Summer is one of the most anticipated times of the year and for good reason! The days are longer and people are generally in a happier mood. There’s a positive energy and atmosphere (stämning) all around! Here’s a few things you can do to enjoy the summer in Sweden.
Eat Ice Cream
Summer has just begun and I have already lost track of how many ice creams I’ve had. It feels like there’s an ice cream stand on every street corner with happy customers tempting you with their purchases. It doesn’t usually take long for me to become one of these customers too. Your ice cream order can be very customized. Just be aware of the costs because they can stack up if you get too excited! If you’re looking for cheaper alternatives, you could always go to a convenience store and buy a ice cream or popsicle from the freezer and they also hit the spot.
Have a Picnic or BBQ
The weather in Sweden can be a little unstable but when the weather cooperates, you should consider taking advantage of it by having a picnic or BBQ party (grillfest). Food, nature and good company is a great combination that is sure to bring a smile on anyone’s face. For those with a playful side, you can bring out a frisbee, ball or maybe try playing Kubb, a lawn game you play with wooden blocks that’s kind of a combination of bowling and horseshoe.
Enjoy the Nature
You’re never too far from nature in Sweden. There are parks within cities or you can always go outside the city for a little more untouched nature. Sweden has Allemansrätten or “the everyman’s right” which allows everyone to enjoy the Swedish nature freely. You can hike on a trail, pick flower or berries, go swimming or just enjoy a walk in the park.
Enjoy a Fika or Meal Outdoors
Many cafes and restaurants have outdoor seating during the summer so you can enjoy a fika break and being outdoors at the same time. Invite a friend to catch up with or just bring a book and enjoy your company. Eating out in Sweden can get quite expensive but it’s nice to treat yourself once in awhile!
Visit the Archipelagos
The islands along Sweden’s coastline are really something. It’s not uncommon in Sweden to have a summer house (sommarstuga) away from the city and near the water. It’s a great way to relax and slow down from the stress of everyday life. There are usually nice hiking trails, you can swim in the ocean. The views you’ll find on the islands are almost magical. Don’t forget to wake up early or stay up a bit to catch the sunrise or sunset.
Go to Events or Festivals
The summer is full of events and festivals to celebrate different things. You might find music, food or culture festivals. There’s something for everyone. Do your research and see if there’s something for you. You could also consider volunteering for some of these festivals and get a different perspective. Many events and festivals happen annually so if you miss something, just check back again next year.
Take a Vacation and Travel
It still blows my mind how many vacation (semester) days people get in Sweden. Employees in Sweden are entitled to 25 days of annual leave, and that’s not including the many public holidays throughout the year. With so many vacation days, many people travel and go abroad. You can also take this opportunity to explore more of Sweden or just be a tourist in your own city! It’s great to explore and be curious about your own city wherever you are.
Relax and enjoy
Summer in Sweden is a really special time, so make sure you give yourself a chance to enjoy it. Life can get pretty hectic sometimes so just slow down and take a moment to literally smell the flowers and enjoy yourself.
Hope you all have a lovely summer!
Written by Joanne Lau
My name is Joanne and I’m a Canadian Interaction/UX Designer who moved to Sweden at the end of 2016. I’m really enjoying living in Sweden and am borderline obsessed with learning Swedish. When I’m not in sketching, designing or trying out the latest gadget, you’ll find me taking photos, climbing rocks or reading with a cup of tea. You are welcome to visit me over at my blog.