Even when visiting the only town on the Åland Islands, nature is always close by. Mariehamn has the Baltic Sea on two sides and there are plenty of parks and green areas in the town. One of the more famous parks is on a small island next to the eastern harbor. People might know Lilla Holmen for its peacocks, but there are more to enjoy while walking around on the small island. Its name actually means little island. Birds, swimming, and ice cream are what is on offer here.
Lilla Holmen offers both swimming possibilities as well as an opportunity for bird watching. It is considered to be a “bird island” and you take a stroll among all the hens and peacocks that are walking around freely. There are also smaller birds and rabbits in cages on the island. In other words, this is a good place for the youngest members of the family. The main attraction is, however, the small beach. The beach is equipped with changing rooms, a floating bridge as well as tables for picknicks. Susann says it’s a nice place for having a swim. In the summertime, there is also an ice cream kiosk.
The main attraction is, however, the small beach. The beach is equipped with changing rooms, a floating bridge as well as tables for picknicks. Susann says it’s a nice place for having a swim. In the summertime, there is also an ice cream kiosk.
Lilla Holmen was first connected with the main island in 1870 when a bridge was built. The town of Mariehamn has been responsible for the upkeep of the park since 1881.
The hens and peacocks that are currently residing on the island are recently moved there. But they are not the first inhabitants on Lilla holmen. Captain Karl Holmqvist brought the first peacocks to the island already in 1936. The previous residents had to be put to sleep after cases of the bird flu in 2016.
Lilla Holmen is just a short walk from the center of Mariehamn. All in all, it’s only a couple of hundred meters to the center of the town, It is also possible to park close to the bridge leading out to the island. Only pedestrians are allowed through the gates. This means that you have to leave your bike at the entrance or walk with it on the compound.
Don’t forget to check out the other places of interest on the Åland Islands here >>