The bus to Marstrand from Nils Ericson Terminalen takes about an hour. Catch the 302 or the 312. The bus takes you from mainland Sweden over a bridge to the island of Koön and from there you can catch a ferry to the island of Marstrand. Marstrand has sort of spread into Koön but despite that the number of inhabitants is something like 1500 people. Although tiny it has held city status since the C13th. You step off the ferry on to a cute little street of wooden houses and tourist shops. The tourist office is conveniently located directly in front of you and you can get a map from them for free. A walk around the island doesn’t take long – we ambled round in about 1 1/2 hours. The scenery is beautiful – especially the rocky western side of the island with the waves crashing against the sides and the sea birds swooping.

The houses are concentrated around the old port on the south of the island and the east and north are covered in lovely Swedish style forest and rocks In the centre of the island stands the forbidding stone Carlstens Fästning (Carlsten’s Fort). This military fortification once served as a prison. A prison sentence on the island was effectively a death sentence, subjected to the harshest manual labour some years as many as half died. There is a C13th church and the town hall is the oldest stone building in Sweden.

It’s a beautiful place to get away to if you’ve been cooped up in the city. There are places to eat and places to stay as well as little tourist shops to spend your hard earned cash in – with it being Sweden’s most popular guest harbour the prices are higher than on the mainland.

If you’re looking for a slice of paradise – look no further.

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