Karlskrona is a seaport and the capital city of Blekinge County (southern Sweden) with total area approx 22 km2 (8 ml2) and population around 35,000. Karlskrona is popular as Sweden's only baroque city and houses country's largest naval base (Karlskrona Orlogsbas) and Swedish Coast Guard's (Kustbevakningen) headquarters.
Cruising season runs between June-September. As cruise port, Karlskrona is rarely visited by cruise ships (6 in 2018, 1 in 2019). For season 2020, the port had scheduled/booked 6 ship calls. Among the visiting cruise lines are CMV, Saga, Oceania, Phoenix Reisen.
The city spreads over 30 islands in the eastern part of Blekinge Archipelago, with Trosso being the largest. To the east of Trosso, the small Stumholmen Island (former property of the Swedish Navy) now houses Marinmuseum (National Naval Museum). Since its foundation, the town has kept its main street grid pattern that allows sea winds to blow freely into downtown. Some parts of the city (mainly the Naval Port) are UNESCO sites.
Karlskrona Archipelago is Sweden's most southern island group, with several islands linked to Karlskrona via ferries. Karlskrona's downtown is approx 6 km (4 ml) from mainland Sweden. The city also has good ferry connections to Poland (Gdynia) served by Stena Line. Most islands are interlinked by roads. One of the larger populated (Aspo Island) is connected with a free ferry. Boats travel between the Karlskrona islands during the summer months.
The town was founded in 1680 by Karl XI (1655-97, King of Sweden between 1660-97) when the Royal Swedish Navy base was relocated from homeport Stockholm to Trosso Island (previously used mainly for grazing and farming). At that time, the Swedish Empire (1611-1718) was Baltic Sea's prime military power, and the new navy base had a better location against Denmark. Karlskrona's shipyard was established soon due to Navy's heavy losses suffered in 1659 during the Dano-Swedish War (1658-1660, between Sweden and Denmark-Norway). By 1711, the shipyard became country's largest industrial employer (with ~1100 workers). Port's oldest dock (Polhem) was cut in the cliff and is still in use.
In October 1981, Whiskey-class Russian submarine S-363 (in Sweden "U137") ran aground in the archipelago close to Sturko (just outside Karlskrona). Media characterized the accident as "Whiskey on the Rocks" affair. The grounding caused a rise in tensions between the Soviet Union (USSR) and Sweden.
Karlskrona cruise terminal
Port Karlskrona can handle cruise ships with max LOA length 160 m (525 ft). Larger liners are anchored at sea and their passengers transported/ferried to the port via ship's tender boats. Every cruiseship call is marked with a special dockside welcomming event featuring dressed in 18th-century clothes performers.
Future port expansion projects include dredging to allow access to larger-sized vessels.
The new cruiseferry of STENA LINE has been taken off the Holyhead-Dublin route for repairs and maintenance due to engine problems - just 4 months...May 2, 2020
- show more news