Transport on the Åland Islands
Åland is an archipelago of over 6,000 islands in the Baltic Sea. Constitutionally, it is a Swedish-speaking autonomous province of Finland. Sea travel is a vital part of Åland's economy and a major local employer. The main ports are located at the capital Mariehamn, at Berghamn and at Långnäs on the east shore of Fasta Åland (the main island).
The islands have quiet roads which are much appreciated by cyclists. There are no railways on Åland, but there are Ålandstrafiken local bus services operating in conjunction with the inter-island ferries.
Road vehicles registered in Åland have number plates with blue lettering starting ÅL:
The Silja Line, Viking Line and Tallink ferries operating between Helsinki, Turku or Tallinn and Stockholm call briefly at Åland, at either Mariehamn or Långnäs. As well as providing useful transport links, this also permits the sale of duty-free alcohol etc. on board the ships. This is due to Åland's special constititional status and exemption from normal European Union rules on Value Added Tax and other tariffs, negotiated by Finland as part of talks leading to membership of the EU in 1995. Vessels must call at an Åland port to qualify.
A network of ferries operated by Ålandstrafiken provide inter-island services (and links with Galtby and Osnäs ferry harbours in Finland).
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- Air Åland
- Visit Åland website: travel information
- Destination Åland provides online booking of ferries to and from Åland as well as accommodation on Åland
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