Sandhammaren is a beach and nature area in Ystad Municipality. This is one of the long sandy beaches that makes the province of Skåne a popular summer destination for many looking for a vacation on the beach. This is, after all, one of the most popular beaches in the region known as Österlen at the southeastern point of Sweden.
In addition to the three-kilometer-long sandy beach, there is a lot more to explore here. There is both an old lighthouse as well as the oldest rescue station in Sweden. These are both signs of the treacherous waters of the Baltic Sea. These shores hide many shipwrecks that have gone under during their journey around the southernmost point of Sweden.
A Short History of Sandhammaren
Sandhammaren has a long history that includes many shipwrecks but also pirates. It was the current and treacherous water that sank most of the lost ships, but the pirates also played a role in a few cases. They tricked the passing ships towards the beach where they got stranded.
There is a high number of lost ships in these waters, which until the mid-19th century was as high as 10 to 15 ships annually. Two lighthouses were built here and they were first lit in 1862. Since 1904 there is only one lighthouse still standing in the area. A rescue station had been established here prior to the lighthouse. It opened in 1855 and was active until 1945. During these 90 years, more than 500 were saved by rescuers from the station.
Things to Do and See
Yes, it is the beach that is the main attraction here. Crowded with sun and beach seekers during sunny summer days, while a bit more secluded and empty when the wind increases. The views here can, however, be magnificent no matter when you visit. We can only guess, but we would not be surprised if the sunrise is extraordinary.
Sandhammaren Havsbad is a three-kilometer-long sandy beach. The beach has many times been mentioned as one of the best in Sweden with its fine sand. It is a popular destination for beachgoers during the sunny summer days. It is adjoined by a small café close to the main parking lot. From the parking lot, there are some mighty sand dunes to pass through before reaching the never-ending beach.
The lighthouse, “fyr” in Swedish, was completed in 1862. It stands a bit inland from the beach, close to the main parking lot. There were originally two lighthouses along the beach, but one was decommissioned in 1891 and completely removed in 1904. The lighthouse is open during the summer months.
The old rescue station stands near the lighthouse, just on the other side of the road. It is the oldest rescue station in Sweden and was originally located a bit north in Mälarhusen. It was moved to its current location in 1891. The building that is still standing is the old boat house, which is open for visitors during the summer months.
The beach and nearby forest are both part of the Sandhammaren Nature Reserve. The reserve was established in 1987 and covers an area of 530 hectares, or around 742 football (soccer) fields.
How to Get to Sandhammaren
- Flights: The nearest airport is Malmö Airport (MMX) to the north, there is also Copenhagen Airport (CPH) right across the Öresund Strait in Denmark.
- Car: Sandhammaren is located along countryside roads between Ystad and Simrishamn.
- Bus: Buses from Skånetrafiken connects Sandhammaren with the surrounding area.
The driving distance from 5 major Swedish cities, according to Google Maps:
- Stockholm – 634 kilometers (6 h 50 min)
- Gothenburg – 352 kilometers (3 h 40 min)
- Malmö – 85 kilometers (1 h 15 min)
- Linköping – 439 kilometers (5 h 10 min)
- Kiruna – 1864 kilometers (19 h 20 min)