A "kronoholme"

Häradsskär lies far out in the Gryt archipelago and is one of Sweden's 1700 or so kronoholmes - islands owned by the state. Häradsskär's location in the outer archipelago, with excellent fishing, early on attracted people from the mainland, who then settled on the island. They combined fishing with pilotage. Early on, being a pilot was not a specialist profession; it was just local people who acted as pilots. In 1677 the pilotage service became a state authority, and twenty years later Häradsskär got its own permanent pilot station. During the Second World War pilotage was especially busy work. Ships tried to make their way through the archipelago in order to avoid mines and U-boats. As navigational equipment improved, there was less need of pilots. On 1 July 1968 the story of Häradsskär's pilot station came to an end - 291 years after it was established.

The Häradsskär lighthouse, which actually stands on the neighbouring island of Stångskär, is what is known as a Heidenstam lighthouse. This type of lighthouse was designed by Gustav von Heidenstam, an engineer at the Swedish Board of Pilotage. In all, eleven such lighthouses were built in Sweden, of which ten still remain today.

Häradsskär is in Östergötland, more precisely at N58° 8.8' / O16° 59.7. On the west side of Häradsskär there is a general-purpose harbour. As well as the lighthouse and the buildings associated with the pilot station and the lighthouse, Häradsskär offers an abundant birdlife, forest and beaches with lots of plants. The shining rocks just seem made for a cooling dip.


  • Beach
  • WC