Eco-friendly travel guide to Sweden advises how to be a responsible tourist. Learn how to travel 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 Sweden, Europe.
- Air quality: 4 / 5
- Bus connections: 4 / 5
- Train connections: 3/ 5
- Hitchhiking: 2.5 / 5
- National parks: 4/ 5
- Outdoor activities: 4 / 5
- Locals' English level: 4 / 5
- Safety: 4 / 5
- Accommodation: US$10 - $350
- Budget per day: US$ 40 - $ 600
- 1 Responsible Travel
- 2 Air Quality and Pollution
- 3 Respect the Culture
- 4 Top 10 Places to Visit
- 5 Explore
- 6 Eat
- 7 Drink
- 8 Activities
- 9 Accommodation
- 10 Regions
- 11 Cities
- 12 Getting There and Moving Around
- 13 Sustainable Shopping
- 14 Recycling
- 15 Work and Study Abroad
- 16 See Also
Sweden, officially the Kingdom of Sweden is a Nordic country in Northern Europe that borders Norway to the west and north, Finland to the east, and is connected to Denmark in the southwest by the Oresund Bridge. Sweden is the largest country in Northern Europe, and it has thousands of coastal islands and inland lakes, along with vast boreal forests and glaciated mountains. The principal cities, namely, eastern capital Stockholm and southwestern Gothenburg and Malmö, are all coastal cities with gorgeous beaches. All of this makes the country one of the top tourist destinations in the country.
Sweden is rich with natural resources that include copper, gold, hydropower, iron ore, lead, silver, timber, uranium, and zinc. The country is impressive, and it is known for its clean streets. Swedes are generally environmentally conscious, and this makes sense when you see how beautiful the region is. It is therefore essential that as a visitor in the country, you ensure that you try to be as environmentally conscious as the locals. Some ways to ensure responsible travel include:
- Choosing the right transport method: A major part of your travel experience includes discovering every nook and cranny of the country. While you will have transport options like private cars and taxis at your disposal you need to know that not only do they contribute to more congestion and traffic pollution but also emit harmful gases into the environment. So, choose options like walking, cycling, electronic and public transportation in general.
- Trying local food: A huge part of the local culture is the traditional food that is offered at the local traditional restaurants and by street food vendors. Instead of just sticking to international fast food franchises that contribute to so much waste being produced in the world, you should try the local options. Not only will it help the local economy but also will directly help the families whose sole source of earning are these small food businesses.
- Do not throw waste: As an eco-friendly traveler, you need to promote sustainable living as much as possible in the country to motivate not only fellow tourists but local people. When you visit any tourists attractions especially country parks, make sure you do not throw any food wrapper and do not just stop at that but if you see any trash, pick it up and throw it in the dustbin. It might look like a very small thing to do but has a huge impact on people watching especially the children present in the park since they learn and mimic the behaviour of other people around them.
- Choose a green hotel: Plenty of accommodations are available in the country that provide you with a top-notch experience but instead of choosing them, you can pick green hotels for your stay. They use eco-friendly measures to reduce the pollution and waste of the country. This is one of the great ways to contribute towards the country to keep it safe and clean.
- Shop local: In order to support local craftsmen and artisans always shop local. During your trip to the country, you will come across small shops and food stalls in almost every lane of the country. If you want to have an unforgettable experience in the country, then buy goods and handicrafts from these shops. This will not only help you to save a lot of money but you will be supporting a lot of local people who are dependent on their small businesses to earn a livelihood.
Air Quality and Pollution
The air quality in Sweden is among the best in the world. However, during the cold winter periods, higher pollution levels do occur. The increase in pollution levels is due to the combustion during the winter and resuspension due to the use of studded tires in the springtime. The major causes of air pollution in Sweden is mainly traffic, energy production and industry, especially in urban areas.
The major environmental issue facing Sweden is the pollution of the Baltic Sea caused by pollutants from agriculture sources and waste treatment facilities. The levels of pollution of the Baltic Sea are a major source of concern for Sweden and its neighbouring countries in Central Europe. The main water pollutants come from the international shipping industry, sewage, regional industry, waste treatment plants, the transportation sector, and leakage from agriculture. Once they reach a body of water, these pollutants result in the creation of "aquatic dead zones," which are pollutant-overloaded zones where limited or no life can be sustained due to the lack of dissolved oxygen, and because of this fish cannot breed in more than 16,000 Swedish lakes.
Lastly, environmental noise is an inevitable nuisance in the urban community. There have been some efforts to restrict the noise levels; however, noise constitutes an increasing problem in the city. The major causes of this type of pollution are traffic, primarily road-, railway- and aircraft traffic, as well as noise from neighbours, construction sites and industrial plants.
Respect the Culture
Sweden is home to a variety of cultures as it is home to not only locals but many people from different areas. One of the key characteristics of Swedish culture is that Swedes are democratic, humble and find boasting unacceptable. They tend to prefer to listen to others as opposed to ensuring that their voice is heard, and when speaking, they speak softly and calmly. In most cases, Swedes appear to be reserved at first, but once you get to know them, they are generally very friendly and are always happy to help and to answer any questions you might have.
An excellent way to get to know Swedish people is to join Swedish societies, clubs, associations and non-profit organizations. Learning some Swedish language is also a perfect way to experience more of the culture.
Top 10 Places to Visit
There are thousands of lakes, extensive forests, tons of coastline, mountains and rolling hills to explore. Sweden is also filled with colourful wooden buildings, traditional huts, stone fortresses and cathedrals, and some pretty innovative contemporary architecture. Whether it's hiking trails or art museums you're looking for, Sweden has it. Below are the top 10 places to visit in the country:
- Stockholm: The city of Stockholm is one of the most picturesque cities in Europe and has an abundance of clean air that blows in off the Baltic Sea, as well as wide-open spaces, woodlands, and parks. The city also has a strong connection to history, particularly in the old town centre of Gamla Stan where there are many historic buildings as well as dainty cobbled streets that wind around the island and give visitors the chance to explore on foot. For some maritime history, head down to the harbour to see the Vasa, a warship that dates from the 17th century and escaped a watery end after being preserved and restored. There are also several open green spaces such as Kungsträdgården where locals go to relax and enjoy the splendid scenery.
- The Oresund Bridge: It is a combined railway and motorway bridge in Malmo, 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.
- 'Stockholm Archipelago: It is a group of 30,000 islands in the Stockholm area. Many of the islands have planned day tours, or you can charter a private boat and island hop at your pace. One of the best ways to get around and witness the stunning and rugged islands is to take one of the old steamboats that still operate in the region. Only about a thousand of these islands are inhabited, so as you explore, you get to take in the wild scenery and private atmosphere. While visiting the archipelagos, you can see a World War I fortress at Starofortet or Vaxholm, the “capital” of the archipelago with its ornate buildings and a history of herring fishing. You can also indulge yourself at a spa in Nacka, the closest to Stockholm and accessible by motor vehicle.
- Jukkasjärvi: It is an ice hotel in Jukkasjärv, which holds the title as the largest hotel in the world to be constructed from snow and ice. The hotel usually stands from approximately December-March, after which it becomes too warm for the hotel to be sustainable and so it is left to melt. Ice hotel’s accommodation features snow rooms, ice rooms, and art suites. This hotel is a must-visit for winter lovers. Besides the actual hotel, there are many activities available at the location such as ice fishing, dog sledging, and excursions into the wilderness on snowmobiles. In the wilderness, you will meet Sweden’s aboriginal people, the Sami, whose lives revolve about the reindeer migration.
- Swedish Lapland: Located in the far north above the Arctic Circle is the perfect place to go if you are looking for a wilderness adventure. The area has summer skies and sun around the clock. Lapland is for canoers, hikers and viewers of wildlife. Swedish Lapland is home to the indigenous Sami, who live in massive forests and barren tundra. Those who visit in winter can buy reindeer hides at Jokkmokk, the centre of Sami life.
- Malmö City Library: A beautiful and vast municipal public library which opened in 1905. The library is vast 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 studying because of the warm temperature and quaint corners. 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 lovely and helpful.
- The Drottningholm Palace: It is the private residence of the Swedish royal family that is located in Drottningholm, Stockholm. Apart from being the private residence of the Swedish royal family, the Palace is a popular tourist attraction. The Palace is large, historical, and the architecture is breathtaking. It takes around an hour to see all the rooms and read the history behind it. The ceilings in the Palace are stunning - you will do a lot of neck exercises as you keep looking at them. The personnel is very kind and helpful. The gardens are glorious, and walking around them is both pleasant and relaxing. Also, there are many corners where you can take amazing pictures. The park has many ducks and wild geese. There is a coffee shop as well where you can relax and enjoy some local delicacies.
- The Royal Armoury: It is a museum in the Royal Palace in Stockholm that contains many artefacts of Swedish military history and Swedish royalty. It is the oldest museum in Sweden that was opened by King Gustavus Adolphus because he wanted the clothes from his campaign in Poland to be preserved for posterity. The museum shows the rich history and all the displays are fantastic in mint condition. The collection includes a drinking horn made from a horn of the last aurochs bull that was taken by the Swedish army as war booty from Poland. There is a horse carriage exhibition in the cellar. Entry is free, so there is no need to miss out on this incredible place.
- Långholmen: It is an island between Södermalm and Kungsholmen in central Stockholm, that can be reached via two bridges; Pålsundsbron in the east and Långholmsbron in the west. Långholmen is a popular spot for walks, picnics and swimming, and it is one of the best places to take pictures in Stolkholm. The small beaches, located right outside the former prison, are usually crowded in summer. The river is fantastic, and the waters are clear, and the reflections from the boats and the buildings are breathtaking. After a short walk, you will reach the Långholmen beach, which is worth it. When the weather is good many people are swimming, and it also has a magnificent view, so it is ideal even for just sitting or having a picnic. The island has a lot of heart, lovely people and many businesses that visitors can support.
- Skinnarviksberget: It is a hidden hilltop spot with scenic city views; the views of Stockholm are even better at night. The terrain of the hike is quite uneven, so make sure to wear comfortable shoes carry a flashlight at night, as there is no light. Some of the best times to come here are sunset and sunrise as they are both the most beautiful times and also there will be very few people there at that time. Besides the views, the district itself is very cool with plenty of trendy bars.
Sweden is a top-notch tourist destination that is full of unique things to do and see. There are numerous cities to explore, each of them offering a different and worthwhile experience of the country. Stockholm is built on fourteen islands, has more than fifty bridges, the medieval old town, Gamla Stan, royal palaces and museums such as open-air Skansen. Malmo has the perfect vacation areas for an ideal summer vacation, and Gothenburg is an architectural haven for those who are into that type of thing.
The Swedish countryside is made up of gorgeous greenery as it is packed full of beautiful landscapes to see and explore. Sweden is incredibly popular for being home to some of the most lush green spacesvb. Being one of the largest countries in the EU, Sweden offers a lot of natural space and a minimum population density.
There are thousands of lakes, extensive forests, tons of coastline, mountains and rolling hills to explore. Sweden is also filled with colourful wooden buildings, traditional huts, stone fortresses and cathedrals, and some pretty innovative contemporary architecture. Whether it's hiking trails or art museums you're looking for, Sweden has it.
- Kungsträdgården: It is a park in central Stockholm that is colloquially known as Kungsan. The park's central location and its outdoor cafés make it one of the most popular hangouts and meeting places in Stockholm. The park hosts open-air concerts and events in summer and has an ice rink during winters. There are also many cafés, art galleries and restaurants. The park is one of the most beautiful places to chill in the middle of the city with all of the people and cherry blossom trees blooming and the beautiful fountain.
- Vita Bergen: A park area of Södermalm in Stockholm. Vita Bergen is a famous park as it is mentioned in the novel The Red Room by August Strindberg. The Katarina church overlooks grassy areas full of trees, an outside amphitheatre, traditional Swedish heritage cottages and even a little park bar. The park is beautiful, with lovely places to hang out. The playground is small and not much going on, but the kids managed to be entertained for a few hours. It is also an excellent place for playing and walking with your dog. There is a small kiosk where you can buy cold beverages, although the prices are kind of high.
- Pildammsparken :This is a vast neighbourhood park in Malmo 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.
- Kosterhavet National Park: Arguably the best place to observe marine line under protected circumstances is Kosterhavet National Park. Kosterhavet, which borders Norway, is the country's first marine national park. With 6,000 species of marine life, the park is home to several species that can't be found anywhere else in Sweden. The park is centred around the shores and sea of the Koster Islands. Kosterhavet’s coral reefs make it popular with snorkelers and divers, while landlubbers can enjoy quaint fishing villages waiting to be turned into picture postcards.
- Abisko National Park: A National Park in Northern Sweden with breathtaking endless views of nature and mountains. There are six basic trails that are easy to navigate and do not require expert abilities. This is Sweden's oldest national park that is filled with different paths of different lengths. There are paths both up the mountains and in the valley, and a lift for those who don't want to walk up or down the first part of the hill. There are many species of birds in the park. There are also various mammals which include smaller ones like the marten, stoat, squirrel, and the fell lemming. The larger animals include the moose, reindeer wolverines, Arctic foxes, lynx and bears. There moose and reindeer are common sightings, but the rest are only seen sporadically. The national park is also known for its cross-country skiing opportunities, snowshoeing, and other winter sports.
- Tyresta National Park: It is a national park with a surrounding nature reserve located in Haninge and Tyresö municipalities in Stockholm County. It is one of the most incredible natural grasslands in Europe as it is immaculate and the biodiversity is well-balanced and protected. The lakes are great to get refreshed and make for great camping grounds. The park is nice to visit during all seasons. The park offers a nice getaway from bustling city life, and there is a lovely cafe to recover energy after your hike.
- Ribersborgsstranden: It is the main beach in Malmo. 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 suitable for relaxation.
- Sudersand: It is the most popular beach area in the Baltic Sea. The beaches of Sudersand are found on the tiny island of Faro, and you can reach this beach destination from Stockholm on the Nynashamn-Visby ferry and then the Faresund-Faro ferry. The beach region offers boat rentals, several water activities, accommodations, food, and spectacular views. The beach gets rather crowded on weekends.
- Varamon Beach: It is in the centre of southern Sweden, is a favourite destination for both locals and visitors. This beach gets the most sun compared to all the other beaches in Sweden and has lots of soft sand, public facilities, and summer activities for kids and families. To find this beach, head to the city of Motala and follow the signs from there.
- Järnpojke Also known as the Iron Boy, in English known as the "little boy who looks at the moon" is a sculpture in Gamla stan Stockholm, which is only 15 centimetres high and therefore is the smallest public monument of Stockholm. The statue is located behind the Finnish Church, which is only a few meters off the Stockholm Palace. The sculpture is described in very few tourist guides and is therefore considered "secret" tourist attraction. There are many myths surrounding the statue and people leave coins and rub his head for fertility. The coin must not be Swedish currency; otherwise, people will steal it.
- Turning Torso: It is a neo-futurist residential skyscraper in Malmo 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.
- The Katarina Elevator or Katarina Lift: It is a passenger elevator in Stockholm that connects Slussen to the heights of Södermalm. The original lift was constructed in 1881, but the current structure dates from the rebuilding of the Slussen transport interchange in 1936. There is a beautiful view of the city from the lift, on one side bus station and the other construction site. If you visit it, it can be good exercise. There is a café at the top where you can sit and enjoy nice drinks.
- The Nobel Prize Museum: It is located in the former Stock Exchange Building, the old town in central Stockholm. The Nobel Prize Museum showcases information about the Nobel Prize and Nobel prizewinners, as well as information about the founder of the prize, Alfred Nobel. The museum's permanent display includes many artefacts donated by Nobel Laureates, presented together with personal life stories. The museum is quite small, but there is ample material inside, including films about winners, experiments for kids. You can spend about an hour in the museum. There is an audio guide available in many languages and a movie room where you can watch all the stories about the winners. Visiting the museum is a must as you will learn a lot and come away inspired. There is also a museum store where you can buy chocolate medals, dynamite candy and books about or by many winners.
- The Vasa Museum: It is a maritime museum on the island of Djurgården in Stockholm. The museum is home to the 64-gun warship Vasa that sank on her maiden voyage in 1628. The Vasa Museum opened in 1990 and is the most visited museum in Scandinavia. The museum offers a fantastic experience with interactive exhibits and information throughout. The Vasa is huge, and the museum wraps you in the whole story of it, and the story of Sweden for that time. The audio guide is in different languages and can be easily played by scanning the QR code with your phone or tablet. There is also a 20-minute movie which explains the whole story of the ship.
- 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.
One of the best things about travelling 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.
Swedish people appreciate their food and meatballs that have an excellent reputation in Sweden. If you're keen to get a taste of Swedish meatballs outside of Ikea, then you should check out some of the different varieties. Moose or elk meatballs are pretty famous, and there's a meatball boutique in Sodermalm where you can discover a wide variety of flavours. Their most reputable food includes a wide selection of game meat too. On special occasions, you might even get a chance to eat some reindeer.
The average times for meals in Sweden are generally from 8 to 11 am for the standard continental breakfast, noon to 2:30 pm for lunch, and as early as 5:30 pm for dinner to around 8 or 8:30 pm. Many restaurants in Stockholm and other big cities are open to midnight, but this might not be the case in the small villages.
There are also some traditional foods in Sweden you should try because it's delicious. Then there is Swedish food which is rather disgusting, but you should try because you might want to join the conversation about how bad it is
Some of the top local dishes to try include:
- Smörgåstårta which is a sandwich cake made up of a cold cake made of several layers of white or light rye bread with creamy fillings in between. The base usually is mayonnaise and eggs, and shrimps, ham, cucumbers, tomatoes are added on top sliced lemons.
- Köttbullar are meatballs
- Pyttipanna, or pytt i Panna are little cubes of potatoes, onions and any kind of chopped meat, which is fried in a pan together with egg or pickled beetroot.
- Chokladbollar are chocolate balls, and the main ingredients are oatmeal, sugar, coffee, cocoa and butter.
There's one drink that, while famous worldwide, is particularly valuable in Sweden. Fika is a massive part of Swedish culture and tradition, with most people enjoying a trip to a café regularly. Fika is usually translated as a “coffee and cake” break, as it includes having a cup of coffee or tea and a bite to eat, but it is much more than just that. It is a state of mind, an attitude and an essential part of a Swede’s daily routine.
Aside from a love of coffee, the Swedes enjoy their Schnapps, or aquavit, which is a superb Swedish drink, served icy cold. Aquavit is much stronger than it looks, and Sweden has strictly enforced rules about drinking and driving. Most Swedes seem to drink their liquor straight. But mixed drinks, especially in urban areas, are now more commonplace. The drink prices in the country are sky-high.
The legal drinking age in Sweden is 18, and in most Swedish municipalities it is forbidden to drink alcohol in public. Drinking alcohol in public can attract a fine. Beer is the drink of Sweden, but it is relatively uncommon in Sweden to drink a glass of wine or bottle of beer in the evening during the week or if one has worked the next morning. Sweden is embracing the growth of craft brewing as five years ago. There were thirty craft breweries in the country while today, there are one hundred and fifty. The Swedish beer culture is quickly expanding, and breweries are constantly trying out new flavours. Beer is so popular that many fine-dining restaurants offer beer pairings for their set menus in addition to the usual wine pairings.
Drinking straight from the tap is the norm in Sweden as the water is clean and fresh. This also means you can save both money and the environment by not buying bottled water. You can carry a water bottle to refill when you are about. The tap water in Sweden has even better quality than bottled water. However, this might depend on which country you are from, but most people have no problems with drinking from the taps.
A fun fact is that the tap water in Uppsala, the 4th biggest city in Sweden, contains high levels of Fluoride, and apparently, people from Uppsala have very healthy teeth because of that.
There are numerous activities that suit the different types of tourists that visit Sweden. The activities are designed to ensure that no one is left out, and people of diverse interests can still enjoy and have a great time. The activities tend to depend on what time of the year you visit the country. In the winter the most common activities are mainly centred around the snow and include things such as skiing, ice fishing, and dog sledging, to name a few. Swedish winters are made up of extremely dark days, with some making it seem like there are full days of night. This is good news for people who want to hunt the northern lights.
Sweden also has beautiful mild summers and some of the most popular activities during this season include hikes, bike riding, visits to the many beautiful gardens and lakes, to name a few. It is essential to carefully plan your itinerary to ensure that you get the best out of what the city offers.
The diverse seasons in Sweden contribute to making it one of the best vacation destinations in the world, particularly for people with an eye for nature and culture. This means that there is a high need for various accommodation options to suit the needs of the tourists that will be in the different parts of the country. An example of an awesome type of accommodation in Sweden is the ice hotel. The ice hotel offers a mixture of hot and cold rooms so you can switch between the unique experience of the cold room and the hot room when you need some extra comfort. There are several other accommodation types, and people can choose which best suits their needs and pockets.
Green hotels or Eco hotels are certified green hotels that follow and practice green living in every sphere and activity. There are many green hotels in the major cities of Sweden, but it might not be easy to find an eco-hotel in the small villages. In such cases, tourists can opt for the hotels that have at least some eco-friendly credentials. The main aim of eco-friendly hotels is to sustain 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. Also, the furniture in green hotels is usually made from eco-friendly or sustainably sourced materials. It is vital to confirm if the hotel you are booking is genuinely green as some hotels may practice false advertising.
Hostels and Guest Houses
Hostels in Sweden turn up in the unlikeliest of places; there are many of them dotted across the country, in converted lighthouses, old castles and prisons, historic country manors, schoolrooms and even on boats. They offer some of the best accommodation in the country, especially for those who are travelling alone. Dormitories are few, and most hotels only rent double rooms so you should be comfortable with the idea of sharing a room with a stranger. Most of the hostels charge similar prices and have similar amenities. Generally, the rental of linen and towels are not included in the price of a room or bed; and in most cases, breakfast is provided surcharge.
Apartments are available for rent to people who want to stay in Sweden for extended periods. Some several flats and apartments are available for rent for at least two-month lease. These are more affordable as they charge a flat rate and buy your food, which lowers costs. Those travelling 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 prices differ according to which part of the country you are in; it gets cheaper as you go deeper into the small towns.
Some families rent out a part of their home to tourists, known as couch surfing. This trend is expected mainly in tourist hotspots. 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. It is important to note that couch surfing was not designed to provide long term housing, and most people tend to stay between three and four days; a week maximum. Also, when couch surfing, you need to take responsibility for your safety.
There are numerous campsites 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. There is at least one campsite in every town or village, and they are generally of a high standard. For access to camps, you need the Camping Key Europe card, which costs 150kr. Most sites are open from June to August.
Many campsites also have cabins, each of which is usually equipped with bunk beds, a kitchen and utensils, but not sheets. Cabins can either be self-catering or catered and are an excellent alternative for those who do not want to sleep in tents.
the sparsely populated, northern part of the country (It spans more than half of the country's total area), with nine provinces. Lots of wilderness, with forests, lakes, big rivers, enormous marshes and high mountains along the border to Norway. Great for hiking and winter sports. Largest cities are Gävle, Sundsvall, Umeå and Luleå.
the central part of the country, includes Stockholm, Uppsala and the provinces of Dalarna, Närke, Värmland, Södermanland, Uppland and Västmanland.
the ten southern provinces, including the island-provinces Öland and Gotland. The largest cities in Götaland are Gothenburg in Västergötland and Malmö in Skåne. Also containing Dalsland, Halland, Småland and Blekinge.
- Stockholm - The capital and largest city, famous for its beauty and the amazing archipelago. In addition, Stockholm offers a unique nightlife scene and it is home to some of Northern Europe's best restaurants.
- Gothenburg (Göteborg in Swedish) - A port and industrial city on the west coast, second in size.
- Malmö - Connected to the Danish capital of Copenhagen by the Öresund Bridge.
- Västerås - The centre of Swedish industrialisation. Only an hour away from Stockholm.
- Växjö - In the heart of Småland this beautiful city defended Sweden against the danes back in the days.
- Linköping - A University city and the 7th most populous in Sweden.
- Jönköping - A picturesque town surrounded by lakes in Småland, also the 10th most populous in Sweden.
- Kiruna - A mining town in Lappland, and the northernmost city in Sweden.
- Luleå - Industrial city in northern Norrland, with a technical university.
- Umeå - University city in Norrland.
- Uppsala - Lively pretty old university city. Fourth largest city in Sweden.
- Örebro - Old shoe manufacturing centre, halfway between Stockholm and Oslo.
Getting There and Moving Around
Travelling to, and moving around Sweden is relatively easy. Several modes of transport can be used to travel to Sweden, with the most convenient for you being dictated by where you are coming from, be it a local or international area. People from surrounding nearby usually travel to by bus or train. While those coming from further away commonly use aeroplanes. Locals tend to prefer trains and buses.
SAS Scandinavian Airlines, Sweden’s national carrier, operates connecting flights to major cities in Sweden via Stockholm. SAS also links many parts of the world directly to Sweden. To travel to the southern part of Sweden, you can also fly into Copenhagen in Denmark and cross the now-famous Öresund Bridge. There are several direct flights from almost every European countries and has many direct flights from the UK and a maximum flight time of three and a half hours. The cheapest time to fly to Sweden is during the autumn and winter months when tourism is relatively slow. Also, flights are generally less expensive when booked as far in advance as possible and midweek travel is cheaper than weekend departures.
Travelling to Sweden by road is comfortable and reliable from most nearby countries, and buses are the best option. Sweden is one of the prime destinations of numerous coach companies that offer inexpensive trips. Some of these bus companies are Bohemian Lines, Eurolines Germany, FlixBus and Swebus. CheckMyBus is an app that helps you find the most convenient coach trip to Sweden and allows you to save money by comparing ticket prices. Most bus companies offer discounts for children, youth, students and pensioners
It's easy to travel from London to Stockholm, Gothenburg, Malmö or anywhere in Sweden by train. The journey is lovely with lots to see on the way. However, it is essential to note that getting to Sweden by train is much more expensive than flying. There are no through tickets, and the total of all the tickets you'll need from the UK is likely to cost around £300–400. It is cheaper to buy a rail pass instead; either a global InterRail pass (from £233) or a Eurail pass (from US$538) are the best options. The train journey from London to Sweden involves trains that go via Brussels, Cologne, Hamburg and Copenhagen. A typical trip will involve changing trains four or five times and take around 24 hours.
Hitchhiking in Sweden is mainly dependent on where you are. Almost everyone speaks English which will increase your chances of learning from the meetings along the way. You should avoid standing on motorways, but you can hitch on the motorway ramps and local roads. It is essential to carry a map so that you won't end up in an unexpected place.
In northern Sweden, there are only a few main roads so you should stand somewhere where there is some sign of civilization. As in some areas, there are no real motorways, and you can stop all the traffic, especially if you stand on something like a bus stop.
Boats and ferries are another mode of transport that is used to get to Sweden. Most ports offer marina facilities that allow cruise ships to dock. Most cruise ships dock at Stockholm, Visby, Gothenberg and Halmstad. Those coming from Finland come in along the Torne River. Sweden is also easily accessible by car from Finland and Norway as they have borders with numerous entry points into the country.
Sustainable shopping is a type of shopping that recognizes that everything we buy has health, environmental and social impact. Therefore, this type of shopping is your chance to support what is important to you and avoid products and services that do not align with your beliefs. There are many shopping centres in Sweden 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 spread the wealth by visiting different shops.
Sweden 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. Also, Sweden has, for a long time, had a can and bottle deposit system that gives people money back when they recycle.
Sweden 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
Sweden 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. When looking for a job in Sweden, you should try searching online or consider working with a recruiter. Generally, citizens from countries outside the EU must apply for a work permit to work in Sweden. Many universities encourage international students' enrollment, although their classes are primarily in Swedish.
There are exchange student programs between some of the major universities in the country with universities in other countries. These programs bring 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. Most student exchange programs have a minimum of 12 months.
Sweden also has a high school abroad program which allows high school students to study in Sweden for a selected period.
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. One of these websites is "great au pair." Being an au pair can be a great way to learn about the Swedish language and culture. The concept of au pairs is more dominant in cities and not villages and small towns.
Several voluntary organizations across Sweden 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.