When you visit Sweden (or move there,) you will find that it is located on the Scandinavian peninsula between Finland and Norway. The Gulf of Bothnia and Baltic Sea are to its east, and Denmark is located to its southwest. Sweden can claim the highest uplift of land in the world along its high coast along the Gulf of Bothnia where stony islands rise from the sea. It is a northern European country and is the 56th largest on Earth. The capital city is Stockholm.
Land and Location
Adventure awaits when you study the geology of this country and its peninsula. You will find that it has land which glides gently from its tall mountains near Norway to the Baltic sea. It is one of the most stable and oldest parts of the crust of the earth. Retreating glaciers helped to form its features and changed its soils. It is an incredibly beautiful place to live and explore
History and Culture
There is much for you to find when you delve into the history and culture of Sweden. This northern European country has been a sovereign nation for over 1000 years. Its parliamentary democracy was established in 1917 and is a constitutional monarchy. Most of Sweden’s society is similar in religious and ethnic composition, but this has begun to change a little as more immigrants have created some diversity socially.
Sweden was once a backward and poor country but rose above this and became highly developed with a sophisticated welfare system. If you are on the fence about moving to Sweden, you might consider that the life expectancy and standard of living here are some of the highest in the world. Long ago, this nation moved away from military aggressiveness, choosing instead to play a role in negotiations and peacemaking in the world.
Climate and Physical Features
Your status as an active explorer of the outdoors will help you enjoy the climate in Sweden. Be aware that the subarctic climate in the north creates very long days during the summer and makes dark, cold periods in the winter. If you are used to normal days and nights, then you might want to choose to live in the southern part of Sweden. Southern Sweden’s climate has summers which are frequently bright, cool, and pleasant. The winters are also cold in the south.
Learn more about Sweden’s special policy called Allemansrätten, or the Right of Public Access before you decide to hike, or camp. Be pleasantly surprised that you are allowed to camp overnight and go anywhere (even on privately owned land.) Feel free to pick berries and mushrooms, but be responsible. You are required to treat animals, plants and other people’s property without damage. The phrase ‘don’t disturb, don’t destroy’ is a summary of how people are to treat the land and its bounty here. The constitution in Sweden includes the Right of Public Access, but it isn’t a law. It could be viewed as part of the culture, heritage, and custom accepted by the people of Sweden and it evolved over the years.
Modern Urban Sweden
When you visit Sweden’s capital, Stockholm, expect to find wonderful dining and shopping opportunities. It is an international city with fantastic music and clubs for you to explore and a great culture to experience. It is a unique place that stretches across 14 islands in the Baltic Sea. They are connected by 57 bridges and seven centuries of history.
Celebrate a singular tradition, and what may be the most popular festival in Sweden called “Midsummer.” You can expect eating, dancing, drinking, and various pagan rituals. Expect silence in the capital city because this festival empties Stockholm. Swedes go to celebrate Midsummer in the countryside. Pickled herring and new potatoes with spices is a traditional lunch for this holiday. Enjoy beer and chilled Swedish vodka, accompanied by singing at this festival.
If you are worried that your passion for sports will suffer, then look to Gothenburg. A transformation from industrial seaport to an international and cultural sports venue has turned Gothenburg (Göteborg,) into Sweden’s second-largest city. Visit the museums, which have been refurbished and see the Gothenburg Opera House (it was completed during the 1990s.) Gothenburg’s fine cuisine is based on fish and local produce.
It may be a small and friendly town, but Malmö is viewed as the gateway to the continent of Europe from Sweden. It is connected by the Öresund Bridge to Copenhagen. The bridge turned the two cities into one complete metro area in the year 2000. You can find many places to explore (including beautiful beaches, villages, and smaller towns) from Malmö because it is a hub for transportation. If you prefer to walk, then Malmö will please you because almost all things in the town are accessible to foot traffic. Another way in which you can bridge the gap between your moments of fun in European countries such as Sweden would be to play the EuroJackpot lottery. You can check to see if you have any winning numbers each Friday evening at EuroJackpot Results.
Culture and Tips for Fitting In
Swedes will appreciate your efforts to understand their customs and culture if you relocate here. There are some very particular things you should know about Swedish customs (and plan to follow along with) if you would like to make yourself welcome to the residents.
Fika – If you are a coffee lover, you have an immediate common interest with most residents. Swedish people love coffee! They make a point of getting together at least once a day to meet with colleagues, family, or friends to have something sweet and a cup of coffee or tea.
Prepare to be Patient – Standing in a line is common here as a ticketing system is used by many businesses. You need to get a ticket from a machine on the wall and then you wait your turn to be served. Your number will be displayed on a screen, so watch carefully for your opportunity.
Learn Swedish – It isn’t absolutely necessary, but you can truly integrate into society better if you learn its language. Sweden is top at having English as a second language so you could go years here without having to learn any Swedish, but why not immerse yourself fully into living in this country?
No Shoes – Whether your host explains that the outdoors life makes for a dirty home if shoes are worn, or if they believe that it is a sign of respect, prepare to remove your footwear if you enter a private residence in Sweden.
Punctuality – There are several other observances and customs which Swedes hold as important, but one of them that you should follow closely is to be on time. Punctuality is valued highly here.
Enjoy your relocation or visit to Sweden, for the country has a wealth of experiences to offer, including those that are a variety of natural, urban, cultural, and culinary type. Learning as much as you can about the country and its people will guarantee that you have full and unique experiences in Sweden.