The combination of gentle beaches facing the South Funen Archipelago, the much wilder and rugged coastline facing the Baltic Sea, with its landscape of beautifully rising and sloping hills together with the coves reclaimed from the sea (in Danish “Nor”), creating an amazing flora and wildlife, make Ærø quite unique – different spectacles greet you each day all-year-round. Here are some ideas of what to see:
Ærø was in fact, until 1856, two separate islands joined by a three metre high rock dam, known as a “Drej”. Between the two isles of Western-Ærø and Little-Ærø was a section of shallow waters, Gråsten Nor, so named after the residency of the local duke, situated at the westerly point of the dam.
The most significant geological sight on the island is Voderup Klint. It is a 30-metre-high (app. 9 ft.) cliff, shielding the island from the Baltic and comprising of Cyprina clay from the last interglacial period. This type of clay is only found here and on Ristinge Klint on neighbouring island Langeland.
Næbbet is an area of wild bird breeding grounds for, amongst others, wading birds and terns, and is located at Skjoldnæs (the most westerly point of the island).
This is a large protected inlet (app. 150 ha), which was navigable by boat until around the year 1600. The area around Vitsø Nor, including Søbygaard and Søby Volde, is home to many treasures and sites of significant historical and cultural value, as well as rare plant and wildlife flora, associated with commons, meadows and marshland.
The 200-km-long Archipelago Trail, opened in 2007, spans across Southern Funen and the islands of Tåsinge, Langeland and Ærø. On Ærø it takes you from Søby in the west, via Ærøskøbing and all the way to Marstal in the east, allowing you to take in both the coastal areas and the mid-ridge of the island.
Ærø is, by nature of being an island, surrounding by sea, thus has kilometre upon kilometre of coastline, much of which provides fantastic bathing beaches. The best places for a swim are found by the three largest towns Ærøskøbing, Søby and Marstal, with their child-friendly sandy beaches and shallow waters. In addition you will find the charming privately-owned beach huts here, one of the well-known characteristics of Ærø.