With its long coastline and safe harbours, Blekinge province's past and present are faithfully fastened to the sea. Sweden and Denmark once squabbled over the area, a trump card in power games over the Baltic. It's the only historical county in Sweden other than Gotland whose historical borders (covering 3039-sq-km) are exactly the same as the present-day administrative area. It might be Sweden's second-smallest province, but that doesn't mean its historical significance has been forgotten.
Today, the jewel in Blekinge's crown is the Unesco-lauded naval town of Karlskrona, famed for its wealth of baroque architecture. The region’s second-largest town, Karlshamn, was the last part of the homeland many thousands of 19th-century emigrants saw before they sailed off to new lives in America.
Beyond these urban centres a low-key landscape of fish-filled rivers and lakes, brooding forests and a stunning archipelago – perfect for reading books or lazy island-hopping – awaits.