A tour through The Avian Kingdom

Driving distance: 26 km

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Start at the lookout point Bligehöj next to Harlösa Church. From here you can se large tracts of The Avian Kingdom. Adjacent to the parkin lot is the Endowmnent House, one of Scania's oldes old people's home, built in 1823. The house is now a museum, open to the public during summer Sundays, thanks to voluntary efforts. The oldest parts of the church is from the late 1100s. If you wish to visit the church on an ordinary week day, feel free to ask the church janitor to open up for you.

Begin the tour of The Avian Kingdom by driving out of the parking log and past the Endowment House. Turn right at the T-junciton and drive down the hill to Harlösa Village. Cross road 104 and continue stright ahead to the big yellow station house in art noveau. The magnificent station building is now a library but it demonstrates that Harlösa once was a railway junction where several lines converged. Read more about Harlösa at: www.harlosa.nu

Keep right at the station and follow Stationsgatan (Station Street). The street ends at a junction and here you take left. You are now going out of Harlösa, over the creek Kävlingeån and onwards to the Revinge field, direction Veberöd. Direcly after the bridge is an information panel on the right hand, advising what applies to the military training field and when it might be off limit.

Just before the small village Silvåkra, there is a sign "Fågeltorn" (observation tower), that shows the way down to the parking lot by lake Krankesjön. Here is a three-story observation tower that provides an excellent view out over the internationally renowned bird location. After having descended from the tower,  you can turn left and follow the path that leads off to the bridge out to the hide out in the lake. En route, you will pass one of the resting places of the 'Skåneleden' with both a shelter, a barbecue and a toilet. The hide out itself, is located quite a bit out into the lake and here you get up close and personal with bird life.

Turn back up to the road towards Veberöd and turn right into the Silvåkra hamlet. The tiny hamlet has a church from the early 1100s with  tidigt 1100-tal med wonderful murals. Once upon a time, the hamlet was laid out by a lake and because of that, the churchgoers came to the church by boat. If the church janitor is on site, you can ask him to kindly open up for you.

Continue the road towards Veberöd. You will cross a cattle-grid when exiting the hamlet and this means that now, you can get both roaming cows and calves on the road ahead. So drive carefuly if you see them close to the road. Just beyond Silvåkra, you will find a gravel road to the left towards the village of Vomb. A small wooden sign indicates that this is also the road towards a En liten träskylt visar att det också är vägen till "naturreservat" (Nature Reserve). If you want to see more of the close to 2000 cows, you could instead of turning towards Vomb, continue on towards Veberöd. On the Revinge field's Pampas-like grass expanses further on, it can be an impressing sight with all the heads of cattle. The animals, who are outdoors the year around, will eventually end up as prime and ecologically marked meat.

Back to the gravel road towards Vomb. After just a few hundreds of meters, you will cross the little creek Klingavälsån. Here you find the next observation tower. The small Klingavälsån is, despite of its modest appearance, the base for the nature reserve, of great importance both from a national as an international perspective. The strech of water you can see from the tower is the last piece of the creek before it joins the Kävlingeån. 

By the observation towers are posted species charts with some of the birds you might see. A pair of binoculars is always handy to bring along. To protect the wild life, it is not allowed to wander out into the nature reserve.

Continue on the small gravel road, directon Vomb. You are crossing a very flat field with meadow ridges that, in the old days, was considered to give the best grazing and hay. These particular meadows were irrigated through canals. The road will cross such canals, now only visible as narrow ditches. The canal system was important and was maintained by a person particularily hired for the task. He was called the Meadow Waterer.

As you arrive to the equally small village Vomb, you will get to a T-crossing. Beware! The  hedges are  high and all of a sudden you could be right in the crossing without realizing it! Turn left on the asphalt road heading north. Just after the end of the village, you find the area Vombs Norregård, where, the rare Spadefoot Toad sometimes is seen.

Further on, the large lake Vombsjön comes into view. As the the road stretches out along Vomsjön, there is an observation tower adapted to the disabled. Here you have a free view of Vombs ängar which are well known by ornithologists from far and wide for its rich birdlife. Coffee tables are provided for picknics and if it is summer and you fancy a dip, it can be provided for, free of charge, in the lake Vombsjön opposite the tower.
Continue on the road northwards. You will cross a bridge where water gushes out from the lake to form the beginning of the Kävlingån. The river is beginning its long and ever more meandering course towards the sea. Along the river, counties has, for many years, worked with recreating parts of the meanders. Several dams has been built in order to capture nitrogen rich silt by the creeks that runs out into the river. This has been done to lower the nitrogen emission in Öresund, the straits between Denmark and Sweden. The dams attracts more and more birds and it is the combination of the old nature values and the modern preservation methods that has turned The Avian Kingdom into the rich and diversified bird sanctuary it now has become.

The road ends in a T-junction with road 104 at the North West corner of lake Vombsjön. Turn right (east), direction Sjöbo. You will have Vombsjön at your right hand. In an old half timbered farm with a thatched roof, you will find Sjögården, where you can get lovely newly made waffles and coffee during the warmer parts of the year.

After just shy of a kilometer onwards, you will cross the Borstbäcken creek and directly after that, is a gravel road to the left with a sign indicating a nature reserve (Naturreservat). A makeshift parkering  is the start of the Borstbäcken nature reserve. The creek and its surrounding area is of both national and international interest because of its great species diversity. During spring, the very rare 'True Oxlip' blossoms in the area. The ravine also carries a dark history from the Swedish-Danish wars. The farmers in the village tried to ambush the inviding Swedish army, but failed with cathastrophic consequences, fasing the war experienced Sweedish army and in the area is a mass grave for the fallen farmers and farmhands from the region. In the north part of the reserve is a memorial over The Battle of Borst. A Swedish web site describes it further and with clever use of Google Translator, you can find more information. www.sjobo.nu/evert

From the parkeringen, turn back out to the main road (Road 104). Turn right and go back the direction from which you came, towards Harlösa/Gårdstånga. Before and after the T-cross with the road towards Vomb, you see the meadows Strandängarna and the fields north of lake Vombsjön. Here, as well as along most fields along the Kävlingeån river, you will see vast ammounts of geese during winter time. Sometimes in the thousands.
After just a few hundreds of meters, you come up to the farm Vikens gård. Between the buildings, you turn right on the gravel road towards Hjularöd castle. The gravel road nimbly climbs the ridge. Feel free to make a short stop to look at the view and then continue about 3 km up to the castle.

Hjularöds castle. There always was a castle here all the time back to the middle ages, but the building, as it is today, was built at the end of 1890 in French style. The park is open for visitors but please respect the privacy of the castle itself, since it is a residence. Around the castle is, as with most Scanian castles, a desedeous forest. Beech tree forest are beautiful to wander in the year around, but probably more so during the time of flushing and at fall. See more at: www.hjularod.se

From Hjularöd, turn left direction Harlösa. After around 700 meters, you pass one of the oldest dated stone bridges from the middle of the 1700s. The road follows the Harlösa creek down the ridge towards the bridge. Along the road you have a breath taking view of the bcreek's ravine and The Avian Kingdom itself. A leg of a long continous hiking and backpacking trail, 'Skåneleden', follows the creek down in the ravine.

Just outside Harlösa, you can turn right back to Harlösa's church and you are back at Bligehöj viewpoint. If you did not unpack your picknic basket before, feel free to do it now.