We are lucky enough to live in southern Sweden. Blekinge, our part of Sweden, has an archipelago made up of 1650 islands, skerries, and islets. With the great transport system of archipelago boats, and county buses (we moved from the UK where buses were a little hit and miss!!), exploring the archipelago is very easy. We started exploring our archipelago a little last spring and summer, but this year, with a little more research, we are going to go on a journey of discovery. We will explore the archipelago looking at the background, how to get there, what to see and do, where to eat, and where to stay for each place we visit. We would like to take you with us on this adventure via the blog, and you never know you may well find yourself booking a trip to discover this small part of the world 🙂 Enjoy the adventure with us….tenth up is the island of Torkö.
Background Information about Torkö
We were tipped off about this lovely little island by a friend, who let us in on the fact that it had an old, very deep quarry that was now used for diving and swimming in. This quarry is a remnant from World War Two, the history says, and is now abandoned as a quarry. During the middle ages the island also was home to a Franciscan monastery, but all that remains of that now are a few bricks.
Our Adventure To Torkö
One hot sunny Friday afternoon we set off in the car to Torkö, lured by the sniff of a new cafe to discover (which would hopefully have a supply of ice creams), and a quarry to cool off in and swim. A new and different kind of place for us to paddle around in. The cafe was easy enough to find, and we headed in. We only needed ice creams, but if you want anything other than a drink and a snack you do need to let them know in advance. Three huge ice creams bought, we sat and admired the view from the cafe’s decking.
This lovely cafe also has some artwork for sale and a little shop which you can buy little items or art supplies.
Refuelled, we set off in search of the quarry. On my map there was a road marked going right past it. However, once we got to it, it was gated off, and even though it would only be a five minute walk down the track we were not allowed to leave the car there….or anywhere it seemed. We drove back onto the mainland over the little bridge 50m away, and parked in a campsite’s communal car park, and then walked back to the quarry. This only took us 10 minutes, but it is useful to know to just leave your car there rather than trying to get closer. Edit 2019: There is now a car park opposite the entrance to the track that leads to the quarry 🙂
Once we’d gone down the track, we were delighted to find such a great natural water play area 🙂 It has large rocky outcrops (up to 8m high) that people were jumping in off, and rope swings to use to swing in, and large expanses of rock to lay on and warm up afterwards. The water was very deep, very blue, and very inviting. We walked around the quarry looking for a place that might give the three littlies some easier and safer access than jumping of a cliff edge, and we eventually found such a place.
It enabled me to also make sure the remaining twin waiting on the side was relatively safe as well (our little lady is a good swimmer, but they are not so competent yet being only 6, but have no fear and think they can swim marvellously!).
So, I needed to get in and then I could be on hand and near by for any mishaps or panics. I took each twin in one at a time a few times and they loved it. As for madam, she was swimming, somersaulting, and diving like the mermaid she is.
When it was time to leave, I think it is fair to say no one wanted to! We had discovered, thanks to a friend’s recommendation, a lovely oasis of a place to have fun in the water…calm water not quite as cold as the sea, but still with plenty of fish and wildlife to be seen…a perfect spot for my trio and we thought that next time, we would do a spot of “pond dipping” there too and see what we can find. It was not long until we were back again….the following day. This time with Dadda in tow as well. With that extra pair of grown up hands we were able to go to a slightly higher point, where fearless twin 2 did a spot of leaping off cliffs (around 3m) with his Dadda. They were able to scramble down the rocks into the water too, as well as play around with the rope swing. Dadda himself did the 8m leap into the quarry, while his four cheerleaders watched on amazed…however I think only one (twin 2) would give it a shot given the chance….which he wasn’t!!!! Then, they all loved it so much that we were back again on the Sunday for a third day in a row!!!
Look closely…that is Dadda leaping in from 8m!
How To Get To Torkö
None of the archipelago ferries visit this island so you either need to drive, or take the bus to a nearby place on the mainland. Driving, you take the turning for Listerby off the E22, follow the signs for Torkö, and then drive over the bridge onto the island.
What To Do And See On Torkö
- Visit the old disused World War Two quarry and take a refreshing swim.
- Torkö is a good spot for some fishing.
- Visit Maja’s Kloster (which translates as monastery) Cafe which doubles as a shop/art exhibition home. Check the website for details of opening times and events on there.
Where To Eat On Torkö
Maja’s Kloster Cafe is a beautiful cafe with a selection of tasty food and drinks in a lovely location. To find it head to Sankta Klaras Väg and be sure to ring ahead if you want more than a drink and a snack.
Where To Stay On Torkö
There is nowhere as such to stay, but just before you reach the bridge to cross onto the island there is a large, but lovely and scenic campsite that even has a couple of sandy bathing spots itself, as well as playgrounds for the children. It has camping places and stugor for rent.