Find your route
The St. Olav Waterway is dedicated to King Olav of Norway. The beautiful archipelago and the sea view freckled by islands make the route truly one-of-a-kind. Enjoy the calm of archipelago nature and let your mind rest.
The sea route begins in Turku and passes through historically interesting areas in the archipelago of Finland and Åland. You can be very flexible when planning your journey. Do you want to walk the entire distance? Do you want to walk some of the legs and choose bus transport for others? Or would you prefer to divide the route up for several occasions? A wanderer on the St Olav’s Waterway does furthermore have the added bonus of resting during the crossings on water. During these you will be transported on board road ferries or shuttle boats.
Maps – both as overviews an in details – of the St Olav Waterway is found here. Travelling in different ways on the road and through the sea offers nice variety to your journey. You can bike, sail or kayak part of the way.
The Turunmaa Archipelago – travel tips and alternative archipelago routes
Would you like to get to know the Turunmaa archipelago in your own way and find alternatives to main roads? There are many opportunities to wander off route and tread your own path, but it does require some extra planning and time. Beautiful secret places await you along small roads.
Did you know that a great part of the route within the Turunmaa Archipelago belongs to the UNESCO Biosphere area?
A few tips for finding true gems in the archipelago:
- Travel by boat from Turku riverside to the centre of Nagu
- Travel by boat from Turku riverside to Själö island in Northern Nagu. Continue to the centre of Nagu by shuttle boat:
- Visit the southern archipelago of Pargas and Nagu by turning from the main road to Granvik (road no. 1802). After 8 kilometres hop on board shuttle boat m/s Viken, that goes to Björkholm or Pensar. Both locations offer rental cottage accommodation. Check the shuttle boat schedule in advance. From Pensar you can continue via shuttle boat to e.g. Brännskär and Kirjais in Lilland in Nagu. In the summer Kirjais provides services (a shop and restaurant) and you can continue by foot.
Kirjais (information only in Swedish)
- There is a shuttle boat service from Kirjais Nagu Lilland to Brännskär. Bränskär offers accommodation services. You can get to Kirjais by taking the main road after the Nagu ferry for 6,2 km and then turning left to Kirjais (14,3 km) or by taking the main road for 9,2 km and then turning left to Kirjais (11,7 km). In the summer Kirjais provides some services (a shop and restaurant). The shuttle boat dock is situated by the village where the road ends.
Kirjais (information only in Swedish)
- Experience the outer archipelago via shuttle boat. M/s Eivor embarks from Pärnäs in Nagu where it can be found next to the Korpo ferry. Visit Nötö, Aspö, Jurmo or Utö.
Meritie.fi (information only in Swedish)
- If you do not want to return to Pärnäs and would rather continue to Kökar, check for charter transport.
- Drop by Houtskär and Norrskata before taking the shuttle boat to Kökar. You can find ferryboats leaving to Houtskär and Norrskata at Galtby harbour next to the shuttle boats.
Inspiration, men också en del matnyttigt kan du hitta i Skärgårdens hamnbok.
Are you travelling with children? For the route between Turku and Korpo, there is a special pilgrim’s passport available for children. The passport follows Olav’s life journey from viking to king and saint. You can collect stamps and solve tasks during your way. The passport is free. Ask for a copy at Turku Cathedral or other churches or libaries along the path, or at the tourist information points in Pargas, Nagu and Korpo. More information and extra tasks are found here.
Åland archipelago and Åland, travel tips
Uppland, Gästrikland and Hälsningland in Sweden – choose an inland or coastal route
From Eckerö in Western Åland the passage continues to Grisslehamn in Sweden. On the Swedish side the trail travels north through beautiful cultural landscapes to Uppland, Gästrikland and Hälsningland. You may choose whether you want to continue inland or follow the coastal route from Grisslehamn to the direction of Söderhamn and Hudiksvall. Coastal routes require a boat or kayak.
In Sweden pilgrims have the opportunity to enjoy versatile sceneries. Marine and coastal landscapes turn into farmlands and in the west you will be faced by Norway’s large forest and mountain areas. Once you arrive in Nidaros and Trondheim you are at the shore of the Atlantic Ocean.
The new route to the coast is called the St. Olav Waterway, and the Vikingleden route continues through Uppland, Gästrikland and Hälsningland. It is connected to the current pilgrim route to Helgonleden, which runs from Uppsala to the Nidaros Cathedral in Trondheim.