Monday, 3 August 2015

Summer on Ivö island

Summer on the fairy-tale Ivö Island

Ivö is Scanias largest island,
situated in lake Ivö and
reachable by a a ferry from Barum.

The northern part of Ivö island with its lush vegetation reminds of a scene from a fairy-tale.

My previous visit to Ivö was early this year with a promise to be back to experience the summer high season when the island turns into a green oasis welcoming many national and international tourists. The island has 170 inhabitants and is Scanias largest island. A limestone layer contain fossils dating to the cretaceous period 70 million years ago. Typical fossils would be belemnites, mussels, brachiopods and ammonites. Sharp teeth and parts of skeletons of large lizard like animals called plesiosaurs has also been found. During 1880's until 1950's the island had a kaolin and limestone quarry. Kaolin was used to manufacture china, porcelain, paper, rubber, paint and many other products. Now tourism and agriculture is important but the island also produces ginger breads for Sweden and Germany. During the high season the daily production reaches 400.000 units.

The wonderful nature inspire to many kind of activities.

Visitors can stay at one of the two camping sites or at Ivögården B&B. Alternatively Kungsgården, a private farm with long traditions since 1848, offer the chance of enjoying farm life with its animals and crop cultivation. They all organize daily activities ranging from canoeing, cycling, water skiing to fishing. The northern area, where the quarry was, is a fossil rich area that can be visited by yourself or by joining an excursion tour to the area.

Ivögården (center) and the gorgeous nature on the island.

For anyone interested do ask for courses on cooking, marmalade production and cheese tasting. If you do not have the opportunity to stay on the island then the town of Bromölla offer programs, too. Humleslingan takes you on a 5 mile long trip around the island and the boat Klacken around on the lake with a stop at Ivö.

The church of Ivö and wheat fields next to Ivögården in the center of the village.

The church of Ivö is in roman style and it was built in the 13th century probably on the initiative of the bishop of Lund. It is one of the oldest brick-stone churches in Sweden. The wall paintings of fresco is dating back to the 14th century and the baptismal font in the church to the 13th century. Other old relics are displayed by the University of Lund (historical museum). 

Ivö church is dating back to the 13th century.

Ivö is a historical island with many tales to tell. You may discover the well of Ursula that is said to have transformed water into vine, the mystic caves that carry ancient fossils, the cellar of Ivöhus (remains of a stronghold where bishop Andreas Sunesson lived his last years) or the red ruins of Bratting Castle that is said to have sunk to the bottom of Ivö lake. If you take a tour at Klacken you will see what is left of the quarry and enjoy the lush shoreline while enjoying picnic or a barbecue at facilities provided.

Wild flowers of the season at Klacken shores.

Klacken shoreline by lake Ivö.

Ivö has much to offer but it all starts with one main issue; the relaxed environment and beautiful nature for anyone to enjoy. Activities are available for all in the family and excursions to nearby Kristianstad and its Vattenrike another opportunity. Have a great end to your holidays and a wonderful and sunny August!


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