Samsø, the island of biking, potatoes and labyrinths

Masa Mesic | Live the World

November 23, 2022

Samsø is Denmark’s most popular island for potatoes, with roughly 3700 inhabitants and 114 square kilometers in size. Samsø lies in the Horsens archipelago and is surrounded by other islands including Tunø, Endelave, Hjarnø, and Alrø. 

This majestic island is reachable with the ferryboat from the mainland Hou (north of Horsens), and going there takes about an hour.   

Samsø's potatoes & food stands

Samsø’s earth conditions, which is a fine mixture of soil and sand, make it the perfect place for growing potatoes. Danes are big consumers when it comes to potatoes: on average, a Dane consumes around 73 kilos of potatoes per year! Moreover, the island hosts an annual competition in "potatoes' making" and, more specifically, there is an award for the best open potatoes sandwich. A typical Danish dish are the ‘open-faced sandwiches’ or Smørrebrød- well the same principle is applied here but using potatoes.    

© istock/Nanna Kirkegard Olesen

Samsø is also filled with numerous food stands and farm shops which sell local produce. Samsø almost becomes this open market island, especially in the summertime, which makes it very easy and also attractive for the local Danes to buy according to the season, without needing to go to the supermarket. It gives the island a bit more of an old fashioned, traditional vibe rather than a big city life atmosphere. 

Biking on Samsø

If you are into biking, Samsø is definitely worth exploring, as it is not very densely populated with cars. The scenery and preserved nature make it the perfect place to be outdoors and explore. There are in total 22 villages on Samsø, some smaller some bigger, which are easy to get to and explore by bike. Each one of them carries their own charm and character. As you bike around the island, you will also be able to witness some hilly landscapes and stunning viewpoints of the surroundings. To make things easier for you, you have a choice of three different bike paths, which take you to various parts of the island: the green, the yellow, and the dotted. Ideally, once on Samsø, try and find a local map of the island, which will have the three bike routes displayed. 

© istock/Animaflora

Samsø labyrinth

When on Samsø, make sure you schedule a visit to the world’s largest labyrinth, according to the Guinness World Records. This place measures up to about 12 football fields and has around 50,000 trees and bushes on its premises. Ideally, you discover the Samsø Labyrinten with a group of friends or family to make it more fun and challenging. As you enter the labyrinth and move from junction to junction (by the way, there are 186 T-junctions), you need to answer a question. Your answer will either guide you forward in the right direction to complete the entire riddle or will get you lost and hit a dead end. Yikes! In total, there are eight different pathfinders or riddles to solve. 

© istock/pierlugipalazzi

Good luck and don’t forget to have fun! 

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