Lighthouses of Sweden: Lake Vättern and the Göta Canal

This page includes the lighthouses of Lake Vättern, in southern Sweden. Lake Vättern, Europe's sixth largest lake, is 130 km (81 mi) long but no more than about 31 km (20 mi) wide. The Göta Canal, part of an inland waterway that connects Göteborg on the Kattegat to Mem on the Baltic Sea, crosses Lake Vättern on its way from the larger Lake Vänern to the Baltic. There is some commercial traffic on the canal, but mostly it is used by recreational vessels.

Four counties border the lake. The listing here is counterclockwise starting in Örebro county at the north end of the lake.

The Swedish word for a lighthouse is fyr. The front light of a range is the nedrefyr (lower light) and the rear light is the övrefyr (upper light). Aids to navigation in Sweden are maintained by the Swedish Maritime Administration (Sjöfartsverket).

ARLHS numbers are from the ARLHS World List of Lights. SV numbers are from the Sjöfarsverket light list (Svenska Fyrlista) as reported by the Swedish Lighthouse Society. Former Admiralty numbers are from volume C of the Admiralty List of Lights & Fog Signals (the Admiralty decided in 2014 to drop these lights from its listings). The lighthouses of the lake are not included on the NGA List.

General Sources
Swedish Lighthouse Society (Svenska Fyrsällskapet, SFA)
The Society has a large web site, and some of the information is available in English as well as Swedish. An interactive map links to pdf pages (in Swedish) for the major lighthouses, and there is a list of photos available.
Svenska Fyrar i Vänern och Vättern
This page on the SFA web site has photos of many of the lake lighthouses by Esbjörn Hillberg.
Online Lists of Lights - Sweden
Photos by various photographers posted by Alexander Trabas.
Leuchttürme und Leuchtfeuer in Schweden - Svenska Fyrar
A large collection of photos and data; text in German; referenced below as LLS.
Lighthouse Pages from Anke and Jens - Sweden
Photos and brief accounts (in English) by two German lighthouse fans.
Schwedische Leuchttürme auf historischen Postkarten
Historic postcard views posted by Klaus Huelse.

Vänäs Fyr
Vänä Light, Karlsborg, September 2007
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Elena

Örebro Län Lighthouses

North Shore Lighthouses
Bastedalen (2)
1953 (station established 1900). Active; focal plane about 7 m (23 ft); two flashes every 6 s, white, red or green depending on direction. 4 m (13 ft) light displayed from a platform on the roof of a square 1-story wood building. Building painted white. It appears that the lights were formerly displayed through a slit-like window in the building. Hillberg's photo is about 3/4 the way down the page, Trabas has a closeup photo, and another photo is available, but the light is not seen in Google's distant satellite view. This light stands at the northern end of the open waters of the lake, marking the entrance to narrow passages leading to Hammar and Askersund. Located about 3 km (1.8 mi) southwest of Hammar. Site status unknown. SV-5025; ex-Admiralty C6952.27.
Storsundsholmen (Dimestorp)
1929. Active; focal plane 8 m (26 ft); white flash every 1.5 s. 5 m (23 ft) square pyramidal tower, painted white. A photo is available, and Google has an indistinct satellite view. Located on an island just off the northwestern shore of the lake, on the west side of the passage leading to Olshammar. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. ex-Admiralty C6952.2.
Orrholmen (2)
1929 (station established 1906). Active; focal plane 5 m (17 ft); flash every 5 s, red, green or white depending on direction. 4 m (13 ft) octagonal lantern, painted white. Måns Suneson has a photo, and Google has a distant satellite view. The light guides vessels in a narrow channel between the islands of Lilla Rocknen and Stora Rocknen. Located about 30 km (19 mi) northeast of Karlsborg. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. SV-5015; ex-Admiralty C6952.15.

Västra Götalands Län Lighthouses

West Shore Lighthouses
* Vanäs (Vanäs Udde, Karlsborg)
1892. Active; focal plane about 9 m (30 ft); three flashes every 9 s, white, red or green depending on direction. 8 m (26 ft) octagonal pyramidal wood tower with lantern and gallery, painted white; lantern roof painted green. A photo is at the top of the page, LLS has a page for the light, Trabas has a closeup photo, another photo is available, Hillberg's photo is nearly 3/4 the way down the page, Huelse has a historic postcard view, and Google has a satellite view. This light guides vessels westbound on the Göta Canal across the lake into Karlsborg. Located on a promontory on the east side of Karlsborg. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS SWE-415; SV-4995; ex-Admiralty C6953.2.
Broskjutvarnings
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 6 m (20 ft); very quick flashing white light. 4 m (13 ft) square unpainted wood enclosure standing on wood legs. Trabas has a photo, and Google has a satellite view. Located in a lakeside residential neighborhhod just south of the Karlsborg airport. Site status unknown. ex-Admiralty C6953.
Kråk
1968. Active; focal plane 34 m (112 ft); very quick flashing white light. Approx. 29 m (95 ft) square cylindrical skeletal tower with square central cylinder supporting a 2-story octagonal control room. Entire structure is gray. Trabas has a good photo, another photo is available, and Google has a satellite view. This is a watch tower at a military base. Located about 8 km (5 mi) southwest of Karlsborg. Site status unknown. SV-4991; ex-Admiralty C6952.9.
* Enebågsudde
Date unknown (station established 1907). Active; focal plane 6 m (20 ft); flash every 6 s, white, red or green depending on direction. 7 m (23 ft) square tower with lantern and gallery, painted white. LLS has a page for the light, Trabas has a closeup photo, Henrik Linderoth has a distant winter photo, and Google has a satellite view. Located on a promontory about 13 km (8 mi) south of Karlsborg. Site open, tower closed. ex-Admiralty C6952.6.
* Hjo Norra (2)
Date unknown (station established 1897). Active; focal plane about 9 m (30 ft); quick-flashing light, white, red or green depending on direction. Approx. 7 m (23 ft) round concrete tower with lantern and gallery, painted white. Trabas has a fine photo, Hillberg's photo is 4/5 the way down the page, a photo showing both lighthouses is available, Wikimedia has a photo, Huelse has a historic postcard view, and Google has a satellite view and a distant street view. Located at the north end of the detached breakwater protecting the harbor of Hjo. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS SWE-190; SV-5041; ex-Admiralty C6952.8.
* Hjo Södra (2)
Date unknown (station established 1897). Active; focal plane about 9 m (30 ft); two flashes every 6 s, white, red or green depending on direction. Approx. 7 m (23 ft) round concrete tower with lantern and gallery, painted white. Svante Adermark's photo is at right, Trabas has a photo, Hillberg's photo is 4/5 the way down the page, Jenny Mathiasson has another photo, and Google has a satellite view. Huelse has a historic postcard view of the original lighthouse. Located at the south end of the detached breakwater protecting the harbor of Hjo. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS SWE-191; SV-5042; ex-Admiralty C6952.81.

Hjo Södra Light, Hjo, July 2009
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Svante Adermark

Jönköpings Län Lighthouses

South Shore Lighthouses
* Domsand
1983. Active; focal plane 7 m (23 ft); one long flash every 10 s, white, red or green depending on direction. 6 m (20 ft) post light centered on an unusual dome-shaped equipment shelter. Lighthouse painted white. Dick Wåhlin has a photo, and Google has a satellite view. Located on the north breakwater of the Domsand yacht harbor, on the north side of Bankeryd near the southwestern end of the lake. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. ex-Admiralty C6951.2.
* Gränna (2)
Date unknown (station established 1898). Active (?); focal plane about 9 m (30 ft); four white flashes every 12 s. Approx. 7 m (23 ft) round concrete tower with lantern and gallery. Lighthouse painted white with black trim, lantern roof green. Fredrik Alpstedt's photo is at right, LLS has a page for the light, Hillberg's photo is the next to last photo on his page, Richard Neill has an excellent photo, a good 2008 photo is available, Josep Martí has a twilight photo, and Google has a distant street view and an indistinct satellite view. Located on a pier that was the end of the original south breakwater of Gränna; new breakwater moles have been built on both the north and south sides of the harbor. (Trabas has a photo of the light at the end of the new south breakwater.) Accesssible by walking the mole, and there's also a fine view from ferries departing for the island of Visingsö. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS SWE-153; SV-5067; ex-ex-Admiralty C6952.88 (?).

Visingsö Lighthouses
Note: Visingsö is a narrow island about 14 km (8.7 mi) long in the center of Lake Vättern. The island is accessible by ferry from Gränna.
* Visingsö Södra Udde
1900. Active; focal plane about 11 m (36 ft); white flash every 6 s. Approx. 6 m (20 ft) round stone tower with lantern and gallery, painted white. Hillberg's photo is near the bottom of the page, a 2011 photo and a view from the lake are available, and Google has a satellite view. The island is accessible by ferry from Gränna. Located on the southwestern tip of the island. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS SWE-423 SV-5062; ex-Admiralty C6952.87.
* Visingsö Norra Udde
1900. Active; focal plane about 8 m (26 ft); two white flashes every 6 s. Approx. 5 m (17 ft) round stone tower with lantern and gallery, painted white. Hillberg's photo is near the bottom of his page, a view from the lake is available, Trabas has a distant view, and Google has a satellite view. Located on the northeastern tip of the island. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS SWE-422; SV-5052; ex-Admiralty C6952.85.
Gränna Light
Gränna Light, Gränna, July 2013
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Fredrik Alpstedt

Östergötalands Län Lighthouses

East Shore Lighthouses
* Hästholmen
1897. Active; focal plane unknown; continuous white light. Approx. 7 m (23 ft) hexagonal pyramidal wood tower with lantern and gallery, mounted on a 1-story hexagonal wood base. Above the base, the tower appears to be covered with iron sheets. Entire lighthouse painted white. Eric Drommer's photo is at right, LLS has a page for the light, Trabas has a photo, Hillberg's photo is fourth from last on the page, another good closeup photo is available, and Google has a satellite view. This historic lighthouse is located on the tip of a peninsula sheltering the west side of the harbor of Hästholmen. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS SWE-186; SV-5047; ex-Admiralty C6952.45.
Jungfrun
1947. Active; focal plane unknown; four white flashes every 12 s. Approx. 5 m (17 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with lantern and gallery, painted white. Hillberg's photo is a little over 2/3 the way down the page, Trabas has a view from the lake, and Google has an indistinct satellite view. Located on an island about 4 km (2.5 mi) off the east side of the lake and 8 km (5 mi) west of Vadstena. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. SV-4985; ex-Admiralty C6952.3.
* Vadstena Mole
1889. Active; focal plane about 7 m (23 ft); three white flashes every 9 s. 7 m (23 ft) octagonal pyramidal wood tower with lantern. Lighthouse painted white; the lantern roof is greenish metallic. Henry Law has a 2008 photo, Günter Kriems has a closeup photo, Trabas also has a good photo, Hillberg's photo is about 2/3 the way down the page, Huelse has a historic postcard view, and Google has a satellite view. Located at the end of the mole at Vadstena. Accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS SWE-410; SV-4975; ex-Admiralty C6951.8.
Fjuk (3)
1910 (station established 1852). Active; focal plane 18.5 m (61 ft); one long white flash every 8 s. 9.5 m (31 ft) round cylindrical concrete tower with lantern and gallery, painted white. Hillberg's photo is 2/3 the way down the page, Patrik Lindblom has a good closeup photo, Trabas has a distant view from the lake, and Google has a satellite view. This lighthouse is near the midpoint of the crossing of the lake (from Karlsborg to Motala) by vessels following the Göta Canal. The original lighthouse was replaced in 1889 by a lantern mounted on the keeper's house. The present lighthouse was one of the first in Sweden to be built for automated operation. Located on a small island about 12 km (7.5 mi) west of Motala and 8 km (5 mi) northwest of Vadstena. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. ARLHS SWE-134; SV-4980; ex-Admiralty C6952.
Hastholmen Light
Hästholmen Light, Hästholmen, August 2004
Flickr Creative Commons photo by Eric Drommer
Klubbudden
1941. Active; focal plane 27 m (89 ft) (?); very quick flashing white light. 26 m (85 ft) square cylindrical concrete tower rising from one end of a 1-story concrete building. Trabas has a photo, and Google has a satellite view. This light guides eastbound vessels approaching Motala and the Göta Canal from Lake Vättern. Located about 400 m (1/4 mi) off a promontory on the west side of Motala. Accessible only by boat, but visible from shore. Site open, tower closed. SV-4970; ex-Admiralty C6951.7.

Göta Canal Lighthouses
Hundsten
1929 (rebuilt 1984). Active; focal plane 4 m (13 ft); flash every 3 s, red, green or white depending on direction. 4 m (13 ft) octagonal lantern mounted on a concrete pier. Lantern painted white. Trabas has a photo, Anders Pettersson has a photo, another photo is available, and Google has a street view and a satellite view. This leading light guides eastbound vessels entering the Göta Canal from Lake Vättern. Located just offshore from the Solviksgaten neighborhood, on the north side of the entrance to Motala harbor. Accessible only by boat, but visible from shore. Site open, tower closed. ex-Admiralty C6951.65.
Borensberg
1898. Active; focal plane about 6 m (20 ft); white flash every 4 s. 5 m (17 ft) square tower, painted white; lantern removed. Trabas has a closeup photo, the light is in the left distance of a photo taken across the canal, and Google has a satellite view. Located at the end of the jetty on the west side of the eastbound entrance to the canal from Lake Boren, near Borensberg. Probably accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. ex-Admiralty C6951.5.
Norsholm
1898. Apparently inactive. 5 m (17 ft) square tower, painted white; lantern removed. The light is at the left edge of a photo taken across the canal, an aerial photo is available (click on the photo for a much larger view), and Google has a satellite view. Located on the south side of the eastbound entrance to the canal from Lake Roxen, on the west side of Norsholm. Site open, tower closed.
Söderköping (Mem)
1898. Active; focal plane 7 m (23 ft); flash every 3 s, red, green or white depending on direction. 7 m (23 ft) square wood tower with a small lantern, painted white; lantern roof is red. A closeup and another photo are available, Marinas.com has aerial photos, and Google has a satellite view. Located at the end of a short pier on the north side of the westbound canal entrance at Mem. Probably accessible by walking the pier. Site open, tower closed. SV-4892; ex-Admiralty C7010.

Information available on lost lighthouses:

Notable faux lighthouses:

Adjoining pages: East: Nyköping Area | West: Lake Vänern

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Posted September 3, 2007. Checked and revised August 12, 2014. Lighthouses: 22. Site copyright 2014 Russ Rowlett and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.