Flen is in the heart of Södermanland, within easy reach from the main towns of the province – Eskilstuna, Nyköping, Katrineholm, and Strängnäs. What began as a railway junction, is now mostly famous for the production of ice-cream. The 6.600 inhabitants lives close to lakes, forests and a royal palace.
A Short History of Flen
Flen shares its name with the parish in which it is located. Flen parish has its origins in the Middle Ages, but it took centuries before a town developed here. It was with the railway and its establishment in 1862 that Flen prospered. It became an important railway junction with the main railway between Stockholm and Göteborg as well as the smaller line between Grängesberg and Oxelösund. The main purpose of the latter was to transport iron ore from the mines in Swedish Bergslagen to the iron mill in Oxelösund.
Flen became a town in 1949 and stayed so until it was incorporated as the central locality of Flen Municipality in 1971
Things to Do and See
Nature is always close by, especially with the many lakes. But there are more things to see in Flen, such as an historical train station and a royal palace.
The station in Flen opened in 1862. The original station building was moved to Skebokvarn when the current was built in 1893. The station is today one of the most historical buildings in the town and a common entry point for visitors.
Orresta gård might be the oldest estate in all of Flen and is suggested to even be the origin of the town itself. Its saga goes back to a man named Orm (Swedish for snake), who is believed to have lived during the Viking Ages. It was first during the 19th century that the estate had to give way for the surrounding development.
There are today three buildings left and they are considered to be a cultural heritage. It is a private property where the guided tours of the estate is complemented with a small café.
Orrestaö and Lake Orrhammaren
North of the center you will find the peninsula Orrestaö. Located in lake Orrhammaren, it is a popular spot for summer activities, such as swimming or just relaxing at the beach.
Just a short distance outside of Flen is the Stenhammar Palace. It is currently owned by the Swedish state since 1903, but has a history dating back at least to the 14th century. The Swedish state acquired the estate in a will, where they were obliged to each time lease the estate on lifetime to a person that is in the succession for the Swedish crown.
The estate is currently leased by the Swedish king, Carl XVI Gustaf. He is the second tenant during the state ownership. Except for the palace, there is today also farming, cattle breeding and forestry conducted here.
Stenhammar Nature Reserve
Close to Stenhammar Palace is the Stenhammar Nature Reserve. The reserve covers almost 200 hectares and was established in 2009. There are also a few ancient remains within the reserve, such as the hillfort Stenhammar skans dating back to the Iron Age.
GB-hallen is the local ice rink and the home of the local ice hockey team Flens HC Flames. The rink was built in 1999 and has a capacity of 800. But it is probably not 6th-tier ice hockey that you would go here to see. Instead, there are also times for the public to enter the ice for some ice skating.
How to get to Flen
Flights: The closest airport is Stockholm Skavsta Airport (NYO) 47 kilometers away. It offers international flights to Europe. Sweden’s main airport, Stockholm Arlanda Airport (ARN), is located 156 kilometers away for more national and international flight options.
Car: Flen is located along road 57 between Katrineholm and Gnesta.
Train: Flen has connections to Hallsberg, Linköping, Sala, and Stockholm.
Bus: Regional buses connects Flen with the surrounding region.
The driving distance from 5 major Swedish cities, according to Google Maps:
Stockholm – 118 kilometers (1h 27 min) Gothenburg – 384 kilometers (4 h 17 min) Malmö – 528 kilometers (5 h 38 min) Linköping – 115 kilometers (1 h 23 min) Kiruna – 1300 kilometers (15 h 1 min)
Find out more about other destinations in Sweden by visiting our page Exploring Sweden