Kayaking around Lidö in the Stockholm Archipelago
Lidö in the northern Stockholm archipelago is well suited for conferences. This is where you meet the silhouette of the Sea eagle, free horizon and a newly renovated 18th century manor. After a relaxing kayak trip around the island, including freshly caught herring served on typical Swedish rye bread, a soothing sauna awaits you. Then it is time to change into something more fashionable, enjoy a gourmet dinner and finish off the evening on the dance floor.
Lidö manor is only an hour away from Stockholm, close to the idyllic town of Norrtälje. You can sit at the conference table by ten o’clock in the morning, unless you choose to kayak first…
Everybody can kayak, but it can feel a bit difficult during the first minutes. The kayaks are well suited to beginners, and the kayaking starts in calm waters. It is led by Dag Åsvärn, Commando major, botanist and archipelago enthusiast. The other guides are Dag’s friends from one, or both, of these two worlds. However, there is no stress, as the kayaking is tailored to give everybody a great trip. If the water is cold an escort safety boat will follow.
There will be at least one stop along the way, perhaps on a rocky promontory on the northern part of the island. Here the soil is not so sensitive, and you can see the vast Sea of Åland over the Sea Gulf, the great open stretch of water opening into the Baltic Sea. Dag will be pleased if you ask him the Latin names of plants, and their use in old times. This is also a good place for birdwatching, for example the Sea eagle, hatching in the area. And maybe Olle and Marita Sjöblom, inhabitants since generations on neighbouring island Fejan, will offer you a sandwich with freshly caught herring.
After the kayaking and a refreshing sauna, Dag will give a short lecture on the fascinating history of Lidö Manor and its owners, among them the Gustavus Adolphus’s chancellor Axel Oxenstierna’s cousin Traveller-Bengt. He was an early Swedish globetrotter portrayed in a biography written by the famous Swedish explorer Sven Hedin, the last Swede to be knighted.
The dinner is enjoyed in the new dining hall. The chef and his colleagues have won prizes for their cuisine. After dinner, the choice is between the dance floor, the bar or listening to the night sounds under the great sail protecting the outdoor bar from rain. After an elegant breakfast in the breakfast room, complete with original tiled ovens, the conference room is waiting. The rooms are small but exquisite, and 18th century is, after all, always 18th century.