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Five great beaches in Skåne for when the sun shines

Summer (sometimes) means sunshine. Here are five of the best beaches in Skåne you can rush out to on those cloudless days.

Five great beaches in Skåne for when the sun shines
Stenhuvud, a well-known landmark on the Österlen coast, viewed from Knäbäckshusens strand. Photo: Conny Fridh/imagebank.sweden.se
Haväng
 
North of Kivik, Haväng vies for the title of the best beach in Österlen, the popular holiday area in Skåne’s southeast corner. It combines a stunning stretch of sand with beautiful walks on the Österlenleden and Backaleden trails which cross the meadows and hills behind it. 
 

The beach is cut in two by the Verkeån river. Photo: Jorchr/CC BY-SA 3.0
 
The beach is cut in two where the Verkeån river hits the sea, and the meadows are filled with free-ranging herds of horses and cows, which sometimes come right down to the shore. When you get bored of the beach you can wander up to Havängsdosen, a stone-age grave with a sea view. Usually, you can also take a break for a posh fika or lunch at the nearby Vitemölla Badhotell, but unfortunately it’s closed for renovation in 2019. 
 
Behind Haväng there are rolling hills and meadows with traditional farmhouses on them. Photo: Henrik Malmqvist/imagebank.sweden.se
 
Knäbäckshusens strand
Haväng’s chief rival lies just to the southern side of Stenshuvud, the hill that marks the southern end of the Hanöbukten bay. Visitors walk down a winding path from the car park past picturesque thatched cottages to find a long stretch of white sand with a steep, verdant bank behind it.
 
There’s a risk of dangerous undercurrents in bad weather, but it’s so shallow (and the water is normally quite chilly) that it’s unlikely you’ll get out deep enough to be at risk. Tasty pancakes at the Franskans Crêperie in nearby Rörum are the perfect end to a day here.
 
The trees at Knäbäckshusens strand go in places right down to the sea. Photo: Mikael Tannus/VisitSkåne
 
Ribersborg
 
Malmö’s very own beach gets packed on sunny days, but the swimming piers make it great for a midday dip, while the dunes provide enough protection from the wind to have a beachside barbecue.
 
And this year Malmö’s city government has splashed out 2.2 million kronor on Urban Beach, a whole program of summer entertainment that includes a floating obstacle course, a food truck, circus acrobats, dancing, trampolines, and places to hang out. Visitors can can also play mini golf at Ribban Gold Green, and buy hot dogs and ice creams at the regular kiosks spread out along the cycle path that runs behind the beach. 
 

The jetty. Photo: Jaque de Villiers/imagebank.sweden.se
 
Skanör-Falsterbo
The upmarket housing around the Skanör peninsular means you’re not exactly in the wilderness, but once you get out on the white sand of Skanör, it’s one of the best beaches in the county. The beach tends to be windy and the surrounding sea is often spotted with windsurfers and taking advantage of it.
There are also cute wooden bathing huts all long the beach. If you’re feeling flush, you can eat at the popular Badhytten restaurant by the beach, or for adventurous types, there’s the option to rent kite-surfing kit and get lessons from Ksurf
 
The beach huts at Skanör are painted in a variety of appealing colours. Photo: John Sander/Imagebank Sweden
 
Mossbystrand

Its claims to be the “Riviera of the South Coast” might be a slight exaggeration, but Mossbystrand is a very fine sandy beach on the very south of Skåne near the old fishing village of Abbekås, with a nature reserve behind it. Its closeness to Trelleborg and Skurup means it can get a lot of locals on afternoon visits, but on some days you’ll almost have it to itself. Mossbystrand Kiosk sells ice cream and sand toys, but also smoked fish and filling meals served with chips or mashed potato. 

 
Mossbystranden can sometimes be deserted. Photo: Alex Regnér/Region Skåne

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How a rental car shortage in Europe could scupper summer holiday plans

After long months of lockdowns and curfews Europeans are looking forward to jetting off for a bit of sun and sand -- only to find that their long awaited holiday plans go awry due to a shortage of rental cars.

How a rental car shortage in Europe could scupper summer holiday plans
Tourists wait outside of rental car agencies in Corsica. Photo: PASCAL POCHARD-CASABIANCA / AFP

In many areas popular with tourists cars are simply not available or subcompacts are going for a stiff €500 euros.

Car rental comparison websites show just how expensive renting a vehicle has become for tourists this summer.

According to Carigami, renting a car for a week this summer will set tourists back an average of 364 euros compared to 277 euros two years ago.

For Italy, the figure is 407 euros this summer compared to 250 euros in 2019. In Spain, the average cost has jumped to 263 euros from 185 euros.

According to another website, Liligo, daily rental costs have nearly doubled on the French island of Corsica. At the resort city of Palma on the Spanish island of Mallorca, rental prices have nearly tripled.

Today’s problem is a direct result of the coronavirus pandemic.

Faced with near absence of clients, selling off vehicles to raise cash made a lot of sense for car rental firms struggling to survive.

“Everyone drastically reduced their fleet,” said the head of Europcar, Caroline Parot.

Until the spring, most companies still had fleets roughly a third smaller than in 2019, she said.

Car rental firms are used to regularly selling their vehicles and replacing them, so rebuilding their inventory should not have been a problem.

Except the pandemic sent demand for consumer electronics surging, creating a shortage of semiconductors, or chips, that are used not only in computers but increasingly in cars.

“A key contributor to the challenge right now is the global chip shortage, which has impacted new vehicle availability across the industry at a time when demand is already high,” said a spokesman for Enterprise.

It said it was working to acquire new vehicles but that in the mean time it is shifting cars around in order to better meet demand.

No cars, try a van

“We’ve begun to warn people: if you want to come to Italy, which is finally reopening, plan and reserve ahead,” said the head of the association of Italian car rental firms, Massimiliano Archiapatti.

He said they were working hard to meet the surge in demand at vacation spots.

“But we’ve got two big islands that are major international tourism destinations,” he said, which makes it difficult to move cars around,
especially as the trip to Sardinia takes half a day.

“The ferries are already full with people bringing their cars,” he added.

“Given the law of supply and demand, there is a risk it will impact on prices,” Archiapatti said.

The increase in demand is also being seen for rentals between individuals.

GetAround, a web platform that organises such rentals, said it has seen “a sharp increases in searches and rentals” in European markets.

Since May more than 90 percent of cars available on the platform have been rented on weekends, and many have already been booked for much of the summer.

GetAround has used the surge in demand to expand the number of cities it serves.

For some, their arrival can’t come fast enough.

Bruno Riondet, a 51-year-old aeronautics technician, rents cars to attend matches of his favourite British football club, Brighton.

“Before, to rent a car I was paying between 25 and 30 euros per day. Today, it’s more than 90 euros, that’s three times more expensive,” he said.

In the United States, where prices shot higher during the spring, tourists visiting Hawaii turned to renting vans.

In France, there are still cars, according to Jean-Philippe Doyen, who handles shared mobility at the National Council of Automobile Professionals.

“Clients have a tendency to reserve at the last minute, even more so in the still somewhat uncertain situation,” he said.

They will often wait until just a few days before their trip, which means car rental firms don’t have a complete overview of upcoming demand, he added.

He said business is recovering but that revenue has yet to reach pre-pandemic levels as travel is not yet completely unfettered.

SEE ALSO: British drivers will no longer need an insurance ‘green card’ to visit Europe, EU rules

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