Experience Småland with a motorhome or caravan! Småland’s forests and the beautiful coast of Småland offer fantastic opportunities for a wonderful drive. There is a lot to experience along the way, whether you prefer historical sights, fun natural areas or action-packed adventures.
In this travel guide, you will find tips for those who want to see Småland with a motorhome or caravan. Further down in the guide, you will find suggestions for nice campsites and pitches, which you can use as a starting point during your trip. sometimes you can walk or cycle from the campsite or rest area, while other times it is better to get around by car or motorhome.
Keep in mind that campsites and rest areas can quickly fill up during high season. Please book a place in advance or make sure to arrive in good time on the day. Free camping is also often an option, as long as you make sure to follow laws and local regulations. Here you can read more about free camping.
We recommend attractions in Småland that you don’t want to miss during your trip. The locations are presented, starting in the home town of the Swedish “polkagris” town of Gränna and then continuing out to the coast, further south and finally inland again. You can choose to follow the entire route or just pick a few goodies that suit you. Here you will find fifteen exciting places and attractions in Småland:
Gränna is the city of polkagris! It was in the 19th century that the single mother Amalia Eriksson started a sugar bakery and started making polkagris. Today, the treats are a huge tourist attraction, and in addition to buying and eating them, you can see how they are made. In Gränna, you also don’t want to miss the Grenna museum, where you can visit the Polar Center and learn about Grännason Andrée and the dramatic polar expedition he and two colleagues carried out in a hot air balloon in 1897.
When you are in Gränna, you can take the opportunity to make an excursion to Visingsö. It is quite possible to bring a camping vehicle on the ferry, but in high season you may need to book well in advance and the ticket price will be higher. An easier option could be to leave the motorhome or caravan at a campsite or rest area in Gränna and get over on foot, or preferably by bicycle. Visingsö is a fantastically scenic island where you can visit Visingsborg’s castle ruins and get to know charming alpacas.
Huskvarna is located between Gränna and Jönköping, and can be a nice stop on the way. One of the most interesting places to visit here is the Husqvarna museum, which tells about the history of the company, from the production of weapons to sewing machines, motorcycles and all kinds of household appliances. If you want, you can also explore the charming Smedbyn, where the blacksmiths once had their workshops.
Jönköping is nicely located by the shore of Lake Vättern and offers some interesting experiences. Among other things, it is very exciting to visit the “Tändsticksmuseet”, which tells about the financier Ivar Kreuger and a time filled with poverty and child labor. The city park in Jönköping is also well worth a visit. In addition to nice green areas, there is, among other things, an open-air museum, mini golf course, playground and all kinds of animals.
Astrid Lindgren’s World is a theme park with a focus on the famous author’s popular fairy tales. Here you will find Villa Villekulla, the farm Katthult, Mattisskogen and lots of other places that you probably recognize from books and movies. Step into the world of the fairy tale and meet Pippi, Emil, Ronja and all the others.
Västervik Resort is a five-star campsite and resort, which offers much more than just camping. There are both sea baths and experience baths here, and you can also enjoy spa and relaxation. The resort also has an exciting high-altitude track and the possibility to rent kayaks, SUPs or bicycles. In summer, there is also an activity schedule with water gym, mini disco and much more.
Kalmar is a lovely coastal city that has a lot to offer, and first and foremost you don’t want to miss visiting Kalmar Castle. This mighty and fabulous building has an 800-year history that includes everything from the formation of the Kalmar Union to bloody battles during the Kalmar War. Inside the castle you will be met by both beautiful halls and interesting exhibitions. When you visit Kalmar, you can also take the opportunity to stroll around Kvarnholmen, where the charming settlement is partly surrounded by the old ring wall.
A unique museum that you don’t want to miss, especially if you like James Bond movies, is the James Bond Museum in Nybro. The museum is run by Gunnar Schäfer, who today also bears the names James and Bond in his full name. It was when Gunnar, as an 8-year-old, saw the film Goldfinger in the cinema that his interest was sparked, and today he runs the world’s first and only Bond museum. The collection is incredibly impressive and includes everything from Bond brides’ dresses to cars, planes and hovercraft used in various films.
Did you know that Europe’s longest zipline is in Småland? The course, which is 4.6 kilometers long and consists of four different courses, is located by Little Rock Lake in Klavreström. Here, both children and adults can challenge themselves on a really exciting and fast-paced adventure in beautiful nature.
Kosta is like the heart of Småland’s Kingdom of Glass, and here you can see glassblowing, try blowing glass yourself, see art glass at the Kosta Gallery or perhaps find affordable glass at the Kosta Outlet. Also, don’t miss having a drink in the delicious glass bar at Kosta Boda Art Hotel. You can also travel around to various smaller glass huts such as Målerås glassworks, Orranäs glassworks, Bergdalahyttan and Mickejohans art glass. In addition, the glass kingdom offers much more than glass, such as nature experiences, moose safaris and charming cafes.
Kronoberg’s castle ruin is a well-preserved historical ruin, located on an islet in Helgasjön in Växjö municipality. It was in the 15th century that the bishop of Växjö had a fortress built here, which was later rebuilt into a larger castle. During the 16th century, this building played an important role in the so-called “Dackefejden”, and when you visit the ruin, you can learn more about the dramatic events. Right next door you will find Ryttmästaregården, where you can stock up on food or ice cream.
If you want to visit a real fairytale castle, you should go to Teleborg Castle, which is located just outside Växjö. It was Count Fredrik Bonde af Björnö who once upon a time had the castle built as a gift to his wife Anna Koskull. The impressive building was completed in 1900 and was then equipped with all the luxury and opulence you could imagine. Today you can stroll around the beautiful castle park, and you can also enjoy a meal in the castle restaurant.
Huseby Bruk showcases fine old mill environments from the time when the site functioned as an iron mill. Once upon a time, the famous “Huseby Affair” took place here, which led to the owner, Florence Stephens, being defrauded of large sums of money and later declared incompetent. Today, the mill is a popular destination with a castle building, park, restaurant, shops and various exhibitions.
The car cemetery Kyrkö mosse is outside Ryd in Tingsryd municipality and is, to say the least, an odd sight in Småland. Here, in the middle of Småland’s forests, lie around 150 scrap cars from the mid-20th century. The originator of the place was “Åke på Myren”, who bought old cars to dismantle and sell spare parts. What remained were the bodies, which eventually began to be taken over by nature, and today have been transformed into an attraction and a popular photo motif.
The IKEA Museum is located in Älmhult and tells about a piece of important Swedish history. It was in 1943 that the then only 17-year-old Ingvar Kamprad started a modest small mail order company. In 1958, the first IKEA department store opened in Älmhult, and this is precisely where the museum is located. At the museum, you can get an insight into the poor farming society of the time, and about IKEA’s development into a global giant.
There are also many rest areas in Småland, where you can stay overnight with a motorhome or campervan. Here you will find tips on some nice places.
In Gränna harbor there is a large parking space for mobile homes. From here you can walk to central Gränna, as well as to the boats that go to Visingsö.
Address: Hamnvägen 26, Gränna
At Ölandskajen in Kalmar, you are standing on asphalt, right next to the marina and tourist information. The location serves as a good starting point for visiting Kalmar and Kalmar Castle.
Address: Ölandskajen, Kalmar
Kosta Lodge offers a nice and well-maintained rest area on gravel, with cycling distance to central Kosta. At the lodge there is a restaurant and jacuzzi.
Address: Stora vägen 2, Kosta
Vidinge farm offers simple sites for mobile homes next to a family farm hotel, where dogs are warmly welcome. The place is in a nice natural area where you can hike or cycle.
Address: Svartshult Vidingegården, Älghult
Kattugglan’s campsite is a charming little place where you stand nicely next to a stream. There are a few places with electricity, but these are on the other side of the road.
Address: 341 91 Ljungby