Swedish mountains draw tourists looking to avoid wildfire smoke

A view of Mount Helags from Dunsjöfjället, central Sweden. (Ankara/Wikimedia Commons)
Maria Persson, who runs the Helags mountain station in Jämtland (central Sweden), tells Radio Sweden that she is seeing more tourists coming to mountain areas to avoid smoke from the fires further east in Jämtland county.

“We’ve had some calls from concerned guests who say that in the areas where they are now further east the air is quite thick and stings the eyes and throat,” she says. “Then they come here to avoid that. The air is better here.”

Persson, who works for the Swedish Tourist Association, says that she and her colleagues are now constantly responding to calls, emails, and Facebook messages from tourists worried about the fires.

But she admits that there is limited information available in English for the roughly five percent of her guests who are visitors to Sweden.

“That is a problem of course, since all the information is in Swedish. We have our Facebook page, but we don’t have many channels to get information to our international guests.”

Related stories from around the North:

Canada: Feds announce funding to tackle climate change in Inuit region of Atlantic Canada, Radio Canada International

Finland: Finnish national parks will remain free despite budget woes, Yle News

Norway: Norway’s Arctic islands crush May heat records, The Independent Barents Observer

Russia: Record heatwave in the Arctic, The Independent Barents Observer

Sweden: Italian water bombers assisting Sweden in fight against spreading wildfires, Radio Sweden

United States: Warming, fires, warming, fires: How tundra wildfires could create an unstoppable cycle, Alaska Dispatch News

Richard Orange, Radio Sweden

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