Boy fishing at a lake in Smaland, Sweden.

Sweden - Fishing

Sweden is well known for its various waterways, such as the coastal seas, rivers, lakes and dams in providing an ideal habitat for a rich marine life. Fishing has been part of Swedish culture since the oldest days, to supply food. As the years have progressed fishing occupations are still active and an important source of national economy.

Sweden has a long U-shaped coastline consisting of east, south and west. The east coast borders Finland and the Gulf of Bothnia, while the west coast borders Norway and the North Sea. The east coast has an abundance of nearby islands to fish from.

Some anglers opt to fish from the numerous boats available. The west coast is ideal for deep sea fishing and famous for its sea food, with guided lobster and fishing trips being offered.

Yet sport fishing for recreational activities has also become a popular past time in this Scandinavian country.

Sweden is reputed to have about 37 coarse and game fish available for catching. Three main commonly caught fish are pike, zander and perch, while in the fast running waters it is salmon trout and grayling. Among all the countries in the world, Sweden offers some of the best chances for pike fishing. The rivers and lakes offer many pike, the official record of the heaviest freshwater pike caught in Sweden was 19kgs. Pike are generally caught for recreational sport, not commercially.

The fishing season in Sweden is usually all year in the southern sections, central Sweden is generally from April to November and northwards to Lapland, it is typically May to October.

There are about 100 000 lakes in Sweden, and the biggest one is the Vänern Lake. Lake Vänern has about 20 000 islands and may be an angler’s paradise. Southern based lowland lakes tend to be high in perch, pike, zander and coarse species. The central lakes tend to have prominent fish populations of pike, perch, carp, brown trout, grayling and zander. In the lakes further up northwards, there is an abundance of brown trout, grayling and Artic char.

In northern sections of the country are some magnificent rivers systems. Fishing along the rivers is considered a great location for anglers. Having a guide is recommendable for anyone fishing in the northern sections and within the Artic Circle, as the weather tends to be harsh and the landscape can be hard to navigate along. Yet the benefits are unspoilt natural settings, with views of the northern lights and midnight sun. Some well-known river fish found in this part of the country are brown trout, char and grayling.

Along central Sweden there is the 200 km long southern stretch of the Dalälven River. Meadows, wetlands and marches compliment the superb fishing waters along the river. The largest zander in Sweden is reputed to have been caught from this river.

Various southern rivers, especially the Mörrumsån River are known for their great supply of salmon. Salmon fish are quite large here and some are known to weigh over 25kgs. These southern rivers also are great for trout fishing.

There are fishing orientated holidays offered by Sweden and many resources for anglers, from serene fly fishing to adventurous deep sea fishing.