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We're Andre & Lisa, adventurers and experienced budget travelers.

We have over two decades of travel experience and since 2018 have led a full-time nomadic lifestyle.

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Sweden is a Scandinavian nation with thousands of coastal islands and inland lakes, along with vast boreal forests and glaciated mountains. Its principal cities, eastern capital Stockholm and southwestern Gothenburg and Malmö, are all coastal. As progressive and civilised as it may be, Sweden is still a wild place with scenery ranging from barren moonscapes and impenetrable forests in the far north to sunny beaches and lush farmland further south.


Long shunned by travellers on a shoestring budget, Sweden is now somewhat more affordable - although not yet exactly cheap. But pay the odd kronor or two extra, to be able to feast your eyes on the beautiful countryside, swig some of the excellent aquavit and party all night in Stockholm’s nightclubs.

  • Capital: Stockholm
  • Government:Constitutional Monarchy and Parliamentary Democracy
  • Currency: Swedish Krona (SEK)
  • Area: 450,295 km2
  • Population: 10,23 million (2019)
  • Language: Swedish, large Finnish speaking minority (470 000, RUAB 2005), most people speak apprehensible English
  • Religion:23% theist (mainly Lutheran with Muslim and Catholic minorities), 76% non theist (including 23% atheist)
  • Electricity: 230V/50Hz (European plug)



Europe’s only indigenous people, the ancestors of the Sami migrated to the north of present-day Scandinavia, following the path of the retreating ice, and lived by hunting reindeer in the area spanning from Norway’s Atlantic coast to the Kola Peninsula in Russia, collectively known as Sápmi. By the 17th century, the depletion of reindeer herds had transformed the hunting economy into a nomadic herding economy.


Sami beliefs and mythology have traditionally revolved around nature, with the noaidi (shamans) bridging the gap between the physical and the spiritual worlds. From 1685, the Sami were forcibly converted to Christianity and Sweden’s policies regarding the Sami were tinted with social Darwinism, deeming them to be an inferior race fit only for reindeer herding, up until after WWII, when the Sami began to actively participate in the struggle for their rights, forming numerous associations and pressure groups.




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Most destinations have different times of the year when they’re more or less popular with tourists. 


Peak Season

Shoulder Season

Off Peak Season



































































Climate Chart with avergae monthly temperatues and rainfall


Sweden’s proximity to the North Atlantic and prevailing south-westerly to westerly winds result in a climate that is mild in the winter months. The northernmost part of the country, however, has a subarctic climate with long, cold and snowy winters.


  • June to August - Summers are short but intense, and the ‘white nights’ beyond the Arctic Circle magical.
  • September & October - Nothing’s open, but the countryside is stunning in autumn.
  • March & April - Winter sports and the aurora borealis (northern lights) keep Norrland towns buzzing.


In general, May to September is the best time to visit Sweden – north or south. Summer weather in Sweden is similar to that in southern Britain, alhough there are more hours of sunshine and less rain. By the end of August, the leaves in northern Sweden start to change colour and night frosts are not uncommon; the first snows fall in September. In Stockholm, snow can fall in October but doesn’t generally settle; by November, though, the ground is usually covered in a blanket of snow, which will last until the following March or even April, when there can still be snow showers. Winters in the south of Sweden are often mild whilst in the north you’re likely to encounter snow until well into May and temperatures can fall to -30C.


While Sweden may have some beautiful beaches, even the summer months have very moderate temperatures and don't really get hot.




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Sweden is expensive. There are just no two ways about it!


Accommodation Cost in Sweden:

Hostels start around 250 SEK ($30 USD) per night for a dorm and about 650 SEK ($75 USD) for a private room. A budget hotel will begin around 700 SEK ($82 USD) for a basic double room. Cheaper options are available but you might have to share a bathroom with other guests. Airbnb apartments or a house will cost you between 600-1,200 SEK ($70-145 USD) per night. Expect to pay more in Stockholm compared to the rest of the country. Most campsites have modern facilities, including toilets and showers - with plots costing around 200 SEK ($23 USD) per night. Wild camping is a great budget option as it is legal to camp almost anywhere in Sweden. You’ll need to make sure you are not camping near someone’s house, that you take all trash with you when you leave, and that you aren’t in a farmer’s field or garden. But other than that, you can pretty much throw your tent anywhere - as long as you do not stay longer than a single night in one location.


Food Cost in Sweden:

It is possible to eat for cheaper from outdoor street vendors - starting at 50 SEK ($6 USD) - though options might be few and far between. Your best bet for cheap food (when it comes to restaurants) will be Thai and Middle Eastern restaurants where you should find meals for around 65 SEK ($8 USD). Grocery shopping in Sweden will cost around 650 SEK ($80 USD) per week, however, if you cut down on meat and cheese ( which can be some of the most expensive items in Sweden!) you can lower your costs significantly. Some convenience stores and cafes offer pre-packaged sandwiches and meals for if you’re on the go and want a quick bite. The cheapest grocery store chain is Willy’s, but ICA and Lidl might have good deals. Whole pizzas begin around 65 SEK ($8 USD) and most nice sit-down restaurant meals begin at 200 SEK ($24 USD) for a main dish.



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While Sweden may not be the most budget-friendly destination, there are still plenty of ways to save while you’re here. It takes some work and you won’t be able to eat or drink out a lot but it can be done:


  • If you have to drink, go for beer - Alcohol isn’t cheap in Sweden as it is heavily taxed but beer is relatively affordable. In a bar you might find beer priced as low as 40 SEK ($ USD) and if you buy your beer from the Systembolaget (the government-run store that sells alcohol) you can save even as much as 50%.
  • Book transport in advance – If you reserve your train or bus ticket three to four weeks in advance you can save 40-50% off the intra-day prices. Swebus, SJ, and MTR are the major companies you’ll want to consider, with MTR being the cheapest train company. Flixbus is a budget-friendly option as well if you’d rather take the bus over the train.
  • Use a refillable water bottle – The tap water in Sweden, as in all of Scandinavia, is perfectly drinkable. We always have our refillable water bottles with us when we travel. They save you money, are good for the environment and it’s good to ensure that you stay hydrated when travelling.
  • Buy a city tourism card – These tourist passes give you access to a city’s public transportation system and free entrance into 99% of the museums and attractions. If you plan on seeing the majority of attractions and museums, these cards can save you a bundle.
  • Skip the restaurants – Eating out in Sweden is very expensive, especially if you are going to a sit-down restaurant. If you want to eat out, stick to the outside food vendors you see on the street.
  • Go for a lunch buffet – Lunch is the best time to eat out in Sweden as some restaurants have set meals for workers. It’s the best deal you can find and one utilized a lot by locals. Don’t miss Hermitage in Stockholm for a cozy, home cooked meal!
  • Avoid clubs – Most clubs will have a cover charge.
  • Get a metro card – Each region of Sweden has its own public transportation operator, and transportation cards will include buses, trams, subways, and boats. If you will be in a city for a few days, a tourist pass might offer better value.
  • Check for special deal – When you’re shopping for groceries, check the flyer first and pay attention to what’s on sale.


  • Stockholm - Tour the urban waterways, explore top-notch museums and wander the labyrinthine Old Town.
  • Jukkasjärvi - Hike through wild landscapes, spot herds of reindeer, absorb Sami culture and sleep in the world-famous Ice Hotel.
  • Gothenburg - Dig into the art, fashion and originality that make Sweden’s ‘second city’ first-rate.
  • Visby - Join the feasting, archery and other medieval fun and frolics in this historic town.
  • Kiruna - Race a dog-sled under the northern lights.
  • Lake Siljan - Celebrate Midsummer in the heartland villages surrounding this lovely lake.
  • Arvidsjaur - Take a car for a spin on a frozen lake.



Beautiful capital cities are no rarity in Europe, but Stockholm must surely be near the top of the list for sheer loveliness. The saffron-and-cinnamon buildings that cover its 14 islands rise starkly out of the surrounding ice-blue water, honeyed in sunlight and frostily elegant in cold weather. The city’s charms are irresistible. From its movie-set Old Town (Gamla Stan) to its ever-modern fashion sense and impeccable taste in food and design, the city acts like an immersion school in aesthetics. Although the city centre and other neighbourhoods are easily walkable, the excellent transport system, comprising trams, buses and metro, is the best way to cover the city’s more far-flung sights.


Stockholm In Two Days

Beat the crowds to the labyrinthine streets of Gamla Stan, the city’s historic old town. Watch St George wrestle the dragon inside Storkyrkan, the old-town cathedral, and join a tour of the royal palace, Kungliga Slottet. Then trek to Södermalm for dizzying views from the Söder heights. See what’s on at the photography gallery Fotografiska – you can grab a bite here, too. If the weather’s nice, party at the bars in Medborgarplatsen. Spend the next day exploring the outdoor museum Skansen.


Stockholm In Four Days

On day three take a guided boat tour of Stockholm’s waterways. Visit the impressive Vasamuseet, then stroll up to Hötorgshallen for a big bowl of fish soup and speciality-food browsing. Next day, head to Drottningholm Slott in the morning, then spend the afternoon doing what Stockholmers do best: shopkg. Start with pedestrianised Biblioteksgatan off Stureplan, then transition to Drottninggatan for souvenirs.




  • Mention the archipelago to Stockholmers and prepare for gushing adulation – well-deserved, too. Buffering the city from the open Baltic Sea, it’s a mesmerising wonderland of rocky isles carpeted with deep forests and fields of wildflowers, dotted with yachts and picturesque red wooden cottages. You can see most of the islands on day trips, but it's worth staying overnight if you have the time. Most have good boat connections, provided you check timings in advance.
  • There are plenty of reasons to come to Vaxholm, the most obvious being that this is the closest archipelago island to Stockholm and thus provides a charming taster to this extraordinarily diverse array of pine-clad islands and islets. Vaxholm is more than just a gateway, however. With cobbled sloping streets flanked by well-preserved wooden houses painted in candy-coloured pastels, plus a slew of excellent restaurants and idiosyncratic family-owned shops, it holds its own as a charming place to visit.
  • Just 40km northwest of Stockholm, Sigtuna is one of the cutest, most historically relevant villages in the area. Founded around AD 980, it’s the oldest surviving town in Sweden, and the main drag, Storagatan, is very likely Sweden’s oldest main street. Around the year 1000, Olof Skötkonung ordered the minting of Sweden’s first coins in the town, and ancient church ruins and rune stones are scattered everywhere.


See the below map for more details / points of interest - or download KML / GPX



This area, the birthplace of Sweden, offers evidence of the region’s long history, including rune stones so plentiful you might stumble over them. Pre-Viking burial mounds in Gamla Uppsala light the imaginations of myth-builders and history buffs. There’s also the trip into the bowels of the earth at the old mine in Falun, which accidentally provided the red paint for all those little cottages dotting the landscape. And in Mora, the definitive Swedish king’s path towards the crown is still retraced today, by thousands of skiers each year in the Vasaloppet.

Lake Siljan Region


It's difficult to imagine that 377 million years ago the area around picturesque Lake Siljan bore the brunt of Europe’s greatest meteor impact, when a giant lump of space rock hit with the force of 500 million atomic bombs, obliterating all life and creating a 75km ring-shaped crater.

Today, the area is a picture of tranquillity just a few hours' drive from Stockholm and is close to the hearts of many Swedes for whom it's a favoured summer destination. The 354-sq-km lake and its surrounding countryside combine sparkling waters with lush green landscapes, outdoor activities galore, a rich tradition of folk arts and some of Sweden's prettiest villages. If outdoor pursuits aren't your thing, you'll be able to see Swedish folk-art Dala horses being hand painted in Nusnäs, learn about the life of one of the nation's best-loved artists, Anders Zorn, in Mora, or just relax and enjoy life in lovely Tällberg.



Skåne (Scania) is Sweden at its most continental. Connected to Denmark by bridge, its trademark mix of manors, gingerbread-style abodes and delicate, deciduous forests are a constant reminder that central Europe is just beyond the horizon. Dominating the scene is metropolitan Malmö, defined by its cosmopolitan culture and striking, twisting tower. Further out, velvety fields, sandy coastlines and stoic castles create one of Sweden’s most bucolic landscapes. Add to this the fact that Skåne is often dubbed Sweden’s larder and you have yourself one scrumptious Scandi treat. Lund is an essential day trip from Malmö and an excellent base for stays in Skåne.



  • Gregarious, chilled-out Gothenburg (Göteborg) has considerable appeal for tourists and locals alike. Neoclassical architecture lines its tram-rattled streets, locals sun themselves beside canals, and there's always an interesting cultural or social event going on.
  • A resort, fishing harbour and spa town, Strömstad is laced with ornate wooden buildings echoing those of nearby Norway. There are several fantastic Iron Age remains in the area, and some fine sandy beaches at Capri and Seläter. Boat trips run to the most westerly islands in Sweden, popular for cycling and swimming.
  • Forward planning and Swedish design smarts stepped in at the right time to cleverly redevelop Norrköping defunct historical mills and canals into a hip posse of cultural hang-outs and Manhattan-style lofts against a backdrop of fringing waterfalls and locks. As Stockholm grapples with a high cost of living and little room for growth, nearby cities like Norrköping are coming on the radar.
  • Most famous for its mighty medieval cathedral, Linköping fancies itself as Norrköping’s more upmarket rival. While quite the modern, industrial city today (manufacturer Saab is the major employer), pockets of its past survive in its churches, castle and museums and in the picture-perfect streets around Hunnebergsgatan and Storgatan.
  • Vadstena is a wonderfully quiet and pretty lakeside town with a hell of a lot of charm. There's something about the place that, if you've come for a day trip, you will wish you were spending the night.



The province of Småland isn't small at all, but it occupies some 30 thousand square kilomters of dense forests, glinting lakes and bare marshlands from the Baltic Sea coast, deep into the Swedish interior. In fact, it's so big that its broken up into five smaller counties or län: Kalmar, Östergötland, Jönköpings, Kronobergs and Halland, of which Kalmar is the largest and Östergötland the most populous.

Historically, Småland served as a buffer between the Swedes and Danes who were forever having territorial tussles. Today, it's known for its Glasriket 'Kingdom of Glass' (think Orrefors and Kosta Boda glassware), the scenic Lake Vänern towns of Jönköping-Huskvarna, Gränna and Vadstena, and as the jump-off point for island explorations to Öland (from Kalmar, with its magnificent castle) and Gotland (from Oskarshamn, with its hulking ferries). From nature to history and culture, Småland has a lot to offer – plan for a few days here if you can.



Gotland is the largest island in the Baltic Sea (2994 sq km in diameter), situated off Sweden’s southeastern coast. Archaeological finds have revealed that the history of human life on the island predates the Christian tradition, stretching back some 8000 years. Sparsely populated and barely developed, considering its long history of occupation, the charm of the island is its tranquil, almost haunting, beauty.

Gotland's capital Visby, with its intact city walls, is a medieval marvel, magnificent in its authenticity. From the hilltop behind its striking cathedral, overlooking the Baltic, you could easily believe you were somewhere in the Mediterranean, or if you've an active imagination, that you've slipped way back in the annals of time. Come for Medieval Week, when everyone dresses the part, and it's even easier to believe.

Outside Visby, wheels are essential for exploring the island's diverse landscapes – sandy shores, grassy meadows, secluded coves and historical hamlets.



In Norrland, the northern half of Sweden, the population is sparse – reindeer outnumber cars, and much of the landscape consists of deep-green forest. It’s a paradise for nature lovers who enjoy hiking, skiing and other outdoor activities; in winter in particular, the landscape is transformed by snowmobiles, dog-sleds and the eerie aurora borealis. The north is home to the Sami people, and it’s possible to take part in traditional Sami pastimes, such as reindeer herding.

  • Infamous among certain naughty youngsters because its name sounds a lot like a Swedish swear word, Gävle (Yerv-luh) is a lively university town that’s been a prosperous industrial centre since the late 19th century, when it exported local timber and iron.
  • Your first views of central Sundsvall may be one of the most pleasant (or mind-boggling) surprises of your visit to the Bothnian coast. Its main appeal lies less in any one specific sight than in the Bothnian Coast's most cosmopolitan city as a whole, complete with highly strollable boulevards and a clutch of great restaurants.
  • The Höga Kusten stretches from north of Härnösand to Örnsköldsvik, and it’s a wonderful area for scenic drives along narrow, twisty roads, though you can't really say that you know the Höga Kusten without visiting its tranquil islands.
  • Östersund is remote enough that if you are approaching by car, you can expect to see almost as many reindeer as cars. This pleasant town by Lake Storsjon, in whose chilly waters is said to lurk a rarely sighted monster, is a relaxed and scenic gateway town for further explorations of Norrland.
  • Beautifully situated in a mountain valley by the shores of Åresjön lake, Åre is Sweden’s most popular skiing resort and visitors invade the village during the December-to-May skiing season. Things don't drop off much for summer though, as this small village is taking on the mantle of the adventure capital of Sweden.
  • A youthful college town, Umeå has a long and fascinating history. The town was founded in 1622, and was home to the indigenous Sami people whom visitors can learn about at a couple of excellent museums.
  • The capital of Sami culture, and the biggest handicraft centre in Lappland, Jokkmokk (meaning 'river bend' in Sami) not only has the definitive Sami museum but is also the site of a huge annual winter market gathering.
  • The tiny village of Jukkasjärvi is 20km east of Kiruna, 200km north of the Arctic Circle, and is surrounded by lakes, fir trees and reindeer. It is also home to one of Sweden’s most famous attractions: the extraordinary Icehotel.
  • Scarred by mine works, the ‘current’ Kiruna may not be the most aesthetically appealing city, but it's a friendly place with the highest concentration of lodgings and restaurants in the northwestern corner of Sweden. Its proximity to great stretches of hikeable wilderness and the proliferation of winter activities make it an excellent base.
  • Easy access to spectacular scenery makes Abisko one of the highlights of any trip to Lappland. Hiking is the big draw here – trails are varied in both distance and terrain, and while most people come here to tackle part (or all) of the 450km-long Kungsleden.


While new-generation Swedish chefs thrive on experimentation and inventive creations, Swedish cuisine retains firm roots in its culinary heritage. There's still appreciation for traditional offerings such as toast skagen (toast with bleak roe, crème fraiche and chopped red onion) and köttbullar och potatis (meatballs and potatoes, usually served with lingonberry jam, or lingonsylt).


Seafood staples include caviar, gravlax (cured salmon) and the ubiquitous sill (herring), eaten smoked, fried or pickled and often accompanied by capers, mustard and onion. The most contentious traditional food is the pungent surströmming (fermented Baltic herring), traditionally eaten in August and September in a slice of tunnbröd (thin, unleavened bread) with boiled potato and onions and ample amounts of snaps.


In the north of Sweden, the bounty of the wilderness enhances the menu, from reindeer and elk steak and Arctic char (fish) to mushrooms and berries (including cloudberry-based desserts).


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For your first visit to Sweden, choosing the right base is essential to exploring the country's diverse landscapes, rich history, and vibrant culture. Here's a breakdown of top areas and accommodations:

Where To Stay In Stockholm:

Stockholm is the capital city of Sweden, known for its beautiful archipelago, historic old town, and modern Scandinavian design, offering a perfect introduction to the country's culture and attractions.

  • Budget Accommodation: Consider staying at City Backpackers Hostel for affordable dorm beds and a central location near Stockholm's main sights and transportation hubs.

  • Mid-range Accommodation: The Hotel Birger Jarl provides comfortable accommodations with modern amenities and easy access to Stockholm's shopping and dining districts.

  • Luxury Accommodation: Opt for the luxurious ambiance of the Grand Hotel Stockholm, featuring upscale rooms, gourmet dining options, and waterfront views.

Best Value Tip: Visit Stockholm during the offseason (late fall or early spring) for better accommodation rates and fewer crowds while still enjoying indoor attractions like museums and galleries.

Where To Stay In Gothenburg:

Gothenburg is Sweden's second-largest city, known for its picturesque canals, vibrant food scene, and cultural events, offering a laid-back atmosphere and easy access to the nearby West Coast.

  • Budget Accommodation: Consider staying at Slottsskogen Hostel for affordable rooms and a central location near Gothenburg's parks and botanical gardens.

  • Mid-range Accommodation: The Hotel Flora provides comfortable accommodations with Scandinavian design and easy access to Gothenburg's shopping and entertainment districts.

  • Luxury Accommodation: Opt for the luxurious ambiance of the Upper House, located atop the Gothia Towers, featuring upscale rooms, a spa, and panoramic city views.

Best Value Tip: Explore Gothenburg's local markets and food halls for affordable and delicious dining experiences, especially for seafood lovers.

Where To Stay In Kiruna:

Kiruna is a unique destination located in Swedish Lapland, known for its stunning Arctic landscapes, Northern Lights sightings, and outdoor adventures like dog sledding and ice fishing.

  • Budget Accommodation: Consider staying at the Icehotel 365 for a truly unique experience in ice rooms or warm accommodations and easy access to Kiruna's winter activities.

  • Mid-range Accommodation: The Camp Ripan provides comfortable accommodations in cabins or hotel rooms and offers guided outdoor excursions to explore Kiruna's wilderness.

  • Luxury Accommodation: Opt for the luxurious ambiance of the Arctic Bath, featuring upscale cabins, a spa, and floating saunas on the Lule River.

Best Value Tip: Visit Kiruna during the shoulder seasons (late winter or early spring) for better accommodation rates and a chance to experience the Northern Lights without extreme cold temperatures.

For hassle-free bookings, use platforms like for competitive rates or Holiday Swap for unique homes worldwide. Ensure to book in advance, especially during peak seasons, and align your preferences with nearby activities such as surfing, snorkeling, or cultural exploration.






Let iVisa take the pain out of travel planning and assist you with Electronic visas, Travel Authorizations, Visas on Arrival, and even Paper Visas. They can also help with Health Declarations and Embassy Registrations. If you're from the US, they also provide a One-Stop Shop to renew your Passport securely and error-free.

Find a cheap flight by using Skyscanner or Momondo. These are our favorite flight search engines. They index other travel websites and airlines across the globe to easily find you the best deal.

ACCOMMODATION is our number one resource for researching and booking accommodation. In addition to, we have found to consistently returns the cheapest rates in Southeast Asia. For longer stays, find unique homes worldwide on Holiday Swap, the most affordable travel platform that allows you to book homes anytime, anywhere in only a few clicks.

TRANSPORT is a leader in online car rental bookings; we compare car rental deals from many companies so that you can choose which is best for your trip. 12Go connects the world door-to-door, from transfers to flights, under the same user-friendly ticket.

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