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I am going to go backpacking this summer, and my goal is Sweden. Looking around, I have grown to like the landscapes of Abisko in the north of Sweden. But, because it is rather far away from where I live (Germany, that means 35 hours by bus+train) I am asking if there are any landscapes similar to that of Abisko, closer to me, in Sweden. Giant valleys and woods sprinkled inbetween, with many flowing rivers and creeks.

Any info is greatly appreciated! :)

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The Scandinavian mountains reach from Stavanger in the south to the North Cape in the north. You can easily explore where mountainous areas are via the interactive topographic maps of Norway and Sweden. Southern Norway is geographically closest, but is less well connected, with only few trains connecting Malmö with Oslo. You might find that it's just as fast to take the train to Östersund (central Sweden), from where you can quickly reach the central Swedish mountains. It probably depends where in Germany you are: from northern Germany you may be able to reach Oslo in a day in time to take the sleeper train north or west into the mountains, from southern Germany you'd need at least an extra day (or an overnight bus, which sucks).

I've been to southern, central, and northern Norway, as well as to central and northern Sweden and northern Finland. Broadly speaking, the mountains look roughly similar, but with significant differences, so whether the other mountains are "like that of Abisko" is subjective. I know some valleys that somewhat remind me of the Abisko valley, but they all take longer, not shorter, to reach (and get at least two orders of magnitude less hikers).

In practice, I think that if you're traveling overland to the Scandinavian mountains anyway, then the extra time it takes to travel to northern Sweden is not that huge, considering there are two trains per night going there from Stockholm.

  • Thank you. I have my mind set on Sweden for this journey, stubborn as it may be, so I am not considering Norway. I agree with your sentiment, that traveling to the Scandinavian mountains is already an undertaking, so adding on that and visiting the North of Sweden makes sense. Especially because of the well connected nature of traveling to Abisko. I would rather not meet other hikers though, so I won't take any popular trails, but rather venture of the beaten path. Thank you for your summary of the mountains and your experiences as well. – seesta Jun 17 at 19:32
  • @seesta The main marked paths I Abisko gets quite a bit of traffic but once you leave them you can have an entire valley for yourself. Good luck ! – Guran Jun 18 at 6:07
  • Nordkalottruta (Finland+Sweden+Norway) parallels Kungsleden, and I have at times hiked on it for a week without meeting anyone. – gerrit Jun 18 at 7:56
  • If I'm allowed to elaborate here: what way should I walk, from Abisko turiststation, to find an area with both valleys and forests? Many images of people putting up tents in Abisko are taken in the valleys, but I'd like to camp in the beautiful (even though small from what the images show) woods. – seesta Jun 18 at 9:49
  • @seesta If you follow Kungsleden from Abisko to Abiskokaure but instead of going up towards Sälka, you continue straight toward Unna Allakas, you'll be out of the crowds as soon as you're off Kungsleden. Alternately you can hike south from Nikkaluokta into Visttásvággi, also quiet but not deserted. If you seek deserted areas, you can hike from Rensjön toward Rautasjaure or from Kaitum along the Kaitum valley. Along the last two you'll probably meet no hikers at all (but probably some fishing people), and trails may be very faint, though mountains are less pronounced there. – gerrit Jun 18 at 10:46
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Abisko is kind of unique in Sweden, with it’s accessible alpine setting. (It’s a long journey no doubt, but not complicated thanks to sleeper trains)

The areas of Kebnekaise and Sarek have a similar feeling, but takes even longer to get to, even if slightly more south.

Then you have the area between Hemavan and Ammarnäs. Still further south but not significantly faster to get to. (Unless flying to Hemavan)

The only Swedish area I can think of that has an alpine feeling and is closer to Germany is western Jämtland. Start from the mountain station Storylvån for example.

Then again, for Scandinavian mountains, Norway beats Sweden hands down. Quite a bit more expensive though.

  • Thanks edited for clarity. – Guran Jun 17 at 13:31

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