Things To Do In Sweden
Sweden is a haven for those who enjoy a high standard of living, open spaces, forests, mountains, lakes and seas. In short, Sweden is a country that will be loved by all who come to visit. This Scandinavian land that features in the northern reaches of Europe makes for one of the world’s best places to live. Sweden has given us brands like Volvo and H&M, and also hosts some amazing sights for natural phenomena like the Midnight Sun and the Northern Lights. With palaces and royal strongholds, cathedrals and open-air museums, the country will show you some fun time. Read on to find out some of the most unique things you can do in Sweden.
One of the most unique things to do in Sweden is live in a hotel made completely of ice. Yes, no one’s making a joke here, it is true. The Icehotel in Jukkasjärvi in Sweish Lapland is one of the winter holiday highlights of the country, becoming a coveted tourist attraction for its rooms sculpted in ice, beds of ice, drinks served in ice glasses and art installations of, guess what? Ice. You can choose to book a room here but it is quite expensive and almost always full. So book in advance or live somewhere else (for budget travellers), and come here for a drink. On the side, you also have tours of Northern Lights and roughing it up with some cute huskies in the snow near the hotel. Icehotel is officially functional and open from October to early April, but also welcomes guests otherwise (without the fun of winter, off course).
See Northern Lights
Well, if you came to Sweden and didn’t chase the Northern Lights then did you even come to Sweden? Chances are, you are travelling to Sweden just to see the Northern Lights. And why not? The country’s northern reaches near the Arctic Circle make for one of Europe’s best and most clear spaces to see Northern Lights. The best place to spot this awe-inspiring phenomenon is the Swedish Laplands, that falls in the Arctic Circle. Visit the place during winter, when nights are completely dark and clear. The season for viewing typically starts in late-September and goes on till April. Make sure you have taken plenty of warm clothes as you will be stranded out in the open for probably hours at end before the show actually starts.
Some other places to try for Northern Lights are Abisko, Tärendö and Jukkasjärvi.
Go Dog Sledding
Dog Sledding as a mode of transport in the frozen reaches of Arctic had been a norm since scores of decades, probably a few centuries. But today it is mostly used for recreational purposes for tourists coming to Sweden. Dog sledding is a fun, coveted activity to glide across the northern zone of Sweden and feel like Santa Claus himself with his pack of reindeer. You will cross frozen lake beds and rivers, go across slopes and hills, meet locals in parkas and see the white wonderland that is Swedish Laplands. This is a must-do. You can try dog sledding in winters at many places, like Sarek National Park, Jukkasjärvi, Kiruna and Abisko.
Hike up Swedish Peaks
If you thought Sweden only offers winter holiday prospects then you thought wrong. The country is as equipped with summery natural endowments, and offers some amazing hiking trails and trek routes during spring and summer seasons. The forests and rocky ravines make for awesome adventurous walks/treks/hikes. You can go up the King’s Trail in Kungsleden, which is a 440 km long path from Abisko that goes up north, with Sarek National Park on the way. Another coveted trail is at the Kullaberg Nature Reserve, with tough climbs and beautiful vistas. For a unique trail, head to the High Coast, where red granite cliffs await you to conquer them, and lovely islands sit around waiting to be seen from the height. Coastal walks are also quite satisfying here if you don’t want to climb.
Enjoy Cherry Blossom Season
Japan is not the only country in the world to celebrate cherry blossom ('sakura' in Japanese). Sweden is also renowned for its körsbärsträd or cherry blossom season, the lovely baby pink and white blossoms that paint the trees during spring. By April, the landscape bursts to life with these powdered pastel colours, and various events and festivals are held under these trees and parks to enjoy the bloom. You can be a part of these celebrations in Stockholm’s grand park Kungsträdgården, Gothenburg’s Botaniska Trädgården, Malmo and Sundsvall. Major events include craft centres, snack stalls, picnics, barbecues and parties. Instagram fans, you are going to get the best photos around here anywhere.
Say Hi to the Midnight Sun
Sweden is one of the Scandinavian countries to see the phenomenon of midnight sun in most of its northern areas. From June to mid-July the sun shines high in the sky through the night, especially in the Arctic Circle region. Three great places to witness midnight sun are Jokkmokk, Gällivare and Abisko. Since the sun never sets, technically you have all day to enjoy and not sleep at all!