Ven Island Sweden has been on my radar since I moved to southern Sweden last year. This small island between Sweden and Denmark is a place where time stands still. With only 1300 residents, Ven island is home to kilometres of biking and trekking paths, cliff side landscapes, pebbled beaches, and diverse wildlife. It is easily one of the most beautiful places in Sweden, and a true hidden gem with a vast history that is largely unknown outside of Scandinavia.
If I had to recommend one day trip from Malmö (or even a day trip from Copenhagen), Ven island would be at the top. In fact, when we visited recently, we left feeling eager to visit again … and even talked about how it would be a great place to take visitors *hint hint.*
Ready to fall in love with Ven? Read on to find out everything you need to know about this beautiful Swedish island.
OKAY FIRST, A FEW KEY THINGS TO KNOW.
where is ven island sweden?
Ven is located between southern Sweden and Denmark. In fact, when you visit the island you will be able to see both coasts on either side. The closest major cities to Ven are Malmö and Copenhagen, with Landskrona being the closest Swedish town to the island.
how to get to ven?
Getting to Ven island is easy! From Malmö or Copenhagen, you’ll first need to get to Landskrona. the town of Landskrona is about 30 minutes north of Malmö, and easily accessible by public transit or car.
Getting to Ven by Public Transit: From Malmö, you can catch a train from Malmö to Landskrona from Malmö Central Station. Then from the Landskrona train station, you’ll take a bus (City Bus 3) to the ferry terminal. The easiest way to navigate this is to to put the final destination Landskrona Skeppsbron into the Skånetrafiken app.
Getting to Ven by Car: If you are going to Landskrona by car, you put in the same destination (Landskrona Skeppsbron) and there is free parking at the ferry terminal. Alternatively, some people bring their cars onto Ven island. However, it isn’t a very car-friendly island so I would not recommend this. Plus, the island is so small it really isn’t necessary. If you’re staying overnight and worried about getting to your hotel, I’d suggest discussing options for a pickup at the ferry terminal with your hotel.
Ven Island Ferry: Once you have arrived at the ferry terminal, you can take the ferry from Landskrona to Ven. I would recommend booking your ticket online ahead of time, especially during the busy summer months. Ticket cost is 180 SEK (about 17 EUR) round trip per person.
ven bike rental
The best and most popular way to get around Ven is by riding one of the iconic yellow bikes. At the Ven bike rental shop, you’ll find a bunch of bikes to choose from: single bikes, tandem bikes, Christiania bikes – and tons of options for kids! Once you get off the ferry on Ven island, turn left and head up the hill to the bike shop, which is located at the top.
You can either rent a bike upon arrival, or reserve a bike ahead of time. Reserving a bike is a good option during peak season (July and August) or on public holidays.
Ven bike rental cost: 110 SEK for a standard bike (and 60 SEK per additional day if you are staying for multiple days). You can read more about bike prices here.
If biking isn’t your thing, there are plenty of people who walk or hike around the island, too!
THINGS TO DO IN VEN
Truly the best things to do in Ven are wandering (biking) without a plan. The island is home to 7.5 square kilometres of nonstop nature, surreal cliffs, and beaches, and the best things are often just stumbled upon. With that being said, there are a few highlights you won’t want to miss! I’d recommend grabbing a map at the bike shop and using it as a guide while you wander.
When you leave the bike shop, you have the option option to turn right or head left back down the hill toward to the ferry. You’ll notice many people turning right, but I’d recommend starting left. From there, head toward the harbor and bike through the small path between the restaurant and the ice cream shop. This quiet little coastal path was one of the best we found on the island.
Below you’ll find a few must-sees.
Easily a highlight for me, the local Alpaca farm is home to a bunch of these adorable furry animals. When we passed by mid-morning, we were greeted by the owner who told us all about the alpacas … who had just received their summer haircuts. After talking to the owner, it seems as if the alpacas aren’t always there alongside the fence, so I think we got a bit lucky. But, she also said that she does alpaca treks around the islands with guests. So if spending some time with these cuties is high on your list (and it should be), you should check out Ven Alpaca Trekking. In the main harbor, you’ll also find a store where you can purchase homemade goods made from the alpaca wool.
sankt ibbs gamla kyrka
Sankt Ibbs Gamla Kyrka in Ven (St. Ibb’s Old Church) is a beautiful 13th century medieval white church that sits atop one of the highest points on the island and looks out over the water. Here, you can visit the church and walk around the grounds, which we were shocked to see had tombstones that dated back hundreds of years.
Ven island has a deep-rooted history that dates back many centuries. In mid-1500s, Danish astronomer Tycho Brahe owned the island and built two observatories. Although Tycho Brahe was often famous for some of his outlandish antics (including getting his pet moose drunk), he also made some pretty revolutionary discoveries and it is really cool to see his reconstructed observatory in person. If you are interested in learning more about Brahe, you can also visit the Tycho Brahe museum.
Side story: I wasn’t super familiar with the Tycho Brahe story, but Sebastian and I went to a live taping of the comedy podcast The Dollop in Copenhagen last year, where their entire sketch was based on this crazy story. If you are looking for some entertainment, there is a recording of the podcast we attended here.
spirit of hven distillery
Spirit of Hven is a distillery operating on the island. It uses local products to distill it’s own Hven whiskey, and you can visit for various different tasting tours. The property is also home to a hotel, and pub/restaurant.
still need some convincing? here's some of my favourite ven island shots:
hotels in ven
Ven island is small, but it is still home to quite a few accommodation options, ranging from hotels and bed and breakfasts, to Airbnbs and camping. Next time we visit, I would love to stay overnight and if your schedule allows it, I would highly recommend considering this option. Here’s a few properties to check out:
- Spirit of Hven Hotel: As I mentioned above, this popular distillery is also home to a hotel. Book a weekend package and make the most of this awesome spot with a locally-sourced dinner and whiskey tasting.
- Camp Ven: Ven camping is another great option if you’re looking for an affordable and fun experience. While I haven’t stayed here, we rode by and the space looked great and was right by the sea. Choose from traditional camping, cabins, or – if you’re not much of a traditional camper like me – glamping!
- Airbnb: Ven island is home to a bunch of Airbnb properties. After biking by so many charming cottages, I would absolutely look at this option.
Ven Sweden is one of those places that photos will never, ever do justice. As I continue to explore more of my own backyard in Sweden, I am continuously amazed that this place has been largely off the radar of most tourists. And Ven island is no exception. If you’re inspired by this content, don’t forget to check out some of my other Sweden blog posts.