The summertime is normally also vacation time. This year it´s different. Covid -19 and the politicians have closed the borders and recommend everybody to stay home. So, what do you do at home?

Staycation – if you happen to be in Jönköping, Sweden

I am lucky to have a nice balcony where I can have dinner looking out over a small lake in the center of town (Jönköping). The lake, Munksjön, is the old harbor of Jönköping where there used to be a shipyard and other industries. One industry is still there, the Alstrom-Munksjö paper mill.

The university and the courthouse have taken over the place where the shipyard was located. None of the ships built here are still operating in lake Vättern, the main lake here, but some are still in operation on the Swedish coasts. Also, the Police and the main office for the Swedish Forestry Agency are located at the former industrial estate.

Staycation

Me consuming a better dinner on my balcony.
To the left, you see the old chimneys of the Alstrom-Munksjö paper mill. The white and yellow building in the middle is the university and the silvery house is the courthouse where there used to be a shipyard. To the far right, the red police office and behind that (out of sight in this photo) you will find the main office for the Swedish Forestry Agency.
The bridge was built in 2006 and stops all possibilities to have a harbor here ever again(?). Lake Vättern, the main lake, is located to the right of this photo and could be reached by boat through a canal.

What else to do here?

I don´t really expect anyone to come here right now. Hopefully, the town and the tourist attractions will still be here after Covid -19. So, if you happen to come by, here is what you “have” to do:

Husqvarna Industry Museum

In the neighboring town, Huskvarna, you will find the chainsaw and garden products manufacturer Husqvarna, or Husky as it´s also called. The factory has been around since 1620 and shows a good example of how to survive through centuries by being flexible.

The company was founded during a time when the Swedish rulers/kings and queens, tried to put as much land as possible under their feet. They started by making weapons for warfare. Something that was in high demand back then.

When peace came along, they didn´t close the factory. Instead, they started making products for the civilian market. Kitchen equipment, bicycles and later motorbikes – and chainsaws.

The Husqvarna museum is run by a foundation and is really worth a visit. Here you can see items that have been manufactured during the centuries. My personal favorite is the hot dog machine.

Read more about the Husqvarna museum here.

The Match Museum

In 1844-45 manufacturing of matches was started in the town of Jönköping. The factory is still there but today it is a cultural center with restaurants, cafés and a theatre. Also, the matchmaking museum is located here in the former main office building for the match factory.

In the museum, you can follow the process of match manufacturing. You can even try some of the old machines that were used. The mechanics of the machines is fantastic. The fact that they still work proves that it´s good quality.

You can read more about the Match Museum here.

The Elmia Wood show

Another quite common reason for forestry people to visit Jönköping and its neighborhood is the forestry show Elmia Wood. The show takes place in the forest some 30 km south of Jönköping. The next venue will be 18 – 21 May 2021. Read more about that here.

Jönköping, the town of matchmaking

Matches are not manufactured here anymore, but there are plenty of other reasons to come here. “The town of matchmaking” can also refer to the fair organizer Elmia, who (a normal year) organizes some 30 trade fairs within different branches.

If you come by and need a personal guide, let me know. If you come by and want to guide yourself, read more here.

Have a nice summer and stay sound where ever you are!