Instructions for hikers

Short stays in natural environments, including stopping to rest, swimming and sunbathing, are permitted in all areas that you are allowed to access, as long as it does not cause damage or inconvenience to the owner or holder of the land. 

Everyone’s Rights 

Everyone's rights refer to public access right to nature, regardless of who owns the area or manages it. In conservation areas, everyone's rights are restricted. 

Under everyone's rights, you may 

  • walk, ski and cycle in natural environments, including forests, natural meadows and waterways 
  • ride a horse 
  • stop and stay for a few nights in areas where access is permitted 
  • pick wild berries, mushrooms and plants that are not protected 
  • angle and fish through the ice 
  • go boating and swimming, wash yourself in water bodies and walk on ice

Everyone's rights do not give you a right to 

  • prevent landowners from using their land 
  • go into yards, gardens or cultivated fields 
  • cut down or damage growing trees 
  • collect dry timber or fallen trees 
  • collect moss or lichen 
  • build an open fire on somebody else’s land 
  • disturb the privacy of someone's home, for example by camping too close to houses or by making noise 
  • litter the environment 
  • drive a motor vehicle off the road 
  • disturb or damage birds’ nests and chicks 
  • disturb animals 
  • fish or hunt without proper licences 
  • bring your dog to a public bathing area, an area reserved as a children’s playground, a maintained skiing track or an athletics field 
  • have your dog off the leash in the urban area, on exercise routes or on somebody else's land 
  • have your dog off the leash between 1 March and 19 August, even on your own land (the Hunting Act) 

Privacy of the home and public peace 

Deliberately breaching the privacy of someone's home is prohibited. Places protected by the privacy of the home include homes, holiday apartments, tents, caravans, house boats, private yard areas and any buildings directly connected with them. 

Lighting fires 

In hiking areas and campsites, special places have been reserved for making fires, and fires must not be lit anywhere else. You must be careful with fire. When you are finished with your campfire, you must pick up all rubbish. The fireplace is not a bin, however: do not try and put waste that will not burn in the fire. 

Putting out the fire 

When it is time to put out your fire, stop adding firewood to it and let the fire slowly die down. If the fire is still smoking when you leave, put it out properly with water or snow. Always check that the fire has really gone out and that it is no longer smouldering. If the fire escapes and causes damage, the person who lit it will be liable. 

Out and about with your dog

Hiking with a dog can be very rewarding for both the dog and its owner. However, the owner must make sure that the dog does not disturb wild animals. For them a dog is always a predator, regardless of its race or hunting instinct. Ground-nesting birds are particularly sensitive to disturbance, and even if the dog would not harm the chicks in the nest, a crow or seagull may take the opportunity to rob the nest if the mother leaves it. 

You must also show consideration for other people going about in nature. Some people are genuinely afraid of dogs, which is why you must keep your dog on a leash. 

You are also obliged to keep your dog on a leash by the law. Under the Hunting Act, dogs may never be let off the leash on someone else’s land without the permission of the landowner or holder of the hunting rights. Dogs must be kept on leash between 1 March and 19 August. The owner is liable for any damage caused by their dog. 

Updated 2.4.2024