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Published: July 22nd 2010
Today the scooter came out of its hiding place in the Tandy garage and we set off to explore Öland. The island is bigger than we had thought so we decided to tackle st the south part as that is the Unesco designated World Heritage area. It is a massive plateau of limestone with only a very thin layer of earth on top and has a very unique set of vegetation. Human beings have lived here since prehistoric times.
We hadn’t gone far when we realised that we needed fuel for the scooter and there were not many buildings about never mind garages. We would have liked to go right to the bottom tip of the island to Ottenby where there is an important bird watching area as this island is a major migration point for many varieties and numbers of birds.
Decided though that that was just too far, especially given our fuel shortage, so we found a road which lead down to the sea at Seby Lage.
We were hoping for a swim but no chance. Arrived at the beach to find a family making noisy fun, but apart from this it was an incredibly tranquil place, and a
sea which can best be described as prime evil sludge. This must be the sort of soup in which life began.
It was pink ! It was also copper coloured, purple, dirty brown …in fact it had so many colours in there it almost made up the full spectrum. Now this was pretty impressive to look at but no way was any part of our fair skin touching that water.
Astonishingly some people were swimming off the end of the ‘pier’. We left them to it and went for a walk along the amazing bird reserve by the water’s edge. So many birds and of such a variety. Wonderful sight. This incredibly odd seawater must present a wonderful diet for the birds.
We then headed across to the other, West, side of the island across the area called the Alvar which is totally flat with quite sparse vegetation on the limestone bedrock and, lots of happy looking cows. Nearer the coast the fields are planted with grain, almost ripe and golden, another lovely sight so we really enjoyed our drive on the easy flat and half empty roads. When we stopped by a wonderful patch of wild flowers on the
verge we were immediately surrounded by butterflies.
Should also mention that there is a profusion of windmills on the island, all in beautiful condition and all protected buildings. They look lovely, so much nicer than wind turbines !
We found fuel at an automated garage and fortunately the credit card did work, once I had it the right way up that is. Went down to a beach on this west side of the island near Degerhamn (where there is a power station and wind farm). Yuk - the sea was black and so was the sludge on the shoreline. Smelled horribly of rotting vegetation. Did not swim !
We stopped for a very late lunch snack on the way back at a lovely friendly bistro and had delicious Swedish style hamburger and fried egg sandwich then back to the campsite where I braved a quick dip in the, not quite so icy, water. We like this area of island very much. It reminds us, just a little of the Ile de Re in France. Pretty houses, roses and hollyhocks, very flat and very peaceful. It would be perfection with a swimming pool !
Late to bed as Skyped with daughter
Jenny and granddaughter Isobel who are 8 hours ahead of me in Australia.
Amazing how I can sit here in a motorhome on an island in Sweden and speak to my family on the other side of the world.
Our last day in Sweden as tomorrow we head west to Denmark again and Copenha
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