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Photographer: Per Pixel Petersson

Uddevalla - the heart of Bohuslän

In the calm waters of Bohuslän’s beautiful inner archipelago, lies UDDEVALLA, surrounded by bare cliffs, saltwater, and mountains with lush forests and rich greenery. Here, you can experience boat tours all year round, hike to historic lookouts, or jump into the ocean from historic grounds.

Indeed, Uddevalla’s history is truly exciting. It has even changed nationality a remarkable seven times! Its residents have been Swedish, Norwegian and Danish through the years. It was the Norwegians who named it Oddevall in 1498 and also named Byfjorden, the fjord that winds along the coastal landscape into the city centre. On these waters, world acclaimed botanist Carl von Linnaeus arrived in Uddevalla in 1746, expressing that: ”We believed we had come to Venice itself, when we arrived in Uddevalla”. Just like then, you can still sail all the way into the Uddevalla city centre.

During the second half of the 18thcentury, Uddevalla experienced a real boost when the rich herring period gave the city its first ”Gold Age”. Despite having suffered several large fires, the latest of which happened in 1806, Uddevalla has always risen again. In the 1950s, the second “Gold Age” arrived with the thriving Uddevallavarvet shipyard and surrounding shipbuilding industry. Today, Uddevalla is the largest city in Bohuslän and a successful commercial centre with a strong business community.

Unique places and experiences  
The seaside boardwalk Strandpromenaden is Uddevalla’s pride and joy. The wooden boards run snugly along the steep mountain walls and the ocean, all the way from the shell banks Skalbankarna in eastern Uddevalla, through the city centre and along the coast into Lindesnäs. Many people prefer this route when walking to Gustafsberg, Sweden’s first seaside resort. There, you can learn more about royal resort history, stay in the old heated sea bath house and the bath hotel, which today functions as a hostel. Stroll among the well-preserved houses from the 18thand 19thcenturies, have a swim, enjoy the view and just relax with a cup of tea or coffee in the lush resort parklands. 

Walking around on the shells of animals who lived here more than 10 000 years ago is a mighty experience. Uddevalla is home to the world’s largest shell banks. Botanist Carl von Linnaeus also visited during his trip to Uddevalla in 1746, describing the site as ”one of Bohuslän’s wonders”. Pop past the Little Shell bank museum and also visit Bohusläns museum with art gallery and exhibitions on the region’s fishing, industrial and resort history. Want to explore more? Hop on a 100-year-old archipelago boat and head out on the fjord.

Flavoursome fun
Enjoy a cup of delicious coffee or tea in Café Fredborgs wonderful garden, a surprisingly quiet and calm oasis in the middle of the city centre. You’ll encounter more of a crowd at Lejas café by Kungstorget the town square. Here, every pastry is a piece of art and virtually everything is home baked from organic produce. If you’d rather take your tea or coffee in an environment frequented by royal and well-to-do summer guests in the 18thand 19thcenturies, patisserie Snäckan at Gustafsberg is a safe bet. The seaside resort setting offers cakes and delicious sandwiches by the waterfront.

Our stunning bridge
You can’t miss it when you visit or pass through Uddevalla. The powerful landmark Uddevallabron’s pylons create diamond-like prisms reaching 149 metres up into the sky. The bridge was opened in 2000 and has become a firm favourite with photographers all year round, from all angles, and in all types of weather. The bridge is also pictured on a stamp.