The Åland Islands Guide

The Åland Islands Guide

Welcome to the Åland Islands! Are you thinking about visiting the Åland Islands or have you already booked your vacation? Don’t miss our guide about the places to see and the things to do here.

We hope that you will find the information provided here useful. We will keep adding content continuously. Do you have ideas, suggestions, or requests? Please feel free to ask questions or tell us if there is anything that you would like to see in this Guide to the Åland Islands.

Sights Around the Åland Islands

There are several sights on the Åland Islands that might be of interest to its visitors. Here you will find a variety of fascinating attractions; medieval castles like Kastelholm, Russian fortifications such as Bomarsund Fortress and the batteries at Kungsö and Sålis, and older constructions like the chapel at Lemböte and medieval stone churches. Add to that the amazing nature and the ever-present sea, as well as fun events throughout the year.

To read more about a particular attraction, click on the star on the map.

How to get to the Åland Islands?

The Åland Islands are located in the Baltic Sea at a narrow point between the mainlands of Sweden and Finland. There are only two ways to get to the islands; either by plane or more commonly by boat.

There are four companies that run ferries stopping at the Åland Islands. Two of these companies are based on the islands.

Taking the Ferry to the Åland Islands

The Åland Islands are located at the center of several shipping routes across the Baltic Sea. This has resulted in several possibilities to access the islands via passenger ferries. As Åland is outside of the EU tax union, there is still the possibility of duty-free shopping onboard many of the ferries that make a call on the islands. This has also resulted in many cruises from especially Finland and Sweden having passengers that actually don’t disembark before they get back to their port of departure.

The main ferry operators to the Åland Islands are:

  • Viking Line
  • Eckerö Line
  • Tallink Silja Line
  • Finnlines

Viking Line

Viking Line has several ferries to the islands. From Stockholm and Kapellskär in Sweden and from Turku and Helsinki in Finland. From Stockholm, it takes approximately five hours and a half to reach Åland. The journey from Kapellskär is quicker, approximately two hours thirty minutes. It is possible to book a bus transfer to Kapellskär. From Turku, the trip takes 4-5 hours and from Helsinki 11 hours.

  • Kapellskär ⇄ Mariehamn
  • Stockholm ⇄ Mariehamn/Långnäs ⇄ Turku
  • Stockholm ⇄ Mariehamn ⇄ Helsinki

Visit Viking Line >>

Eckerö Linjen

Eckerö Line or Eckerölinjen has one ferry crossing at one of the narrowest parts between Grisslehamn in Sweden and Eckerö. The journey takes two hours and there are additional bus transfers available from Stockholm to Grisslehamn and from Eckerö to Mariehamn.

  • Grisslehamn ⇄ Eckerö

Visit Eckerö Line >>

Tallink Silja Line

Tallink also has several ferries stopping in Mariehamn. From Stockholm in Sweden, Turku, and Helsinki in Finland, as well as from Tallinn in Estonia.

  • Stockholm ⇄ Mariehamn/Långnäs ⇄ Turku
  • Stockholm ⇄ Mariehamn ⇄ Helsinki
  • Stockholm ⇄ Mariehamn ⇄ Tallinn

Visit Tallink Silja Line >>

Finnlines

Finnlines, that might have been mostly used by lorry drivers, have ferries connecting Sweden and Finland via the Åland Islands. As of 2021, it is the two ships M/S Finnswan and M/S Finnfellow that traffic the Åland Islands.

  • Kapelskär ⇄ Långnäs ⇄ Naantali

Visit Finnlines >>

Flying to the Åland Islands

The different companies with flights to the Åland Islands have often changed in recent years. The islands have one main airport, which is located outside of Mariehamn.

Mariehamn Airport (MHQ)

Mariehamn Airport has had several improvement projects ongoing during the Covid-19 pandemic. The number of operators at the airport is limited and as of 2021 these are Air Leap and Finnair. There are usually only three destinations available. All are, however, able to provide decent connections around the world. These destinations are:

  • Helsinki-Vantaa Airport (HEL), Finland
  • Stockholm-Arlanda Airport (ARN), Sweden
  • Turku Airport (TKU), Finland

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