So, our trip was amazing and Sweden is officially Greg’s favorite place we’ve visited so far. I keep trying to find a way to describe it, but all I can come up with is that it just felt familiar. This probably has something to do with how many people of Scandinavian origin live in Minnesota, and possibly because it was snowing on the day we arrived and I’ve been missing snow this winter.
We woke up at 3am on Thursday morning to catch an early flight out of London and arrived in Gothenburg (pronounced yeh-teh-BOR-ee) in the early afternoon and immediately made our way to our SUPER swanky Airbnb for a nap. Our hosts provided us with a big warm blanket, and Greg and I slept for a good two hours or so.
Once refreshed, we made our way into the city for dinner. Gothenburg city reminded me so much of Minneapolis. It wasn’t too big and not busy at all. There was snow on the ground, and yet people were still biking around. Ahh…home.
We got dinner at Smorgas Baren and if you ever find yourself in Gothenburg, you must must must stop there! It was SO good. I’m not a food critic and do not have the right words to fully describe the deliciousness of our meal, but I think it was the best meal Greg and I have had since we moved abroad.
From Gothenburg, you can catch a ferry to Fredrikshavn, Denmark. From there, it’s just a short train ride to Skagen, the very tip top of Denmark where the Baltic and North Seas meet. Greg and I heard about Skagen years ago while watching some movie about Copenhagen. We’ve wanted to see it ever since then. So when we were planning our trip to Sweden, we were sure to include some time for Skagen, too.
Skagen is a quaint little seaside town and is absolutely beautiful. I can imagine it’s incredibly busy during the summer, but it was pretty dead while we were there, which was nice. The walk from the train station to the point where the seas meet is about 4 miles round trip (something Greg and I had not realized), and there were 40mph winds. So, it took us about an hour to get there. But even though it was cold and windy, Greg and I were determined to see this place, and it did not disappoint! Before heading back to the train station, Greg and I each put a hand in the Baltic Sea and then in the North Sea.
Even though our hands and faces were freezing, our legs tired and our feet sore by the time we made it to the ferry back to Gothenburg, seeing the tip of Denmark was a once in a lifetime opportunity, and I’m so glad we were able to do it!
From Gothenburg, we took a train to Stockholm! The first thing we did in Stockholm was hit up the Vasa Museum. The Vasa was a very poorly designed navy war ship from the 1600s that sank 15 minutes into its maiden voyage (I shouldn’t be laughing, but it’s a little funny). Anyway, the ship was lifted from its sunken spot in ONE PIECE in the 1950s and is now on display. The museum was really interesting, and I’d suggest it to anyone planning a trip to Stockholm.
Our Aibnb was about 20 minutes out of the city. It was just a little studio with a view of a frozen lake and heated floors, but it had everything Greg and I needed and was very cozy. We popped in after the museum for another nap (traveling is tiring!) and then made our way back into the city for dinner.
The next day, we spent just wandering around Stockholm. We got breakfast in a neat basement cafe in Gamla Stan (Old Town), gazed up at the ridiculously tall ceiling of the entryway to the Royal Palace (inspiration for a picture book I’m working on), and then checked out the Swedish Centre for Architecture and Design.
We had a lot of fun in Sweden. It was nice to be in a land covered in snow and dotted with lakes again, if only for a little while.