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Our Insider's Articles about Sweden
For good reason, Öland, Sweden's 87-mile long island is a favorite European vacation spot. With its shallow waters, sandy... [Read the full story]
It’s no wonder that Sweden is the leader in "green" transportation in Europe. Sweden was the second country in the world to... [Read the full story]
A country comprised of vast stretches of untamed wilderness, thousands of rocky islands, and several metropolitan cities, Sweden will take your breath away. It has one of the highest standards of living in the world, and the islands, cities, and small inland towns all have their own traditions and atmospheres. It’s worth dividing your time between them equally. Here are tips to help guide you on your trip to Sweden.
Sweden is a mostly flat country with some mountains along the Norwegian border. The lake region is below that, home to Vanern Lake, the largest lake in Western Europe. Norway lies to the west, Finland lies to the east, and Denmark is easily accessible by the Øresund Bridge in the southwest. The northern portion of Sweden lies within the Arctic Circle, where the Northern Lights are famously vivid.
Sweden’s main cities are Stockholm, Gothenburg, and Malmo. The Stockholm archipelago, in the southeast of the country, has around 30,000 islands, and Stockholm is located smack dab in the middle. The city is spread across 14 islands, and most of it is best toured on foot. Stockholm is an expensive city along the lines of London, but it’s worth it: Its museums, bustling harbor full of stolid vessels, and nightlife are top notch, and the Gamla stan, or Old Town, is one of the most beautiful in Europe.
Ferries leaving Stockholm regularly serve many of Sweden’s islands. Two of the most popular are Gotland and Oland. Gotland is jam packed with historical sights, including medieval churches and Viking graves. As if the ancient sites weren’t enough, the small towns and friendly Swedes make for a cozy Nordic experience.
If you want to get a feel for the Swede’s folk traditions, there’s no better place than the Dalarna region in the interior of the country, where the folk architecture and much of the way of life have been maintained.
As of September 2011, U.S. travelers visiting Sweden for 90 days or less do not need a visa. Sweden is part of the EU, but the official currency is the Swedish Krona. The official language is Swedish, and English is widely spoken. To answer the question of when to travel, consider whether or not you want to go skiing or sun bathing. Sweden is excellent for both.