The Island of Gotland, lying roughly equidistant between Sweden and Latvia, is Sweden's most richly historical area but also has a hip party vibe. Travellers come to Sweden as much for the flash clubs and ground-breaking new restaurants as they do for wilderness hikes and visits to wooden-horse factories.
Getting To Sweden by Ferry
There are numerous scheduled ferry services sailing to and from Sweden. Most ferries are the more luxurious cruise ferry ships but some are commercial freight vferries with limited passenger accommodation.
Belgium to Sweden
From Ghent to Gothenburg with DFDS Torline
Denmark to Sweden
From Grenå to Varberg with Stena Line
From Frederikshavn to Gothenburg with Stena Line
From Elsinore to Helsingborg with Scandlines and Sundsbusserne
Estonia to Sweden
From Tallinn to Stockholm (via Helsinki) with Viking Line
From Tallinn to Stockholm (direct connection) with Tallink
Finland to Sweden
From Helsinki to Stockholm (via Åland) with Tallink Silja and Viking Line
From Naantali to Kapellskär with Finnlines
From Turku to Stockholm (via Åland) with Tallink Silja and Viking Line
From Vaasa to Umeå with RG Line
Latvia to Sweden
From Riga to Stockholm with Tallink
From Ventspils to Nynashamn with Scandlines
Lithuania to Sweden
From Klaipeda to Karlshamn with DFDS Seaways
Germany to Sweden
From Travemünde to Trelleborg with TT-Line
From Travemünde to Malmö with Finnlines
From Kiel to Gothenburg with Stena Line
From Sassnitz to Trelleborg with Scandlines
From Rostock to Trelleborg with Scandlines and TT-Line
Norway to Sweden
From Sandefjord to Strömstad with Color Line
Poland to Sweden
From Gdansk to Nynäshamn with Polferries
From Gdansk to Viswith with Polferries
From Gdynia to Karlskrona with Stena Line
From Świnoujście to Ystad with Polferries
Russia to Sweden
From Saint-Petersburg to Stockholm with St. Peter Line
UK to Sweden
From Immingham and Tilbury to Gothenburg with DFDS Torline
Things To Do and See in Sweden
Expereince Nature -
From the cascading northern lights that illuminate the sky above the wilds of Swedish Lapland, to the white sandy beaches of the south – it’s all yours to enjoy.
The rocky coastline of Sweden is dotted with thousands of small islands, some green and lush, others craggy and barren. There are five main archipelagos on the eastern and the western sides of the country, particularly around Gothenburg and Stockholm. Steep cliffs, rolling hills and narrow valleys sit side-by-side calm lakes and deep bays along the High Coast on the Gulf of Bothnia. This is a UNESCO World Heritage Site situated on the east coast of Sweden.
Along the coast of Sweden and its archipelagos there are many watersports to enjoy, including yachting, canoeing, kayaking, windsurfing, kite boarding and water skiing. For nature lovers, the wildlife and in particular the seals, sea birds and sea life are a treat.
Swedish Culture - Perhaps Sweden’s greatest export is its culture and its modernity. Swedish design, music, art and literature are admired the world over. That Sweden punches way above its weight, historically and in modern times, in terms of the impact of its culture around the globe is without doubt.
Take Björn Borg’s tennis game: stoical, rock solid, with a single-minded attitude and never-say-die tilt. Perhaps descriptive of Swedes as people. But instead of analysing Swedes perhaps we should just enjoy and celebrate the sheer showbiz of ABBA, the functionality and aesthetic of Swedish design, the peace prize of dynamite inventor Alfred Nobel and the Swedish folklore-inspired works of Astrid Lindgren. And much, much more.
As Ingemar Stenmark, man-of-few-words skiing legend, replied to a sports commentator’s criticism of one of his performances: “Try it yourself”.
Swedish History - You can discover that Sweden was a major power in Europe in the 17th century by visiting the many beautifully castles, palaces and manor houses from the period? Or that 3,000 years ago the people of Tanum, now a World Heritage site, carved depictions of their lives and customs onto rocks, perhaps so that we would discover them.
Luckily, the Sweden of yesteryear is extremely well preserved in the historical sites, museums, castles, palaces and manor houses in and around the major cities of Stockholm, Göteborg, Malmö and further a field.
Worth checking out is the amazing Vasa Museum in Stockholm which is a museum built around the Vasa Ship; the world’s only surviving 17th century battleship which sunk on its maiden voyage in Stockholm. The museum building, the presentation of the ship and its artefacts have to be seen to be believed – unmissable.
The Mine Museum in Falun, central Sweden, is a UNESCO World Heritage site, an honour it shares with the town of Falun and homesteader estates. It sits on the edge of the Great Pit, the site of a giant cave-in in 1687. The museum tells the story of the mine and the company that ran it and it has received the highest ranking from the Michelin Guide. And they should know.
Kalmar Castle in eastern Sweden, sits on a headland jutting out into Kalmar Strait . It dates from the 14th century and was rebuilt in the 16th century. The castle was built around a harbour and soon became “The Key to the Kingdom” and a significant defensive fortification on the then Danish border. Nearby lies the “Ölandbron” a bridge that takes to island of Öland, as famous for its sunny micro-climate, as it is for being holiday destination for Swedes and for its unique flora and fauna. It is also famous for its amazingly well preserved pre-Viking and Viking historical sites.
Where are the Vikings?
Many tourists from English-speaking countries wonder where they can see real Vikings. Unfortunately, they have not been around for a thousand years. "Viking" is not the name of a separate tribe or nation - it is simply the old Norse word for "sailor", "navigator of the fjords" or "pirate" depending on etymology. While most Swedish, Norwegian and Danish people of these days were not Vikings, but sedentary farmers or fishermen, some men (and in a few cases women) joined expeditions of trade, exploration and piracy, reaching as far as present-day Canada, Morocco and the Caspian Sea. As the pagan Scandinavians were christened around AD 1000, the Viking raids declined.
There are still traces from the Viking age, such as runestones and burial mounds, everywhere in Sweden. Some good places to see Viking age artifacts are The Museum of National Antiquities ("Historiska museet")  in Stockholm, Gamla Uppsala in Uppsala and Birka and Adelsö just west of Stockholm.
The Viking Age heritage has been contorted through history - romanticized during the 19th century, abused by neo-Nazis, but more truthfully re-enacted by neo-pagans and live-action roleplayers. Most Swedes are proud of their Viking roots, though they don't take it very seriously.
The World's Stinkiest Fish Dish!
Adventurous diners might want to try surströmming, which is (coastal) central and northern Sweden's entry in the revolting-foods-of-the-world contest. It's herring which is fermented in a tin can until the can starts to bulge and almost bursts. It all gets so foul-smelling that the fish is only eaten outdoors to keep it from stinking up the house, although it has been known for unsuspecting visitors from other countries to be "treated" to an indoor surströmming experience for more intensity.
It is considered bad manners not to notify (or invite) the neighbors before having a surströmmingsskiva, a party where the delicacy is consumed. It is claimed that the best way to get over the smell is to take a deep breath of it just when you open the can, to as quickly as possible knock out your smelling sense. Surströmming season peaks in August.