Right of Public Access
Don’t disturb or destroy!
Sweden’s wonderful natural landscape is open to us all, with scents, birdsong, blooming meadows and the peace of quiet of the forest. However, we must treat the natural landscape with respect and show consideration to animals and other people.
It is permitted to jog, ride and ski across land owned by others, provided there is not damage to crops, afforestation or the like. However, you may not pass across or reside on private grounds without permission. This is considered trespassing. Plots which are not always enclosed may be located near a living area. Residents here are entitled to be left in peace – the “domiciliary peace zone”. If the building is restricted from visibility, you may pass nearby, although no closer than 10 metres.
It is permitted to pitch a tent for one day or more on land which is not used for farming, and is not located nearby a living area. The nearer a residential building you pitch, the greater the risk that you may disturb someone – and the more important it is to request permission from the landowner. How long you are permitted to camp depends on the circumstances. Camping in close proximity to a plot of land is highly inadvisable – even for just one night – without permission. Slightly different rules apply to caravans.
Travelling across fields and woodland
It is forbidden to drive a car, motorbike, moped or other motor vehicle across terrain or on roads which are closed off to motor traffic. Such roads may be signed Förbud mot trafik med motordrivet fordon (Motor vehicles not permitted) or Ensild väg (Private road).
You may park right next to the road. Ensure cars and caravans are parked so they do not block access for others or pose a hazard to traffic.
If you ride across someone else’s land, you must be extremely careful. The risk of damaging the land is extensive. Do not ride on designated jogging tracks or nature trails, or in other areas where you may cause a disturbance. The same applies to cyclists.
You may pass through enclosed areas provided there is not damage to fencing. Make sure gates are closed properly to ensure cattle do not escape. Naturally, climbing over fences into plots of land is forbidden.
Making a fire is permitted only if there is zero risk of the fire spreading. In times of drought, a fire ban may be enforced. Thoroughly extinguish the fire before leaving the site. If the fire spreads, you may be held liable.
Never light a fire directly on a rock. This may cause ruptures and leave an ugly stain on the landscape.
Swimming and boats
You are permitted to bathe and moor your boat for one or more days, and go ashore at any location, with the exception of plots of land or where the authorities have restricted access, for example, to protect bird life. How long you are permitted to stay depends on the circumstances. The same rules apply here as regards camping.
It is permitted to row, paddle or operate a motor boat on water owned by others. Bear in mind that specific restrictions may be in effect, for example, speed limits, refusal of access or a ban on water skiing. Those operating motor boats are requested to show particular consideration.
Take your rubbish with you
If you’ve been camping or enjoying a picnic in the woods or fields, make sure you tidy up after yourself. Never leave bags of rubbish beside a full bin or refuse sack, as wild animals may rip them and remove the contents. Glass, cans and capsules may harm animals as well as people, while plastic bags may cause great damage if consumed by animals.
Picking flowers and berries
You may not take twigs, branches, bark, birch bark, leaves, acorns, nuts or tree resin from growing trees. This is considered theft or damage. Naturally, you may not fell growing trees or bushes.
You may pick wild berries and flowers, mushrooms, fallen branches and dry twigs lying on the ground. Certain flower species are rare, with the risk of becoming extinct. Such species are protected and may not be picked. Check with the Country Administrative Board, for example, to find out which species are protected in the area you are visiting.
Keep dogs on a lead
You may be accompanied by your dog in the countryside, however, from 1 March to 20 August, they’re not permitted to roam free in forests and fields. Even during other times of the year, you must keep an eye on your dog to ensure it does not cause any harm.
Don’t disturb or destroy!
This is the rule of thumb for Public Right of Access.