Sweden is a country located in Europe with name that begins with letter S. The home of Pippi Longstocking and ABBA, Elchen and Ikea is the fourth largest state in Western Europe with an area of 450,000 km². 9 million people live in Sweden; the largest cities in the country are the capital Stockholm – the seat of the Swedish king and the country’s only megacity – followed by Malmö in the south and Gothenburg in the west. The central Swedish city of Umeå was Europe’s cultural capital in 2014.
The geography of the Scandinavian country, which stretches from 55 to 69 degrees of latitude, is usually divided into flat southern and central Sweden and mountainous northern Sweden (Norrland), where the peaks along the border with Norway are over 2,100 meters above sea level to reach.
The first national park in Europe was established in Sweden in 1909: Kosterhavet on the archipelago on the North Sea. In the meantime, a total of 29 areas have been declared as national parks and another 3,200 areas have been placed under nature protection. Check Countryaah to find more countries that begin with letter S.
Citizens of the EU and Switzerland need a passport or identity card to stay in the Schengen country Sweden.
Sweden’s climate is milder than its northern location suggests – thanks to its proximity to the Atlantic Ocean and the influence of the Gulf Stream. There can be precipitation all year round, but the average precipitation amounts of 500 to 800 mm are rather moderate. In summer it can get amazingly hot in southern Sweden with temperatures well above 30 °C; There is biting cold with values above -40 °C in winter north of the Arctic Circle, while the average daily temperature in January in Malmö is + 2 °C.
The duration of the day is also subject to strong fluctuations: While southern Sweden gets 7 hours of daylight in winter and 17 hours in summer, it is dark all day north of the Arctic Circle in winter and light for 24 hours in summer.
Food and drink
Even if the Köttbullar meatballs are mostly served in Ikea restaurants: in Sweden, herring, crabs, salmon and eel are right at the top of the menu, next to moose and reindeer. For a snack in between, there is varmkorv – warm sausages. The national drink is coffee: an average Swede drinks up to 170 liters of filter coffee called brygg per year.
In Sweden, despite all the friendliness, people are discreetly cautious. Everything loud and intrusive is suspect to people. As in the Swedish furniture store, everyone – apart from the king – is used indiscriminately. If you are invited into a Swedish house, you take off your shoes at the entrance and thank you for the invitation. Besides Christmas, the most important festival of the year is Midsommar: On the first Saturday between June 20 and 26, the summer solstice is celebrated in a lively atmosphere across the country.
Medical care in the cities is considered very good. In the sparsely populated areas, however, the closest doctor may be further away. People allergic to pollen should take into account that Sweden’s vegetation is in flower almost simultaneously from mid to late May.
Sweden is considered a very safe country. However, pickpockets have increased in Swedish cities in recent years, and it is recommended that you only bring the amount of cash you need when you stroll around town and that you keep an eye on your valuables in restaurants and cafes.
- Tear gas sprays are banned in Sweden.
- Consumption of alcohol is prohibited in public; drunk people can be arrested and put in a drunkard cell. Private security guards are also allowed to arrest.
- Using sexual services is forbidden in Sweden: offering them is allowed, only the client is subject to punishment.
Climate and travel time
Cool continental climate, but rather temperate due to the influence of the Gulf Stream. The temperature decreases towards the north. Summers are moderately warm, winters long and often snowy. Only short daylight in winter. The areas in the west and south have the most precipitation. In the interior there is a dry continental climate. Temperatures can fall in the north.
All about money
1 euro is equivalent to 10.33 Swedish kronor (SEK)
In Sweden, tipping is not as common as it is here. When visiting a restaurant or in a taxi, however, you are happy to round up the amount. The service fee is automatically included in all Swedish hotel bills. Tipping hotel staff is perfectly fine, but not expected and is a matter of personal taste. Even in restaurants, the service fee is already included in the bill, but if you go out in the evening, a small tip is expected.
Other essential information
The electrical voltage in Sweden is 230 volts. The sockets and plugs are two-pole as in Austria, Germany and Switzerland. You therefore do not need an adapter to use your electronic devices.