Planning for Kungsleden

General Information:

Kungsleden, or the King's Trail, is one of Sweden's most famous hiking routes, offering breathtaking landscapes, serene wilderness, and a unique outdoor experience. Stretching approximately 440 kilometers from Abisko in the north to Hemavan in the south, the Kungsleden traverses through some of Sweden's most pristine and remote wilderness areas. The trail is typically open from mid-June to mid-September, but weather conditions can vary, so it's crucial to check local forecasts and trail conditions before embarking on your journey.

Duration and Daily Distance:

The duration of a through hike on Kungsleden can vary depending on your pace and the number of rest days you choose to take. On average, hikers complete the trail in about 3 to 4 weeks. However, some experienced hikers may finish it in as little as 2 weeks, while others may take up to 5 weeks to savor the experience fully.

To maintain a steady pace and ensure you have enough time to enjoy the scenery, plan to hike approximately 15 to 20 kilometers per day. Keep in mind that some sections may be more challenging than others due to elevation gain, terrain difficulty, or weather conditions. Adjust your daily distance accordingly to accommodate these factors.

Rest Days:

Taking rest days during your through hike on Kungsleden is essential for several reasons. Not only does it give your body time to recover from the physical demands of hiking, but it also allows you to explore nearby attractions, restock supplies, and simply appreciate the beauty of your surroundings without the pressure of covering miles.

Plan to take a rest day approximately every 5 to 7 days, depending on your pace and preferences. Popular rest stops along the trail include mountain cabins, villages, and scenic camping areas. Use these rest days to replenish your energy, do laundry, and enjoy activities such as fishing, bird watching, or simply relaxing in nature.

Now, let's dive into each segment of the trail:

Abisko to Nikkaluokta:

Distance: Approximately 105 kilometers

This northern section of Kungsleden offers stunning views of the Abisko National Park, including the iconic Lapporten (the Lapponian Gate) and Abiskojaure Lake. The trail is well-marked and relatively gentle, making it an excellent introduction to the wilderness of Swedish Lapland.

Plan to hike about 15 to 20 kilometers per day, allowing 5 to 7 days to complete this segment. Highlights along the way include the Abiskojaure and Alesjaure mountain cabins, where you can rest, refuel, and enjoy the hospitality of fellow hikers.

Nikkaluokta to Saltoluokta:

Distance: Approximately 95 kilometers

This segment takes you through the beautiful birch forests and open mountain terrain of Sarek National Park. The trail follows the shores of Tjaktjajaure and crosses several mountain passes, offering breathtaking panoramic views along the way.

Allocate about 5 to 6 days to hike from Nikkaluokta to Saltoluokta, covering approximately 15 to 20 kilometers per day. Be prepared for some challenging terrain, especially when crossing the Tjaktjapasset and Salkapasset mountain passes. Rest and recharge at the Tjaktja and Sälka mountain cabins, where you can enjoy hot meals and cozy accommodations.

Saltoluokta to Kvikkjokk:

Distance: Approximately 90 kilometers

This section of Kungsleden winds through the remote wilderness of Padjelanta National Park, passing by vast open landscapes, tranquil lakes, and rugged mountain peaks. The trail is well-maintained but can be muddy and wet in places, especially after rainfall.

Plan to hike about 15 to 20 kilometers per day, allowing 5 to 6 days to complete this segment. Take time to admire the stunning views of the Sarek and Padjelanta mountain ranges, and make sure to visit the picturesque Vakkotavare and Singi mountain cabins along the way.

Kvikkjokk to Ammarnäs:

Distance: Approximately 130 kilometers

This central section of Kungsleden offers a diverse mix of landscapes, from dense forests and alpine meadows to crystal-clear rivers and towering mountains. The trail follows the course of the Lilla Lule River, passing through remote wilderness areas that are teeming with wildlife.

Allow about 7 to 8 days to hike from Kvikkjokk to Ammarnäs, covering approximately 15 to 20 kilometers per day. Keep an eye out for reindeer, moose, and ptarmigan along the trail, and take time to explore side trails that lead to scenic viewpoints and hidden waterfalls.

Ammarnäs to Hemavan:

Distance: Approximately 70 kilometers

This final segment of Kungsleden offers a rewarding conclusion to your through hike, with stunning views of the Vindelfjällen Nature Reserve and the majestic peaks of the Swedish mountains. The trail passes through dense forests, open moorlands, and charming mountain villages, providing ample opportunities to reflect on your journey and soak up the beauty of your surroundings.

Plan to hike about 15 to 20 kilometers per day, allowing 3 to 4 days to complete this segment. Take time to visit the historic church in Ammarnäs, and don't miss the chance to soak in the soothing waters of the Hotagen hot springs before reaching the end of the trail in Hemavan.


Embarking on a through hike on Kungsleden is a challenging yet rewarding adventure that allows you to immerse yourself in the stunning wilderness of Swedish Lapland. By planning your route carefully, pacing yourself appropriately, and taking time to rest and recharge along the way, you'll be able to fully appreciate the beauty and tranquility of this iconic hiking trail. So lace up your boots, pack your backpack, and get ready for the journey of a lifetime on Kungsleden!