Sunday, 1 June 2014

Shiny and Mighty Österlen

Stenshuvud National Park

View from Stenshuvud National Park towards south and Simrishamn.

Our plans were really to go to Lund to visit an exhibition by Gudrun Sjödén but we then decided to use this option a little later. Instead we drove south to Österlen on a sunny and warm summer day. Österlen is a region that does not have exact "borders" but we understand that Simrishamn, Kivik and e.g. Tomelilla is part of it and Ystad again not. May we say that Ystad is a westerly gateway to Österlen? Geographically this is the southeastern corner of Skåne and with Stenshuvud National Park it also has an elevation of 97 meters above the sea level. Route 9 takes you down past Degeberga and Brösarp. Brösarps Backar lure many visitors to this beautiful hilly, green area. No stopping this time for us but surely next time when we pass the region again. We also passed Kivik and Stenshuvud with the idea to first visit Simrishamn and the other two mentioned places on our return. Due to its natural beauty a few words first of this National Park (

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The route to Stenshuvud National Park is very well marked and the visitor center guide you to several alternative hiking routes that are not too long and where walking is easy. You can choose between low- and highland / beach or do both of them as we did. First we went up to Stenshuvud itself along a 1 km long path. This is uphill but yet friendly enough to allow you to carry your picnic basket with you. There is a picnic area next to the visitor centre but if you want to enjoy the magnificent scenery then why not take your coffee there. First part of the walk is through a beech forest that glows in the sun. What can be more beautiful? The second path (0,5 km) took us down to the beach. After passing a meadow full of flowers you will reach a "mileswhite" sandy shoreline. All-year-promenades streches out from Ystad all the way to Kivik. From Ystad it is possible to set out for diving excursions to explore old shipwrecks. 

Gröna Butiken Orelund

Gröna Butiken at Orelund

We would also like to mention a popular private shop along the route in Rörum, between Kivik and Simrishamn, in the middle of apple-pear-plum-cherry orchards. They offered freshly pressed apple must (juice without additives)for tasting in two varieties; filtered and  non-filtered. Apple must is a true local delicacy. Of all delicacies available we decided for local fresh new potatoes, cucumber and absolutely delicious "flavorino" tomatoes. The texture and taste of the potatoes were previously unexperienced - it was almost shame to enjoy them with marinated herrings. This is a shop worth visiting again. Missed the chandelier above?


Simrishamn, Österlen, Skåne.

Simrishamn is regarded as the "capital" of Österlen where tourism, including a growing marina, is replacing traditional industries like fishing. Old buildings in the side streets have survived giving the visitors an idea of how locals lived in the past - and still do. The church of St. Nikolai in the picture was mentioned for the first time in 1161 and has its name after St. Nicolaus, Patron Saint of the seas. Given the opportunity we visit flee markets, curiosa shops and alike to find some things for our veranda. This one in Simrishamn is one of the bigger ones, but we failed to find what we were looking for. However, close to it was an interesting maritime shop worth another visit. Below photos of the modern harbour with its marina. Top right photo also show Stenshuvud at a distance.

Simrishamn marina.

This week-end was the week end for "Matrundan" a gastronomic event in Österlen. We did visit Gröna Butiken, wanted to visit Nordic Sea Winery that is opening a new visitor center and Kivik Musteri. The two latter places were closed in the afternoon leaving something to experience on our next visit. Our short stay in Kivik was nevertheless interesting. This small and cosy town has a nice harbour area besides its massive fruit industry. The final picture this time is from one of the apple farms very close to the factory of Kivik Musteri. Hope you enjoyed this trip with us.

An apple farm in Kivik.

Musical recommendations: José Manuel SOTO,  Sevilla.

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