The Right of Public Access

The wonderful Swedish nature is open to all of us through the Right of Public Access. We can enjoy land, ocean and islands with lovely scents from flowers and seaweed. Listening to birdsongs and experiencing flowering meadows. Hearing the ocean and the silence that spreads towards the horizon.

We must also be careful with nature. We must show consideration to other people and to animals.

In order to care for our heritage, we love to leave nature in a better condition when we are leaving – than when we arrived. It’s all about; Not disturb. Not destroy!

Domestic peace

Walking, jogging, riding and skiing over someone else’s land is allowed – if you do not harm crops, forest planting or the like. But you cannot pass over or stay on private grounds without permission, that is a home crime. The private ground is not always fenced, but it is the area closest to the dwelling house. The residents have the right to be in peace, in the “home peace zone”. If the house is protected from view, you can pass quite close, but preferably not closer than 10 meters.

Camping

Set up a tent one or two days is allowed on land that is not used for agriculture and which is located far from the dwelling house. The closer the inhabited houses you want to camp, the greater the risk that you disturb someone and the greater the reason is to ask the land owner for permission. How long you can camp depends on the circumstances. Just outside a ground, it is highly inappropriate to camp even one night without permission. For a boat the same applies, read more further down.

It is not possible to reserve a campsite for itself. One must not stop another paddler, boat owner from camping at the place where you are.

Our nature is sensitive and in order to avoid wear and tear, all groups with more than 10 people should agree on camp sites with landowners on overnight accommodation.

Pay attention to the local regulations that may restrict your right to camp, moor your boat and park your car, camper or caravan.

To travel in forest and land

It is forbidden to drive a car, motorcycle, moped and other motor vehicles in the terrain or on roads that are closed for motor traffic. Such roads can be marked with the sign ”Förbud mot trafik med motordrivet fordon” or ”Enskild väg”.

Pay attention to the local regulations that may limit your right to park and set up your camper or caravan. More information can be found on the respective municipality’s website.

Where there are no restrictions through nature reserves, Natura 2000 area and similar or local regulations, you can park immediately next to the road. Be sure to set a car and a caravan so that they do not prevent anyone from arriving or becoming a danger to the traffic.

You can pass fenced areas, only if you do not damage fences or scare the animals. Gates you have opened, you must close properly so that cattle do not come loose. Of course, you are not allowed to climb over fencing to the private ground.

Fire

Making fire is only allowed when it is not the least danger of fire. In the event of drought, a general prohibition on fire may apply.
For updates on the fire ban situation read on; https://www.msb.se
Only in Swedish on https://www.dinsakerhet.se/sakrare-fritid/skog-och-mark/brandriskprognos-for-gras–och-skogsbrander/

A fire should be extinguished properly before leaving the site. You can be sentenced to damages if the fire spreads.

Never cook or fire directly on rocks. They burst and it gives ugly sores in nature that cannot be repaired.

Bath and boat

You get to bath, moor your boat one or two days and go ashore everywhere, except on private grounds and where any authority has specifically forbidden access, for example for protection of bird life or other restrictions.
The same rules apply, as for camping.

To row, sail, paddle or drive a motor boat on another’s water is allowed. Please note that there may be special bans, eg speed limits and quiet zones, access prohibition or prohibition of water skiing. The requirement for consideration is extra-large for those who travel by motor boat.

Use of jet skis

You can only drive jet skis in public fairways and areas that have been approved by the County Administrative Board. If you violate the rules, you can be fined.

Ordinance (1993: 1053) on the use of jet skis (free translation)

2 § Watercraft / jet ski may only be used in public waterways and in water areas referred to in section 3 §, first paragraph. Ordinance (2004: 607).
3 § The County Administrative Board may issue regulations on which water areas in the county, in addition to public waterways, which watercraft /jet ski may be used in…
3 b § The person who is driving a jet ski shall adapt the route, speed and mode of transport so that people and animals are not disturbed unnecessarily. Ordinance (2004: 607).

After an EU judgment, the police do not use the law room above, but they do instead intervene with the support of the Maritime Law

Chapter 20, 3 § The person who takes such a route, keeps such speed or otherwise by ship* traveling so that he unnecessarily disturbs the surroundings sentenced to monetary fines.
* Watercraft / jet ski is considered a ship.

Sources: https://www.lansstyrelsen.se/vastra-gotaland/privat/djur-och-natur/motortrafik-i-naturen.html and http://www.notisum.se/rnp/sls/lag/19931053. htm

Garbage and waste

If you have camped or had a picnic in the nature, ie woods, land and terrain, you have to clean after you. All the debris you brought out to sea, you must bring ashore.

It is prohibited to throw garbage and waste.

Never place garbage bags next to a full waste basket, garbage bin, container or toilet. Wild animals tear them apart and pull out the debris. Glasses, cans and caps can damage both humans and animals. Plastic bags can cause great suffering if the animals eat them. Take an extra garbage bag, when you are out and grab rubbish that has flowed ashore with the wind and the power of the sea and bring ashore. Together we will make the archipelago more beautiful.

Pick flowers and berries

You must not take twigs, branches, fists, bark, leaves, acorn, ollon, nuts or resin from growing trees. You must not take oysters. It is considered as vandalism or theft. Of course, you are not allowed to fell growing trees, shrubs or bushes.

You can pick wild berries and flowers, mushrooms, fallen branches and dry sticks on the ground. Some flowers are so rare that there is a risk that they will be eradicated. Such flowers are protected and must not be picked. Find out, for example by the The county administrative board, ie “Länsstyrelsen”, which plants that are protected in the area where you are.

Keep the dog on a leash

The dog can follow in the nature, but the period March 1 – August 20, when it must not run loose in forest, island and land. Even during other times of the year, you must have your dog under such supervision that it cannot damaged the wild life and wild animals.

Be aware there are animals, such as goats, sheep, cows, horses et c, on some islands and those animals tend to be shyer and more afraid of dogs and people. Therefore, do not let your dog loose on an island, before you oversee the situation.

Not disturb not destroy.
This is the main sentence in The Right of Public Access.

Read more about The Right of Public Access;
https://www.naturvardsverket.se/Documents/publikationer6400/978-91-620-8522-3.pdf?pid=4204