Geographical location

The Kattegat, Swedish Kattegat ( Dutch: "cat hole", Danish pronunciation [ kadəgad ] ) is the covering 22,000 km ² and an average of around 80 meters deep, extremely difficult to be traversed sea area between Jutland (Denmark) and the Swedish west coast. At Skagen it borders the Skagerrak. The Kattegat is seen either as an arm of the Baltic Sea, an arm of the North Sea, or, in traditional Scandinavian opinion, as neither of the two.


The connection to the open North Sea via the Skagerrak and the Limfjord. However, the latter compound only by small boats passable. Ocean-going vessels to reach the Kattegat by circumnavigation of the northern tip of Jutland, Skagen. The Baltic Sea is connected by the Øresund, the Great Belt and the Little Belt with the Kattegat.


Several major rivers flow into the Kattegat:

  • The Guden in Denmark,
  • The Göta älv at Gothenburg in Sweden,
  • And Lagan, Nissan, Ounas, Viskan from the Swedish Halland.


Among the islands in the Kattegat include (selection, by region ):

  • Bjorko
  • Fotö
  • Grötö
  • Halleskär
  • Hyppeln
  • Hälsö
  • Hönö
  • Kalvsund
  • Källö - Knippla
  • Öckerö
  • Rörö
  • Vipeskär
  • Asperö
  • Böttö
  • Brännö
  • Dana Holmen
  • Donsö
  • Galterö
  • Gäveskär
  • Kårholmen
  • Rivö
  • Styrsö
  • Vinga
  • Vrångö
  • Vendelsö
  • Lyngaskär
  • Halland Väderö
  • Hirsholmene with Deget and Hjellen
  • Læsø with Hornfiskrøn and Nordre Rønner
  • Anholt
  • Hesselø
  • Hjelm
  • Samsø with Kyholm and Lindholm
  • Vejrø with Bosserne ( Bosser Flak )
  • Sejerø
  • Nekselø
  • Tunø with Tunø Knob
  • Svanegrunden
  • Hov Røn
  • Endelave
  • Æbelø with Ejlinge
  • Bradet
  • Dræet
  • Æbeløholm
  • Mågeøerne ved Bogense

Læsø and Anholt form the Danish desert belt so-called because of the dry summer climate, which can dry out ponds to the ground.


In the Kattegat, there are several shoals:

  • To Denmark (in the vicinity of the island Hesselø ): Lysegrund, Lille Lysegrund, Schultz reason or Schult 's reason Briseis flak and Hastens reason.
  • To Sweden: Fladen ground, Lilla Middelburg reason Stora Middelburg reason and Hertha flak.


Ecologically the Kattegat is a transition zone between the salt- poor Baltic Sea and the Skagerrak atlantic embossed. To the south of Læsø outweigh flatter areas up to 60 meters of water; in the north of the Norwegian Trench drops steeply to over 600 meters. The abundance of fish is great, there are also European lobster and Norwegian lobster or virgins lobster (Nephrops norvegicus) ago. The species-rich world of the Kattegat also deal local museums and aquariums, such as the Kattegat Centre in Grenaa.

Origin of the name

The name of the Kattegat is derived from the Dutch and Low German words Katt = cat and Gatt = hole. In the maritime sector, Hanseatic period and later the Kattegat was feared due to its many shoals and narrow waters driving. So the captains came to the verdict, the Kattegat is as tight as a cat hole. Numerous wrecks tell of the earlier difficulties of navigation in the Kattegat.

An earlier name of the water body was the Jutland sea ( Old Norse: Jótlandshaf ).

Traffic in the Kattegat

Today in particular is the eastern Kattegat a heavily trafficked sea area, through which runs a significant portion of the traffic to and from Gothenburg, Copenhagen and the Baltic ports. Several major ferry lines cross or pass through the Kattegat, the lines Frederikshavn - Gothenburg Frederikshavn -Oslo, Larvik Frederikshavn, Frederikshavn -Moss, Kiel -Oslo, Kiel - Gothenburg.


Is currently under construction near the eponymous island of Anholt offshore wind farm. A total of 111 wind turbines of the type Siemens SWT -3.6 -120 to be built, thus resulting in a total nominal output of offshore wind farms of 400 MW. Completion is scheduled for 2013.