Abisko National Park
If you’ve made your way to the northernmost parts of Sweden, Abisko National Park is just one of those must see places.
The areas this far north are rightfully considered to be the last wilderness of Europe – and the scenery is truly breathtaking. A combination of mountains, valleys and a rugged, peaceful landscape more than 200 km north of the arctic circle gives Abisko a very unique environment that attracts over 40.000 people to travel here every year. Many of them are coming for all of the adventurous activities that Abisko has to offer, while others just want to experience the peace and serenity of such a remote region. In either case, most of them find that it’s worth the trip.
If visiting in the winter
During the winter there are tons of exciting activities in Abisko. Dog sledding, ice climbing, snowshoe hiking, reindeer tours, snow mobile tours and cross-country skiing are just a few examples. The nearby ski resorts of Björkliden and Riksgränsen also offers some great opportunities to go backcountry skiing.
Abisko’s location this far north, and the absence of light pollution, makes it an ideal place to see the northern lights (or the aurora borealis). In fact, it’s one of the most popular locations in Scandinavia and many activities and tours in Abisko are combined with trying to watch the lights. Under the right conditions, it’s a very powerful experience with such a luminous display above the dead-quiet wilderness.
Unfortunately they are only possible to see during the winter as the summer sky is far too bright.
If visiting in the summer
During the summer, Abisko is a very popular hiking region and one of the most popular trails in Sweden, Kungsleden, passes through the area. If you’re not visiting for long, there are also shorter tours available that takes you up on the nearby peaks for some really stunning views. If you’re not into hiking, there are many other activities to explore such as fishing and hunting in the Abisko area during spring, summer and autumn.
A few weeks around the summer solstice, which usually occurs on June 21, you may experience the midnight sun with 24 hours of daylight in Abisko. During this period, the sun will not descend below the horizon and remains visible all night.
Accommodation in Abisko
Accommodation is available in the form of hotels, hostels or rentable houses and cabins in Abisko. There are several great options in the area such as the Abisko Mountain Lodge, Abisko Turiststation and the homely Abisko Guesthouse.
Another good option is to stay at the ski resorts of Björkliden or Riksgränsen, which are about 20 and 40 minute drive away respectively.
How to get there?
Abisko is reachable by the E10 highway, about 1,5 hour drive from the city of Kiruna. It’s a really beautiful drive but if you’re driving during the winter, remember to plan for a bit longer trip and lower your speed.
Kiruna is located very far north in Sweden and if you’re not in the mood for the long drive up there, you can either take the train or a quick domestic flight. While in Kiruna, it’s very convenient to rent a car and drive yourself, or take the bus or the train out to Abisko.
If you can, you should definitely try to stop by the incredible Ice Hotel if you’re visiting during the winter.
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