Åland is becoming more and more accessible to everyone thanks to Zoomcamp Åland, which arranges trips and activities for people with disability. There are also several places to stay, restaurants and activity organisers that have focused on accessibility for everyone. Here are some of them:
Sandösund on Vårdö is one of the most disability-friendly tourist facilities: it has eight apartments with wheelchair access in two terraced houses. Here it is even possible to get out on the lake owing to a specially constructed lift that carries the guest directly from their wheelchair into their kayak or boat. The flatness of the area and the beautiful countryside made Sandösund a place that ticks all the boxes.
Käringsund Resort & Conference
Käringsund Resort & Conference in Eckerö is a complete holiday village with a restaurant for the whole family, which provides a number of cabins with wheelchair access, including room for even a larger Permobil. There is also a whole collection of activities available at Käringsund that can be specially adapted if necessary. Fishing for wheelchair users can be arranged.
Degersand Resort in Eckerö is located by Åland’s largest sandy beach. The extensive and shallow beach makes it a very popular place to stay. Zoom ensures that even wheelchair users are able to enjoy the warm sand. The cabins and the restaurant do not have disabled access, but ramps make it possible to move around indoors with a wheelchair. The toilet is not adapted for the disabled user.
The Bastö Hotel in Finström is a family-owned hotel with a restaurant in the centre of Åland. There is a ramp and all doors have been adapted for wheelchair access. The corridors are relatively wide and the rooms spacious. The toilets in the rooms have not been adapted for the disabled user but there is one in the corridor that has. The restaurant is in a separate building – it is spacious and there is a ramp.
Godby Vandrarhem (hostel)
Godby Vandrarhem in Finström is an affordably-priced place to stay that meets Nordic hostel standards where there are common service areas. For example, sports associations for the disabled tend to stay there. The rooms are wheelchair-accessible but no particular further adaptations have been made.
Smakbyn, a restaurant located in Sund Kastelholm, provides a real culinary experience with the well-known chef Micke Björklund in charge. The premises have been fitted and equipped with wheelchairs in mind and table heights are comfortable. The gravel in the car park is difficult to move around on, though, and it is recommended that you park near the main entrance.
The Åland Maritime Museum
The Åland Maritime Museum is an accessible museum. Lifts and ramps facilitate mobility impaired visitors, people in wheelchairs and with prams to get around the museum. At the reception and in the auditorium there are audio induction loops. We strive to keep as many of our displayed objects out of showcases so that those who need to, can ‘see’ the objects with their hands.
Accessibility on board the Pommern is unfortunately still very limited. We are working on it and hope to be able to open up the ship for mobility impaired visitors in a couple of years. Please contact us if you have any questions regarding accessibility, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Eckerö, where Degersand and Käringsund are also located, has Åland’s only curling rink, the Vianor curlingcenter, which has a lower storey with disabled access. The rink is equipped with two new playing areas that are of international competition standard.
Larssons Vattensport provide boat trips with a SunTracker, which works extremely well in terms of wheelchair use on board. Visit their website for more information on other activities they organise.