From sensing history in old buildings with creaking floorboards and antique furnishings to feeling nature come alive as your tree hut gently sways with the wind, the selection of interesting lodging opportunities are numerous in Kvarken.
You can spend the night inside a glass house underneath a millions of stars sparkling above you, or in an old lighthouse overlooking the Bothnian Sea, listening to the soothing waves as you fall asleep.
Perched in the middle of the UNESCO World Heritage Site Höga Kusten, on the small and steep island Högbonden, Högbonden fyr offers unique lodging in its old lighthouse residence. With a total of 30 hostel style beds divided between the lighthouse itself and the garden house, the simplicity of the place materialises in the lodging itself. The tranquil and quiet atmosphere high above the Bothnian Sea makes it the ideal place to relax, explore and be at one with nature.
During the day, you can explore nature and wildlife around the area. At night, waves gently lapping against rocks will put you to sleep. If you don’t feel comfortable sharing a dorm with other travellers, you can book a separate bedroom. Bring your own bedding or rent some at the lighthouse, and be prepared to share bathroom facilities with the other guests.
On the other side of the Bothnian sea, in the Finnish archipelago, there’s another interesting island that offers unique accommodation. On the small, but constantly growing, Tankar Island you can get acquainted with original and genuine archipelago lifestyle by staying in an old and simple wooden guest cabin located in the cozy island village.
Enjoy your evenings in the warm and flickering light from the open fireplace, and listen to the calming crackling of the wood slowly burning before you bed down for the night in bunk beds. Bedding can be brought by guests or rented at location.
Situated along the Umeälven River in the region of Umeå’s beautiful countryside, Granö Beckasin offers unique bird’s nest lodging in one of six tree houses as well as in their ECO-hotel built using sustainable materials. As the sun sets, you can enjoy airy views of the river from your tree hut porch, take in the sounds of nature, and sleep as your tree hut gently rocks you to sleep from the movement of the trees, after a day filled with outdoor adventures, educational nature activities or discovering wildlife.
In a more secluded area in the middle of the Finnish woods, Emmes Retreat offers a tranquil place for silence and mindfulness, forest bathing and yoga. Cradled between tree trunks, four separate tree huts at Emmes Retreat is the place to rejuvenate and reconnect with nature as you get a good night’s sleep. Wake up to the sounds of birds welcoming the day, and enjoy your morning coffee on your private tree hut porch overlooking the forest and nearby lake.
Emmes Retreat has a yoga-treehouse and of course, a sauna with a lake view. Photo: Lola Akinmade Akerstrom
If you prefer a view to the calming sea and the midnight sun or millions of stars as the darkness surrounds you at night directly from your bed, the glass houses at Kalles Inn is the perfect choice for you. Situated in the Finnish archipelago, where civilization ends and nature starts, the glass houses represent a middle ground between the full comfort of a hotel room and the wild elements outside. Rest and relax in fully soundproof huts with a 180° degree view over the sea and horizon after a day of exploration or a visit to the traditional smoke sauna or the lighthouse sauna found at the property.
Another place made to enjoy nature from the comfort of modern and fully equipped lodging, are the stand alone cabins at Glasbruket Resort, also located in the constantly rising Kvarken archipelago. These large cabins are perfect for big families, companies or groups of friends looking for a unique place to be at one with nature. Each building is equipped with a glassed-in patio, three bedrooms, fully equipped kitchen, bathroom and a private sauna and a luxurious outdoor spa.
In the middle of the Swedish forest close by river Vindelälven, five wilderness cabins have been built to fit in with the surrounding nature at Forsknäckarna. Enjoy wilderness meals in the big Sámi tepee or socialise with other guests in the sauna and hot tubs found at the property after an exciting day of white river rafting.
If you are more into activities involving husky dogs, Aurora Borealis Adventures arranges overnight stay in one of their tepees, just across the river from Forsknäckarna.
It is not only nature you can get closer to while choosing the perfect lodging. In an abandoned old farm house in the Finnish countryside, Wanha Tupa emerged in 2010. After a complete renovation done according to old building traditions, Wanha Tupa now represents a glimpse back in time and let’s you live rural life like they did in centuries past, even for just a weekend.
Skillfully furnished farmhouse Wanha Tupa. Photo: Lola Akinmade Akerstrom
The house is authentically decorated and furnished, and its creaking floorboards adds sounds of history to the building. With 16 beds, a large living and dining room and a kitchen to do your own cooking, this perfectly makes for a quiet rural family getaway. Prepare your self-caught fish in the covered barbeque area or renew your energy from a sauna experience in its traditional Finnish wooden sauna. Speaking of energy, as you walk through the house you might even feel the presence of former residents of the house, if you are open to those kind of experiences!
Another place where you can get close to history and culture, is in the unique 200 year old sea merchant residence at Hotel Krepelin in the Finnish town of Kristinestad. Even though the external part of the buildings are kept in its original state, it has fully renovated interiors with modern bathroom facilities and a fully equipped kitchen. All the nine different apartments are furnished in an old homely style to make your stay as authentic and cozy as possible. Chat with your holiday neighbours in the common area between the historical buildings, or relax after a day of adventures in the privacy of your own little garden in front of your apartment.