Gota Canal

A classic cruise with a difference through the Swedish countryside!

Read on - and contact Passport Travel for more info on this fascinating trip!

Gota Canal Cruises

Cruising Sweden’s Timeless Past

A journey on the Gota Canal between Sweden’s two largest cities covers a time span of almost 2000 years and is rich in history and culture.  The journey by a turn of the century boat is an experience that can be enjoyed again and again, because every journey is different.

Different stops are made in each direction, in particular on the four-day cruises. A good idea is to combine itineraries by making the journey in both directions, as there is also a 30% rebate on the return journey. Otherwise the six-day journey is what most travellers consider ideal, with overnight stops and longer sightseeing visits along the way.

Whatever time you choose to travel – spring, summer or autumn – you will be looked after by personnel who speak English. Cabins are comfortable but small with washbasin only. Separate bathroom facilities on each deck. Only take essential luggage.

Sample Itinerary: 4 Days – Stockholm – Gothenburg – or reverse

journeys with M/S Juno and M/S Wilhelm Tham

Day 1 Stockholm – Sodertalje – Trosa

Depart Stockholm 9.00am, Sodertalje lock is the first and also the largest lock on our journey. Trosa has been a well-known town since the 14th century, moving to its present site in 1610. Regular steamer traffic between Stockholm, Nykoping and Trosa began in 1860, bringing large numbers of summer visitors. Some local fisherman’s red houses have been rebuilt attractively with carved wood decoration and beautiful verandahs.

Day 2 Mem – Motala

We arrive at Mem the first lock on the Gota Canal, where it was inaugurated on 26 September 1832. Soderkoping is an idyllic town founded in the 13 century and one of the most important during the Hanseatic era. The railway line between Stockholm and Malmo crosses at Norsholm. Arriving at Berg in the early afternoon we travel through a lock staircase of 7 locks. Borensberg – small village with the latest addition to the canal, an aqueduct from 1995. Borenshult – lock staircase of 5 locks. Motala – as von Platen had intended, developed into a large town with an engineering works. We visit the old lockkeeper’s cottage and the Canal Museum in the Head Office of the Gota Canal Company, where there is a slide show and other displays. A walk along the canal past von Platen’s grave is recommended.

Day 3 Motala – Sjotorp

Karlsborg Fortress was built at the same time as the canal. Forsvik was an early metalworking village, which boasted a flourmill, a sawmill and plenty of waterpower. It is dominated by Forsvik ironworks, now a well-known museum of industrial history. Forsvik also has the Gota Canal’s oldest lock, and an iron bridge, both built in 1813. Tatorp – manually operated lock. Toreboda – the railway line between Stockholm and Gothenburg crosses the canal here. Toreboda has Sweden’s smallest ferry, "Lina", which travels across the Gota Canal. Lyrestad is where the old harbour storehouse was used for goods carried on the canal. Nowadays, it contains a museum run by the local homestead association since 1985. At Sjotorp we enter the last lock of the Gota Canal before crossing Lake Vanern, Sweden’s largest lake. There are fine walks along the eight locks.

Day 4 Trollhattan – Gothenburg

The lock at Lilla Edet is the last on our journey and it was first built in 1607 and rebuilt in 1916. Lodose was a prominent trading centre on the west coast as far back as the 11th century and we visit its Medieval Museum. Arrive Gottenburg 2.00pm.

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