The valley of Fryksdalen — to see along the way

Once you have visited Värmland and Fryksdalen, you are likely to return. The beautiful countryside and the valley around the lakes of Fryken offer many opportunities to enjoy the nature and the culture of Värmland. At Tossebergsklätten, the view is magnificent and stretches over a majority of the upper part of lake Fryken.

Here, legend meets reality, above all through Selma Lagerlöf’s stories. In “The saga of Goesta Berling” but also in many of her other novels many buildings and places are described with other names. The original manor of Rottneros park is the role model for “Ekeby”, the lake of Fryken is described as “Löven” and Tossebergsklätten as “Gurlitta klätt”. Selma Lagerlöf lived most of her life at her mansion Mårbacka, which is now a memorial estate and a tourist attraction. Next to Rottneros Park is the stage “Berättarladan”, where the theatre group Västanå Teater perform many of Selma Lagerlöf’s novels.

The area of Fryksta

Apertin’s manor and nature reserve

Apertin’s history goes back to the 12th century, when monks from Aberdeen came to christianize Värmland. 

Apertin’s manor is situated in a nature reserve, with deep gullies and luscious vegetation. Apertin’s gullies became a preserved area in 1936, and was thereby the county’s first nature protected area.

The manor’s oldest part, the ground floor, is from 1670. The cavaliers, who were noble officers, used to gather here to dine and feast with countess Sara Catharina Linroth Löwenheim. Here Selma Lagerlöf found the inspiration to “Ekeby in “The saga of Goesta Berling” and also from a priest operating in the parish at the time. 

Mogården and Illberg’s burial ground, Fryksta-Clara Elfs jernväg

After having passed Apertin’s manor, at Mogården and Illberg, you will find two typical Iron Age burial grounds with 50 piles and stone formations.

Through the area the railway embankment from Sweden’s first public railway, “Fryksta Clara Elfs jernväg” stretches. The route between Fryksta and Lyckan (by the river of Klarälven) was operated between 1849 and 1871. During the first years oxen or horse-drawn carriages were used, but in 1856, the locomotive engine Fryckstad was commissioned. At Illberg, there is a memorial as well as remains of the railway. 

Freja and the quayside of Fryksta

S/S Freja af Fryken is a steamer which was  launched in 1869. In 1896 the vessel foundered at Bössviken, Östra Ämtervik and 11 people died. The boat was salvaged and restored in 1994 and operated on Fryken until 2016. The steamer is now under restoration and is being rebuilt to be a museum.

By the quayside of Fryksta, there is a small museum telling the story of the steamer Freja and showing some of the saved items.

At the quayside is also Café Freja and a small railway museum about Fryksta-Clara Elfs jernväg.

The area of Nilsby

Nilsby Bridge

The bridge, Nilsbybron, was built in 1997, and received the “Beautiful roads’”-award that same year. It is made up of eleven ranges of concrete arches, shaped in red concrete.

At the eastern bridge abutment there is a memorial in honor of the technics genius and inventor Harry Nyquist, who came from Nilsby.

The oak of Kammersrud

About 1,5 kilometers northwest of the bridge in the village of Kammersrud is the oldest oak in Värmland. It´s believed to be 1000 years old. 

In the gnarled, whitened tree there is a hole, which was made in the olden days to pull sick children through. According to folklore, it was a way to expel the evil from their bodies.

Hagudden

Hagudden is a beautiful cape, located in the middle part of Fryken, north of Nilsby. 

The area which is own by the municipal of Kil offers a nice recreation area with many beaches.

Take the opportunity to enjoy the beautiful surroundings and go for a swim in Lake Fryken.

The area of Östra Ämtervik

The barrows of Smedsby

At Smedsby, about 10 minutes walk from Alma Löv Museum there is one of the finest burial grounds in Värmland from the Bronze Age (1800-500 B.C.). In a slope down towards Lake Fryken on plateaus and landings there are five barrows and eleven stone circles. The area is marked with orange colored poles.

Vilarstenen

South of Mårbacka, there is a rock that looks like a little sofa, called “Vilarstenen”. Here, the ghost of a murdered medieval priest, attacked people until the end of the 17th century. 

He stopped haunting people after having made an agreement with Selma Lagerlöf’s ancestress.

The church of Östra Ämtervik

The church is known as Selma Lagerlöf’s church. Here, the Lagerlöf family grave is located. The present church was built 1878-1898 and replaced the earlier medieval church, which burnt to the ground after having been struck by lightning. In the 1920s, Selma Lagerlöf donated an oil painting by Paul Piltz to be used as altarpiece.

The Heritage Centre of Östra Ämtervik

The local history society started in 1948, before that the area was used as a spa. The heart of the Heritage Centre is a typical “parstuga” from the 18th century. In the area, you will find several old buildings including an open air theatre. Every year, at the beginning of August, there is a Lagerlöf feast. Here, you can also find “Östra Emtervik’s Sparbanksmuseum”, a bank museum.

Near the Heritage Centre there is also a museum exhibits carriages, traps, sleds and farming machines.

The museum is run by the “Trillan och kyrkvägar society”. In the summer, the society arranges hikes along old church roads, with features of historical tales and cuffers.