Sweden’s first, as well as the one and only Marine National Park – that and much more is Kosterhavet.
Havet means harbour in Swedish language and that speaks for itself. The Koster Islands and the surrounding shores are part of the Skagerrak Sea in the Swedish municipality of Bohuslän.
Kosterhavet is located in the western part of Sweden, sharing borders with Norway and its marine park Ytre Hvaler. It stretches across more than 388 square kilometres, all the way from Grebbestad in the south to Strömstad in the north.
Kosterhavet Marine National Park is where the most unique animal and plant species can be found.
The waters around the coastline are rich and also show high biodiversity. The Koster Fjord reaching 200 meters depth has an environment typical to the open ocean.
There is ocean water with very low temperatures and high salinity.
These conditions allow the waters to treasure species such as spongers, cold-water corals or brachiopods, all animals which can be usually found much further from the coast that in here. All together, Kosterhavet can be proud to have more than 12 000 species of fauna.
The rich fauna and various and colourful underwater life is a great attraction for divers and snorkelling lovers who wish to explore the deepest secrets of Swedish northern waters.
Things to do:
There is several popular snorkelling trails. Some of the other popular visitors’ activities include for instance kayaking, fishing, bird watching or, indeed, swimming.
Visitors can also explore the underwater life from the land. The Kosterhavet naturum is the visitors centre located on the South Koster Island which offers several interactive exhibitions and activities, as well as aquarium. Education and fun come hand in hand.
The Marine National Park was established in 2009 and thus belongs to one of the newest ones in the country. The reason behind its establishment was to keep it as a valuable resource for recreation and protection, and thus maintain the natural wealth of the region.
Apart from the water and underwater environment, the Park also comprises of several islets and parts of Rossö island.