A picture of some hiking signs in Säby Västerskog

MINIGUIDE: Hiking trails in southern Linköping

You don't need much to enjoy the beautiful nature in southern Linköping - possibly some comfortable hiking shoes. To make it a little bit easier for you, and to make sure you know where to go, we have put together a list of some short distance hiking trails. We wish you an enjoyable day outdoors!

1. Östgötaleden between Vidingsjö fitness centre and Bjärka-Säby

This is an easy to medium stretch of hiking trail through varied landscape. The trail takes you by oak pastures and locks at the Kinda Canal. Take a detour to Hjortkällas old agricultural landscape where there are information boards, to Fornhemmet  and Nya Slottet Bjärka-Säby.

Along the trail there are barbecue areas, shelters, toilets and summer cafes (Hovetorp locks and Nya Slottet Bjärka-Säby). Bus connections are also available in several places. Getting started at Vidingsjö motionscenter: Take bus 1, 16 or 17 from Resecentrum and get off at Hässlegatan.

Photo: Gunnar Ölfvingsson

2. Säby Västerskog - An enchanted forest

Experience a genuine enchanted forest with a variety of fungi and wood-dwelling insects such as beetles. The average age of the trees is estimated at 180 years! Dead trees are the basis for much of the life in this ancient forest and are therefore often left where they fall; so good mobility is a must. Take the opportunity to refresh yourself in lake Stora Mörken, which also offers shelters and toilet facilities; located just south of the nature reserve. Swimming from the rocks at lake Stora Rängen a few hundred meters away is worth a detour.

This nature reserve can be reached from the road between Bjärka-Säby and Bestorp. About 1 km south of Bjärka-Säby, by Slåtterängen, there is a sign “naturreservat” to the left. Säby Västerskog is located along the Östgöta trail between Bjärka-Säby and Sätravallen. The trail is about 1,5 km.

3. Viggeby - Lakeside experience

Signposted from Road 34, about 25 km south of Linköping and located just north of Brokind. Here the visitor will find a varied lakeside experience - a large nature reserve on a peninsula in lake Järnlunden with its own archipelago.

The area has a rich flora and fauna and is a perfect place for swimming, lakeside walks and boating. Other facilities available include areas for swimming and barbecuing, a cabin for rest and shelters for staying overnight. Fishing is free within the reserve. The Östgöta trail has a detour into the reserve but it does not go through it.

4. Öna - A culture wonder in the middle of the woods

Öna is a lovely stop on the way to Ulrika or Ycke Urskog (take Road 34 south to Skeda Udde, continue to Haraldsbo and turn left towards Drögshult). After about 5 km there is a sign to Öna turning right. This is a cultural reserve area with 17th-18th century settlements on large flat rocks.

Offering views over lake Stensjön and the pastures surrounding the farm - perfect for a picnic. No trail of its own but Östgöta trail passes close to Öna.

5. Ycke Urskog - Like hiking in a fairytale

Go back in time and enjoy ancient forest! Ycke offers distinct virgin forest with both spruce and pine, with some trees dating back to the early 1700´s. It is almost magical hiking in these woods, different fairytales coming to mind when surrounded by the great trees at Ycke. Hiking is available both within the reserve along the marked 1,5 km forest trail as well as along the Östgöta trail. You can stop and rest at any of the shelters or at the roofed barbecue area by the trail. Learn more at the information boards by the parking area. Hiking here requires good mobility due to fallen tree trunks crisscrossing the trail climb over or crawl under! To get to Ycke, take bus 552 to Ulrika. You can ask for more directions and buy your picnic at the grocery shop there.

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