Strömstad has many beautiful beaches and places where you can take a swim, but the wind direction is important. The wind steals many degrees of heat, but if you are in the shelter, even cool sunny days can be good.
Wind from the south
Wind from the south and southwest is the most common wind direction on the coast of Bohuslän, but unfortunately also the one to which most beaches in Strömstad are directed.
Styrsö is a small island just outside Strömstad towards Kosterrenna. Here it is warm on land even when there is a strong wind from the south or south-west. The island has a nice sandy beach, bathing raft, toilet, kiosk, and trails you can explore on. The disadvantage is that you have to go by boat, but it only takes 10 minutes, and you can take the Koster boat if you do not have access to a private boat. Read more about Styrsö here.
Nötholmen is a small island with a land connection a few minutes walk from Strömstad center, close to Strömstad Spa & Resort. Here you can hide from the south wind in a small cove on the north side. The island has many paths in the woods and on boulders. A walk around the island along the beaches takes about 1 hour. Read more about Nötholmen here.
Nord-Koster is one of the most beautiful places in Strömstad municipality. Here you have several nice sandy beaches to choose from. On the north side it is windless when it blows from the south. On the north-west side, you get the feeling of being in a Mediterranean country. Here it is especially nice when it blows from the east, but you will find shelter behind a dune if it blows from the south as well. The island has marked trails and many great hiking opportunities. A trip around the whole island takes about 3-4 hours. It takes approx. half an hour to walk from the harbor to the finest beaches. In the harbor in the south there are several good restaurants. The disadvantage is that you have to go by boat, but it is easy to get there with Kosterbåtene which has frequent departures from Strömstad harbor. The tour takes approx. 45 minutes. Set aside all day, you will not regret it. Read more about Nord-Koster here.
Wind from the west
When the wind comes straight from the west, most of the beaches in Strömstad are exposed, but there are some places you can travel to. Unfortunately, you have to go by boat to get there.
Alaska is a small park on Nord Långö just outside Strömstad. Here it is sheltered if the wind comes from the west. Alaska has a large lawn and several terraces, a small sandy beach and jetty, and a summer cafe/kiosk. There are several paths on the island, and if you walk across the other side, you will come to a larger beach where you have shelter from the wind from the east. You have to go by boat to get to Alaska, but there is a separate archipelago boat from the northern harbor in Strömstad. Read more about Alaska here.
Furholmens Havsbad is located on a small island just outside the harbor in Strömstad. There you will find shelter from the wind from the west if it is not too strong. The island has its own restaurant that is open in the summer season, toilets, a child-friendly small sandy beach, a diving tower, and many nice boulders you can swim from. There is a boat at regular intervals from Strömstad harbor, and it only takes 5 minutes.
Wind from the north
Saltö is the ideal place to travel to when the wind blows from the north. Then it's windless here. Saltö has a large and fine sandy beach, toilets and forest terrain with hiking trails. The island has a land connection and is part of the Kosterhavet National Park. If you follow the shoreline to the west, you will come to beautiful rocks and a small passage over to an islet that is reserved for naturists. There is a large car park a few hundred meters from the beach, and it takes about 20 minutes to drive there from Strömstad center. Read more about Saltö here.
Hålkedalsbadet is a small beach you have to search for. It has its own diving tower, sandy beach and lawn with shade from trees if you wish, toilet and parking right next door, for the disabled. It is located in a narrow fiord and is well sheltered from wind from the north and to a certain extent from the south. Read more about Hålkadalsbadet here.
Wind from the east
Wind from the east, or offshore wind, is the ideal wind direction for many of the beaches in Strömstad. Then it is warm and good on many of the most beautiful beaches in the municipality.
Capri is a large area with a child-friendly sandy beach at one end and boulders at the other with a nice view of the skerries. There are play facilities for children, toilets and a kiosk. Nearby there is also a pizza restaurant, hotel, and cabins for rent (Källviken Semesterby and Konferens). Parking right by the beach, about 5 minutes from Strømstad center. Perhaps the most beautiful seaside resort in Strömstad. Read more about Capri here.
Seläterbadet is only a 5-minute drive from Strömstad city center. The area has both a lawn, a sandy beach, a diving tower, toilets, a kiosk, and a water slide. It also has its own ramp for wheelchair users, and there is a water-resistant wheelchair for lending for swimming. Parking right by the beach. Shallow and very child-friendly. Read more about Seläterbadet here.
Rødudden is a small mountain in the extension of the northern harbor in Strömstad. Here, nature has created many nice sitting and sleeping areas with magnificent views of the skerries. Parking close by. Kiosks and restaurants a few hundred meters away. Not child-friendly, but great for young people and adults.
Båtsviken is a small, intimate sandy beach that is mostly used by people living close by, but you can reach it by following the Coastal path along the beach south from Seläterbadet. The beach has no facilities, but can be a nice destination. Read more about the Coastal path from Seläter to Strömstad here.
When it is windless or light wind, you can put more emphasis on other factors, such as if you have small children with you, if you need services for the disabled, if you want to be on the beach in the morning or afternoon, if a sandy beach is a must, or if you want to swim from smooth rocks.
Morning sun: In Alaska and Furholmen you have the sun right in front of you in the morning. A place for morning birds, but also nice sun conditions the rest of the day.
Morning sun: At Saltö and Hålkedalsbadet you have a nice sun in the mornings. Not as good after 4 p.m. Saltö has the largest and finest beach.
In the middle of the day: On Capri, Seläterbadet, Båtsviken, Byneset and Nord-Koster you have the sea between you and the sun all day from 12 to 18. You also have sun earlier in the day and in the evening, but then it comes from behind or from the side if you are sitting or lying against the sea.
Evening sun: On Nord-Koster, Styrsö and the north side of Nötholmen you have the sun directly towards you in the evening. There are nice sun conditions also earlier in the day, especially on Nord-Koster and Styrsö, but then you get it from behind or from the side when you sit/lie against the sea. On Capri there are also places where you get the sun right in front of you in the evening when you look out over the sea.
Sandy beach: On Nord-Koster, Capri, Saltö, and Styrsö there is a very nice sandy beach. At Seläterbadet and Båtsviken, the sand is good on land, but there are some rocks and mud out in the water.
Smooth rocks: Capri, Saltö, Byneset, Furholmen, Nötholmen.
Bathing jetty / diving tower: Capri, Seläterbadet, Byneset, Hålkedalsbadet.
Hiking opportunities: Saltö (large nature reserve), Capri (marked path close by), Nötholmen (several marked paths).
Child friendly: Capri, Seläterbadet, Saltö, Styrsö, Nord-Koster. At Nord-Koster you will find the most beautiful and child-friendly sandy beaches, but it takes approx. half an hour to walk from the harbor where the Koster boat drops you off.
Most exotic experience: Nord-Koster, Styrsö, Alaska. The boat trip can be experienced as an obstacle, but also makes the excursion more exciting.
Best overall: On the mainland: 1) Capri, 2) Selälterbadet, 3) Saltö. By boat connection: 1) Nord-Koster, 2) Styrsö, 3) Alaska.
More excursions: www.turideer.com