Planning a wild camping trip somewhere in Europe, but you’re not sure where to go? You’re in luck because this guide lists the four best wild camping spots in Europe!
A little spoiler – most are up in the Nordics. These countries are known for everyman’s right or freedom to roam, which allows anyone to make use of the public land, as long as they follow a few simple rules. So, here are the best wild camping spots in Europe, and everything you need to know about them!
Sweden is a great country for wild camping in Europe. The country is known for everyman’s right, which means that everyone has the right of access to Swedish nature. You’re allowed to ski, walk cycle, and camp on any land in the country – the only exceptions are private gardens, land near houses, and land that is under cultivation.
The country has spectacular nature, so it truly is one of the best spots for wild camping in the whole of Europe. Head to the Swedish Lapland in the winter and set up camp atop a mountain to see the Northern Lights. Just be sure to bring a camping stove – the winters in the Nordics are no joke.
It’s also possible to camp in nature parks, near famous landmarks, and close to cities. You can set up camp close to Stockholm or just outside one of the many fabulous castles in the country – whatever you’re most fascinated by, you can probably camp right next to it in Sweden.
The Nordic countries are great for wild camping and Norway is no exception. The country is known for the freedom to roam, which is a rule that allows anyone to set up camp in the wilderness, as long as they are 150 meters away from the nearest house.
You can even camp on private property, but you need to ask permission from the owner if you want to spend two or more nights there. If you’re camping for just one night, no permission is needed. The only rule is that you should leave no trace behind, so be sure to pick up the trash after the camping trip.
Also, the leave no trace rule means you’re not allowed to set up camp in any places that are harmful to the ecosystem, so no pitching tents in fields of wildflowers.
Wild camping is allowed in Switzerland, but only above the tree lines in the mountains. It’s not allowed in nature reserves, hunting ban areas, and wild rest zones, and in places where it is allowed, the only rules are that you must respect wildlife, leave no traces, and cause no disturbances to flora and fauna.
It’s worth noting that the exact rules about wild camping differ from region to region, so it’s always best to check with the local authorities before you set up camp somewhere. Also, it’s a smart idea to check the weather forecast before setting up camp in the Swiss mountains – stay away from streams, lakes, and mountain ridges in case rain or thunderstorms are forecasted.
Finland is another country where wild camping is entirely legal thanks to the Finnish everyman’s right. It means you can pitch a tent on any public land and even private land, but only if it’s obvious that the private land is not being used.
There are several exceptions to the rule, but they primarily include nature preserves and restricted areas. Everyman’s right applies to approximately 90% of the entire landmass of Finland, so there are plenty of countries you’re allowed to explore. The rules for wild camping are similar to those in Sweden and Norway – don’t leave any trash behind, don’t disturb or damage the flora and fauna, and be careful where you’re setting up campfires.
Pitch a tent near one of the country’s mesmerizing lakes – quite a few of the lake beaches are equipped with various facilities for campers, including sinks, grills, and toilet blocks.