Umeå is situated in the far north of Sweden, 700 kilometers north of Stockholm, 600 kilometres south of the Arctic Circle and close enough to the Gulf Stream to feel its benefits. Thus, the climate offers fairly warm summers with a sun that hardly ever sets, and snowy winters ideal for cross-country and downhill skiing. A few hours away by bus there are mountains with challenging skiing in winter, and adventurous hiking and canoeing in the summer and autumn. The north of Sweden offers a rich array of unexplored rivers and streams with great fishing, and a beautiful countryside with extensive forests interspersed with farmland.

The nearest town to Umeå is, in a sense, Vaasa in Finland, to the east across the Gulf of Bothnia. It is brought closer by ferry traffic that takes you to "The Land of a Thousand Lakes" in about 4 hours. Going west you can enjoy astonishing scenery in Norway - "The Land of the Fjords" - approximately half a day's ride away by car.

You will also become acquainted with the Scandinavian rule of " Right of Public Access". This rule gives Swedish citizens and their guests the right of access to privately owned land - provided they abide by the country code - and thus to the pleasures of the forests and countryside of Sweden. A clean and unspoilt environment characterises the city of Umeå and its surroundings. In Umeå, opportunities for excursions, recreation and silence are only a short bike-ride away.