Alingsås – the Capital of Swedish Fika
27 minutes from Gothenburg
Cobbled streets, wooden houses with lovely courtyards and cafés in almost every street corner – you have arrived in Alingsås. Welcome!
A guided tour is the best way to explore the café town of Alingsås. On the tour, you will get the chance to hear how Alingås became the Swedish Capital of Fika. And there will, of course, be several stops to taste the famous fika at some of the many cafés in the city.
At Nolhaga you can get a day trip for the whole family. There are things to see, children's activities and, if you like, some relaxation. The grand 19th-century castle is situated in the middle of the park and there is a smaller zoo where it is possible to pet some of the city's farm animals located next to the castle. Also, there is a newly opened aqualand with a spa-section just outside of the park.
Take a ride with the popular steamboat Herbert. Back in 1905 Herbert was a tugboat and has with its original machinery become a piece of engineering history. The boat ride takes place on the lake Mjörn with a stop on the island Risön which has a president and national anthem of their own!
This is another well-visited summer park. Artists appear on the stage, markets open up, and parties are being held in the evenings. In addition, there is a café and a beach if you would like to have a swim.
Travel back in time on a 12 km long train travel in the scenic landscape with a view over the lake Anten. You can buy your ticket at the station where there is a museum worth checking out, too.
Floda and Nääs – where Industrial Meets Modern
26–42 minutes from Gothenburg
The area around Floda & Nääs has something for everyone – whether you want to explore historic buildings, mooch around craft shops, eat really well or just relax in a hot sauna.
Ecological sustainability is the main concept at Garveriet in Floda. Here you can have lunch in the restaurant, a cup of coffee in the café, shop for some bread in the bakery, or take a cooking class in “zero waste”. The menu is always season-based and therefore regulated by what the local farmers have to offer.
Enjoy a meal in an old ironworks storage – the restaurant Jernbruket has a rural and rustic setting from its history as a iron factory. The meal is cooked on a wood-fire grill and the food is from either their own farming or from loval farmers nearby.
The castle Nääs slott is a well-preserved gem with a lot of history. It is located in the park Slottsparken next to a beach and a stables. The interior looks exactly as it did in the late 19th century when the private owner deceased. There are guided tours of the castle that will show you through different floors and rooms while learning about the castle’s history.
Slöjd & Byggnadsvård is the shop to go to for anyone that is into craftmanship. You can get loads of advice, look at cool exhibitions and take part in a class to develop your skills in crafts. Mulle Mecks' (Gary Gadget's) carpentry shop is located just next to Slöjd & Byggnadsverk. It targets the younger craftsmen between 4–10 who would like to learn more about crafts and arts. It is Gary Gadget himself that teaches and supervises the kids how to use a hammer, a saw and a drill while building their own crafts.
Fasten your walking boots and take a friend on a lovely Sunday walk along the walk Gotaleden. The trail was inaugurated this summer and goes from Kungsportsplatsen in Gothenburg all the way to Alingsås. If you just want to walk part of it you will pass convenient train stations at several places along the trail.
Nääs Fabriker is an old textile factory that has now transformed into a popular tourist destination with several fashion stores, a hotel, restaurants, and a café – although, the rural setting is still there. The hotel has a great view over the lake Sävelången, with an outdoor jacuzzi, sauna, gym and a small beach.
Sweden’s biggest golf complex is located on a peninsula between the lakes Mjörn and Sävelången. There are three 18-hole courses to choose between and a multi-course with regular gold, frisbee golf and football golf. It is the well-renowned designer Gert Wingårdh that is behind the architecture of the big hotel adjoining the golf complex.
Hönö – a Gem on the West Coast
60 minutes from Gothenburg
At the island Hönö you can experience the best of Gothenburg’s archipelago – all year round. Fishing boats, restaurants, and a scenic setting makes Hönö a great destination – summer and winter.
Hönö Klåva is the harbour and the centre of the island, where you will also find most of the stores and restaurants. There are several day trip destinations from the harbour to smaller islands nearby, too, if you are looking to see more of the archipelago.
The island of Vinga is Gothenburg’s westernmost point and with its 29 metres tall lighthouse it meets the Atlantic Ocean. The publicly loved artist Evert Taube grew up on Vinga and his childhood home is now a well-visited museum. The island is a popular destination during the summer for swimmers and sun lovers.
Enjoy the beautiful scenery or explore the island by bike, which might be the very best way to do so. There is a bike rental place by Hönö Klåva, but it’s also possible to bring your own bike on the ferry. Hönö’s nature has a great deal to offer.
Ersdalen is a very popular nature reserve on Hönö and especially for those who enjoy the climbing form bouldering. There are hundreds of “bouldering problems” with a varying degree of difficulty. The spectacular nature and unusual environment date back 12,000 years to the time when it was covered in ice.
Gunnebo House and Gardens – a Unique 1700s Summer Villa
26 minutes from Gothenburg
Just fifteen minutes away from Gothenburg you will find the castle Gunnebo slott – an oasis for anyone who would like to experience a bit of history along with a lively culture preserve. The area around the castle is as good in its full summer glow as in its winter style.
Take a stroll through the many well-groomed gardens and wild vegetation that covers the castle on every side. One of the gardens, with statues and trimmed bushes, is placed right in front of the grand façade. Two of the gardens provide vegetables and spices for the restaurant and the English park with narrow paths which leads to a lake.
If you’re hungry you should go to the servants building, next to the castle, where the lunch restaurant and café Gunnebo Kaffehus och Krog is found. Everything on the menu is organic and based on the season. And the food served has an affiliation to the castle and the 18th century.
The Edible Country is something unique. You can book a table out in the nature where you and your party will cook your own meal of food from the local farmers. The table is possible to book May–September.
Gunnebo House has an immaculately beautiful interior that it’s only possible to see accompanied by a guide. On the 45 minute tour you’ll go round the whole building and your guide will entertain you with their favourite anecdotes about Gothenburg in the 18th century.
Saturdays and Sundays
Marstrand – Sweden's Sailing Capital
53 minutes from Gothenburg
The world elite in sailing come to Marstrand each year along with a massive audience for the spectacular competitions on the island. But Marstrand is more than just sailing, there are many more things that you can do here. Paddling kayak, go shopping along the harbour, have some ice cream on the docks or try the famous seafood platter.
For anyone interested in nature Marstrand is the right destination. The island has an interesting history of art, architecture, and culture along with idyllic nature. If you have the time, walking is probably the best way to experience everything that is to see on Marstrand. Narrow alleys and old paths by the ocean will get you around the island. One of the trails will lead you to the 17th-century fortress Carlsbergs Fästning.
With the ocean as next door neighbour seafood is a natural component at many of the local restaurants. The restaurant Grand Tenan has made a name for itself with its gratinated Nephrops and beautiful outdoor seating next to the ocean. The restaurant Ottos Kök has created a menu from local seafood and its Toast Skagen is world-class. At Marstrands Wärdshus you can have a delicious and renowned seafood platter.
At Grand Hotel Marstrand you can stay in royal style. King Oscar II spent much of his time at the hotel which is still furnished in his contemporary time. A more modern and Scandinavian styled hotel is the Marstrands Havshotell where you will wake up with a view over the ocean. There is also a chance to stay at fully-equipped apartments on the island, at Villa Maritime, if you are looking for some more independence.
July 1-5 there will be a big event held on Marstrand, where the best sailors in the world join together to compete in GKSS Match Cup for men, and Nordea Women’s Trophy for women. The event is one of the biggest sailing competitions in Northern Europe and will gather thousands of fans.
Styrsö & Vrångö – Archipelago Idylls
48–57 minutes from Gothenburg
The lovely islands Styrsö and Vrångö is located along the Gothenburg's archipelago. When visiting, it's quite difficult to believe that there is a big city located so close.
Experience Styrsö and Vrångö on foot. The distance between the islands is short and, on the islands, too. The roads are car-free and narrow, which has led to paths around the island just for hiking.
The boarding house Pensionat Styrsö has a delightful personal touch to it. None of the rooms are decorated the same way and from the dining area, you will see the waves of the west coast.
The café on the same island is another gem. On the menu, you will find home-grown herbs, and there is even a gin & tonic bar with live music. A popular spot for both tourists and the locals.
Vrångö is known for the the many swim-friendly spots, with both beaches to walk in the ocean or rocks to jump from. The scenic nature is also associated with Vrångö, where it’s possible to find several rare plants and flowers.