Lerkaka, Öland, Exploring Sweden

Lerkaka, Öland – Exploring Sweden

Lerkaka is a small settlement in what was once Runsten Parish on the island of Öland. It is famous for its well-preserved rows of windmills, which is one of the area’s main tourist attractions. The settlement does in addition to the five windmills house about 50 permanent inhabitants. It is today a part of Borgholm Municipality in Kalmar County. The name Lerkaka, if translated literally to English, would give you “Mud Cake”.

A Short History of Lerkaka

Lerkaka has a long history of farming, something the five windmills tell a story about. It was originally the northernmost settlement within the Runsten Parish, right at the border with Långlöt Parish. A settlement might have existed here since the Viking Age, depending on how far the rune stone has been moved since its creation.

Things to Do and See

Lerkaka offers many sights connected to the agricultural past of the island. The windmills and also the surrounding fields create a quite unique scenery. In addition, the Baltic Sea is never really far away.

The Windmill Row

The island of Öland is famous for its many windmills and there are estimated to have been around 2000 of these here during the 19th century. There is a row of five windmills that have survived in Lerkaka and these are considered to be some of the best preserved of the around 400 that are still standing on Öland.

The Old Forge

The old forge, or “smedjan” in Swedish, belongs to the local heritage group and today it houses a café. It was used in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. First as a storage room and later as the main forge for the smith Johan Olsson.


A “Linbasta” was a kind of sauna in which flax or linseed was dried. The one in Lerkaka is the only still surviving of its kind on the island. It dates back to the 18th century and was in use up until the 1920s.

Ölands Runinskrifter 37

This is number 37 of the runestones of Öland. This runestone stands on the other side of the road compared to the windmills. It has a height of 215 centimeters and tells of Unn. Olof, Gammal, and Saxe and them raising this stone in memory of their father Unn. Geirvi raised it in memory of her husband. Olof avenged the rich Unn. Unn owned half of the village.

How to Get to Lerkaka

  • Flights: The closest airport is Kalmar Öland Airport (KLR) 38 kilometers away.
  • Car: Lerkaka is along countryside roads in the center of the island.
  • Bus: Buses from Kalmar Länstrafik connect Lerkaka with the surrounding region.

The driving distance from 5 major Swedish cities, according to Google Maps:

  • Stockholm – 443 kilometers (4 h 56 min)
  • Gothenburg – 370 kilometers (4 h 28 min)
  • Malmö – 312 kilometers (3 h 28 min)
  • Linköping – 256 kilometers (3 h 24 min)
  • Kiruna – 1674 kilometers (18 h 52 min)

Explore More of Sweden and Öland

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