Allmansrätten, or literally translated “Every Man’s Right”, is Sweden’s Right of Public Access. And it’s one example why Sweden is better than other countries. It is pretty easy, all it says is: Nature belongs to everyone and you can enjoy it as much as possible.
“You rely on the Right of Public Access whenever you go out in the Swedish countryside – whether it is to take a walk, go kayaking, climb a mountain or just sit down on a rock to think.
The Right of Public Access is a unique institution. It gives us all the freedom to roam the countryside. But we must also take care of nature and wildlife, and we must show consideration for landowners and for other people enjoying the countryside. In other words: Don’t disturb – don’t destroy!” (via naturvardsverket.se)
So, why does it make Sweden a better country? Like mentioned in blog posts before, swedes are nice people. They are friendly and ready to help. And the idea of giving back the nature to the people is … well … natural. When you think about it for a longer time you see that it is quite obvious that all the things out there should be able to be enjoyed by everyone. But Sweden is a special country: 9,415,295 people on an area of 449,964 sqkm (that makes an average of 20.6/sqkm). Germany for example is very different: 81,799,600 people on an area of 357,021 sqkm, makes a population density of 229/sqkm, ten times more people in one square kilometer than in Sweden. That makes it much easier. Sweden has more natural space, in Germany there is rarely a spot not populated. So, natural space must be protected in Germany. And since Germany has many more people, it is much harder to keep them under control.
But anyways, the Right of Public Access is something to enjoy in Sweden and last weekend I did. I went with my friend and neighbor Lars to Söderåsen, a national park 45 minutes car drive outside of Lund. The national park covers an area of 1625 ha (to get an understanding of the size, NY’s Central Park covers an area of 349 ha). A beautiful place.
We arrived on Friday evening, put up the tent, enjoyed the camp fire. We enjoyed hot dogs, whiskey and a cup of tea and spent a cold night in the tent. The next morning we had a great breakfast, packed our stuff together, took a little walk through the national park and then went back home.
The cool thing is that there are several camping places within Söderåsen National Park. Within the camping areas you can find camp fire places, pre-cut fire wood, a water pump, toilets, and even some cabins. The cabins are pretty cool, there are beds inside and an oven. And the greatest: it is all free. You can go there, use it all, and go home again. Perfect.
Lars and I talked about it. In the US you would have to pay money fo all of this, for staying there, for using the fire wood… And in Germany it would be prohibited.
Since I can call myself a proud owner of the Heimplanet tent, I will enjoy this much more. But I will wait until the freezing days are over and look forward to the spring.