Karlstad is the capital city of Varmland with a population of close to 90,000 sitting near Lake Vanern, the largest lake in Europe. The city surroundings include a never-ending forest and the water with the reputation of having only two seasons.
In the winter, you will find the natural landscape covered in blankets of thick snow with temperatures falling to the negative digits. But when this abates, there is only the warm summer season with locals basking in sunshine and lush greenery.
It is the ideal time to take a road trip in your biluthyrning i Karlstad (translation: car rental in Karlstad). It is not a city where you need to drive a lot while there. You would probably park once arriving and perhaps take a stroll through the town.
While the city icon is a smiling sun, and their tagline is “Sun of Karlstad” or “Sola i Karlstad,” the reference is not so much about the beautiful sunshine itself but more so the hospitality and warmth of the people.
One, in particular, is responsible for beginning the tradition, a waitress from the 18th century, Eva-Lisa, with a reputation for being exceptionally friendly, cheery, and kind. A statue was erected in her honor along the Klaralven banks.
She shares the spotlight with another statue in the river area of a famous Karlstad figure of Ms. Selma Lagerlof, the world’s first female to earn the Nobel Prize in literature. Find out why you need to make this town one of your road trip destinations at https://theculturetrip.com/europe/sweden/articles/heres-why-you-should-visit-karlstad-at-least-once/.
Why A Road Trip Through Sweden to Karlstad Is a Must
Karlstad is a welcoming, friendly, and cheerful city for tourists to take time in their holiday travels on road trips through Sweden to the capital city. Visitors will find hospitality as the daily practice with a tagline that encourages a sunny disposition when interacting with each other.
The locals take being “hosts” very seriously, putting forth much effort to ensure visitors are well cared for. You will find it best to park your hyrbil and walk throughout the city to take in the various attractions as only they can be seen.
Strolling along the Klaralven banks or wandering the canal connecting Lake Vanern and the river and enjoying the many breathtaking parks can only be done on foot. Let’s look at a few more places that are a must-see.
When you take your car hire to Karlstad, you will want to find a good place to park since many of the places to see will be better viewed by walking. If it is wintertime, you will want to pay attention to the weather conditions since it will be cold. Dressing in layers is wise. Walking near the water, specifically along the Klaralven river, is a favorite for many travelers.
Sweden and Norway benefit from the river’s flow before it ends up in the Karlstad delta, eventually joining Lake Vanern. In the winter, some river areas are used for an ice skating track.
Lake Vanern and Hammaro
Sweden’s largest lake is Lake Vanern which also serves as the third-largest in all of Europe. It boasts roughly 5600 square kilometers of surface area, equating to double Luxemburg’s size. The city is situated on the lake’s northern shores, allowing holiday travelers to enjoy a day sitting by the water or even swimming in the summer.
Hammaro is an island, a small distance from the town center, where visitors can enjoy the premium areas of the lake. But if you find the lake’s water too chilly still, there are pools available for your enjoyment. A local public bath offering a few water slides references as Sundstabadet, perfect for enjoying a nice, relaxing dip.
Stora Torget and Centrum
The main square, Stora Torget, is in the city’s center. In the direct vicinity and surrounding this area, visitors will find the town’s prominent buildings and historical structures.
The regional court or “Varmlands Tingsratt” and the cathedral or “Karlstads Domkyrka” are found here. Also erected in the center of the area is the 1955 peace monument denoting the Sweden and Norway peaceful union dissolution from 1905.
Visitors will find most of the town’s cafes, restaurants, and pubs in this location as well. Walking throughout the square is convenient, offers much history, and you can enjoy an excellent coffee and perhaps a meal after a long day of sightseeing.
Sandgrundsudden and Varmlands Museum / Brigadmuseum
The museum of Varmland, found in the town’s central location, is a regional facility allowing travelers to experience the culture as they explore. The museum’s building is in a Chinese-inspired structure dating to 1929 known as the “Cyrillus” building. The facility is situated on Sangrundsudden at the location where the river splits at the start of the delta running into the lake.
The Brigadmuseum or the Brigade Museum has the intention to make visitors aware of the Swedish armed forces’ development and history. For those interested in exploring the Cold War’s influences on the Swedish armed forces development, the museum allows you to learn the history. The facility is situated along the river’s right bank, only a small distance from the city’s center.
Among the oldest stone bridges in Sweden from the 18th century, you will find the Ostra bron – Gamla stenbron. Buses are the only transport with access, but the suggestion for travelers visiting in the summer is to use the “boat bus” or “batbuss” traveling beneath the bridge, which will then take you on a leisurely path on the river.
Near the bridge, visitors will find an island in the center of the river referenced as “Gubbholmen,” offering guests an outdoor gym where everyone can take advantage of a free workout.
Swedes make up among the most passionate coffee drinkers worldwide with set times for individuals to take breaks to have coffee and a sweet or bring friends, family, or potential dates to enjoy the brew and conversation. Karlstad has one of the country’s best brands known as “Lofbergs.”
On a lovely afternoon, most coffee drinkers will take their prize to go so they can enjoy the sunshine as they indulge.
The city of Karlstad boasts a vivacious feel even though it is not quite as dynamic as you’ll find with Gothenburg or Stockholm, of course. It might not have the size comparison, but it certainly makes up for that with the quality it offers those visiting. Read here why Karlstad is becoming famous for its musical culture.
Not only does it have the best brand of coffee known throughout the country, but it celebrates one of the best ice hockey teams and enjoys the largest rally seen in Sweden. Plus, those that choose to hire a car and road trip to the town will enjoy a stunning natural landscape.
Once arriving, the car can be parked to save petrol, and you can take in the glorious scenery everywhere you turn in the town.
In climbing the water tower in the center of the city, you will have a world-class view of the entire area and using the boat bus will take you leisurely down the river. Before you know it, your time in the lovely city will be over, and it will be back on the road in your rental car for your next Swedish adventure.