Östersund is a beautiful city, but also the capital of the province Jämtland (Sweden). During my backpack trip, I stayed for a couple of weeks in different places around Östersund. I had often time to do some lakeside relaxation in this beautiful city. The city is easily accessible by car or public transportation (e.g. direct train to Stockholm). In this post, I will describe some highlights of Östersund.
The absolute highlight of Östersund is Jamtli, an open-air museum comprising of an outdoor area which contains a number of reconstructed wooden buildings from all over the country (complete with guides wearing the 19th-century period costumes) and an indoor exhibition area. The exhibition area contains interesting exhibitions focusing on the cultural history of Jämtland, from the Ice Age to our own times (including everything about the Vikings and Sweden’s wildlife). They also have some temporary exhibitions. Jamtli is very nice to visit. Between January 1st to June 23 and August 22 to December 30th you have FREE entry to the park. In the summer you have to pay an entrance fee. The museum also has some nice grass spots where you can have a Picknick, so it is allowed to bring your own food and drinks inside the museum. Click here fore more information about the museum.
This park is located next to Storsjön lake. It is the fifth largest lake of Sweden and is well known for the great lake monster (Storsjöodjuret), which is still inhabiting the lake according to some locals (I did not succeed to see it). Just sitting on the shore, sunbathing or taking a swim at this lake (watch out for the monster), is very relaxing. In summer, you can play midget golf in the park and in winter the lake turns into Sweden’s largest ice-skating rink.
The most well known landmark of Östersund is the city hall. It is 51 meters tall and has a beautiful architecture. The building looks almost like a castle and the bell tower on top is kind of shaped like an onion.
Östersund is also known as ‘the Winter City’. The city has its own piste, where you can do some skiing. Other winter activities are cross-country skiing, ice-fishing, dog sledding, snowmobile safaris and many other winter sports.
Next to the Bashusparken, you can find Storsjöhyttan, a glasswork studio. The three ladies, who own the shop mainly use traditional methods and most of the production is based on glassware blown. It is very interesting to have a look in their shop.
Östersund has a nice city centre with a wide variety of shops. The centre is big enough for an afternoon shopping. There are some second hand shops, antique shops, outdoor shops, but also well known shops like H&M.
This is an island across Östersund, which you can easily reach by foot from the city centre via Badhusparken. On this island you can find a beautiful church called Frösö Kyrka. To reach the church, it will take you around 1,5 hour from Östersund’s city centre. On the island, you can also find Frösö Zoo and Nöjespark, one of Sweden’s largest zoological gardens with exotic animals (tigers etc.).
Have you ever visited Östersund?
This article is part of the GPSmyCity iOS app. You can download it, read this article offline and obtain travel directions (by foot, car or bicycle) to the places mentioned in this article. Click here to download it.
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