Fjällbacka is a small locality along the coast of Bohuslän in Western Sweden. Back in the day, it was a fishing village. The around 820 inhabitants live through the strong winds of the coast, but the summer population is much larger as people flock to the seaside.
Fjällbacka is one of the most famous coastal localities along the Swedish west coast and is the location for many of Camilla Läckberg’s crime novels. The author herself was born in Fjällbacka in the 1970s. Many fans of Astrid Lindgren are also familiar with the place. A few scenes from the movies about Ronia were filmed at the gorge Kungsklyftan.
A Short History of Fjällbacka
Fjällbacka is one of the historical coastal societies within Tanum Municipality. The fishing village is mentioned as early as 1610 and at the end of the century, the village consisted of 22 houses. Fjällbacka’s development would for its first centuries follow the availability of herring for the fishermen. The 19th century did also see the harbor develop for exports when grain was shipped to England.
Fjällbacka is also the home of the anchovy. This is not the small fish, but the traditional seasoning of sprats and herring. So for many Swedes (and Finns), it is the canned food that most think about when someone mentions anchovies. It was in Fjällbacka that Gustav Andersson came up with the recipe at the end of the 19th century after decades of experimentation.
Things to Do and See in Fjällbacka
Prior to the pandemic, Fjällbacka was a popular stop for many of the Chinese tour buses and we can understand why. There are many sights within easy reach. You really can decide if you want to explore for an hour here or you can spend days.
The mountain Vetteberget, or the sign mountain, overlooks most of what is today Fjällbacka and the nearby archipelago. Vetteberget reaches a height of 74 meters above the sea and was for a long time used as a maritime landmark. It is around the foot of this mountain that Fjällbacka has grown and for people reaching its peak a great view is guaranteed.
Kungsklyftan is a gorge in the mountain Vetteberget. It became famous for many when it was one of the locations where the film about Ronia, the Robber’s Daughter was filmed. The gorge is about 200 meters long and includes walking under several large boulders. The name means the King’s Gorge and was established after a visit by King Oscar II of Sweden in 1887. The hike through the gorge will take you from one street close to the harbor to another residential street on the other side. This means that it is easy to reach and you don’t have to walk the same path back in case you consider it a bit too challenging.
For anyone wanting to explore Fjällbacka on foot, there are few places that will be missed if you follow the hiking trail Vettebergsleden. It is a loop that starts and ends at the bus station and will take visitors around the wharves and up on the mountain Vetteberget. The four kilometers is estimated to take about an hour to walk.
Badholmen is a small islet right next to the center of Fjällbacka. The islet has both a small hostel and a café. In addition, it is one of the main beaches of the locality.
Badberget, or the bath mountain, is another beach in Fjällbacka. It is located a bit outside of the center and includes a sandy beach and other amenities.
Netorsgården Local Heritage Museum
The local heritage museum showcases the old residential building Nestergården that was built in 1849. This is where you are able to learn more about life in Fjällbacka in the 19th century.
How to Get to Fjällbacka
Flights: There are domestic and international routes to and from Göteborg Landvetter Airport (GOT), which is 151 kilometers away. Another option is Oslo Gardermoen Airport (OSL), 220 kilometers away.
Car: Fjällbacka is located along road 163 between Grebbestad and Kville.
Bus: Local and regional buses connect Fjällbacka with the surrounding region.
The driving distance from 5 major Swedish cities, according to Google Maps:
Stockholm – 502 kilometers (5h 38min) Gothenburg – 129 kilometers (1h 27min) Malmö – 398 kilometers (4h 8min) Linköping – 362 kilometers (4h 9min) Kiruna – 1599 kilometers (18h 5min)
Find out more about other destinations in Sweden by visiting our page Exploring Sweden