My name is Daniel and I am the founder of the travel blog Traveler’s Edition on dryden.se. I live in Östersund, just on the outskirts of Sweden’s beautiful mountains, and love nature and all it has to offer. Today I am the guest blogger on Our Scandinavia and I’m about to tell you about one of Sweden´s most interesting places – Gotland. And what it’s all about off season!
Gotland, Sweden’s largest island, is a popular holiday destination, and most tourists visit the island during the summer. Imagine the warm and sunny days on the fine sandy beaches, day trips to sea stacks and relaxed walking along the city wall in Visby. To go there at any time other than July and August feels strange to many people.
Maybe it’s time to think again?
My first visit was on Gotland in the fall, and I chose perhaps the least glamorous month of them all. November is not known as the most beautiful month of the year, but the mere thought of empty hotels, deserted beaches and little traffic on the roads made me a little extra attracted. I was right! The rugged landscape was a good fit for November with its cold winds from the Baltic Sea that threw the ocean right in my face.
Do you doubt still? Let me convince you! Here are my top five reasons to visit the island of Gotland off season, when all the other tourists have gone home!
1. Free from tourists
The breakfast room at the hotel is empty, no crowds at lunch restaurants and if you like to book a table for dinner; just call and say what time you arrive. There is also no queues for the ferry to Fårö, and there is never any congestion at parking lots. Sure, many restaurants out there in the smaller resorts on the island have been closed and there are no bathing weather, but suddenly you will find a small cozy café that is open. And then you’re one of the few guests!
2. The landscape looks the same in November
Gotland´s barren landscape of windswept cliffs and rocky shores are often without vegetation. This means that it looks the same in November as in July. Sure, the water is not very inviting if you want to swim, but to stand and watch the sea is a thrill in itself.
3. Best service
You will sometimes be almost alone in the restaurant, which is great chance to be guaranteed food cooked just for you. Serving staff also have time to talk to you as a guest and perhaps offer the little extras as a thank you for staying right at their restaurant.
4. Reasonable prices
As hotels are often half empty in the fall and prices drop compared with July, I paid a pretty small sum for my three nights on the island. You can find really good accommodation for a reasonable price, and sinking into a warm hot tub after a day of autumn winds in the face is really cozy!
Maybe it’s just me, but I am really allure in most weather! Whether it is 25 ° C and bright sunshine, or -2 ° C and biting winds from the Baltic Sea. Bring the right clothes that will thrill even in November, when the sun sinks down at 16 o’clock in the afternoon. And the fact is – a cup of coffee never tastes as good as when one closes the door behind him as the November wind is tearing into the house so it creaks at the joints.
Gotland off season for me was a nice experience, and I really recommend you to dare to try! It is a beautiful island. Although it was July.
Gotland and communications
- Flights from Stockholm, both Bromma Airport and Arlanda Airport, takes under an hour and costs from 1500 SEK return.
- Boats leave from Oskarshamn and Nynäshamn on the Swedish east coast, the tour takes about three hours.
- Car rental on the island is easy and relatively inexpensive, and the island is not more than 150 km from north to south so it goes fast to travel between villages.