Narke is a province in south central Sweden. It is next to Vastmanland, Sodermanland, Ostergotland, Vastergotland, and Varmland. Provinces in Sweden are historical, geographical, and cultural regions. They don't serve any administrative purposes anymore, so it is entirely a legacy marking. Orebro is the largest city, and the former capital, although now it is just a city. It is on the shores of Lake Hjalmaren, Sweden’s largest lake and the point where the roads from Stockholm, Gothernburg, and Oslo meet.
To get to Narke, you can fly to the major cities of Stockholm, Copenhagen, and/or Oslo. From any of these, a combination of trains and buses will get you right into Orebro. The main railway junction in Hallsberg, which is nearby and a good hub. Transport around the province is relatively easy without a personal car. There are buses to most small towns and villages, although to access any national parks or do serious hiking you may want a car.
Budget hostel accommodation in Narke are available in Orebro, the main city. Look for signs saying “vandrarhem,” as that's the Swedish word for “hostel.” Many Swedes do speak English, so you can always start asking people for a hostel as well. Outside the larger cities hostels can be difficult to locate, so consider a guesthouse (known in Swedish as a “gasthus”) instead.
Once your accommodation is sorted, explore Narke! The former capital, Orebro, has a beautiful Renaissance castle, which is a continuation of the original 14th century fortress and later expansion. The castle sits on an island in the middle of the Svartan stream that runs through town. Nearby, make sure you visit the Wadkoping Open Air Museum - a collection of old buildings with traditional shops, cafes, and more. Many of the buildings date to the 14th and 15th centuries. One of the earliest Church of Sweden churches, St. Nicholai, is in Orebro, and well worth a visit.
Hikers can traverse the Kilsbergen mountains that separate Narke from Varmland; it is the southernmost part of the taiga (boreal forest) in Sweden and nature enthusiasts can find unusual flora and fauna in the region. The Bergslagsleden, or “Bergslags Trail,” begins at the southern tip of the province and runs the length of it. The full trail is 280kms long but day hikes from Orebro are popular. Narke has a lot of lakes, the largest being Vattern lake, where you can fish, swim, canoe, kayak, and more. Unlike many other lakes in Sweden, you do not need a permit to fish in Vattern lake.
Whatever you choose to do in Narke, you will enjoy the scenery, Swedish hospitality, and cultural city of Orebro!
Hi, I'm Jakob Lombardi,
the Hostelz.com local expert for Närke hostels. Welcome.