Relaxed canoeing for adults and families in a beautiful lake system with island camping
Skåne, Sweden's most southerly county, offers beautiful rural landscapes with plenty of scope for a canoe adventure!
The region is wonderful for paddling and Canoe Getaway in Skåne can be reached in just two hours by hourly public transport connections from Copenhagen, making it a perfect choice for a weekend escape for couples, families or groups of friends!
Your tour takes you along Holjeån on a river trail which stretches from Östafors in the north to the lake of Ivosjön in the south. The river offers leisurely paddling in lovely countryside through the Holjeå valley region and has an almost tropical feel.
Camping equipment is provided for overnighting at the network of camping spots. Photo: WL.
Network of camping spots to choose from with fireplaces
The water is relatively clear and the river varies between sections of rapids (you do not pass these on the standard route) and gently-flowing sections. The river opens up into the Ivo Lake archipelago, a beautiful lake dotted with islands ideal for exploring and camping.
Overnights are wild camping and there is a network of designated spots to choose from (tips will be given at the start of the tour) - fireplaces are provided at the locations for preparing food and enjoying a cosy evening by the fire!
With distance to cover flexible, the tour is ideal for adults or families. Photo: WL.
Wonderful birdlife and the flexibility to vary route and distance
Lake Ivo is also rich in birdlife, with possibilities to see a variety of species including osprey, hobby, black-throated diver, common crane, grey heron, common sandpiper, great crested grebe and common tern.
The total minimum distance from start to finish is just 12km, but the lake area offers great flexibility to do as much or as little paddling as you wish during the tour with plenty of possibilities to plan your own exploration of the lake area and create your own adventure. Alternatively, use some of the time to explore some of the wonderful hiking trails or perhaps a little fishing.
Canoe Getaway in Skåne is ideal for adults or families looking for an accessible, flexible canoe tour in an attractive rural area. Camping equipment (tent, sleeping mat, toilet spade, saw and axe, rubbish bag, fresh water container, camping stove with fuel) is included as standard and provisions can be purchased locally before your tour.
Take some extra time for hiking in combination with your canoe tour
The Lake Ivo area is ideal for canoeing for 4-5 days, but you can also extend your trip with extra days, either resting at your island campsite or spending an extra night or two at the canoe centre and doing some day hikes.
From the canoe centre, there are two very convenient options for hiking:
- Näsumaviksleden, a path through the wetland area close to the centre, length 5.5km when starting/ending at the centre (also a great option for your arrival day if you are camping at the canoe centre before beginning your tour).
- A long-distance hiking path, Skåneleden, passes just 2km from the canoe centre and so the 1st and 2nd stages of this trail can easily be explored as part of your trip. You can hike north or south as far as you wish, either returning along the path or catching a bus back to the canoe centre. This is a beautiful section of the path, passing through the largest beech forest in Scandinavia!
Why not add a day or two for hiking in combination with your canoe tour? Photo: Nature Travels.
Canoeing for odd-numbered groups
Canoes used are 2-person Canadian canoes but can also accommodate three persons. For odd numbers, there are two possibilities. This does not affect the price and can be decided on arrival - please see under "What's included" for more information:
- Paddle three persons in one canoe. Note of course that this will limit space for packing.
- Extra person paddles own canoe. If you have not paddled before, this can take a short time to get used to, but otherwise presents few problems. Bear in mind that paddling solo will add to the level of challenge, especially in windy conditions.
Arrive to the canoe centre any time between 09.00 and 17.00 (please let us know your arrival time in advance).
You can choose this day whether you wish to have transfer to the start point to begin your canoe tour (NB: you must arrive by latest 16.00 for this option - see details below) or whether you would prefer to camp this night at the canoe centre.
If camping at the canoe centre, the surrounding area offers good possibilities for hiking trails (see under "Description > Take some extra time for hiking in combination with your canoe tour"), or you can choose to do an evening paddle tour on the lake. At the canoe centre there is toilet, fresh water and barbecue area available.
This can be decided on arrival, but if you know your plans in advance, please us know.
Canoe Days (1-3 or 2-3)
Transfer to the start point of your canoe tour near Västanå mill (either on arrival Day 1 or on Day 2 after camping at the canoe centre).
Today you paddle the Holjeån water trail through an attractive rural landscape of fertile countryside around 5.5km to Lake Ivo, which offers good possibilities for paddling in a more open, lakeland landscape and for fishing. Begin your exploration of the lake area before choosing an overnight spot to pitch your tent on one of the islands in the lake.
NB: If water levels are suitable, you can also choose to be transported 6km further up river to begin your tour at Östafors. However, water levels cannot be known in advance, so arrangements for this are made locally on arrival when conditions are suitable. This stretch offers a landscape of rolling countryside, agricultural land and beech forest. An additional local transport fee ( SEK, about £9/person) will apply. There are some rapids on this section which you will need to lift the canoe past. This then gives a paddle distance of around 12km down to Lake Ivo, so this option will normally be suitable only if starting canoeing early on Day 1 or staying the first night at the canoe centre to begin canoeing on Day 2.
The rest of the tour offers the flexibility to do as much or as little paddling as you wish as you explore Lake Ivo - how much time you choose canoeing, swimming, or simply relaxing and enjoying the view is up to you!
You will return to the canoe centre on Day 3, unless of course you have chosen to add extra days(s) to your tour.
The area is normally suitable for tour duration up to max 5 days/4 nights, but you are welcome to add more days if you wish, for example to plan a rest day or day paddle tour from the same camping spot.
On your last day of canoeing, please return to the canoe centre by latest 16.30.
You paddle to the canoe centre on the shore of the lake, where your tour ends. Depending on the time you have available this day, you can choose to have a full day's canoeing on the lake or simply take the shortest route back to the canoe centre to end earlier if you are travelling home. Please return to the canoe centre by latest 16.30.
Dates & Prices»
Start any day by arrangement between 5th May and 24th September between 09.00 and 17.00 (latest end date 24th September; note that you should be prepared for lower temperatures if travelling at the beginning/end of the season).
Duration: 3 days/2 nights (option to extend with extra night(s), normally up to max. 5 days/4 nights).
|3 days/2 nights per adult||GBP|
|3 days/2 nights per child under 16||GBP|
Group rates are available for groups of more than 10 persons. Please contact us for details.
|Extra canoe tour day/adult/day||GBP|
|Extra canoe tour day/child under 16/day||GBP|
|Extra night at campsite after tour/adult||GBP|
|Extra night at campsite after tour/child under 16||GBP|
- Extra canoe tour day: Extend your trip with one or two extra tour days (the area is normally suitable for tour durations up to max. 5 days/4 nights, but you are welcome to add more than two extra days if you wish). Price includes canoe and camping equipment as for the main tour.
- Extra night at campsite: You are welcome to camp at the canoe centre for a night before and/or after your tour. Includes use of camp facilities and extra night's hire of camping equipment. Canoe hire for extra night is not included - if camping after your tour, you should return your canoe equipment once back at the canoe centre. If camping before the normal Day 1 of your tour, you will collect canoe equipment the following day. NB: This price for extra night(s) applies only if the duration of your canoe tour is at least 3 days/2 nights (i.e. does not apply if your tour is total 3 days/2 nights but you choose to spend the night of Day 1 camping at the canoe centre rather than having transport to the start point - for guests choosing that option, canoe equipment is included for Day 1 and standard 3 days/2 nights package price applies).
What's Included »
The number of canoes and tents provided is flexible depending on your preference. This can be decided on arrival and does not need to be specified in advance, but if you have a particular preference, please let us know. For example, as three persons, two canoes will be reserved for you, but on arrival you can choose if you would prefer to paddle three persons in one canoe and whether you wish to take one larger tent or two tents. This does not affect the price.
- Canoe equipment: Canadian canoe (2-3 persons, normally Linder 525), buoyuancy aids, paddle, pack barrel (60 litres, one per canoe).
- Camping equipment:
- Foam sleeping mat (please bring own sleeping bag and sleeping sheet).
- Tent* (2-3 or 3-4 persons). Tents provided are simple tents suitable for the tour, with inner/outer tent layer and area for storage of packing.
- Trangia-style camping stove* with fuel (please bring own camping plates and cutlery).
- Saw and axe for firewood. One sack of wood per canoe is also included for use at the overnight stops.
- Toilet spade.
- Rubbish bag.
- Fresh water container.
- Transfer: Local transfer between canoe centre and tour start point.
*Exact contents/models may differ from examples shown
- Travel: We do not arrange flights or domestic travel, but are happy to advise on suitable connections and assist you with any aspect of planning your journey. See under "Getting There" for general travel information.
- Sleeping bag/sleeping sheet.
- Camping plates/mug/cutlery.
- Provisions (can be purchased locally).
- Simple fishing equipment and licence can be purchased locally.
- As an alternative to camping, the Lake Ivo area also has the possibility to overnight at guest house/hostel accommodation for one or more nights (arranged locally on arrival). Suggestions will be given in tour information.
Good To Know »
Min. 2 adults required*. General good health and level of fitness. Participants (including children) must be able to swim and enjoy the outdoors. No previous experience required. Recommended minimum age 6 (younger children may be possible by arrangement).
*This tour can also be suitable for solo adult + child(ren), depending on ages of children and previous outdoor experience. Please contact us to discuss your requirements.
What makes this "Easy"?
As a self-guided canoe tour of short duration and with flexible route, you can vary the distance covered and level of challenge as you wish. The network of camping locations makes camping straightforward. Level of challenge will be higher in windy conditions and the lake can be choppy.
NB: Perception of difficulty is very subjective. What is hard to one person may be easy for another and vice versa, depending on factors including level of fitness, age and previous experience. Weather conditions/temperatures can also dramatically affect the actual level of challenge encountered.
For information on any equipment and/or clothing included as standard for this experience, please see under "What's Included".
A detailed recommended packing list for personal items to bring will be sent with your booking documentation.
NB: We advise you not to buy equipment or clothes for your trip or to incur other non-refundable expenses such as flights until you have received confirmation of your booking from us in writing. Note of course that the most appropriate clothing to use as well as the level of challenge experienced during any outdoor activity may vary significantly depending on factors such as the time of year and the particular weather/temperature conditions during your trip.
Preparing for your trip:
For further reading, we also have a number of general information articles to get you ready for your trip, covering a wide variety of topics from what to do on a city break before/after your tour, advice on packing, eyewear for winter and considerations for female travellers.
This experience is ideal for groups. Please contact us to discuss your requirements.
This provider has a written environmental policy.
Getting There »
See below for a summary of travel options. To learn more about how to travel to this experience, please get in touch!
Detailed information on travel will be provided in response to your enquiry. We are happy to advise on suitable connections and assist you with any aspect of planning your journey.
NB: Please ensure that you make a booking with us first and wait for confirmation that your spaces are reserved before making any travel arrangements.
Fly to Copenhagen for direct train (1 hour 45 mins) to Bromölla and local bus (15 mins) to the canoe centre.
Ferry Dover-Dunkirk or Newcastle-Amsterdam for onward train connections to Bromölla.