Peace and quiet, yet all services within easy reach. Simrishamn, the capital of Österlen, is a genuine and beautiful small town. It is not least the town's buildings that make up its charm. The low houses in pastel colours lie in long rows along cobbled streets. Beautifully carved doors are also typical of the area, as are the magnificent gardens that lie like invisible oases behind high wooden planks.

It was probably sometime in the 13th century that it became large enough to be granted town rights. However, there have been settlements on the site since the Stone Age. Simrishamn is first mentioned in 1123, when the Norwegian king Jorsalafarare and his fleet are said to have docked here. The name of the fishing village was Svimraros, which means "the mouth of the river that overflows" and refers to the Tommarp River. The fishing village grew to become an important harbour town, thanks to the herring, which played a crucial role in the town's economy and history. This is why a fish is depicted on the town coat of arms.

With the end of the Hanseatic League, times became harder and herring lost its importance. Things didn't get any better when the Swedes sacked the town in the mid-17th century. But during the Age of Liberty, merchant houses sprang up. The tanner Ehrnberg laid the foundations for the city's major industry, the leather factory. You can see how this happened at the tannery museum in Strömska gården. Shipping companies developed as trade grew, and by the end of the 19th century Österlen had Sweden's largest fleet of sailing ships. In Simrishamn, the Björkengren family owned no less than seventy ships.

St. Nicolai's church dates from the 12th century and is built of grey hall stone. For a long time, the church was clad in grey cement, but during a visit to Simrishamn, the artist Carl Milles promised to donate a sculpture if the cement was removed. Now it sparkles again in grey hall stone and the Milles sculptures float on the lawn. Famous are the pulpit bearing the name of Christian IV, the magnificent baptismal font, the medieval crucifix and the oldest votive vessel (church ship) in the East from 1776.

The sea and nature characterise the atmosphere. Visit the Österlen Museum, The pharmacist's Mediterranean garden, Autoseum with Frasses & Mariannes music museum, Nordic Sea Winery, the merchant farms, the Hotel Tourist Board's rosarium, Rosentorget, the Gösta Werner & Sea Art Museum and much more. Shop in the town's shops and have a coffee in one of the many cafés or enjoy a good menu in the town's restaurants. From Simrishamn station, Pågatågen trains run almost every hour Simrishamn-Malmö. Express buses operate routes to Lund and Kristianstad and local buses go to the municipality's other villages.

Join more than 10k+ subscribers

Keep up to date with everything you need to know about Österlen!
Destination Österlen AB
[email protected]