Grisslehamn is a small locality in an area known as Roslagen. This is an area from which it is believed people emigrated to Eastern Europe where they eventually gave their name to the Rus people and later the country of Russia. That grand history is harder to see here today. The locality has a population of around 400 inhabitants, who are permanent residents. The whole coastal area is full of summer cabins. The grand history of Roslagen might in many parts have been lost by time, but Grisslehamn has still been able to play its part in the history of Sweden and then, especially in the postal relationship with Finland.
A Short History of Grisslehamn
Grisslehamn was originally located a bit south of its current location, the former location is today known as Gamla Grisslehamn. The Swedish post office was established in 1636 and within two years a post line had been created between Gamla Grisslehamn and Finland. People both here and on Eckerö on the Åland Islands had the task to transport the post across the Sea of Åland. These transports were carried out all year round and included many dangers.
The post office in Gamla Grisslehamn was burnt down in 1754 and the effect was that Grisslehamn was moved further north, where the access to the water and the route to Åland was better. The last postal sail across the sea was carried out in 1870.
It took almost a century before Grisslehamn had a new permanent connection with the Åland Islands. This was when the Eckerö Line opened the ferry traffic to Åland in 1960. Meanwhile, steamers had been trafficking the coast, bringing summer tourists to Grisslehamn.
Things to Do and See in Grisslehamn
The Baltic Sea is never far away when you visit Roslagen. Swimming and fishing are two common summer activities and so is enjoying the surrounding nature.
Albert Engström’s Museum
Albert Engström was an artist and author. He was born in Lönneberga Parish in 1869 and died in Stockholm in 1940. He had a studio in Grisslehamn and the studio has now been turned into a museum showcasing pieces of his work and artifacts from his travels and life.
Eckerö Line to the Åland Islands
The harbor of Grisslehamn has regular ferries departing to the Åland Islands. These give both the opportunity to explore the islands as well as just to enjoy a cruise back and forth. There are multiple options and the Baltic Sea can sometimes offer some great weather for a cruise.
You can read more about the Åland Islands here in our guide >>
Looking for a hike? Roslagsleden offers several routes in the area. Section 11 of the route goes from Sandviken to Grisslehamn. The section’s distance is around 20 kilometers and do in many places follows the coastline.
Grisslehamn’s Post Office
The post building in Grisslehamn dates back to 1756 and it was an important center for the locality at the time and especially important was it for the post route to Finland.
On the cliffs overlooking the bay, you will find a canon. The canon has no defensive purposes but was instead used as a signal canon. It was used to inform the boatmen traveling on the post route if there were ice along the route or any other hazard. There was at a time an equivalent canon on the Åland Islands.
How to get to Grisslehamn
- Flights: The closest airport is Stockholm Arlanda Ariport (ARN) that has connections around the globe.
- Car: Grisslehamn is located close to road 76 between Norrtälje and Gävle.
- Bus: There are regional busses connecting Grisslehamn with the surrounding area.
The driving distance from 5 major Swedish cities, according to Google Maps:
- Stockholm – 114 kilometers (1 h 30 min)
- Gothenburg – 536 kilometers (6 h 36 min)
- Malmö – 722 kilometers (8 h 19 min)
- Linköping – 309 kilometers (3 h 43 min)
- Kiruna – 1211 kilometers (14 h 28 min)
Find out more about other destinations in Sweden by visiting our page Exploring Sweden