Pick cloudberries in Lapland
Cloudberries have been enjoyed since the 1700s, and Linnaeus says that at that time, enormous amounts of berries were sent to the Swedish royal capital. But it's even better to pick your own berries, meet other cloudberries lovers and together indulge in a special cloudberry supper. All this can be done in early August in the village of Vuollerim just south of the Arctic Circle.
The golden berries, Norrland's gold, have been popular for many centuries. In the past, it was thought that the juicy and tasty berries could purify blood and cure diseases like scurvy and tuberculosis. It is clear that cloudberries are rich in vitamin C and very tasty. The village Vuollerim is surrounded by vast expanses of marshes and bogs where there are plenty of cloudberries, and this weekend the village berry guides show the way to their favorite spots. Along with a handful of other participants, you pick the ripe berries for a few hours. In addition, you visit the bog, with its surging, muddy conditions and maybe fresh tracks from one of the area's bears, and enjoy lunch in the open air. This is a quiet and gentle experience you won't forget.
Back at the Hotel Vuollerim Gästgiveri, owned by 140 villagers and where each room is decorated by someone from the neighborhood, you have the opportunity to rest, shower and sauna. And above all, there is time to make your own jam or chutney out of the day's freshly picked berries.
Then, it's time for a specially composed supper where cloudberries are included in all the dishes. The menu varies from year to year but is inspired by, among other things, the winning entries from the previous year's recipe contests; such as chanterelle toast with the area's air-dried ham and cloudberry chutney, or trout with summer vegetables, potato puree, herb hollandaise and cloudberries. No matter what, it's a tasty delight. Over the weekend, when the winner of this year's best cloudberry recipe is crowned, there will also be the judging of entries, awards ceremony and opportunities for tasting.
If you are coming from far away, it is worth staying a few extra days. Treehotel in Harads is not far away, and Vuollerim's surroundings are well suited for your own excursions or guided activities like a Sami forest safari, a visit to the Arctic Circle or a ride under the midnight sun.