Malmö

From Eco Friendly Travels

Eco-friendly travel guide to Malmö advises how to be a responsible tourist. Learn how to explore the attractions in a sustainable way and how to respect the local people and culture. Make your trip green by supporting locally owned hotels, organic restaurants and other businesses. Read more on how to protect the environment by making conscientious choices and how to travel green in Malmö, Sweden.

From top left to right: Malmö Live, Turning Torso, Emporia, Griffin Sculpture, Lönngården 1950s apartments, and the Öresund Bridge


  • Air quality: 4/ 5
  • Exploring by foot: 3/ 5
  • Exploring by bicycle: 4.5 / 5
  • Public transportation: 4 / 5
  • Parks: 4.5 / 5
  • Outdoor activities: 4 / 5
  • Locals' English level: 2/ 5
  • Safety: 4 / 5
  • Accommodation: US$20 - 500
  • Budget per day: US$ 50- $800

Responsible Travel

Malmö is the largest city in the Swedish county of Scania and the third-largest city in Sweden. Malmö was one of the earliest and most industrialized towns in Scandinavia and many historic buildings and parks and is also a commercial center for Scania's western part. The city is not that popular with international tourists, but it should be as it is one of Sweden’s hidden gems. There are several ways to ensure responsible travel in Malmo, with some being:

  • Support local businesses
  • Use public transport
  • Choose an eco-friendly hotel


Air Quality and Pollution

The air quality in Malmo is relatively high as it is considered very clean, with minimum pollutants. Air pollution in the city is mainly driven by traffic, energy production and industry. The levels of air pollution tend to be higher during winter.

The pollution levels in Malmo were quite high, and the city was even considered an industrial wasteland. However, over time, the city has managed to implement sustainable development and refurbish the parts that had become inhabitable wasteland turning them into beautiful places. There is still a bit of land and water pollution as normal with every other country, but the city levels are not note-worthy.


Respect the Culture

There are has several different cultural heritages in Malmo that highlight and celebrate the differences between the many ethnicities living in the city. One of the common traditional celebrations across the city is the Crayfish Party. During this festival, expert crayfish fishermen compete in fishing skills and show their artful gears to each other. Cooks make the most incredible crayfish dishes, the main estimators of which turn to be the festival guests. There are several other cultures that you may not understand, but it is important to ensure that you do not insult their culture and beliefs.


Top 10 Places to Visit

Malmo is a beautiful coastal city and one of the hidden gems of Sweden. Currently, about 80% of the tourists that visit the city are Swedish locals. There are several places to visit where you can experience the city's beauty and culture as an international traveler. Below is a list of the top ten places to visit:

  • The Oresund Bridge: It is a combined railway and motorway bridge across the passage between Sweden and Denmark. The bridge was the longest combined road and rail bridge in Europe from 2000 to 2019. It connects the road and rail networks of the Scandinavian Peninsula with those of Central and Western Europe. The bridge also has a data cable, making it the backbone of internet data transmission between central Europe and Sweden. The bridge has a spectacular view from the Swedish side, but if you travel by train, then you cannot see the sea from the bridge well.
  • Malmö Castle: A fortress that is part of the Malmo Museum and is owned by the Swedish state and is managed by the State Property Agency. The castle is massive, as is the area around it. Inside the castle, you can learn a little bit about history, including World War 2. There is also a museum where you can learn about aquatic animals and others, and on the other floor, they have a regular art expo. There is a nice restaurant in the interior. The museum is meant for visitors of all ages as both kids and grownups learn something new every time.
  • Saint Peter's Church: It is an elegant Brick Gothic church built in the 14th century as the main church of the city. St. Peter's Church contains late medieval murals of recognized high quality and some unusual furnishings and has an altarpiece that is one of the largest in the Nordic countries. The church has many events, and if you are lucky, you might stumble upon a musical rehearsal.
  • Moderna Museet Malmö: It is a museum of modern and contemporary art. They have exhibitions on two floors, and the museum shop is a great place to find gifts for yourself or others. The museum is recommended for students, artists and art enthusiasts. There are good exhibitions, interesting installations, sometimes very strange. They have booklets noted not only in English and Swedish but also in Arabic. There is a classy café that has outdoor seating, perfect for a sunny day. You can also find nice artsy gifts and cards as well as art books in the shop.
  • Malmö City Library: It is a beautiful and vast municipal public library which opened in 1905. The library is huge and has 550,000 different media, about 10,000 DVDs and 33,500 music CDs. The library was the first library in Sweden to lend video games. The library is clean, spacious and modern, with many diverse power outlets and seats. The atmosphere is suitable for work and studies as there is a good temperature inside and a corner for everyone. They have a great collection of kids' books and a play area when they are tired of studying. The library has many books in English and also offers free Swedish lessons. The librarians are always nice and helpful.
  • Turning Torso: It is a neo-futurist residential skyscraper in Sweden and the tallest building in Scandinavia that is regarded as the first twisted skyscraper in the world. The tower reaches a height of 190 meters with 54 storeys and 147 apartments. The building is residential, so it is private; meaning cannot get up to the top. The tower is heaven for architecture geeks.
  • Pildammsparken: It is a huge neighborhood and park that is perfect for evening walks and picnics. There are many attractive places in the park, like the fountain, the garden and the lake, to name a few. There are many beautiful relaxation spots where you can take gorgeous photos. The park also has activity areas for all ages, many walking and running paths, and an outdoor gym. The gardens are beautiful and well worth a visit during the summer.
  • Slottsparken: It is a park established in 1897. Malmö City Library is located in one corner of the park. The park is a popular place to go for a walk on a sunny day with children as a large playground and the many birds live in Big Pond, including ducks, black-headed gulls, grey herons and swans. There are also lots of trees and fresh air, making it a great place to relax.
  • The Alley -Escape Rooms: It is an Escape room center that has several challenging and exciting escape rooms. The game design is really good and has amazing technology. They offer impeccable service and are super accommodating as they even have plant-based milk with the coffee and women's hygiene items in the bathroom. This is a great place to spend time with friends.
  • Lilla Torg meaning Little Square: A quaint square with open-air restaurants. This is the most popular of the central squares of Malmö. The restaurants in this area are beautiful and offer amazing food, but the prices are rather steep, full of nice but expensive restaurants. It's cool that you can find almost every type of cousin in just one place so that you can decide which one is better for you.
Øresund Bridge


Explore

Malmo is a beautiful coastal city, with the majority of tourists that visit it being locals. This is quite a loss as the city fits the bill of what a hidden gem is. There are numerous beautiful places to visit and experience in the city. Several places across the city are worth visiting, but Malmo is well-known for its beautiful city parks. There are numerous places to visit across the city, including amusement parks, museums, and several great outdoor areas. It is important to note that many businesses in Malmo are cashless. Malmo is worth a visit, and you will discover why as you continue reading this article.


City Parks

  • Pildammsparken: It is a huge neighborhood and park that is perfect for evening walks and picnics. There are many attractive places in the park, like the fountain, the garden and the lake, to name a few. There are many beautiful relaxation spots where you can take gorgeous photos. The park also has activity areas for all ages, many walking and running paths, and an outdoor gym. The gardens are beautiful and well worth a visit during the summer.
  • Slottsparken: It is a park established in 1897. Malmö City Library is located in one corner of the park. The park is a popular place to go for a walk on a sunny day with children as a large playground, and the many birds live in Big Pond, including ducks, black-headed gulls, grey herons and swans. There are also lots of trees and fresh air, making it a great place to relax.
Pildammsparken


National Parks

There are no National Parks in Malmo.


Beaches

Ribersborgsstranden is the main beach in the city. The beach is clean and provides a perfect view of the Turning Torso, Malmö's prominent landmark. There are numerous beach activities, such as swimming, surfing, a sauna, and simply just lying with a good book. The beach is also a calm area, making it good for relaxation.

Ribersborgsstranden


Landmarks

  • The Oresund Bridge: It is a combined railway and motorway bridge across the passage between Sweden and Denmark. The bridge was the longest combined road and rail bridge in Europe from 2000 to 2019. It connects the road and rail networks of the Scandinavian Peninsula with those of Central and Western Europe. The bridge also has a data cable, making it the backbone of internet data transmission between central Europe and Sweden. The bridge has a spectacular view from the Swedish side, but if you travel by train, then you cannot see the sea from the bridge well.
  • Turning Torso: It is a neo-futurist residential skyscraper in Sweden and the tallest building in Scandinavia that is regarded as the first twisted skyscraper in the world. The tower reaches a height of 190 meters with 54 storeys and 147 apartments. The building is residential, so it is private; meaning cannot get up to the top. The tower is heaven for architecture geeks.
Turning Torso


Museums

  • Moderna Museet Malmö: It is a museum of modern and contemporary art. They have exhibitions on two floors, and the museum shop is a great place to find gifts for yourself or others. The museum is recommended for students, artists and art enthusiasts. There are good exhibitions, interesting installations, sometimes very strange. They have booklets noted not only in English and Swedish but also in Arabic. There is a classy café that has outdoor seating, perfect for a sunny day. You can also find nice artsy gifts and cards as well as art books in the shop.
  • Malmo Museum: It is a multifaceted history and culture complex with numerous exhibits, offering a great educational experience for all ages. The museum is large, and the collection is vast. It is possible to spend a day looking at all the exhibits. One of the most exciting parts of the museum is the extensive car and plane collection. The museum is great for kids as there is an interactive science floor where kids can explore all sorts of things.
Moderna Museet Malmö


Eat

There are several traditional foods in the city that enhance the experience of being a tourist. Several restaurants and street vendors sell different dishes that you could try, whether it is out of curiosity or so that you can have a story to tell later.


Traditional Local Restaurants

One of the best things about traveling worldwide is trying the various local cuisines available in that area. In most cases, traditional restaurants are the best place to experience local foods' taste, and maybe even a bit of the culture behind said dishes. Numerous conventional restaurants around the city serve amazing Swedish dishes. Below is a list of the most popular traditional restaurants in the city.

  • Sugoi Malmö: It is an excellent restaurant that serves amazing local dishes. They are generous with the ingredients they put in, and the food comes in large servings. Also, the food is made from fresh ingredients and is delicious. The interior is gorgeous, and they also have a rather large outside serving area. The prices are fair, and the service is good.
  • Två Krögare Bullen: It is a beautiful and cozy restaurant with the atmosphere of an old Irish pub. They offer amazing food, and the prices are following the trend of Malmö. They also serve alcohol with their meals, and their draft beers come highly recommended.


Vegetarian and Vegan

  • The Raw Kitchen Malmö: It is a classy vegan restaurant specializing in raw, plant-based, gluten-free organic and creative dishes such as raw vegan pizzas and a cheese platter with house-made fermented nut cheeses. Reservations are recommended as it can get quite busy.
  • Sajvva: It is a simple but elegant vegetarian restaurant that serves world cuisine created from Nordic ingredients. Many of their plates are vegan and gluten-free or can be ordered as such. Many drinks are vegan, but you should ask the staff to be sure. They also offer organic wine, beer, and a large selection of non-alcoholic drinks.


Street Food

Street food is found in several places across the city and is something that you must try. There are both street-side vendors and restaurants that specialize in street food. Some of the well-known restaurants are:

  • Casual Street Food
  • Paolita's street food
  • Spoonery Slottsstaden


Drink

Malmo is generally a warm city, although, as is normal, there are times when it is cold. As is expected, there is a high need to stay hydrated during summer due to the high temperatures. The high temperatures dictate the beverage of choice as people prefer to drink something that would cool them down. There are numerous cold non-alcoholic drinks to choose from in Malmo, excluding water. Beverages of choice on a hot day include but are not limited to include soft drinks, lemonade, milkshake, vegan shakes, and even iced tea or coffee. Tea is relatively popular, regardless of the temperatures outside; however, tea consumption increases when it's cold. Other choice beverages on cold days include coffee and warm milk.

Alcohol consumption is high in Malmo as there is the general belief that drinking a moderate amount of alcohol is refreshing and good health. There are several bars across the city where people meet up after a long day at work or on weekends for a relaxed evening of drinks with friends. Other people enjoy the occasional drink at home, mostly whiskey or wine. There are both local and international brews available for purchase in both bars and supermarkets. The various types of alcoholic beverages include wine, gin, vodka, and cocktails, to name a few.


Tap-water

The water in Malmo is clean and fresh and thus safe for drinking. This means that you can save both money and the environment by not buying bottled water.


Organic Cafés

Organic foods are foods that are grown without artificial nutrients, pesticides, or other chemicals. Eating organic has become a widespread trend where people are very selective about what they put in their bodies. Several organic cafes attract patrons of all ages who are careful about nutrition. There are many cafes in the city that cater specifically to this group of people. Below is a list of some of the organic cafes that one could try in the city

  • Flax
  • The Vegan Bar
  • Farm2Table


Breweries

The local beer brewing industry in Malmo is gaining significant ground, as they make various types of local beer to meet the demand, which is rather high as the locals are very proud and fond of their local beer. There are several breweries around the city, such as:

  • Malmö Brewing Co & Taproom
  • Ångström Bryggeri Handelsbolag
  • South Plains Brewing Company


Activities

Numerous activities can be done as you explore Malmo. The city is mainly visited by local tourists, although it is a hidden gem that the rest of the world is yet to discover. The activities are designed to ensure that no one is left out, and people of different interests can still enjoy and have a great time. Some of the most popular activities include hikes, bike riding, visits to the many beautiful gardens and lakes, to name a few. Some of the activities are in the city center while others are just on the outskirts. It is essential to carefully plan your itinerary to ensure that you get the best out of what the city offers.


Yoga and Retreats

Yoga is traditionally a Hindu discipline that focuses on physical, mental, and spiritual practices or disciplines. It has become quite popular globally, including Malmo, and some of the most visited yoga studios include:

  • Studio Frid Yoga o Pilates
  • Yoga Roots Malmö
  • Ashtanga Yoga Shala Malmo


Accommodation

Numerous accommodation options across Malmo are tailored to meet the budgets, tastes, and needs of different people. This section will look into some of the accommodation options that are available for tourists to select from


Green Hotels

There are several eco-friendly hotels in the city which aim for the sustainability of the environment. These hotels tend to offer safe, non-toxic, and energy-efficient accommodation. Other characteristics include using renewable energy, organic soaps, energy-efficient light fixtures, and recycling programs. A few of the most popular ones are:

  • Elite Plaza Hotel, Malmo
  • Radisson Blue Hotel
  • Good Morning Malmo


Hostels and Guest Houses

  • Rut and Ragnars: It is an independent hostel located near the cozy Mollevangen and within walking distance to most of Malmö. They have many beds divided into single, double, quadruple and six-bed rooms and two dormitories, one of which is mixed and one for women. All rooms with one, two or four beds are equipped with a TV. There are two communal kitchens and free parking outside the hostel. The hostel is also completely non-smoking.
  • The STF Malmö City Hostel and Hotel: It is in the heart of Malmö near many tourist attractions, cafes and bars. They have single, double, family- or multiple-bed rooms with shower and toilet in the corridor or in the room to choose from. They sell a breakfast buffet or make your own in the fully equipped guest kitchen.


Apartments

Those who intend to stay in Malmo will be very expensive as they charge per day for a long time. Some several flats and apartments are available for rent for at least a month. These are more affordable as they charge a flat rate and buy your food, which lowers costs. Those traveling as a group will find these most convenient as it is possible to share the flat rate cost instead of paying per head or room in hotels and motels. Rent in Malmo apartments ranged from 100 to 1000 USD per month, which is way cheaper than hotels or lodges.


Couchsurfing

Some families rent out a part of their home to tourists, known as couch surfing. This trend has grown in Malmo as it offers the host family an opportunity to make extra money and the tourist a chance to experience Swedish culture through family life. Several websites connect tourists with people who are willing to open up their homes.


Camping

There are numerous campsites across Malmo for those tourists who want to rough it, which offers a sense of adventure by giving people the full outdoor experience, including the fresh night air and the magnificent night skies. Below are some of the more popular campsites in Malmo:

  • First Camp Sibbarp-Malmö
  • Malmö Camping & Feriecenter
  • Scaniaparken


How to Get There

Several modes of transport can be used to travel to Malmo, with the most convenient for you being dictated by where you are coming from, be it a local or international area. People from surrounding cities usually travel to the city by bus or train. While those coming from further away commonly use aeroplanes.


Air

When traveling to Malmo by air, you can either arrive at the Kastrup airport in Copenhagen or take public transport across the bridge into Sweden or fly straight to Malmo Airport. These airports are roughly the same distance from Malmo city center. There are airport-shuttle buses, taxis and rental cars that travel to and from the airport.

Malmo Airport


Bus

Long-distance buses are also a common mode of transport with the locals, although they are difficult for tourists due to the lack of English. Several bus companies follow different time tables. Tickets are quite cheap and need to be booked in advance. You can get to Malmo by bus from Berlin and Paris via Copenhagen.

A bus in Malmo


Train

There are long-distance trains from around Sweden and international ones that stop at Malmö Central station, which is right near the middle of the city. The most frequent long-distance trains are those from Denmark. To book a train ticket and the train times, you can visit the ACP Rail website.

Train at the central station in Malmo


Hitchhiking

Hitchhiking to Malmo is quite possible, sometimes even across the border from Denmark. When hitchhiking, it is important to have a map as there are some areas where hitchhiking is impossible, and you want to avoid those. It would help if you also brushed up on your Swedish.


Others

Ferries are also a way of getting to Malmo. About three Finnlines ferries per day connect Malmö with Travemünde on the north coast of Germany. The journey takes around 9–10 hours, and cabins are compulsory on night crossings.


Moving Around

Malmo is a rather large city with many things to do and places to explore. Moving around the city can be complicated as the city's public transport system is not efficient. In most cases, hiring a taxi or a rental car is the best way to move around. Below are several other ways you can move around the city.


Walk

Most of the city's tourist attractions are far apart, so walking around as your tour is not feasible. However, some places can take a relaxing walk and enjoy the fresh air in most parts of the city.


Bicycle

Bicycles are the best way to move around Malmo as the city is interlaced with many bicycle roads. Bike rental is easy and affordable across the city. Bike-tours are quite popular, and the most common places to book bike-tours include platforms such as Airbnb, Toursbylocals etc.


Electronic Vehicles

Electronic vehicles are growing in popularity in Malmo. There are several charging areas for cars across the city and some even at hotels.

Electric transit bus in Malmo


Public Bus

Green buses are for journeys within the city and cover the eight main city-center bus lines. These buses are color-coded to highlight their route and are fast and reliable. Most of the local bus lines run late into the night, but not all of them, so you need to know your bus schedule if you plan on staying out late to avoid getting stranded.


Tram, Train and Subway

There are no trains dedicated to local travel. People sometimes use the trains bound for Denmark that run along a tunnel beneath the city center and get off in the Southern part of town. This journey takes just two or three minutes and will save you a walk of around 20 minutes.


Sustainable Shopping

There are many shopping centers in the city whereby tourists and locals alike can go shopping. It is more sustainable to shop in local shops and ensure that you stick to one shop and try to spread the wealth by visiting different shops.


Food Markets

There are several markets across the city that are dedicated to selling fresh food. They sell both local and international food, processed or unprocessed. Some of these markets include

  • Malmö Saluhall
  • Fiskehoddorna
  • Bazaar Food Market


Flea Markets

Several flea markets across the city offer both an exciting shopping experience and a chance to mingle with the locals. Most of them sell various things, especially souvenirs at reasonable prices. However, they tend to double the price when selling to tourists. These include:

  • Loppis Lounge
  • Marknadsbörsen
  • Fyndbörsen


Second Hand Stores

The trend of second-hand stores has caught the world by storm; numerous stores have opened where people can buy things they wouldn't usually afford for less than half the price. The most common ones in Malmo are:

  • Humana Second-Hand
  • Öppen Famn Second Hand
  • Beyond Retro


Eco-Fashion

There are several eco-friendly fashion labels in Malmo. These labels deal mostly with producing clothes using 'green' materials, while a few offer care and recycling services to old clothes. Some of these labels include:

  • Dzep Eco Fashion
  • Malmö Clothing Co.
  • Liebling


Recycling

Malmo has one of the most effective recycling practices in the world. Recycling is mandatory across the city, and instead of seeing waste, the citizens see resources. One such example is that they heat homes by burning garbage, paving the streets with recycled ash, and turning food scraps into biogas that fuel buses.


Waste

The city has a strong and effective waste management system as they turn waste materials into fuel. The city is not completely clean, though, as there will always be those who don’t sort their waste, and there will always be some landfill.


Work and Study Abroad

Malmo is a great place to work and comes with a heap of benefits that you don't get in many other countries. However, it is hard to get a job here as English speaking jobs are few and far between, and competition is fierce. Jobs in the hospitality sector especially tend to be reserved for locals, with very few organizations looking for English speaking workers. The city has three universities that encourage international students' enrollment, although their classes are primarily in Swedish.


Exchange Student

Malmo university has an exchange with universities in several countries. Through this program, the university welcomes more than 300 exchange students from all over the world each year. Being an exchange student is a great chance to broaden your academic horizons and get to know another country.


Au Pair

An au pair is a young foreign person who helps with housework or childcare in exchange for food, a room, and pocket money. The concept of Au pairs is rising in popularity. There are several vacancies across the city with requirements that vary according to the family. Several agencies and websites connect potential Au pairs with families that need them. Being an au pair can be a great way to learn about the Swedish language and culture.


Volunteering

Several voluntary organizations across Malmo are always open for volunteers. Some of the most popular volunteer organizations include teaching music to vulnerable children, working with people with mental health issues, and providing meals on wheels, to name a few. You can look up other volunteer opportunities in the city.


See Also