Author: Yellow Duckie
I was looking forward to spend a quiet weekend in the midst of nature so I decided to sail out of Stockholm and visit one of the archipelagos which boast to have the best scenery, Grinda. Although the weather report was not promising, I decided not to trust it as it has been fairly inaccurate lately. To my dismay, the forecasted gloom was there.

When I read about the award winning restaurant in Grinda, I dropped the idea of bringing my own picnic basket and decided to give myself a little treat at the Grinda Wardhus. The boat ride from Stockholm took about 90 mins from Stromkajen (in front of the Grand Hotel) to Norra Grinda (North of Grinda).

It was no surprise to me that the dock at Grinda was nothing more than just a concrete platform surrounded by the forest. Although one may feel a little uncertain if there would be any living form further beyond the path leading towards the inner part of the forest, but the fair amount of passengers that get off this port assures you that somewhere inside, there is life.
Uncertain where I was supposed to go, I just follow the crowd into the forest. Sightings of camp grounds, peculiar tents (a miniature house with front porch), functioning ancient water pumps and mobile toilets are found along the path leading inwards. It was calm and quiet since it’s only half past 9 in the morning. I soon caught sight of some wild raspberry plans and of course various wild flowers that grows along side the path. It was not long before I found the “town center” where the Grinda Wardhus hotel and restaurant is.

The view from the deck where the restaurant is situated is superb. Stretching out from the high ground, it gives viewer a panoramic view of the coastline of the Archipelago. I know lunch would be perfect even before I get a taste of it. Inside the reception area, which is something you should not miss (check out the rustic interior of the reception area, it brings a sense of comfort to tired travelers), you will be able to get a poorly sketched map of Grinda. I wouldn’t say that it is a good guide but it’s the only one you can have and roughly know where you are.

I decided to venture the entire island if possible and find myself a good spot to lay my mat and dig into my book. My walk began at the local mini mart where you can get some groceries for self catering guest. There is also a docking yard for boat owners and a café with a fantastic view by the coast. Kayak and bicycle is available for rental, however, the look of the bicycle was in such a sorry state that the thought of touching it appalls me.

Heading towards the South side of Grinda, alternative port for the arrival/departure of ferry (be sure where you departing ferry will be arriving at), you will see a farm where fresh eggs and lambskins are sold. Just be cautious when you get cross to see the animals, you might get electrocuted for being too close (electric fencing). Swimming areas are marked at the map, however, the gloomy and the strong wind deter me from even wanting to lay my mat down on the ground so I decided to go around the island instead.

Raspberries, blueberries and even Cloudberries can be found all over the ground. The only set back was that it was time to be harvested so I had to leave it where it is with much heaviness. Imagine how many bottles of jam I can produce!

I wouldn’t say that the scenery is breath taking (blame it on Abisko for its jaw-dropping view). However, there is no lacking of good sceneries in this archipelago. It is indeed a perfect picnic place (as there is so much room for picnic) and a perfect gateway for a quiet weekend. Life is peaceful here. Different part of the island reveals different side of its beauty. View from the cliff revealing the hundreds of boats parked at the docking bay, view of the cliff against the blue water, the raging wave as it rushes onto the shoreline and more. There is something about this archipelago…it feels like it is in a world completely on its own. Strange in a positive way that keeps you wanting for more…perhaps it’s the perfect union between serenity and beauty.

Lunch at the awarding-winning restaurant was indeed one of my best experiences here. Both for my taste bud and for my eyes (superb view), indeed they don’t get an award for reason. I was initially battling between the seafood casserole and the entrecote. In the end, I decided to go for entrecote with red wine sauce and I have not regretted since ( I bet the casserole taste equally good). I know I can get entrecote right in down town of Stockholm, however, it matters which chef is handling the meat. Here, it was cooked to perfection, rosy but not bleeding and melts right in your mouth. The compliment of the red wine sauces brings out the flavor of the meat and yet not overpowering it that you can’t taste the meat.

I ended my trip with my book on the rocks at Sodre Grinda (South Grinda) while waiting for the next boat to take me home. It was indeed a quiet and rewarding weekend I had at Grinda. Although it was a day trip for me, I was kind of glad as I would have most probably got myself a place in the youth hostel (as a night stay at the Grinda Wardhus would be unaffordable for my pocket) where mobile toilets are utilized. I am not that fond of these mobile toilets where everyone’s contribution is kept there for a period of time, perhaps until it’s full before being disposed. Back to the world of flushing toilet in trade of the peaceful nature of Grinda, I supposed I could live with that.

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