The home of Selma Lagerlöf

Little did I know that somehow there’s a theme going on for this trip – Nils Holgersson 🙂 How I loved that series when I was little – even though I always cried when the music came on – so they say 😉 Down in Skåne we passed through Skurup, his home village and once we got to Värmland, we ended up in exactly the village where the author Selma Lagerlöf is buried – Östra Ämtervik.

Östra Ämtervik

Also, there was a church service to her memory on the Sunday and as it was at a nice time (11 a.m.), I walked up to the church and had a look. Iriah had told me that the priest would probably wear clothes from the late 1900s, knickerbockers and such. Unfortunately for me (and my camera), he wore a normal priest outfit. But the mass also included a bishop and a folk music group so that it seemed more like a celebration than something religious.

priest and bishop

Two ladies of the church committee were wearing very nice traditional outfits and I took a picture of them later.

Värmland ladies

It was a very nice atmosphere and though the average age was about 65, it was the biggest crowd I had seen all week 😉 After the mass, there was a procession out to the graveyard and her grave, with a speech and the Värmlandsvisan being sung at the end.

grave gravestone


Now I had heard so much about Selma Lagerlöf that I also wanted to see the house that she was born (and died) in, Mårbacka. Google Maps told me it was about 7 km walk from the house, and as it was a nice sunny Sunday afternoon, Rúna and I set off to see it. The walk was rather easy, take a right and a left and then continue for about 6 km straight on.

Along the way, we stumbled into an art gallery with handmade okarinas – which sounded beautiful and Rúna bought one. Sometimes it’s better if you have a full backpack 😉

Here’s the man himself playing – for those who still wonder what an okarina is 😉


We made it to Mårbacka just after 4 p.m. eventually, which meant that we had just missed the last guided tour of the house. Instead we wandered around the gardens and finally had some newly baked coconut cakes for fika – the smell, oooooh! And they tasted just as good 🙂 Refreshed like that, the walk home was no problem of course. A very Swedish Sunday 🙂

Mårbacka Värmland


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