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The wooden town beside Lake Vättern

Hjo

Contact our relocation guides

Hjo is a traditional small wooden town on the western shore of Lake Vättern. Today, more than 9,000 people call Hjo home, but there are more of us every year. New families with children occupy the town’s old wooden villas, dream houses are being built in the new subdivisions, and eagerly awaited condos and rental apartments are planned for the shores of Lake Vättern. 

Kartbild över Hjo
Number of residents

9,243

Towns

Hjo, Blikstorp, Gate, Grevbäck and Korsberga

Neighboring municipalities

Skövde, Karlsborg, Tibro and Tidaholm

Price per square meter (single family/town house)

SEK 18,000

Number of companies

1,407

Major industries

Manufacturing, commerce, construction, agriculture and forestry

Employers

Emballator Tectubes AB, Anva Hjo AB, Hjo Installation Invest AB, Sibab Interior AB, Almnäs bruk AB and others

Popular places to visit

Moster Elin’s ice cream café, Guldkrok outdoor pool, Kulturkvarteret and the Estrid Ericson exhibition, the Bison Farm in Gate, Hökensås golf club and the steamship Trafik

This is Hjo

Enjoying life, engaged and unexpected – with a big heart

Renowned for

The wooden town, ”I love Hjo”, Home & Hobby, Wrångebäck cheese, spa park, ice cream, Estrid Ericson, the founder of Svenskt Tenn, Simon Gate and Sweden’s longest bench 

Living in Hjo municipality

In Hjo we find it easy to free up time for more free time. We like to call it Hjotime! Being within easy commuting distance to the big cities and working regions of Skövde, Jönköping, Gothenburg and Stockholm, many of us choose to live in Hjo but work elsewhere. It’s easy to spend the day at work in Gothenburg, Skövde or Jönköping and get home in good time for a jog and a dip in the lake before dinner. More Hjotime, in other words!

People who live in Hjo are always close to the important things in life. The schools are within walking or cycling distance, and there are thriving associations and a wide range of cultural activities.

There are beautiful living environments in the middle of the historic wooden town that are close to the harbor area, the lake and the city park. Outside the town center there are charming little communities with mother nature and committed green entrepreneurs as neighbors.

Hjo Desktop.
Distances from Hjo to a selection of other places

History

You could say that Hjo is largely a picture of what a small Swedish town looked like back in the 1920s and 30s, but the actual community took shape much earlier. As early as the 12th century, Hjo was where monks would rest when they traveled between the two monasteries of Alvastra on the east side of Lake Vättern, and Varnhem here on the west side. Merchants also came here to sell their goods. Over time, a small community emerged, with permanent stores and industries along the Hjo River. In 1413, Hjo was so well established that it was registered and classified as a town in Erik of Pomerania’s tax ledger. 

Moving to Hjo

Ours is a little municipality where everyone is close to each other. In town you can easily reach exciting cultural offerings, unique little stores and the clear waters of Lake Vättern on foot or by bike.

To the north, south and west, Hjo is bordered by vibrant, thriving countryside. In the smaller communities of Grevbäck, Gate, Korsberga and Blikstorp there are exciting companies and rural residential settings. Green industry has a strong presence in the municipality and the well-managed farms set their stamp on the landscape. Many people realize their dreams of their own little farm in the country here, close to everything the town has to offer, and often with lake views. 

Maybe you’d like to work in another town? In that case, Skövde, Tidaholm, Karlsborg, Tibro and Jönköping are all within commuting distance.

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Working in Hjo

Did you just get a job in Hjo, or are you considering applying for one? The town and the business community are constantly looking for new talent. There is a broad business community with drive and commitment!

There are more than 1,200 companies in a variety of sectors; industry, green industries, contracting and construction companies, hospitality, retail, handicraft, services and culture. Most of the companies have fewer than 10 employees and almost all have fewer than 50. In all, the business community sustains no fewer than 1,800 jobs, equivalent to more than 50 percent of all jobs in the municipality. The biggest employers are Anva Hjo AB, Elektrobyrån Hjo AB and L. Magnussons Måleri i Hjo AB.

Read more about Business & Work in Hjo (In Swedish)

210806 101841 08587 Photographer Jesper Anhede Hr.
Photo: Jesper Anhede

Top-class industry

The wooden town is not only idyllic to visit and stay in, it’s also home to an exciting, innovative industrial sector. It boasts packaging design, manufacturing and construction, sheet metal working, cabinetmaking, automation electricians, industrial designers and maintenance technicians. Indeed, there are great career opportunities and plenty of scope to work with world-class products and services. For example, did you know that the Kalle’s Kaviar tube is produced in Hjo? Or that Scandic’s new hotel interiors come from Blikstorp? So maybe you’ll also find your next challenge with us here in Hjo. No charge for the bathing beaches or lake views!

Comfortable commuting

Because commuting distances in Skaraborg are so short, many people who live in Hjo choose to work in nearby cities. In around 30 minutes you can reach Skövde with Skaraborg’s hospital, college, the extensive business community and the defense establishment. And it’s just as easy to reach the neighboring municipality of Tidaholm, the Swedish Armed Forces in Karlsborg and the furniture industry in Tibro.

In 60 minutes you can be in one of Sweden’s largest municipalities, Jönköping. You’ll pass our expansive neighbor Habo with the company Fagerhults Belysning.

More and more people are discovering the advantages of living in Hjo and working in the big cities of Stockholm and Gothenburg. You can easily commute to them via our ‘own’ railroad station in Skövde. The trips take 2 hours and 1 hour respectively.

In terms of surface area, Hjo municipality is not large, so even the home turf distances are comfortable. The trip between Korsberga and Hjo takes around 15 minutes.

Want to start your own business or are you a new business owner? Read more here (in Swedish)

Schools in Hjo

In Hjo, the school is always close – to the heart and to home. Here, everyday life for our children and young people in preschool and school is characterized by safety, security and quiet study.

Preschools

Hjo has ten preschools, six of which are run by the municipality. Hjo guarantees a preschool place in the municipality within three months. Four of Hjo’s municipal preschools are located in the town center; one is located in Korsberga and another in Gate.

Schools, grades 1–9

There are three elementary schools in the town, one of which has a high school. There are also two rural schools, one in Korsberga and one in Gate.

In 2022, around 180 students moved into the newly built Estrid Ericson School in the town of Hjo. The school’s watchwords are sustainability, literature and movement. The school’s design was inspi

ed by Hjo resident and founder of Svenskt Tenn, Estrid Ericson.
The grades 1–9 elementary school is located in the middle of town and has around 660 pupils. The junior high school uses health profiles and all pupils get their own computer for their studies. Hammarn school can be found next to the Hjo River Valley nature reserve and the Hammarnsjorden residential subdivision. It has around 180 students in grades 1–6.

The grades 1–6 schools Fågelås and Korsberga can be found outside town, each with around 60 pupils. The small schools are characterized by a strong sense of community. The buildings also have a preschool and after-school center. Student groups in the rural school comprise multiple grades who study to gather, and a few times every semester, students work in groups comprising all grades.

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High schools

The municipality does not have its own high school, but Skövde is only 30 minutes away and has a wide range of high school programs at several different schools.

Olins High School will open a high school in the neighboring municipality of Tibro in the fall of 2023. 

Adult education

The Learning Center in Hjo provides courses at the elementary and high school levels; SFI and Komvux as special education. There’s also an IM program.

At Hjo adult education college, you can study courses in e.g. culture, nature and religion. The college is run by the Skara diocese of the Church of Sweden.

The nearest colleges and universities are located in Skövde, Jönkoping and Gothenburg. 

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Things to do in Hjo

There are lots of fun things to do in your free time here in Hjo. Experience nature and the beautiful wooden town, take a dip in Lake Vättern, enjoy music, art and design experiences, and relish the local food, especially the ice cream.

Culture

Thanks to our long tradition of active craftsmen and artists, art studios, handicraft stores and handicraft courses form a natural part of the townscape. Our annual art exhibitions bear witness to this.

Throughout the year, music is played in various locations, and one of the summer highlights is the Rock against Cancer music Festival, which takes place in Hjo Town Park. Another major musical event is the annual accordion meet, when the whole of Hjo is filled with accordion players. Or you can visit Hjo’s restaurants and churches, which offer musical performances throughout the year. There’s also live opera broadcasts, folk music and musical performances to enjoy at Kulturkvarteret. For people who prefer their music “al fresco”, there’s live jazz aboard the SS Trafik during the summer.

Visit Kulturkvarteret for exhibitions, a cinema, tourist information and the library, all under one roof.

If you’d like to learn about different types of art, dance and music, then Hjo School of the Arts is a great choice. There are courses for children and adults alike. 

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Photo: Jesper Anhede

Exercise & Outdoor life

Nature is just around the corner in Hjo and you can get to outdoor recreation areas, nature reserves and hiking trails easily.

The Hjo River Valley nature reserve runs through the town of Hjo. The nature area offers a beautiful hike along the nature trail all the way from the harbor area up to Lake Mull, a distance of just over four kilometers. Along the trail you get to see the remains of the old trip hammers and mill ponds and read more about the significant part they played in Hjo’s history.

hy not take a refreshing stroll or practice running, orienteering or mountain biking along the jogging tracks on the Högaliden outdoor recreation area. For those who prefer training, there’s Guldkroken’s sports area with e.g. a tennis hall, several soccer fields, an artificial grass field and a track & field facility. There are also outdoor gyms in a number of places. The hiking trails Pilgrimsleden, Västra Vätterleden and Runt Vätterleden also pass through Hjo municipality.

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Photo: Jesper Anhede

Boating and fishing

Hjo Harbor is centrally located in Hjo and has grocery stores, restaurants, attractions and shopping within a few minutes walk. The harbor is accessible all year round, and is kept ice-free in winter with the aid of deicer systems. The harbor is managed by Hjo municipality, and if you wish to book a berth it’s easy to make contact through hamnvärd.

And if you do not have your own boat, you can experience Lake Vättern aboard the SS Trafik. In summer, the SS Trafik makes trips to Vadstena, Visingsö and Hästholmen.

The fishing season on Lake Vättern extends throughout the year. You can catch white fish with a fishing pole or spin for perch, pike and grayling from shore. In the fall and winter there’s a chance to catch salmon from the shore. Fishing in Lake Vättern is free. If you prefer trolling on the lake, there are excellent facilities and you can easily put your boat in the water via the ramp in the harbor.

Read more about Hjo fishing and boating club

Read more about Hjo sports fishing club

Read more about Lake Mullsjön's fishery association (in Swedish)

Read more about Hjo Yacht Club (in Swedish)

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Photo: Jesper Anhede

Get a taste of Hjo

Although Hjo is a small town, it has an excellent selection of charming little cafés with their own bakeries and restaurants that offer local produce on their menus. There’s everything from freshly caught Vättern charr and smoked whitefish to the renowned white asparagus, beer from microbreweries, pork from Grevbäcks Gris and cheese from Almnäs Ysteri. These days, Hjo is something of an ice cream Mecca, and there are now three ice cream parlors, two of which make their own ice cream.

Events

There’s always something going on in Hjo. Art exhibitions, music events, craft fairs, lectures, health events, farm visits, car meets and Christmas markets and more attract thousands of visitors every year.

Bathing

In Hjo, you’re never far away from a dip or two in the lake. There’s access to bathing piers, small sandy beaches, water thermometers, washrooms and barbecue areas along the kilometer-long strand promenade to the south. These days, you can also visit Sweden’s longest bench. The harbor area is home to the famous Guldkroksbadet – free bathing for the whole family with a heated outdoor pool, splash pool and adjacent play area for the little ones, changing rooms and an access lift into the pool. The outdoor pools are open during the summer.

The harbor area also has a public bathing area with stairs down into the water on the South Pier and a sandy beach at Guldkroksbadet, with a wheelchair ramp into the lake. Renting your own cabin for the season on the sandy beach at Guldkroksbadet is a good idea. Perfect for the family.

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Photo: Jesper Anhede

Shopping

At the beginning of the 19th century there were a great many master craftsmen in Hjo; everything from potters, painters, goldsmiths and bookbinders to glaziers, carpenters, tailors and gunsmiths. Many of these handicrafts live on in Hjo today, as we can see in our unique boutiques selling everything from ceramics, soap and silver jewelry to leather items, forgings and home-made furnishing items. Hjo also has its own department store, Home & Hobby, which attracts guests from far afield.

We’re proud of our many flea markets, antique stores and consignment stores.

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Photo: Jesper Anhede

Contact us

www.hjo.se

(phone) +46 (0)503-350 000

Contact Center

Bangatan 1B
SE-544 30 Hjo, SWEDEN

Mail

Torggatan 2
SE-544 30 Hjo, SWEDEN


Any questions? Contact our relocation guides!

Contact us
221021 LIS 040.

Municipalities

In Skaraborg there are 15 wonderful municipalities