Grynet står vid kaj

The Eastern side of the Göta Canal with children

Taking the family on a road trip along the Göta Canal in Östergötland can be the best adventure of the year. There is plenty to discover for both young and old. See the boats being lifted and lowered by the water in the locks, challenge each other to mini golf or pet the canal sheep. And don't forget to stop often, to rest your legs and eat ice cream or waffles!  


Söderköping - a good starting point

We suggest that you start the day in Söderköping. While your legs are still fresh and strong, you can climb Ramunderberget and look at the view of Söderköping and the canal. A great experience for both children and adults! Once you've settled down again, it's probably time for the first ice cream of the day, and luckily the ice cream restaurant Smultronstället is right next to the lock. If the line is long, as it sometimes can be, you kids can play in the playground next door, while the adults wait. You can also take a walk through the picturesque city centre. By the way, did you know that parts of Astrid Lindgren's Madicken films were recorded here? 

If you want to stay a little longer in Söderköping, there are a couple of different boat tours to choose from. Both M/S Athene and M/S Göta Lejon have their home port in Söderköping and make day trips out to Mem and the archipelago. Find all the different day trips here! Back on land, you can either check in at Söderköping Brunn or Slussen Rum



Brådtom - a Swedish summer idyll 

When you feel finished exploring the picturesque little town, you can head further west. Stop by Brådtom's lock café for a coffee and say hello to the farm's cats, rabbits and happy free-range hens. The children tend to like this stop a lot! And if you stayed longer than expected in Söderköping and think that Brådtom is a cosy place, then you can also spend the night here, in the midst of a Swedish summer idyll!



The Berg locks - the most famous part of the Göta Canal

The next destination is Berg's locks! This is a good place to end a day trip, or start the next day if you stayed in Brådtom. Play a round of mini golf or take a dip at the child-friendly beach of Lake Roxen. Be impressed and fascinated by the large lock gates in the Lock Gate Exhibition and try to imagine what it was like to wind them by hand in the old days. For lunch or dinner, we recommend a burger at Kanalkrogen Delimo's terrace, where you have a good view of the boats passing the locks. If you wish to spend the night here, Bergs slussar's hostel/cottages are a good fit, and if you want to stay longer, there are several exciting activities in Linköping. There you will find both the Air Force Museum, the Östergötland Museum and Lasse-Maja's Detective House - and of course Old Linköping! 

If you enjoy cycling, we recommend that you rent Kaffeteriet's bikes from the Tourist Information Office  . The stretch from Berg's locks to Borensberg is one of the more child-friendly, and every year new families discover how much fun it is to cycle along the Göta Canal. And regardless of whether you cycle or take the car further west, you will find a really yummy stop in Ljungsbro - Cloetta's factory outlet selling sweets. Here you can also visit the activity park, which is suitable for children of all ages. It is not unlikely that this will become one of the favorite stops on the trip! 


Borensberg - with Östergötland's only manually operated lock 

If you come to Borensberg by bike, you first pass the Glasbruket Café and hostel , where some of the canal sheep have their pasture. They usually don't mind being petted! At Glasbruket there is also canoe rental for those who feel like paddling. In Borensberg, you can enjoy a good lunch at the historic Göta hotel, which you will find right next to the canal. And after lunch, the children will probably want to help raise the lock for the boats that will pass right below the terrace. The lock in Borensberg is one of two locks that are still opened manually. Have a coffee at Kaffeteriet and challenge each other to a mini-golf tournament, or watch toffee production at Börslycke gård. 



Motala - Östergötland's lake town

Finally, yoou continue to Motala where Café Mallboden is a must for all children. Here you will find some of Sweden's best waffles with exciting fillings of both raspberry boats and chocolate balls! Here,in the old Motala workshop district, you will also find pens with canal sheep, and even though they do not want to be fed, they don't mind being petted. When the evening comes, you can make your way down to the harbor in Motala. for a good dinner at one of the restaurants, and you can let the children play in the large lakeside-inspired playground by Lake Vättern. Here you can ride a swan as well as a pike! Next to the city park is the the Vättern Aquarium, with its 15 aquariums showcasing both Lake Vättern fish and tropical fish from Africa, Asia and South America. In the harbour is also Sweden's largest Motor Museum with a large and fascinating collection of vehicles and other technology in contemporary settings. It is a museum out of the ordinary that is often well liked by the whole family! 

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