Abisko National Park, Sweden
Abisko National Park, Sweden

Northern Lights

The Northern Lights, or Aurora Borealis, appear during the beginning of September in and around Kiruna in the far north of Sweden.
Photo by David Becker

SWEDEN

Europe

Sweden Travel Information

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Key facts

Capital:

Stockholm

Location:

Northern Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea, Gulf of Bothnia, Kattegat, and Skagerrak, between Finland and Norway

Currency:

Swedish kronor (SEK)

Area:

450,295 sq km

Population:

10,261,767 (July 2021 est.)

Languages:

Swedish (official)

Religion:

Church of Sweden (Lutheran) 57.6%, other (includes Roman Catholic, Orthodox, Baptist, Muslim, Jewish, and Buddhist) 8.9%, none or unspecified 33.5% (2019 est.)

TimeZone:

UTC+1

Tel Code:

+46

Weather

Climate

Sweden has a temperate climate, with four distinct seasons. The country generally experiences cool summers and cold winters. The northern regions of Sweden have a subarctic climate, while the southern regions have a humid continental climate.

Best time to visit

The best time to visit Sweden depends on what you're looking to do and see. For those interested in outdoor activities, the summer months of June, July, and August are the most ideal. During this time, the weather is generally warm and sunny, and the days are long. The country is also known for its beautiful wildflowers and lush green landscapes.

For those who enjoy winter sports, the months of December to March are the best time to visit. During this time, the country is blanketed in snow, and the ski resorts are open. The northern regions also have the best chance of experiencing the Northern Lights.

Overall, it is best to visit Sweden in the months of June to August, or December to March, depending on your interests.

Transportation

Public Transportation

Sweden has an extensive public transportation network, which includes buses, trains, and subways. The country's major cities, such as Stockholm, Gothenburg, and Malmö, have well-developed public transportation systems that make it easy to get around. The national railway company, SJ, operates trains throughout the country, connecting major cities and towns.

Taxis and Ridesharing

Taxis and ridesharing services, such as Uber and Bolt, are widely available in Sweden's major cities. These can be a convenient option for getting around, but they can be more expensive than public transportation.

Cars and Bikes

Renting a car or bike is another option for getting around Sweden. This can be a great way to explore the country's rural areas, but it's important to keep in mind that gas prices in Sweden are relatively high. Car rental companies are available in all major cities.

Air travel

If you plan to travel between different cities or regions of Sweden, air travel is a good option. Sweden has several airports, including Stockholm Arlanda Airport, Gothenburg Landvetter Airport, and Malmö Airport. These airports have connections to major destinations around the world.

Overall, the best way to get around Sweden will depend on your travel plans and budget. Public transportation is a cost-effective option for getting around the major cities, while renting a car or bike can be a great way to explore the country's rural areas. Air travel is a good option for traveling between different regions of the country.

Accommodation

Hotels

Sweden has a wide range of hotels to suit different budgets and preferences. From luxury hotels to budget-friendly options, there are plenty of choices for visitors. Many hotels are located in the major cities, such as Stockholm, Gothenburg, and Malmö, but there are also plenty of options in smaller towns and rural areas.

Hostels

Hostels are a popular and budget-friendly accommodation option for travelers in Sweden. They often provide shared dormitory-style rooms and shared facilities such as bathrooms and kitchens. Hostels can be found in most major cities and towns, and are a great option for backpackers and budget travelers.

Vacation Rentals

Vacation rentals, such as apartments and houses, are becoming increasingly popular in Sweden. These can be a great option for families or groups of friends who want more space and privacy. Many vacation rental options are available online, such as Airbnb and Booking.com.

Campsites

Camping is a popular way to experience the great outdoors in Sweden, and there are many campsites located throughout the country. Many of these offer basic facilities such as toilets and showers, and some even have on-site restaurants and shops. There is also the option of wild camping in Sweden in certain areas, with some restrictions.

Overall, there are many accommodation options available in Sweden to suit different needs and budgets, from luxury hotels to budget-friendly hostels and vacation rentals. Campsites are also a great option for those who want to experience the great outdoors

Money

Money Tips for Travel

  • Research the currency and exchange rates of your destination before you depart.
  • Notify your bank and credit card companies of your travel plans to avoid any potential issues with international transactions.
  • Bring a mix of cash, credit, and debit cards--and possibly a travel money card.
  • Be aware of the fees associated with withdrawing money from ATMs and using credit cards abroad.
  • Make sure to have a backup option for accessing money in case your primary method doesn't work.
  • Consider using a card with no foreign transaction fees.
  • Be aware of the local customs and etiquette when it comes to paying.
  • Keep an eye on the exchange rate throughout your trip and try to make large purchases or withdraw large sums of money when the rate is favorable.
  • NEVER accept currency conversion at ATMs! Always get your home bank to convert at much better rates.
  • Think about getting a Wise or other travel debit card; these can provide much better rates and some free ATM withdrawals.

ATM and Credit Cards

  • Research the availability of ATMs and credit card acceptance at your destination before you depart.
  • Keep your ATM card in a safe place and be mindful of your surroundings when using it.
  • Try to stick to using ATMs that are affiliated with major banks.
  • Keep your credit card information safe and secure, and be aware of potential scams.
  • Make sure your cards have the necessary security features, such as chip and pin.
  • Be aware of the fees associated with withdrawing money from ATMs and using credit cards abroad.

Exchange Rates

  • Research the currency and exchange rates of your destination before you depart.
  • Consider using a card with no foreign transaction fees.
  • Be aware of the local customs and etiquette when it comes to paying.
  • Keep an eye on the exchange rate throughout your trip and try to make large purchases or withdraw large sums of money when the rate is favorable.
  • Be careful of places that may offer to exchange money at rates that seem too good to be true.

Mobile

When traveling, getting mobile access is very important these days. If you are working remotely, wanting to update social media, or need to access your banks SMS authentication messages having a reliable service is a must. At WhereNext we recommend:

eSIM

Services such as those offered by our partner, Airalo, allow you to easily order and install an eSIM for different countries or regions that you are traveling in.

Dual SIM phone

If you have a phone that supports dual SIM's then you can get a SIM on arrival for each country, this is probably better done at a telco store rather than at the airport.

Extend your home plan

Depending on where you live and your mobile service provider you may be able to extend your plan to cover mobile roaming at reasonable rates.

Keep your primary SIM

With the amount of accounts we all have that require two factor authentication via SMS, keeping a constant number for these accounts is a must.

Community

There are several online communities and platforms that you can use to meet people while traveling, both for making new friends or for networking professionally. Some popular options include:

Facebook groups

There are many Facebook groups dedicated to connecting people while traveling, from expat groups and travel communities to groups specific to certain cities or regions of the country. You can search for groups based on your interests or location and connect with others who share similar interests.

Meetup

Meetup is a platform that allows you to find groups of people that share your interests in your local area. There are Meetup groups all around the world, and they cover a wide range of topics, such as language exchange, sports, and cultural activities.

Internations

Internations is a social network for people who live or work abroad. It has a large community of expats and organizes regular events, activities and gatherings that allow members to connect and socialize.

Couchsurfing

Couchsurfing is a platform that connects travelers with local hosts, who offer free accommodation and a chance to experience the local culture. It's a great way to meet locals and make friends!

Reddit

Reddit has a large community, and there are several subreddits dedicated to connecting expats and travelers. You can use it to ask questions, get advice, and connect with others who are also living or traveling in the country.

Linkedin

LinkedIn is primarily a professional network, but you can also use it to connect with people who work in the same industry or have similar backgrounds. It can be useful to connect with people before you arrive and establish a few professional contacts to help you get started.

At WhereNext, we use Nomad List as a global community and then research more local ones for our destination. These are just a few examples of online communities you can use to meet people; please suggest any others that you think are appropriate for this destination.

Insurance

Travel insurance can provide financial protection and peace of mind for travellers in the event of unexpected situations or emergencies. It covers a wide range of needs--even some you might not expect!

Medical Coverage

Travel insurance can provide coverage for medical expenses if you become ill or injured while traveling. This can include coverage for doctor visits, hospital stays, and emergency medical transportation. It's also a good idea to ensure that your travel insurance covers COVID-19 related illness and delays!

Trip Cancellation and Interruption

Travel insurance can provide coverage if you need to cancel or interrupt your trip due to unexpected events such as illness, weather, or travel bans. It can also provide coverage if your trip is delayed or if your travel provider goes out of business.

Lost or Stolen Luggage

Travel insurance can provide coverage for lost or stolen luggage, as well as personal items such as passports and electronic devices.

Emergency Assistance and Evacuation

Many travel insurance plans offer emergency assistance services, such as providing information on local hospitals and doctors, assistance with replacing lost or stolen documents, and help with arranging transportation in the event of an emergency. At WhereNext we have partnered with Global Rescue for evacuation services, which are highly recommended if you are undertaking dangerous activities or are travelling to dangerous parts of the world.

Liability coverage

Travel insurance can also provide liability coverage in case you cause an accident or harm someone while you are traveling.

Travel insurance can provide financial protection and peace of mind for travellers in the event of unexpected situations or emergencies. It can help cover the costs of medical expenses, trip cancellations, lost or stolen luggage, and more. It's always a good idea to review the coverage and compare the different options available before making a decision. At WhereNext we both use and have partnered with Safety Wing for general travel insurance.

Entry Requirements

Here are some general travel tips regarding entry requirements that apply across all countries:

Passport

Make sure that your passport is valid for at least six months from the date of your arrival in the country you are visiting. Some countries will not allow you to enter if your passport is set to expire within a certain period of time.

Visa

Check with the embassy or consulate of the country you are visiting to see if you need a visa. Some countries require a visa for entry, while others do not. Make sure to apply for a visa well in advance of your trip as the process can take several weeks. Check the latest Visa requirements and if necessary get an online Visa with our partner iVisa.

Health Requirements and COVID-19 Rules

Check with the embassy or consulate of the country you are visiting to see if there are any health requirements for entry. Some countries require vaccinations or proof of medical insurance. Check the latest health requirements and if necessary get an online Visa with our partner iVisa.

Travel Insurance

Consider purchasing travel insurance, especially if you are traveling internationally. Travel insurance can cover you in the event of trip cancellation, medical emergencies, and other unexpected events. Our travel insurance partner is SafetyWing. For dangerous activities and/or countries consider a rescue service like those offered by our partner, Global Rescue.

Customs

Be familiar with the customs and laws of the country you are visiting. Some countries have strict laws regarding drug possession, alcohol consumption, and dress codes.

Currency

Check the currency exchange rate and make sure you have enough local currency for your trip. Some countries may not accept credit cards or travelers cheques, so it is always good to have some cash on hand. At WhereNext we recommend use a Wise debit card, which provides low cost currency conversions and ATM withdrawals.

Research the country

Research about the culture, customs and laws of the country you are visiting. It will help you to understand the place more and also prepare you better for the trip.

Contact Information

Make a copy of your passport and keep it in a separate place from your passport. Also, leave a copy of your itinerary and contact information with a friend or family member at home.

COVID Status

I am vaccinated 
Sweden Open
Test
Not required
Quarantine
Not required

Check Visa Requirements

      Things to Do

      1. Visit Stockholm

      The capital of Sweden is a beautiful and historic city, with plenty of things to see and do. Some must-see attractions include the Old Town (Gamla Stan), the Royal Palace, and the Vasa Museum.

      2. See the Northern Lights

      If you visit Sweden during the winter months, be sure to take a trip to the northern regions of the country for a chance to see the stunning Aurora borealis.

      3. Take a boat tour of the Stockholm archipelago

      Stockholm is built on 14 islands and a boat tour is one of the best ways to experience the beauty of the city and the archipelago.

      4. Experience the Swedish countryside

      Sweden is known for its beautiful landscapes and natural scenery. Take a hike or bike ride through the countryside to experience the country's lakes, forests, and wildflowers.

      5. Visit Gothenburg

      This charming coastal city is the second largest in Sweden and offers plenty of things to see and do, from its canals and historic architecture to its museums and parks.

      6. Explore the ice hotel in Jukkasjärvi

      The Icehotel in Jukkasjärvi is a unique and popular attraction in Sweden, built entirely out of ice and snow.

      7. Visit the Malmö Castle

      This beautiful castle is one of the most important historical buildings in the city and offers a great view of the city.

      8. Take a trip to Uppsala

      This historic city is home to Sweden's oldest university and offers plenty of things to see and do, from its beautiful cathedral to its many museums.

      9. Visit the Gotland Island

      Gotland is an island located in the Baltic Sea, it is a popular summer destination, with its sandy beaches, medieval churches, and ancient ruins.

      10. Visit the Skansen Open-Air Museum

      This outdoor museum in Stockholm is a great way to learn about the history and culture of Sweden, with exhibits showcasing traditional Swedish architecture, folk costumes, and folk art.

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