14 December, 2017

How I found some of the most interesting things in Sweden

I’ve taken my own sweet time to find things to do here. I’ve made mistakes, learned from them, understood how things work and had some insights which will stick with me for life. Here are some of the most interesting things I found.

Amazing Free-standing courses at the university

I wanted to do a Master’s in Stockholm but missed the application deadline by a day. I had forgotten about the last date of application. Much later, I was breaking my head over what more to do in the city. After long hours of research, I found that every university has Free-Standing courses every semester  (4 semesters/year).

You can apply to a maximum of 25 courses each semester. There were a lot of these courses and the best place to find them is Universitadmissions.  I applied to many interesting courses but unfortunately got through only 3 of them. The mistake I did then, was to not look at the eligibility criteria and the course description carefully.

This semester I am studying Oceanography (Introduction to Sea), Geological Sciences and Cultural Policy and Management, Performance Studies at Stockholm University.  Both the courses are so diverse that I would have never dreamt of doing these at the same time. The Sea course, is very scientific, tells you more about the history of the earth, geological phenomenons, tectonics, climate, ocean currents and marine life. While the Cultural policy course is more theoretical, it discusses theatre systems across Europe, their financing and the policies adopted by institutions.

Both the courses have interesting projects and papers to write. But the Sea course had an excursion planned. They took us to Askö Laboratory, Stockholm University’s field station for marine research in the Baltic Sea. We went on a boat with a drill machine to dig sediments from the Baltic Sea and then later analysed the core in the lab. It was interesting to deduce the marine activity, ice sheets and various other phenomenons by looking at the core from the sea bed.


Doing a Bachelor’s/Master’s course

If you are looking to do a degree, higher education or distance courses visit This is the mecca of all courses in all universities across Sweden which are sponsored by the government. If you are a resident here, all these courses are FREE. be sure to find the right starting semesters for your course, eligibility and application dates.

Learning Arts, Crafts, Dance, Music, Technology and other skills

Folkuniversitetet and Medborgarskolan have courses for people of all ages in Arts, Crafts, Writing, Photography, Culture and Technology. They have courses on weekends, weekdays, early morning courses, courses for people on parental leave and everything with amazing flexibility.  Though these courses have a fee, it can be a quick way to develop your skills.


There are a lot of activities, seminars, festivals and shows always happening in and around Stockholm. If you find one that interests you, don’t shy away from writing to the management about how you could contribute and just step up and volunteer. You could make some excellent friends, learn a new skill and find new things about the place which you never knew.

I worked with India Unlimited for the Stockholm Kultur Festival and with Stockholm Film Festival. Both projects were entirely different. At the Kultur Festival I learnt how a festival of this scale is executed, how negotiations take place and how business & networking go hand in hand. However, at the film festival I worked with the ticketing team for a more tech-focused role. At both the places I made some great friends.



Facebook Events, Meetups and Eventbrite

Whatever your interests are or whatever new you are hoping to do, everything can be found here. Yes, Facebook Events, Meetups and Eventbrite are the most important things for my survival. I have found events related to yoga, reading clubs, language, technology,running, rowing, startups, food, cooking, board games and everything else under the sun at these 3 websites. You just need to keep looking.


I met a friend at a tech seminar who apart from talking about her professional skills told me about Acro Yoga. She showed me some stunts and lifted me in the air. That made me inquisitive and I wanted to do it too. To my surprise ,I found a big Acro Yoga community on Facebook and a beginners course in Stockholm. I now know some brilliant poses, exercises and have learnt to stretch my limits.

Music Concerts, Theatre and Culture

Stockholm is an interesting place for theatre, music, dance, circus and art productions. Many artists visit the city year round. I have been a regular at music and theatre performances. The best way to find the most popular things in the city is probably to look at the wall filled with posters outside Slussen station. Of course, there will be Facebook events as well. But some of the popular venues and ticketing sites are Dansenshus, Royal Swedish Opera, Kultur Huset, Folkoperan, Globen, Friends Arena, Grona Lund, Sodra Teatern, Circus Arena, Nalen, Nacka Strandmassan, Ticketmaster and AXS


Written by: Akanksha Srivastava

Hi I am Akanksha. After living and travelling to multiple cities and villages in India, I’ve recently moved to Stockholm. Backpacking across Europe, discovering cities and nature (especially Sweden’s Allemansrätt) convinced me to make this big move. Though I am still trying to find my feet in this city, I am glad to be discovering new stuff and things to do. Food, technology, motorbikes, the fast pace at start-ups and sunshine always keeps me ticking. If you are ever looking for a fika-buddy or a movie-buddy, feel free to shout out!

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