The Stockholm archipelago is the largest in Sweden, consisting of almost 30,000 islands! So whilst a trip to the archipelago is easy to do, choosing the perfect island may not be. Thankfully for me, I didn’t have to choose as I just decided to tag along with some friends who were already headed to the charming island of Grinda.
Located just an hour and forty minutes by boat from central Stockholm, Grinda is a perfect blend of rustic and calm without being too remote and too quiet!
The easiest way of reaching the island is by boat. Waxholmsbolaget and Stromma both have boats leaving from the ferry terminal Strömkajen in Stockholm to Södra Grinda. It’s best to plan the trip in advance and arrive at the ferry terminal well in advance because sometimes the waiting time between ferries can be long, and it’s no fun to miss your boat especially on your way back from the island!
We took the first ferry out at about 9.30am and arrived at Grinda roughly around 11am. Despite being peak summer, the island was really quiet with very few people around. I was told that this was due to the current Corona crisis. There have been very few tourists in Stockholm in general this year. Otherwise, Grinda can get quite busy in summer.
The island is not too big but neither is it tiny. There is a lot of nice wooded areas and treks to choose from, should you wish to hike in the nature. There are also lovely view points and picnic spots along the water for those looking for a relaxed swim.
The island boasts one of the best restaurants in the archipelago – the Grinda Wärdshus. Acclaimed for its Swedish dishes, this restaurant is located in a beautiful art noveau mansion built by Henry Santesson who was the first director of the Nobel Foundation, in 1906. The Grinda Wärdshus is also an inn offering rooms to people staying longer on the island. We had booked a table at the inn and whilst it wasn’t very busy, booking a table is recommended especially during the busy season. The food was absolutely amazing. I had the famous toast skagen – a very traditional Swedish dish made of creamed shrimps served on a toast, along with a seafood stew.
A few steps away from Grinda Wärdshus is Framfickan. Overlooking the water, one can enjoy lovely food and drinks on a huge wooden deck while watching the sun go down. We didn’t get a chance to try this place as it was only opening in the evening.
There is also a cute ice cream shop and a fully-stocked village store where you can buy ready to eat food for your picnic and other essentials if you are camping.
We spent most of our time eating and drinking (not complaining!) and before long, it was time to head back to the docks to catch our ferry back to the city. But the ride on the ferry was a great experience as well because I was seeing the islands fir the first time and being out in the water felt kind of liberating! The islands were dotted with beautiful homes and lush green gardens, many of them boasting their own piers with private boats. That’s the life I say!
I was brought back to reality as our boat docked back in Stockholm, bringing an end to my first but definitely not the last trip to the archipelago!
(Click on the pictures to view gallery)