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Possibly the best known of Sweden's northern national parks, Abisko is no longer the remote and inaccessible place it once was and now attracts thousands of tourists each year.
The Abiskojakka Valley forms part of the park and runs north-south through it with spectacular canyons in several places. Much of the remainder of the park is bare rock with alpine meadows and boulder fields below and birch scrub and dwarf willows in the lower areas.
In the north the park covers part of the shore of Lake Tornetrask and the island of Abiskosuolo.
Birds of the more upland areas include Golden Eagle, Rough-legged Buzzard and Gyr Falcon, Willow Grouse and Rock Ptarmigan, also Long-tailed Skua and sometimes Snowy Owl. Many species of wader occur here including Purple Sandpiper and Temminck's Stint, Dotterel and Red-necked Phalarope. In the scrub there are Bluethroat, Redwing, Willow and often Arctic Warbler. The lakes have divers, Slavonian Grebe, Greater Scaup, Long-tailed Duck and Velvet Scoter. This is one of the best sites in Europe for Northern Hawk-Owl and Snowy Owl sometimes breeds.
Birds you can see here include:
Red-throated Diver, Black-throated Diver, Slavonian Grebe, Greater Scaup, Long-tailed Duck, Velvet Scoter, White-tailed Eagle, Rough-legged Buzzard, Golden Eagle, Merlin, Gyr Falcon, Willow Grouse, Rock Ptarmigan, Eurasian Dotterel, Eurasian Golden Plover, Temminck's Stint, Purple Sandpiper, Dunlin, Broad-billed Sandpiper, Ruff, Common Snipe, Whimbrel, Common Redshank, Common Greenshank, Wood Sandpiper, Common Sandpiper, Red-necked Phalarope, Long-tailed Skua, Snowy Owl, Northern Hawk-Owl, Eurasian Three-toed Woodpecker, Horned Lark, Red-throated Pipit, Bluethroat, Northern Wheatear, Ring Ouzel, Fieldfare, Redwing, Sedge Warbler, Arctic Warbler, Willow Warbler, European Pied Flycatcher, Siberian Tit, Great Grey Shrike, Brambling, Northern Redpoll, Arctic Redpoll, Pine Grosbeak, Snow Bunting, Lapland Bunting
Being so far north several mammals have survived here that have been exterminated further south, Brown Bear, Lynx and Arctic Fox and Red Fox occur as well as Otter, Pine Marten, Mountain Hare and Norwegian Lemming. The abundance of lemmings and other small rodents has a marked effect on numbers of raptors, owls and skuas and visitors in a good "lemming year" will see far more predatory birds.
The rich flora includes Glacier Crowfoot, Ghost Orchid and Butterfly Orchid.
History and Use
Areas of Interest
Access and Facilities
The park now has good visitor facilities with a tourist and information centre that can provide accommodation, marked trails and a cable-car up to My Njulla. Whereas once the only way to visit Abisko was by rail there is now a road to Narvik in Norway and the park can be toured by car.
The trails have conveniently placed huts for hiking visitors but all should carry food and weather-proof clothing. Insect repellent is essential in this part of Sweden.
Content and images originally posted by Steve
Forest Knights's review one of my favourite parts of the world. Great services and great wild life. Pros
- Fantastic views. Easy to escape the crowds
- expensive to get to.