Sweden is a large, geographically diverse and, by a strange coincidence, little-known country. When you get to Sweden, you immediately experience an amazing feeling of free space. Having just driven away from the populated south, you may not meet a soul for hours. The south and southwest of the country is a picturesque area with low hills and the best beaches in Europe - as if created for relaxation. This territory has long been claimed by Denmark. On the west coast are the ancient ports of Gothenburg, Helsingborg and Malmö (connected by a bridge to Copenhagen).
The capital Stockholm is also located here with a number of monuments of monumental architecture, wonderful museums, many interesting cultural events and a rich nightlife. The two university cities of Lund and Uppsala are also worth visiting, and Östersund deserves your attention in the north. The central and northern regions of the country seem to have left the pages of advertising brochures: endless forests, countless lakes (about 96 thousand) and the best hiking trails in Europe.
Sweden's extensive public rail network extends north to Sundsvall and Östersund (Inter Rail, Eurail and Scan Rail cards are valid). The famous Inlandsbanan narrow-gauge railway operates only from mid-June to mid-September. At any station, you can get the SJ Tagtider timetable showing good train routes (except for the Inlandsbanan and Pagatagen lines, where Inter Rail cards are valid). It is better to book tickets in advance. If you are traveling with a card, the seats must be booked separately and in advance. All northern routes between Sundsvall and Östersund and beyond the Arctic Circle, as well as to Norway, are served by Connex. State Railways SJ does not book tickets on the Connex line or provide information.
There are 315 STF hostels in Sweden. They usually have single and double rooms, as well as dorms (almost everywhere there are kitchens where you can cook). Breakfast (buffet) is provided. Prices are low, non-HI members pay around CZK 50 per day. There are also many SVIF hostels. Hotels are cheaper than you might think, especially in the summer in Stockholm and the big cities when prices drop. On average, a double room with private facilities costs 650 CZK. In all hotels breakfast is included in the room rate.
Package tours in Malmö, Stockholm and Gothenburg, organized by the travel agency, include a hotel room for a day, breakfast and a city discount card for 400-500 CZK per person (mid June - mid August and weekends all year round). In large cities, you can book a hotel room or private accommodation through the travel agency, roughly comparable to a place in a hostel. Almost every village has at least one campsite - usually with high standards of service.
Setting up a tent costs 100-200 CZK (plus 10-20 CZK per person) in July-August and slightly less at other times of the year. Most of the campsites are open from June to September, some are open all year round. All campsites are listed in the Camping Sverige guide, which is available in bookstores and attractions. Many campsites have cabins with beds (but no bed linen) and kitchen equipment.
Swedish cuisine mainly consists of meat, fish and potatoes. The dishes are varied and usually tasty. Food and drinks are not expensive at all. Breakfast (frukost) is invariably a buffet with juices, cereals, bread, boiled eggs, salami, jams, tea and coffee (in hostels 50 CZK, in hotels free of charge). The coffee is usually offered filtered, it can be bitter, and, as a rule, the second cup is served free of charge. Tea is rather weak, but it costs the same (15-20 CZK). Street eateries gatukok and korvstand offer hot dogs, burgers, and chips for around CZK 40.
A hearty meal with cutlet and french fries will cost you 50-60 CZK. In coffee shops there are always fresh pastries (coffee with cakes - 40-60 CZK), as well as huge and varied sandwiches (smorgasar) for 30-60 CZK. It is very beneficial to dine in the restaurant, from 11:00 to 14:00 there is an ordinary dish (dagens ratt) with bread and salad, sometimes a drink and coffee at a price of 65-75 CZK. Dishes of Northern Sweden are considered delicacies - venison and elk, wild berries and herring in all kinds of varieties.
Smorgasbord-style restaurant dinners are more expensive (this is a real buffet) at a price of 150-200 CZK, when you yourself pick up as much herring, smoked and fresh salmon, cold and hot meat, potatoes, salad , cheese and fruit. The rest of the restaurants are expensive, especially for dinner (middag): two courses cost 200-250 CZK, plus 35-55 CZK per beer. The cheapest are pizzerias and Chinese restaurants.
Drinks in Sweden cost the same as in most European cities. 0.5 liters of light beer (storstark) will cost 40-55 kroons. Unless you order otherwise, it will be the strongest beer starkol or the weaker mellanol, the cheaper and weaker folkol, and the cheapest (about half) lattol is practically alcohol-free. A glass of wine in a bar or restaurant will cost you 50-60 CZK, almost for this price you can buy a whole bottle in a state liquor store. Local strong vodka (aquavit) is served with ice, drunk in small sips and washed down with beer. Bars and pubs close at midnight, later in Malmö, Stockholm and Gothenburg.
Germany is very unusual in terms of cuisine. Food is a cult here. A culinary tour to Germany is an opportunity to "tasty" and interesting to get acquainted with the culture and traditions of this amazing country. It is interesting that despite the incredible flavor, the national cuisine of Germany began to develop only after the Second World War. Famous for his severity, King Kaiser Wilhelm II forbade all talk about food, the food of the Germans was rather meager.
After the Second World War, the gastronomic preferences of the Germans were formed under the influence of neighboring peoples (Italians, French, Belgians). Having absorbed the culinary customs of other cultures, while maintaining its simplicity, German cuisine has reached a decent level, and today it stands out for its originality. Many national dishes are widely known and are served in the best restaurants in the world.
A culinary tour to Germany will allow you to get acquainted with the main traditions of the people's meal. First of all, this is 5 meals a day. Preferences are given to pork dishes, baked fish, rich soups, sausages. Not a single meal of the Germans will pass without fragrant bread and a glass of delicious beer. The country is also famous for sauerkraut, sweet pastries and gingerbread.
When planning a culinary trip to Germany, people's imagination immediately draws all kinds of sausages and juicy meat. This is truly a gourmet meat paradise. Assortment of German sausages - 1500 varieties of sausages. Due to the pedantry and scrupulousness of the Germans, their sausages are recognized as the best in the world. They rank first in the country's traditional cuisine.
The chefs are the best at cooking potatoes. They fry it, stew it, bake it according to the original recipe. Almost all salads of national cuisine include potatoes. Be sure to try the roast with pork and potatoes in the pots. In German cuisine, it is unbeatable.
Another traditional dish is cabbage. It is eaten daily and placed on the festive table. In the menu of every restaurant and cafe in the country, you can find Bavarian sausages with stewed or sauerkraut.
Germans love egg dishes - scrambled eggs and bacon, baked herring, potatoes and herbs, stuffed eggs with cheese and milk sauce, and many other egg dishes. German cuisine is famous for its vegetable snacks, pastries, desserts.
The Germans have a hearty and satisfying breakfast. As a rule, these are dishes with eggs, bread, several varieties of ham, bread with honey or jam, buns. All cafes offer a large selection of breakfast dishes, they are served from 7 am to 3 pm.
Sweden is a Scandinavian country in the northwest of Europe. The state is stretched in an arc from south to north and has at its disposal an area of almost 450 thousand square kilometers. Which puts the country in fifth place in the ranking of European countries in terms of available land area.
The officially adopted form of government is the Constitutional Monarchy. The capital of the state is the largest city Stockholm with a population of almost 900 thousand people. The population of Sweden is actively approaching the 10 million mark. Which is not so much, because for comparison, Moscow alone has a population of over 12 million people, not to mention the Moscow urban agglomeration of 17 million people. The country's official language is Swedish, which is the language of the eastern subgroup of the Scandinavian group.
The history of Sweden begins about 2000 years ago, when, as a result of the liberation of Scandinavia from the glaciers, nomadic tribes came to these lands. According to the official version, these were the ancient Germans, and it is they who are the direct ancestors of the modern Swedes. The extreme northern territories of the country belong to Lapland, a cultural region located in Northern Europe. The indigenous inhabitants of which are the Sami.
In the ninth century AD, the first kingdom was created - Sweden. In the fourteenth century, namely in 1397, the royal power increased and the countries of Northern Europe united in the Kalmar Union - an alliance of Norway, Sweden and Denmark. It existed for more than a century, more precisely 126 years until 1523. The reason for the collapse of the union is the concentration of all power among the Danes, which did not suit either Norway or Sweden.
Today Sweden is a rather calm and peaceful country. Which adheres to a policy of neutrality in resolving world conflicts. And the country has been doing it for almost a hundred years. Although during the Second World War, the state supported Germany with the supply of industrial raw materials, which brought good earnings to local enterprises.
It is customary for modern Swedes to single out such national character traits as pacifism, rationalism, prudence and scrupulousness. Swedes are a little emotional, constrained and self-disciplined people. But, meanwhile, it is a close-knit nation. This is explained by strict education and instilling from an early age about responsibility to society.
As of today, Sweden is a developed country with a very high human development index, occupying the eighth position in the global ranking. It is a full member of the European Union since January 1, 1995. It is distinguished by developed industrial production, a high level of employment and a low crime rate. As, in fact, most of the developed European countries.
The indisputable natural resources of the country, of which there are in abundance, are coniferous forests and numerous lakes, ponds and rivers. on the territory of the country there are deposits of uranium, copper and iron ores. As a result, the metallurgical and chemical industries are developed.
An interesting and mysterious country, home of matches and the Nobel Prize, the most successful model of a socialist state and one of the oldest royal dynasties, Sweden is considered a mysterious idyllic land of prosperity and success. And where, if not in the homeland of Carlson and Pippi Longstocking, Bjorn Borg and Abba, Vikings and Moomins, you can find out what a truly luxurious vacation is. The majestic medieval cities, canals carved into the rocks, fresh, pine-rich air and a calm rhythm of life, so uncharacteristic for modern Europe, create an ideal environment for enjoying comfort and peace. In Sweden, you can appreciate all the beauty of Scandinavian nature, see and taste truly haute cuisine. Many restaurants have been awarded Michelin stars, and the excellence of Swedish chefs has been awarded international prizes. Both in Stockholm and in very small towns you can find elite restaurants and cozy establishments, because the requirements for the quality of service and food in public catering establishments in Sweden are very high. If you embark on a culinary journey through Sweden, you will not only bring home a traditional sweater, Viking figurines and glass, crystal, steel or silver products, but also an unforgettable gastronomic experience. After all, a high standard of living in Sweden also means high quality food and service, and if you are looking for impeccable service and luxury holidays, then this beautiful country with the Baltic breeze will gladly provide you with them.
There are two types of culinary tours to Sweden - "all inclusive" or impromptu, in which you book only a place in hotels and vehicles, and choose restaurants and workshops on the spot. The service centers will gladly advise you on the best establishments, and it will not be difficult to ask locals or in restaurants about training opportunities, because English is almost a second language in Sweden. Gothenburg is considered the gastronomic center of Sweden, but you should not start your journey from it - enjoy the beauties of the capital for a few days, get used to the local lifestyle, and then go to the city of thousands of tastes and a million drinks.
Organizing a trip to Sweden is now less expensive. In particular, tours to Sweden from Moscow or Kiev can be planned by yourself by purchasing an air ticket from one of the budget airlines. So, the WizzAir air carrier will take you to Sweden from Kiev for 250-300 UAH, if you worry about a ticket in advance (at least a month) (read about it on our website in the article "Cheap flights from Kiev to Stockholm with WizzAir").
Here you will find not only elite restaurants, but also small establishments with a very rich history. It is in Gothenburg that you can taste real Swedish delicacies - lobster, Kalix bleak caviar and delicious cheeses. It is best to visit several other cities and towns in different districts of Sweden as part of your trip. A culinary tour of this harsh and attractive country will certainly include a "Viking Lunch" - a meal in the open air, on the shores of a picturesque lake, where you will be taught how to cook the legendary chicken or carp in clay. Thousands of years of recipes and a clever way of cooking will not leave you indifferent. If you want to choose the best restaurant - pay attention to the presence of the White Giude sign on its doors (sign of the restaurant's inclusion in a guidebook and reference book on the Swedish culinary industry). It is in such establishments that you can not only taste the best traditional dishes, but also get master classes (restaurants are divided into categories, which are also indicated on the plates with the words master class). Before starting any meal, do not forget to clink glasses with your neighbor or even everyone in the hall - drinking without the traditional clinking of glasses is considered bad form in Sweden.
Swedish cuisine differs significantly from its Scandinavian neighbors in its bright sweet flavor. Swedes are so fond of adding sugar to even the most inappropriate dishes that they end up eating more than four kilograms of sugar per month per inhabitant. It is in the sweetness that all the originality (yes, exoticism!) Of the Swedish national cuisine lies. Therefore, do not be surprised when you feel sweet notes not only in dressings for salads, bread and side dishes. Sugar is even added to herring, pate and blood sausage. By the way, it is sweet blood sausage served with berry compote that is perhaps the most daring dish from the entire Swedish menu.
But the real legend is still the old recipe for cooking chicken in clay. Like the ancient Vikings, for this dish the chicken is not plucked, but simply gutted and washed, coated with clay and laid out on stones, under which a fire is made. Watching the ancient process of languishing chicken or carp is a must on a gastronomic journey to Sweden. An hour later, the clay is split, revealing the most tender roast (all the feathers will remain in the clay).
As it should be in Scandinavia, tourist Sweden does not show off its merits. But there are a lot of them: for example, the mountains there are higher than in neighboring Finland, and offer more varied skiing. In addition, Sweden guarantees snow cover on the slopes of ski resorts from November to April, as well as excellent equipment of the pistes, a well-thought-out system of lifts, a variety of après-skiing and, which is noticeable at first glance, a lot of services and entertainment for the youngest tourists - not without reason that the country is the eyes are called "the kingdom of children." However, if you want to be satisfied with your vacation in Sweden, make sure you are ready to spend - it is not cheap.
The main city of Sweden, Stockholm, as they say, is well preserved: in this capital, on 14 islands, there really is something to see in terms of museums, architecture and other "excursions". In addition, Sweden is Volvo and Abba, Carlson Who Live on the Roof, and the Nobel Prize ceremonies. The main principle of the country's residents: good quality in everything and maximum comfort for a person - both at work and on vacation. And last but not least, Sweden is famous for its cuisine - simple, hearty and so similar to Russian.
The capital is Stockholm. A cozy, Swedish-style neat city is split into 14 islands washed by the Baltic and Lake Mälaren and connected by 57 bridges. Medieval landmarks are concentrated in the Old Town of Gamla Stan and on the Knights' Island of Riddarholmen. There is the Royal Palace, the Cathedral, the Nobel Museum, and the oldest Stockholm church of St. Nicholas. For noisy parties it is better to go to the Stureplan area, for expensive clothes - in Östermalm, for photogenic views - in Södermalm. After walking along the picturesque streets, it is worth looking into any of the many museums - the Swedes know a lot about art.
Port Gothenburg once served as a haven for English merchants and is still called "Little London" for its eclecticism and diversity of cultural traditions. It is a city of green parks, well-groomed beaches and interesting museums. Notable attractions include the futuristic Gothenburg Opera, the monumental Elvsborg Fortress, the elegant Gunnebu Castle and the Liseberg, the largest amusement park in Northern Europe.
Famous for its parks and beaches, and Malmö is a small and very hospitable city. Its recognized symbols are the dashingly swirling "Turning Torso" skyscraper, the Øresund Bridge connecting Sweden with Denmark, and the Emporia shopping center with a spectacularly "pressed" facade.
Ski resorts: Hydre, Sälen and Åre, which includes the Teefjell, Åre-Byu, Åre-Björnen and Duved ski areas. For a complete list of interesting cities to visit in the country, see the Sweden Cities and Resorts page. When is the best time to go here and what to do on the spot, see the page "Tours to Sweden".
Moderate, transitional from maritime to continental. In winter, the air temperature in most of the country does not drop below -16 ° C, only in the north there are frequent frosts below -22 ° C, while in summer it is rarely warmer than +22 ° C (and in mountainous areas - +17 ° C). In Stockholm, the thermometer practically does not drop below zero, even in January-February.
Humid sea air masses from the North Atlantic and the Baltic Sea often bring changeable weather with precipitation and winds. The beach season in Swedish resorts is short: you can get warm under the mild Scandinavian sun from mid-June to late August. Fans of alpine skiing are more fortunate: the snow-covered slopes of the northern and western regions are ready to conquer from November to April. Autumn is considered a low season: it is dank, rainy and windy here. In spring, the weather is also capricious, but the snow begins to melt in March, and by April meadows bloom in full bloom in the south.
See the current weather forecast for cities in Sweden for the coming days.
For the first acquaintance with our great country, it is enough to visit several cities, they will best show the history and art of Russia.