THE SOUTH FUNEN ARCHIPELAGO

Danish Ø-dyssey Part III - across one of the most beautiful island groups in Europe

> Several hiking and camping excursions to the South Funen Islands in Denmark < 

The South Funen Archipelago is a cluster of small Danish islands and islets in the waters between Funen Island and Germany. It stands out as one of the most beautiful island groups in Northern Europe where small cultural enclaves exist in untouched nature. During the last ice age, the landscape was flooded and formed by the ice melting, thus creating 55 islands with a particular hilly landscape; The archipelago is the world's largest flooded ice age landscape. Going to one of the islands is quite a gear change down from the higher pulse on "mainland Denmark". People are more relaxed and operate on island-time. They spend time on local produce and to maintain their old beautiful farm houses.For these reasons the story of Denmark is told best by visiting one of the small islands South of Funen.

 

The South Funen islands are very different, each one of them having unique traits. Another feature is the weather, which is often mild and better than rest of Denmark.

Bjørnø is perfect for day tours, with it's rolling green hills and small size. Lyø has the Bell Stone, a dolmen chamber from between 3500-3100 BC. Avernakø is laid-back and has fantastic nature and during Pentecost the locals rise the strange Mai rod to celebrate the coming of Summer. ​Drejø has a population of white deers and Hjortø is exceptionally beautiful and remote with only three inhabitants. Skarø has great local food and a festival, and Strynø holds a number of in-land lakes full of frogs and snakes. Svelmø is uninhabited and great for day visits with a dinghy or kayak. Halmø and Birkholm are low-lying islands completely off the radar which are great for fishing trips, andThurø has it's old fishing houses. Finally, the Helnæs Bay area incl. its islands is a stunning place for weekend excursions to isolated beaches and forests where one can spend a time in the raw nature without meeting anyone and live by foraging and picking blue mussels from the sea bed.

As we both grew up in this area of Denmark we have explored the archipelago since childhood and never stopped. These islands simply go straight to heart for all visitors, be it first-timers as well as repeaters. 

For more fascinating islands in Denmark, check the other Ø-dyssey travel sites:

- I: Northern tip & offshore islands

- II: Islands off Central & South Jutland

- IV: Islands off Funen, Ærø & Langeland

- V: Islands off Zealand & Bornholm

Selected pics from our Danish Ø-dyssey - Part III:

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© Anders M. Pedersen & Jakob M. Pedersen

All photos have been taken by Anders & Jakob.