From Norway's jagged fjords to Sweden's alpine scenery, Denmark's beautiful beaches and the deep forests of Finland to the stunning glaciers and lava fields of Iceland: the Scandinavian countries offer an infinite playground for outdoor enthusiasts.
Scandinavia's large area consists of Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland, and Iceland. As they are sometimes called, these Nordic countries cover an area of well over 1.3 million square kilometres with some of Europe's most untouched and well-preserved forests. Here, along with the biggest glaciers, the largest national parks and UNESCO World Heritage Sites, you will find the most spectacular fjords, trees, and unspoiled nature. Let's find out where the best places are to hike and which country you should consider basing yourself in to get the best your money can buy on your hiking holiday to Scandinavia.
The Best Hikes In Norway, Scandinavia
With some of the most stunning viewpoints and hiking trails in Europe, Norway is a jewel for adventure seekers beyond doubt. The country has 46 national parks, and more than 3,000 natural protected areas. The highly diverse countryside offers numerous hiking opportunities ranging from world-famous tourist attractions to wild and untamed views. With its majestic and unusual combination of narrow fjords and high mountains, Norway has gained a well-deserved reputation as a major European, outdoor adventure destination.
Visit The Besseggen Ridge Jotunheimen National Park In Norway
The Besseggen Ridge is one of Norway's most popular hiking spots and is within a day hike. The ridge is situated in the beautifully rugged, scenic Jotunheimen National Park. Among them, the National Park is home to snow-capped mountains, including Norway's highest mountain, Galdhøpiggen (2,469 metres, 8,100 feet). The beautifully turquoise alpine lakes; wild, untamed plateaus; and over 50 marked hiking and biking trails draw fans from all over the world.
The highlight of the Besseggen Ridge hike is the spectacular viewpoint from which at various elevations you can see two lakes next to each other. The higher, dark blue Bessvatnet Lake is at 1,374 metres (4,507 feet), and nearly 400 metres (1,312 feet) below that is the emerald Gjende Lake. The beautiful sight of these two lakes is undoubtedly something you will never forget!
The Best Hikes In Sweden, Scandinavia
Sweden has a vast network of beautiful long-distance hiking trails that span the entire country. Such as walking trails that stretch through agricultural areas, dense evergreen forests, crystal clear lakes and the vast wilderness of the Arctic mountains. Thousands of local hikers travel to the wilderness to walk specific trails at the start of summer. Sweden is also an incredible travel destination in search of unforgettable encounters, stunning landscapes, and a greater sense of isolation for a growing number of foreign visitors.
The Kungsleden Trail Northern Sweden
Kungsleden is a 440-kilometre (273 miles) long, spectacular trekking path, also known as the King's Trail or the Royal Trail. It is situated above the Arctic Circle, in the north of Sweden. It was founded in the early 20th century and was once a well-kept secret by the hiking and mountaineering elite of Sweden. Lately, the path has gained growing international interest. This has been named by National Geographic and several other publications as one of the best hikes in the world. Today hiking enthusiasts from all over the world enjoy the trail.
The path is divided into four main parts, each comprising approximately a week of hiking. The northernmost leg between Abisko and Kebnekaise is by far the most prominent part. Twenty mountain huts are located 10-20 kilometres (6-12 miles) apart along the entire path or around a day's walk apart.
The scenery and landscape along the Kungsleden Trail is spectacularly diverse. Thick evergreen forests are in sharp contrast to bland desert tundra. The breathtaking alpine scenery of deep valleys ribboned with rivers, stunning 360-degree views, charming villages, and Kebnekaise, the highest peak in Sweden, are waiting to amaze the walkers. Hiking the popular Kungsleden will give you an incredible Arctic experience and allows you to see some of Scandinavia's most breathtaking locations.
The Best Hikes In Denmark, Scandinavia
Denmark is a beach-lovers paradise. The nation does not offer spectacular climbs as its highest point is 147 metres (482 feet) above sea level. Still, it provides incredibly long and scenic coastlines, sandy beaches and hundreds of islands awaiting discovery. The lush, beautiful countryside of Denmark is filled with spectacular walking and cycling paths.
Travel through heathlands, woodland, marshes and pastures and along the way you can meet several different varieties of wildlife and plants. Move through ancient pine and beech forests and be fascinated by the hair-raising coastal rock formations formed from ancient seabeds with recognizable fossils of fish, insects, reptiles and plants.
The unspoiled nature of Denmark is the ideal habitat for explorers who want to enjoy the freedom and absolute peace of camping legally in the wild. For more than 1,000 camping areas accessible in the wild, a multitude of natural camping opportunities awaits the hikers who move on foot.
Camønoen - The Møn Trail, Denmark
Camønoen is popularly regarded as the most convenient hiking trail in Denmark. It extends between Nyord, Møn, and Bogø for 175 kilometres (108.7 miles). The highlight of the trail is Møn's extremely picturesque white chalk cliffs that rise to a height of more than 100 metres (328 feet) with a sheer drop into the sea. The region is also extremely rich in fossils and spectacular artefacts of prehistory. Typical minerals include sea urchins, fossils of belemnites, and shells of crabs.
That is even more enjoyable for hikers is that, after getting them authorized at the nearest geological museum, they are permitted to keep the fossils that they find, given they are not particularly rare. The area is filled with a wide variety of accommodation options, including fun camping areas, B&B cottages, hostels and private rentals. There are also several food options along the way, as well as outdoor shops.
The Camønoen Trek is a part of the Møn Trail. Anyone who wants shorter journeys will miss the rest of the trail and head straight to the highlight: the stunning white cliffs on the island.
Scandinavia has a lot to offer; it certainly has some of the best hiking destinations in the world. Be sure to book the place that feels best suited to you, or why not just visit them all!