Karlskrona Yes, Lund No…

Our next stop was Karlskrona, which is Sweden’s equivalent of Portsmouth, the traditional home of the navy.

The aire at Karlskrona exceeded all of our expectations. It was lovely – right on the front in a modern marina near the town centre. Mark reckons that this could be the best place we’ve stayed in Sweden (Sweden’s answer to Almerimar, perhaps?). We arrived mid morning and managed to grab the last spot on the front row.

There was a modern harbour services building just up the quayside with toilets, showers and washing machines, all included in the £18 price. A bargain when you think that we got a night’s stay with electricity and got six loads of washing done!…..

They weren’t exactly cramming the vans in either – we even had our own picnic bench and pot plant:

Just a few minutes walk away was the Maritime museum, which was… FREE!

We spent a good while in here looking at all sorts of good stuff, including a submarine you could go inside:

From Karlskrona, we set off to a place called Älmhut on a bit of a pilgrimage:

I dread to think how many thousands of pounds I’ve spent at Ikea over the years….. Overall, the museum was good but could’ve been better (though they do get bonus points for allowing motorhomes to stay on their car park overnight 😁).

There was some good information on the history of the company, and displays showing Ikea-furnished from different eras. Here’s the 1960s:

The treatment of the key ranges that student landlords know and love was a bit disappointing. Billy (Mark insists I add “bookcase” here for those who don’t know what Billy is… I’m shocked…. you mean not everyone lives and breathes this stuff???) was singled out and given his own display (though without the key information that we wanted – just how many millions of these things have they sold over the years?).

There was no mention of Malm, Pax, Faktum or the other ranges that at some time have graced many of our homes……

Moving through the museum, there was an interesting mix of old and new. Turning a corner I saw the nice Pöang below and thought “ooh, that cover’s nice. I wonder if it’s new?” (it looked nicer in the flesh than in the photo….):

Nope – it’s the original design from 1977. Oh well…..

From Ikea we made our way to Lund, which has a romanesque 12th century cathedral and a very good write-up in our guide book. If we had our time again we wouldn’t have bothered…
Our visit started off badly looking for somewhere to park. A map showing car parks was available online but without any information as to which might be motorhome-suitable…. Suffice to say we spent a long time driving round until (on the verge of giving up and leaving) we eventually found a car park at the train station that didn’t have a height barrier – this car park wasn’t even on the map: grrrrrrr. £6 gave us just over two hours parking, which would normally have been absolutely fine (just one of the costs of visiting a city) but seems expensive when you arrive at the ticket machine already in a somewhat fed up state….

We went to the cathedral but couldn’t look inside as there was a confirmation service underway. Again, there was no visitor information online which would have enabled us to plan around this. We’d made the effort to turn up at the right time to see the 1440s astronomical clock that according to our guide book offers an “ecclesiastical Punch and Judy show as two knights pop out and clash swords” at twelve noon. Oh well, we’ll just have to imagine it. I guess we’ve been spoiled by the quality of the visitor information in the rest of Sweden…

The rest of the town was OK but didn’t excite us:

Our agreed highlight of Lund was the Pope Francis bobblehead on sale in the cathedral shop (with the Pope Francis “quotable notables” stickers in second place).

Hang on, isn’t the church here Lutheran (ie protestant?). We wonder what use they have for Pope Francis bobbleheads?

So overall, it’s Karlskrona – Yes 😎 and Lund – maybe don’t bother 😤…..

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