Protected areas

Protected areas such as national parks and nature reserves have special rules designed to protect valuable natural and cultural features. Some rules restrict the Right of Public Access while others increase it.

The Right of Public Access is often increased in areas that have been reserved for outdoor recreation. For example, camping in the same location for several nights may be permitted.

What is permitted: the regulations

Areas in which the Right of Public Access may be restricted or increased include national parks, nature reserves, natural monuments, protected shoreline areas, plant and animal sanctuaries, cultural monuments and culture heritage sites.

The regulations governing these areas must be observed by everyone, including landowners. The regulations vary from one area to the next, depending on what is necessary to preserve the features of the particular area.

There may be bans on lighting fires, mooring boats or bringing dogs into an area. Cycling and horse riding may be confined to marked trails. Berry picking is often permitted, although in some cases you are only permitted to pick as many as you can eat on the spot.

See notice boards for information

The regulations governing nature reserves and national parks are often written in English on a notice board close to the entrance of the park or reserve. Often there are also notice boards with maps etc. to help you find your way, as well as information about the natural and cultural features of the area.

The aim is to make your visit an interesting and rewarding experience and to help you understand why the area is valuable and has been protected.

Regulations in English for Sweden's national parks can be found on the website of the Swedish EPA:

Sweden’s 30 national parks

The regulations applying to nature reserves can be obtained from the local municipality or county administrative board that established the reserve. The county administrative board can also provide other kinds of information, including the times of year you are not permitted to enter the county's bird and seal sanctuaries.