Tuesday, 1 July 2014

Hitting Eastern Sands

A promenade in Kristianstad - Vattenriket Näsby Fält (Field).

We have taken a day to explore Skåne's eastern shoreline starting from Brösarps Backar and moving down towards Sandhammar and Ales Stenar in Kåseberga in southernmost parts of the region. Along the route we admired the  natural beauty of Havängen and the rather exotic small coastal villages of Brantevik and Skillinge. Obviously one day is not nearly enough for an in-depth review but we hope that the pictures will talk for themselves. For Stenshuvuds National Park see the earlier post.


Beautiful promenades in the hills of Brösarps Backar.

Brösarps Backar is regarded as the gateway to the shiny Österlen region and also a part of one of the largest natural reserves of Sweden (Verkeån). It dates back to the ice ages and has a sandy soil. It is well known for its flora and is kept open by grazing. An old steam engine runs to St- Olof and the apple district is "around the corner". The northern hills are by route 9 and very easily accessible. Also Havängen, our next stop, is on the other side of the road so this region alone offer plenty to do for a day's visit. 


Havängen with its long white beaches and blooming fields.

Havängen is a well known recreational area but its fantastic landscape nevertheless took us by surprise. The short drive from route 9 to the beaches passes a wine yard and traditional habitation. The beach welcome picnickers and sunbathers for a swim and the hostel provide for accommodation. Interestingly, some two kilometers out in the sea bottom 10000 years old pine remnants have been found and a 5500 years old grave nearby, dated to the stone ages, can also be visited (Wikipedia).


A meadow by the beach at Simris.

From Simrishamn a smaller route will take you south along the coast with miles of white beaches, and beautiful small villages with a continental atmosphere. A small village, Simris, just after Simrishamn offer the above scenery and a parking space where to stop for a walk for photographing. Skåne is an agricultural region and domestic animals stay outside for the long summer. Having entered the meadow over a walkway I ran into some cows. Not expecting them on the beach these rather big animals startled the photographer but we quickly reached an understanding on my, then acceptable, trespassing.


Brantevik, a summer paradise offering B&B facilities.

Brantevik is a small village with some 400 inhabitants with picturesque houses and B&B facilities. It has evolved from a fishing and farming community into a popular tourist resort. Frans Löfström describes Brantevik as the largest seafaring community in Sweden with its 226 registered ships at the end of 19th century. During these times shipping companies where mushrooming in this area. Also Skillinge, the neighbor village, was big in this business and the entire coastal region possessed an impressive 700 ships. The villa also claims to possess the longest liars bench in Sweden, picture above. In July all jazz enthusiasts are offered an impressive program me with Tommy Körberg, Lill Lindfors and others. Sounds great!

"Corporate main office" at Branteviken.

SKILLINGE, the neighboring village has a slightly larger population and is also a popular summer village with its large guest harbour. Tourism and fishing are the key sources of livelihood. The village has an active business climate with over 100 companies that collaborate closely with local interest groups in order to get their voice heard up in the "national hierarchy" (www.skillinge.com). Anyone in for berries? Skillinge organizes a Goosberry Festival in the beginning of August. Other food enthusiast will find Provence-like restaurants. To me, these two villages carry a slight atmosphere of a leisurely labelled French countryside at its best.


Sandhammaren Lighthouse watch over the south-eastern waters in Skåne.

Sandhammaren is one of the most important sand-dune areas in Sweden and the white beaches are said to be one of the nicest. They are continuously shaped by waves and streams. In early 19th century the shallow waters made vessels go down before a provisory lighthouse was built. The present lighthouse was finished by 1862 and was the first of the so called Heidenstam lighthouses - light enough to be built on soft grounds. The above picture really nicely fills up my series of different lighthouses in Europe.


Dag Hammarskjölds summer residence.

The former UN Secretary-General Dag Hammarskjöld purchased the Backaåkra estate in 1957 in order to preserve this moor landscape overlooking the Baltic Sea. After his death in 1961 the Swedish Tourist authority has been looking after the museum containing memories of Mr. Hammarskjölds life and achievements. At this moment the museum itself is closed but the surroundings are stunning and the statue of Mr. Hammarskjöld is at display in the garden. Very much worth a visit.

KÅSEBERGA - Ale's Stones

A fantastic scenery at Kåseberga.

The program for this day is coming to a close with the visit to Kåseberga Ale's Stenar (Stones). This is a megalithic monument probably created during the iron age. It is in the form of a stone ship containing 59 heavy boulders (Wikipedia). Bob G. Lind has written about the origins of Ale's Stones and it seems there is no clear understanding of the reason for its construction. But the fact remains that it is designed with skill on an ideal place for astronomical observations using ancient know-how. For more information see www.alesstenar.info

This has been a most rewarding and educational day out in the field; learning to know Haväng, Brantevik & Skillinge, Sandhammaren, Backåkra and Ale's Stones. Besides being on a beautiful spot the Ale's Stones inspires to read more about the background and know-how that existed already in ancient times. 


Kåseberga Poppies

Hope you have enjoyed todays ride. Have a great day and take care!


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