Skellefteå Travel Guide

Discover the best things to do and see in Skellefteå, explore natural attractions, local culture and customs, food and drink scene, safety, health, how to get around, where to stay, and nearby destinations for excursions.

Introduction to Skellefteå

Skellefteå is a small town located in Västerbotten County, in Norrland, in the north of Sweden. It is a charming town known for its unique blend of nature and culture. Skellefteå is surrounded by forests, lakes, and rivers that make it a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts.

List of Places to Visit in Skellefteå

Culturally Important Attractions: Museums and Historical Places

Skellefteå offers several museums and historical places that you can visit to learn about the local culture and history. The following are the top picks:

  • Västerbotten Museum: This museum has exhibits about the history, culture, and nature of Västerbotten County.
  • Bonnstan: A cultural heritage site that represents the former church village, which was established in the 16th century. It offers a glimpse of what life was like in Skellefteå several centuries ago.
  • Skellefteå Church: This church is Skellefteå’s most prominent landmark. It was built in the 19th century and is known for its beautiful Gothic architecture.
  • Färjsteget: This site marks the location where the original town of Skellefteå was founded.

Natural Attractions of Skellefteå: Outdoor Adventures and Scenic Views

Skellefteå is a perfect destination for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts. Here’s a list of must-visit natural attractions:

  • Nordanå Park: A beautiful park that features gardens, a museum, and Västerbotten County’s oldest building.
  • Boviken Bay: A picturesque bay that offers breathtaking views of the Skellefte River and the archipelago.
  • Ursvik: A nature reserve that’s perfect for hiking. It has well-marked trails that lead through the forest and along the lake.
  • Båtforsen: A waterfall that’s located just outside Skellefteå. It’s a scenic spot that’s perfect for picnics and fishing.

Hiking/Biking Routes of Skellefteå

Skellefteå has a vast network of hiking and biking trails that offer stunning views of nature. Some of the best routes include:

  • Vitbergets Hiking Trail: A 4-kilometer-long hiking trail that offers breathtaking views of Skellefteå.
  • Gravberget: A hill located just outside Skellefteå that offers hiking and biking trails. It offers panoramic views of the city and the surrounding countryside.
  • Skellefteleden: A 160-kilometer-long hiking and biking trail that leads through forests, wetlands, and lakes. It’s a perfect route for those who want to explore Skellefteå’s natural beauty.

Best Things to Do in Skellefteå: Activities and Tours

Apart from hiking and biking, Skellefteå offers several other activities that you can enjoy. These include:

  • Fishing: Skellefteå is famous for its fishing spots. There are several lakes, rivers, and streams where you can try your luck at fishing.
  • Sami Culture Experience: The Sami people are indigenous to the region. You can learn about their culture and way of life by joining a tour of a Sami Village.
  • Watersports: Skellefteå’s lakes and rivers offer several water sports activities, including canoeing, kayaking, and paddleboarding.

Week-Long Itinerary for Skellefteå

If you’re planning to visit Skellefteå for a week, here’s a suggested itinerary:

  • Day 1: Explore Skellefteå’s historical sites, including Bonnstan and Skellefteå Church.
  • Day 2: Visit Västerbotten Museum and Nordanå Park.
  • Day 3: Hike or bike on the Skellefteleden trail.
  • Day 4: Take a Sami Culture Experience tour.
  • Day 5: Relax and enjoy the natural beauty of Boviken Bay.
  • Day 6: Go fishing on one of Skellefteå’s lakes or streams.
  • Day 7: Enjoy water sports activities at the lake.

Food and Drink Scene of Skellefteå

Skellefteå has a rich food and drink scene that you’ll enjoy as much as exploring its natural beauties and historical sites. Here are some must-try dishes and local beverages:

Must-Try Dishes

  • Surströmming: A fermented Baltic herring that’s a popular local delicacy.
  • Palt: A potato dumpling that’s typically served with bacon, lingonberry jam, and butter.
  • Renstek: Roasted reindeer meat that’s hard to find elsewhere. It’s a must-try if you’re a meat lover.

Local Beverages

  • Bryggeri Skellefteå: A local brewery that offers craft beers and other beverages.
  • Cloudberry Liqueur: A traditional Swedish liqueur that’s made from cloudberries.

Where to Stay in Skellefteå: Hotels, Hostels, and Guesthouses

Skellefteå offers several options for accommodation, including hotels, hostels, and guesthouses. Here are some top picks:

  • Quality Hotel Skellefteå Stadshotell: A four-star hotel located in the heart of Skellefteå.
  • Hotell Aurum: Another four-star hotel located in the city center.
  • Stiftsgården Konferens & Hotell: A cozy guesthouse located just outside Skellefteå.

What to Buy in Skellefteå: Souvenirs and Local Products to Bring Home

Skellefteå is known for its local handicrafts and products. Here are some souvenirs and local products that you can bring home:

  • Sami Crafts: You can buy traditional Sami handicrafts, including jewelry, clothing, and souvenirs.
  • Skellefteå Chokladfabrik: A chocolate factory known for its handcrafted chocolates.
  • Local Food Products: You can buy Surströmming, Palt, and other local delicacies to bring home.

Local Culture and Customs of Skellefteå

Skellefteå has a rich culture and customs that you can experience while you’re there. Some important cultural aspects to keep in mind include:

  • Sami Culture: The Sami people are indigenous to the region. You can learn about their culture and way of life by joining a tour of a Sami Village.
  • Midsummer: A popular Swedish holiday that’s celebrated in Skellefteå in June.
  • Winter Activities: Skellefteå is a winter wonderland. Residents and visitors enjoy winter sports, including snowmobiling, dog-sledding, and ice fishing.

Best Time to Visit Skellefteå

The best time to visit Skellefteå depends on what you want to do. If you want to enjoy outdoor activities, then the summer months (late May to early September) are best. If you’re interested in winter activities, then the winter months (December to March) are best.

Do’s and Don’ts of Skellefteå


  • Do bring warm clothing, as it can get cold in Skellefteå.
  • Do try the local delicacies.
  • Do respect the local culture and customs.


  • Don’t litter in the natural areas.
  • Don’t disturb the local wildlife.
  • Don’t forget to respect the local customs and traditions when visiting historical and cultural sites.

Safety and Health

Safety in Skellefteå

Skellefteå is a safe place to visit, with a low crime rate. However, you should take basic safety precautions, such as:

  • Don’t leave valuables unattended.
  • Be aware of your surroundings when visiting unfamiliar areas.

Health in Skellefteå

Skellefteå has excellent healthcare facilities. If you need medical attention, you can go to Skellefteå Hospital, which offers emergency services and general medical care.

Getting to Skellefteå: Transportation Options and Logistics

Airports Near Skellefteå

The nearest airport to Skellefteå is Skellefteå Airport (SFT), which is located just outside the city. There are also several other airports in the region, including:

  • Umeå Airport: A regional airport located about two hours’ drive from Skellefteå.
  • Luleå Airport: A regional airport located about two and a half hours’ drive from Skellefteå.

Bus Stations Near Skellefteå

Skellefteå has a bus station located in the city center, which offers local and regional bus services. There are also several bus stations in nearby towns and cities.

Other Options

You can also reach Skellefteå by train or car. The city is located on the E4 highway, which connects Stockholm and the northern part of Sweden. The train journey from Stockholm to Skellefteå takes about 10 hours.

How to Get Around in Skellefteå

Skellefteå has a well-established public transportation system, including buses and taxis. You can also rent a car or bike if you prefer to explore the city independently.

Where to Go Next from Skellefteå: Nearby Destinations and Excursions

There are several nearby destinations that you can visit from Skellefteå, including:

  • Storforsen: A national park located about an hour’s drive from Skellefteå. It’s known for its beautiful waterfalls and nature trails.
  • Luleå: A coastal city located about two and a half hours’ drive from Skellefteå. It’s a popular tourist destination that offers several attractions, including beaches and cultural sites.
  • Haparanda: A border town located about two hours’ drive from Skellefteå. It’s known for its shopping and cultural attractions.


Skellefteå is a charming town located in the north of Sweden. It offers a unique blend of nature and culture that’s perfect for travelers who want to explore the Nordic region. Whether you’re interested in hiking, biking, or exploring local culture and cuisine, Skellefteå has something for everyone. So, start planning your Skellefteå adventure today!