Even though it is in the summer that Åland’s tourist season is busiest, many people prefer to come to Åland at other times of the year as well.
“A lot of people reckon that it’s pleasant when it’s a little quieter and cooler, and the woods are full of mushrooms and berries. Or when the ice is shiny, smooth and inviting, and you have the urge to go for a drive,” says Marieanne de Mander, owner of Godby Gästhem, who has just decided to stay open all year round.
Godby Gästhem is located in a yellow two-storey detached house in the middle of idyllic Åländ. This is where people come to take it easy. Go for a walk in the woods which are full of chanterelles and lingonberries at this time of year. Or take one of the guest house’s bicycles and go off on an excursion. Maybe to Stallhagens Brewery that is about 10 minutes away.
What is new this year is that you can enjoy Godby in the autumn and winter as well. Marianne suspects that they are going to be fully booked throughout the season.
“We already have bookings into November,” she explains.
Autumn and winter activities in Godby When you stay in Godby you are near Mariehamn and yet you are right out in the country. There are excellent walking paths and long-distance footpaths, including one that goes past Åland’s only arboretum, where conifers from all over the world have been planted. The imposing Kastelholm Castle, the Russian fortress in Bomarsund and the Stallhagen Brewery are all within cycling distance.
“It can be fun to visit such places when the tourist season is over and you can sort of have them to yourself”, suggests Marianne.
If you like winter sports, ski tracks are prepared at Kastelholm Castle in winter and you can go skating on the sea. But Marianne herself prefers to stay indoors where it’s warm.
“I usually cycle to Godby swimming pool and have a long swim. Afterwards I spend a long time in the sauna.”
Small and intimateGodby Gästhem only has four rooms. It has deliberately been kept small and intimate. The guests share two bathrooms and there is a breakfast room with a balcony. The whole guest house has been newly renovated and the style is a mixture of old and new. Marianne assures us that guests are usually very pleased with the accommodation and she often gets extra credit for the breakfast that is included.
“I serve home-made muesli, yogurt, freshly baked bread, and all sorts of toppings, fillings and vegetables. People are not going to go hungry,” promises Marianne.
Several guest houses stay open all year roundGodby Gästhem is not the only guest house to have decided to stay open all year round. Degerby Mat & Café in Degerby stays open all year round and the same applies to Antons Gästhem on Kökar, Runneröd stugor & semesterlägenheter (cottages and holiday flats) in Salvik and Nybonds Pensionat in Sund. And there are several guest houses that stay open well into the autumn, such as Anderssons and Granbergs Gästhem in Eckerö, Djurviks Gästhem in Jomala and Kvarnbo Gästhem in Saltvik. You’ll find more guest houses with an extra-long season on our accommodation pages. Search on the day you want to visit Åland and the guest houses that are open then will be displayed. You’ll find more winter activity recommendations under activities and under travel you’ll find the right ferry to take. Several ferries run to Åland every day.