Experience Sweden in miniature and become one with the wildlife of Dalsland! The pilgrim trail is a beautiful hiking trail that begins in Vänersborg and takes you all the way to Holm’s church in Mellerud and then on to Edsleskog’s church near Åmål. The path then continues, though still unmarked, to Svanskog. You can hike over 10 miles, either as a multi day hike or in sections.
The different sections have varying difficulty levels, with the section between Mellerud and Edelskog being classified as moderate.
Pilgrimages in Sweden were popular for about 500 years, from the year 1050 AD to the year 1550 AD. They were outlawed by Gustav Vasa in 1527, but continued for a few decades. Many of the pilgrims came by boat from Västergötland to Sunnanå outside of Mellerud, from where they continued north through Edelskog towards the final destination of Nidaros, modern day Trondheim in Norway.
Probably the most inspiring way to experience the pilgrim trail is to visit during the unique ‘Pilgrim’s Pop’. Arranged a few times every summer on different dates on different sections of the trail by the music, art and culture organisation ‘Kulturrepubliken Dalsland (The Culture Republic of Dalsland). At Pilgrims Pop, visitors hike a gentle 2 hour section of the trail together with participating musicians and artists. The hike is broken up into 2 parts, with a break for a short concert and picnic under the open sky. This is a great day out for the family that ends with a live concert by the lake side with the opportunity to do some wild swimming and grill a sausage over an open fire.