The Right of Public Access – this is allowed

The Right of Public Access gives everybody the freedom to roam the Swedish countryside. But there are some things you must keep in mind when you are out walking, camping, climbing, picking flowers or doing something else in the countryside.

Camping – caravans and motor homes

The basic rule is that on weekdays you may stay for up to 24 hours in lay-bys and sign-posted parking areas along public roads. On weekends and public holidays you may stay until the next weekday.

Camping – tents
You may pitch your tent for a night or two in the countryside as long as you don’t disturb the landowner or cause damage to nature.

You may cycle across country and on private roads. However, be sure not to ride across the grounds of a house, on cultivated land or on ground that is easily damaged.

Dogs are of course welcome in the countryside. However, dog owners must observe strict rules in order to protect wildlife.

Fences and signs
The fundamental idea of the Right of Public Access is that you may roam the countryside without regard to land ownership. Landowners are therefore not allowed to put up fences to keep people off land that is subject to the Right of Public Access.

Hiking and skiing
You can walk or ski pretty much anywhere in the countryside. The exceptions are to ensure that you do not disturb and do not destroy. For example, you must not intrude on the grounds of a house or cross cultivated ground.

Horse riding
You can ride freely in the countryside, as horse riding is included in the Right of Public Access. But choose your path carefully and avoid soft ground to prevent damage.

Hunting and fishing
The Right of Public Access does not cover hunting or fishing. However, it does affect them in important ways, since hunting and fishing are among Sweden’s most popular leisure activities.

Lighting fires
You may light a fire in the country if conditions are safe. But while a campfire adds to the outdoor ambience, it is a cause of concern to landowners: every year much valuable forest goes up in flames due to carelessness with campfires.

Organised outdoor recreation
It is the Right of Public Access which makes adventure tourism and other forms of organised outdoor recreation possible. However, the Right of Public Access is a purely individual right. There is no collective Right of Public Access for clubs and businesses.

Picking flowers, berries, mushrooms, etc.
You are free to pick flowers, berries and mushrooms in the countryside. But keep in mind that some plants are protected, meaning that they must not be picked. Special rules apply in protected areas, for example national parks and nature reserves.

Private roads

Private roads are most important for outdoor recreation and for our ability to actually make use of the Right of Public Access. They can take us to swimming lakes, fishing waters, berry-picking grounds and other favourite spots.

The Right of Public Access in protected areas
In protected areas such as national parks and nature reserves there are special rules designed to protect valuable natural and cultural features. Some rules restrict the Right of Public Access, others expand it.

Swimming, boating, and driving on ice
The Right of Public Access applies both on land and water. You can swim, sail almost anywhere, moor your boat and spend a night or two on board. The same rules for consideration of your surroundings apply as on land:

Don’t disturb – Don’t destroy!


Text from official site: Naturvårdsverket