Our road trip continues on! On our way up to Orsa, we stopped at the Dala Häst workshop in Mora, to see the original place where Nils Larssons famous painted pony originated. The butik was filled with every version possible, horses, pigs and chickens, along with other decorative items. The painted items are a bit pricy at about 180-500kr ($20 -$52.50 US) but unbelievably popular. Or you can buy a small kit for 199kr ($21USD) that has a machine cut horse, knife and instructions to whittle it into shape yourself. There were crowds of people and the lines were out the door.
We got to take a tour of the workshop and it was surprisingly fun! They had people sitting around whittling these horses at desks, while some used machines.
Then there were the painting rooms. They had a room for each main color. It looks like someone had fun in here!
We soon arrived at Orsa Camping and we were overwhelmed at the size. It is is the largest campground we have ever been to and it was so crowded. We found our spot at the end of a short rooad next to a pond, where we had our own front lawn. There was a fishing dock, that we soon realized would be popular with many young kids, so we did not find much peace at our site.
That day we explored the beaches and trails around the area, planning our daily escapes by kayak. Watching the sunset along the dog friendly beach was so relaxing (more dogs and less people is just our style!).
How welcoming – a family of ducks decided to nest just a couple of meters in front of us. As it started to get a bit cooler, we watched them move from 3 groups and cuddle into one.
We headed out to kayak the lake the next afternoon and the scenery was full of lush forest and many islands. This was in a creek just across from the beach, that eventually opened up to the larger lake.
Thanks to the folks who lent us their island and nice dock where we had lunch.
Dalarna is full of rocky mountains, hiking and mountain biking trails. Before hiking on our own, we drove up a long dirt road (and I mean LONG) to find a historical village way out in the middle of the woods. Skräddar Djurberga Fäbod, which means animal summer pasture village, this is where the farmers take their animals to graze in the summer months after midsommer. A lot of old houses in Dalarna have the same type of timber construction and fences.
Skräddar Djurberga Fäbod
Just up the road is a trail to Storstupet. If you park in the lot down the road from Skräddar Djurberga Fäbod, the hike is only about 2k each way. It is a bit steep in some parts, but was a moderate hike.
Here is the old railroad bridge where I tried to conquer my fear of heights. We were not sure if it was still in use, so I took my time getting out there.
Storstupet is a waterfall canyon with a river that you can hike down into. Since it was once used for transporting timber, there is a slide built with steel barriers at the center of the river where the rapids continue off the waterfall. What a breathtaking view!
The hike is vertical most of the way, so it is important to have proper shoes. A lot of the rocks and trails closer to the falls were wet and soggy. Since you end up along a cliff above the canyon it’s good to take your time.
I hope you enjoyed this part of our journey!
Please follow me as we continue on with more tips from our adventures in Sweden.