Naturreservat Axmar
Naturreservat Axmar
To do Nature and Outdoors Nature reserve

Nature reserve Axmar

The Axmar nature reserve is the largest continuous archipelago area on the southern Bothnian Sea coast. It is also the largest in Gävleborg county, covering around 4,500 hectares. Here you can hike, watch birds and grill sausages, but also visit the Axmar Bruk culture reserve.

The nature reserve is at its most beautiful between April and September. The coastline here is flat and rocky. In addition to the coastal area, the reserve also includes many islands, from 400 hectares in size down to the smallest skerries.

There are two hiking trails in the reserve. On the mainland, you start from Axmar Bruk and follow the trail "from path to wreck" 1 kilometre north along the coast. On Kusön there are several fine sandy beaches and you can hike the approximately 3 kilometres along the forest path between Badviken and Korshamn. The best way to enter Korshamn is with a larger boat.

Valuable to many.
The many rocks and boulders, shallow bays and lagoons in the archipelago offer many different underwater habitats where animals and plants thrive. The bottoms of the shallow bays are richly covered with microalgae, lush vascular plants and dense coralline algae.

It is a treasure trove for crustaceans, shells, fish and seabirds looking for food. Amongst others, there are eider ducks, blackbirds, wagtails, little ravens and white birds. Mixed coniferous forest with elements of birch and aspen dominates, but the vegetation is varied.

There are also elements of deciduous forest and species-rich shrubs and fields. Particularly interesting from a scientific point of view is the plant life along the shores, which has been shaped by the ongoing land uplift.

Sea bay Kusö kalv.
Västerhamn on Jusö kalv is a shallow bay that is equally scenic above and below the water. If you snorkel here, you can see at least ten species of underwater vegetation and many different kinds of fish.

The easiest way to get to Österhamn is by a larger boat. There is an easy path between Österhamn and Västerhamn.

Among mills, wrecks and bladderwrack
As early as 1671, Axmar's first smelter was built near the sea. Iron was produced there with power from the waters of the Skärjeån river and coal from the surrounding forests in Ödmården. Axmar Ironworks has always been isolated from villages and main roads, and for a long time the sea was the main contact with the outside world.

During the 250 years that iron was produced in Axmar, much has been built and changed. The biggest change took place in the 1860s when the entire mill was demolished and moved closer to the then seashore.

In the sea outside Axmar Mill there is an exciting underwater world. Beneath the surface of the rocky and shallow archipelago are several shipwrecks with a story to tell. We have selected eleven sites that tell the 300-year history of the ironworks in different ways, from ore-laden ships to disused barges.