Updated 2 weeks ago

When moving abroad, leisure is almost an essential part of everyday life. Here are some of the leisure activities you can enjoy in Sweden.

You will notice that the Swedes are very keen about leisure and spending quality time with their family. And for good reason. Sweden has a great historical, natural and cultural heritage — both the landscapes and the architecture are equally breathtaking. When it comes to leisure options, you will be spoilt for choice.

Experience the nature

Did you know that Sweden is one of Europe's more sparsely populated countries? By moving to Sweden, you have access to endless nature. You can experience various outdoor activities such as canoe, ski, skating, sailing, horseback riding, biking, nature observation (brown bear, wolves, etc.). You are likely to discover new attractions and species every season. Norrland, for instance, is found in the North of the country and hosts the Lapland National Park. It is very popular with nature lovers and ideal for camping in summer.

The Swedes also like foraging mushrooms and berries, fishing (in the sea and in lakes such as Vänern, Vättern, Mälaren, Hjälmaren and Storsjön) and hunting.

 Good to know: In Sweden, roaming freely in nature is  “Allemansrätten” (every man’s right). You basically have the right to hike, camp, fish, hunt (in certain areas), forage and chop wood no matter where you are. At the same time, you have a responsibility towards nature to always leave it as you found it.

Experience culture

If you have moved to one of the major Swedish cities such as Stockholm, Gothenburg, Malmö and Uppsala, you will be delighted by their cultural and architectural heritage. Many regions also host beautiful royal castles and palaces with a magnificent architecture. Take a journey into the past in Drottningholm, Ekerö, outside Stockholm, Gripsholm in Mariefred, Solliden in Öland, the medieval castle in Orebro etc.

The country also hosts many sites which have been classified as a World Heritage by the UNESCO. Amongst the most popular, are the Fagersta and Falun mines, the Woodland Cemetery in Southern Stockholm and the Struve Meridian Ark in Norrbotten.

Moreover, most cities host art and cultural museums. Stockholm alone has the largest amount of museums per capita. Interesting museums can also be found in more rural areas, such as the IKEA museum in Älmhult or the Peace Park Morokulien which is found at the border between Norway and Sweden.

Experience everyday life

Swedes are famous for their work-life balance. They enjoy ‘fika’; taking coffee breaks accompanied by some kind of pastries or desserts. Sweet pastries such as cinnamon and cardamom buns are quite popular in Sweden.

Shopping in Sweden can be expensive. There are many local fashion, design and beauty brands that have acquired a global prestige, H&M and IKEA among them. However, there are also numerous flea markets and second-hand shops where you can find anything from clothing to homeware at really affordable prices. Gekas in Ullared is a destination for affordable shopping among many famous brands.

The Swedes also love taking a sauna, known in Sweden as ‘bastu’.

 Useful links:

Expat.com – Sweden Leisure Forum 
Frommers www.frommers.com
Ministry of Culture www.government.se
Sweden sweden.se

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