The King began to show an interest in cars and tools at an early age. As Crown Prince, for his fifth birthday, he received a pedal car, a trowel, bricks, gardening tools and a real yoke with two pails.
Today, he maintains a great interest in motor sport: at the vintage car rally on the island of Öland The King likes to drive an old Volvo PV 60 that he received as a present on his 50th birthday.
The King has enjoyed nature and the outdoors since childhood, with outdoor and sporting activities among his favourite pastimes. The King is a highly skilled skier. He has participated in the Vasa Ski Race three times - in 1977, 1987 and 1997. During the summer months he enjoys boating activities.
At the Royal Family's private summer residence, the Solliden Palace on the island of Öland, The King puts a lot of energy into cultivating the garden. His focus is not so much on the flowerbeds but on heavy labour such as laying new water pipes, digging ponds, or thinning out oak forests.
The Royal Family has a cottage in Storlien in the province of Jämtland that The King inherited from his parents. After the death of Prince Bertil, the Royal Family also took over Villa Mirage in St. Maxime, France.
The King is also interested in art, music and food, and is a member of the Swedish Academy of Gastronomy.
In recent years he has exhibited parts of his - and King Gustaf VI Adolf's - private collection of graphic art and has initiated a number of musical events at the Royal Palace of Stockholm.
Hunting is among The King's leisure interests. Every year he participates in Royal hunts at Halle and Hunneberg and in Bergslagen. He also participates in the cloven-foot animal hunt at Tullgarn.
Read about The King's Royal Engagements via the link on the left.