While the southern archipelago of Gothenburg is car-free, you can get to the northern archipelago by car. For this you use one of the free yellow road ferries that depart from Lilla Varholmen (Hjuvik) on the western tip of Torslanda. They will take you to Hönö (“Hönöleden”) or to Bjorkö (“Björköleden”).
Out on the islands, there are other ferries, partly for car transport and partly only for pedestrians. These smaller ferries carry passergers to the islands of Grötö, Hyppeln, Källö-Knippla, Kalvsund and Rörö. Three islands – Öckerö, Fotö and Hälsö – can be reached via bridges from Hönö.
If you visit Gothenburg without a car, you can take the bus to the northern archipelago. The bus leaves from Nils Ericsonterminalen next to the Central Station.
“Öckerö islands” and “Bohuslän’s southern archipelago”
Gothenburg’s northern archipelago is sometimes called Öckerö islands. Many residents also speak of Bohuslän‘s southern archipelago. Ten of the islands are inhabited. Bjorkö is the island with the largest area. Hönö has the most inhabitants.
Tip #1: Hönö Klåva
Klåva on Hönö is something like the commercial centre of the islands. If you want to go shopping, you will find fashion boutiques, gift shops, restaurants, cafés, pizzerias and small shops in the Klåva harbour area. This area is popular with tourists. (In the immediate harbour area, you can park for three hours with a parking disc.)
Tip #2: The bridge to Fotö
If you want to have a wonderful view over the islands, you should walk on the bridge to Fotö in good weather. From the middle of the bridge the view is really breathtaking. You can see as far as the port of Gothenburg. (There are two parking spaces at the northern entrance to the bridge.)
Tip #3: Nature reserve Ersdalen on Hönö
If you drive the Erdalsvägen on the western part of Hönö almost to its end, you arrive at a parking lot. You can continue on foot to the coast and to magnificent rock and stone formations. The area is called Ersdalen and is a nature reserve. Supposedly it is particularly spectacular here during storms when the waves beat against the cliffs.
Tip #4: Ferry ride to Rörö
Located in the far north, the island of Rörö is definitely worth a visit in good weather. Firstly, the ferry ride is a great experience. Secondly, half of the island of Rörö is a nature reserve. Here you can walk, look at the sea and have a rest. Afterwards you can sit in the cozy café in the guest harbour and watch the bustle on the many small boats. On Rörö the old fishermen’s houses have made way for modern luxury villas. Certainly not the poorest of Gothenburgers live here.
If you want to visit Rörö, you can take the car from Hönö via Öckerö to the northern tip of Hälsö. Here, in the small Burö ferry port, there is a large parking lot. We recommend that you leave your car here because there is no reason to take it with you to Rörö – moreover, Rörö virtually has no places to park. The ferry from Burö to Rörö takes 25 minutes. On the way to Rörö she makes a stop at the small island of Hyppeln.
Tip #5: Motorhome parking in the harbours
There are several motorhome/RV sites on the islands:
- Fotö Gamla Fiskehamnen
- Hönö Klåva
- Öckerö Fiskehamnen
- Öckerö Nimbushamnen
- Björkö Fiskehamnen
The tourist office in Hönö Klåva will give you detailed information about these sites.
Tip #6: Cycle tracks
The best way to get around on the islands is on a bike. On the larger islands you will find bike paths. You can even cycle to the islands all the way from the centre of Gothenburg. The bike path runs parallel to road 155.
Hotels in the northern archipelago
There is no larger hotel on the islands. We, therefore, recommend the Arken Hotel & Art Garden Spa, located in Arendal on the northern shore of the Göta älv river. From the hotel you can reach the ferry terminal in Lilla Varholmen in about 20 minutes if you go by car on road 155.
If you prefer to stay in the centre of Gothenburg instead, check here:
Hotels in Gothenburg
Book now: Hotels, hostels, B&Bs in Gothenburg
Källö-Knippla in Gothenburg’s northern archipelago
Near the bridge to Fotö
On the bridge to Fotö
A view on Hönö Klåva harbour area
Nature reserve Ersdalen on Hönö
On our way back from Rörö