The Kullaleden is a section of the Skåneleden's section SL5, which stretches along the coast from Helsingborg to Utvälinge. Here you walk along Kullahalvöns beaches and cliffs, between beautiful small fishing villages, cliffs and rolling seas. When the sun sets over Kullaberg and Skälderviken, offers the distance between Skäret and Arild also on a truly memorable walk in a light that has attracted artists to the area since the middle of the 19th century.
We start our hike in the small fishing village Skäret, best known for the café "The girls Lundgren on Skäret” which has been serving Tuscan cookies and cinnamon buns since 1938. If you do the hike during the day, it is not at all stupid to do the hike from Arild to Skäret and have a coffee with the "girls" before turning back. But we are not looking for coffee. We are out after sunset. And you experience it best if you start in it Skäret.
Here in the heart of Kullabygden, calm prevails even during high season. Although the Kullaleden passes by here, it is far from the parking chaos in Mölle or at the Kullaberg lighthouse. On this section of the Kullaleden, the tourist pressure and pace are a little lower. Today's action in the village consists of a leisurely stroll down to the sea in a bathrobe for a morning swim in Skäldervikens hot water.
Nabben nature reserve
Kullaleden starts from Skärets port to Arild through Nabben nature reserve, through pastures with sheep and cows, seas of blackberry bushes, oxen, heather fields and stately oaks. We walk towards the sunset, with Kullaberg's steep cliff on the horizon. The nature here on the north side of Kullaberg is a little wilder and rockier than the south side. At the rocky shores, several rauk stand up, something that I previously thought would only be found on Gotland.
I Skäret there are several bathing spots, of which the concrete jetty in the middle of the Nabben nature reserve offers pleasant bathing among the rose-pink rocks. The sea is clear and healthy and during the summer months there is also a swimming raft a little outside the jetty. A popular place to sunbathe on hot summer days.
It scents incomparably good in the bushes. The scent of wild honeysuckle and wild roses is thick, like a really lovely scent of summer. Meter-high wild foxgloves in various colors grow in the rocky soil. So beautiful, but oh so poisonous. The last time I saw them wild was in New Zealand. Don't think they really belong in any of these places.
Through the cowsheds
Arild has attracted many artists and writers over the years. And most of them have come here for one thing. The light. When the sun sets over the pastures and the sun's rays settle over the meadow like a golden blanket, that's when the magic along this section of the Skåneleden begins. We have walked this route several times this summer and each time the light has put on a show. Never the same. Always memorable.
Many of Skärets summer cottages were built during the 1950s, before that almost only fishermen lived here who subsisted on the sea and the area's berries in a landscape that looked basically the same as today. In order to preserve the area as it has looked throughout the ages, the lands at the Nabben nature reserve are kept open with the help of livestock. The sheep and cows play an important role in preventing the meadows from growing again. Although sometimes a little help from human hands is needed to clear the thorniest bushes that the animals don't like to eat.
Bronze Age remains at Stensnäs
Kullaberg is rich in ancient remains and here at Stensnäs are the Nabbahögarna with their round burial mounds from the Bronze Age. Resting places that were surely chosen both for their beauty and for their high position overlooking the sea. A peaceful place for someone who meant a lot.
The trees here at Stensnäs are both windblown and gnarled, to the point that they almost look like acacia trees on a savannah. Small, low juniper bushes are mixed with blushing heather and large stone bumblebees. All in a warm summer night.
Kullen in sunset
We arrive at the first viewpoint when the sun is just starting to set behind Kullaberg. The whole landscape perfectly glows. No picture can do this view justice today. The shades of gold that fill our senses are not to be found on the color chart.
There is a small bench to sit on here at the viewpoint, but I climb down a bit for that kullen to see even better. I can see Arild a little further ahead, behind dramatic cliffs and salt ice.
The path now continues at the edge of a steep escarpment, with a fence on one side and rose hips on the other. Every meter offers magnificent views in the evening sun. Nowhere along the path are the houses so close that they disturb, nature has been allowed to continue being nature here closest to the sea. A luxury that few strips of sea in the world have been blessed with.
I realize that we are probably not going on the official Skåneleden anymore, but have chosen an alternative and slightly smaller path to Arild. We can see the wide Skåneleden below us, it runs closer to the beach.
Almost there in Arild
After a few hundred meters at the edge of the slope, surrounded by blackberry bushes and ferns, the path goes downhill towards Kullaleden again. A bench is placed on the way down to the sea. A perfectly placed bench. Such a bench that you could start your own Instagram account about.
The trees down here at the edge of the sea are gnarled, small and lean heavily towards the land. As if they are crouching and holding their breath before the autumn storms. We are now so close to Arild that we can see both Klötets swimming pool and Arild swimming pool. Even if we really only see the sun clinging to Kullaberg's cliff edge with beaks and claws.
Down by Skäldervikens edge again
The last bit to Arild is clearly more popular than the rest of the route. We don't pass a meter without meeting dog owners, evening bathers and parents of small children with prams trying to get their little ones to sleep. But out on the sea in Skälderviken calm prevails. A small boat and a bathing jetty bobbing on the non-existent waves.
We are approaching the harbor in nice little Arild. A village that deserves its own post. Here you can choose to go the same way back to Skäret, or walk up through Arild and walk back to Nabbavägen Skäret. Or maybe just stay for a while in Arild and have dinner at Rusthållargården or Beach. Regardless, hopefully you've had a walk you won't soon forget.
How do I get here?
Arild is located approximately 7 kilometers from Mölle on Kullahalvöns tip and 1 mile from Höganäs. Two bus routes go to Arild – 223 and 224. See map of stops on Skånetrafiken.
If you start your walk at the car park at "The girls Lundgren on Skäret” and goes back and forth to Arild, the distance is approximately 8 km.
This section of the Kullaleden is suitable for all ages, but it can be difficult to navigate with a pram through the cow pens. The cows can be easily irritated when they have calves, so accompanying dogs must be able to stay calm and not disturb.
I want to read more about Kullaleden!
Here are some tips for further reading about Kullaleden and Skåneleden:
- Skåneleden SL5 – The stage between Jonstorp and Arild
- Information about the Kullaleden at Kullaleden's friends
Have you hiked the Kullaleden / Skåneleden on Kullahalvön? Which stretch is your favorite?
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Have you been here? What did you think of the destination?
Travel blogger, gastronaut, photographer and family adventurer with over 55 countries in his luggage. Eva loves trips that include beautiful nature, hiking boots and well-cooked food. On the travel blog Rucksack she takes you to all corners of the world with the help of her inspiring pictures and texts.