Sometimes we get the urge to disappear into the wilderness, to get away from the trappings of modern life for a while. This is possible in many places near where we all live, however, we are still connected in some small way. If you truly want to get out in the wild, then the Kungsleden might just be the trip for you.
The Kungsleden is Sweden’s top walking trail and it explores part of the country that not many people visit. In particular, our version of the trip gets you out into the northern part of the trail, into the Arctic Circle.
This is wilderness walking, exploring one of the truly wild areas of Europe. It is an eye opening exploration of the very essence of Sweden.
Distance: The whole trip is 105km with daily walks of around 10-20km.
Grade: Moderate. The grade is similar to that of the West Highland Way or the Camino. Some tougher days, walking on wild, sometimes rocky paths, with the occasional bit of climbing. However, nothing too difficult and as always, the effort is well rewarded.
The tour starts off in Abisko, in Lapland, 200 miles inside the Arctic Circle. From there you head off out into the wilderness, but, before you go we make sure you have everything you need, ensuring you spend the evening with an experienced guide, who will answer any questions you might have before you head off.
While this all sounds slightly daunting, the trail itself is well marked and relatively easy walking, so if you have some experience of long distance walking, this trip will be no problem for you.
Ah, it is just so intensely beautiful! People describe it as the last great wilderness of Europe and you can see why. The expansiveness of the area, the lack of anything but nature nature nature, draws you in and makes you feel like you are the only people in the world. There is something intensely peaceful and primal about immersing yourself so deeply in the natural world that you will undoubtedly come back feeling cleansed.
While the accommodation on the trip is based on shared dorms (though private rooms can be requested) and it all feels relatively basic, hey, there are saunas at many of the overnight stops, so that is pretty flash! Sweden knows how to sauna, and sitting in one of these tiny cabins, perched in the middle of nowhere gives you great cultural insight into Sweden’s way of thinking. An awesome way to pass an evening!
If you go in August/September, the Kungsleden is one of the best places in the world to see the Northern Lights. To sit in the ethereal glow of nature’s most spectacular display, surrounded by like-minded, happy people, fresh from that days walking (or the sauna!) is an experience like no other.
And if none of that gets you excited about the trip, then we should mention that the Kungsleden has been listed as one of the world’s great hikes by National Geographic, so, you know, there is that.
This self-guided walking holiday is a must for anyone who loves nature. You can easily fly to Kiruna airport via Stockholm and you are only 1.5 hours away from the start point at Abisko.
To experience something entirely unique, we completely recommend losing yourself (only metaphorically) on the sublimely beautiful Kungsleden.
If you want to find out more about the trip, contact [email protected] for further information.