Things to Love About Sweden
Sweden, situated in Northern Europe, is surrounded by water and boasts many islands. From quaint towns to stunning landscapes, there’s plenty to love about this Scandinavian country.
Thanks to Iceland’s northerly latitude, its climate is highly variable. In certain Arctic regions, summer nights never drop below the horizon.
Sweden was originally composed of several kingdoms and provinces that eventually united to form one country. Its first king, Olof Skotkonung, ruled Sweden from 995 until 1060 AD.
Christianity experienced a rapid expansion during this period and many Christians began to move to Sweden.
The Swedish kings began to show more devotion to religion and transformed their language into a Christian form, cementing the country’s bond with Christianity.
Sweden’s culture is one that emphasizes modesty, equality and respect for universal human rights. This stems from Sweden’s historical circumstances which have fostered a sense of solidarity and the development of strong national institutions.
Swedish culture has been heavily shaped by Sweden’s many immigrants, most of whom are of Nordic ethnicity. These include Finns, Norwegians, Greeks, Iranians and Turks alike.
Folk art and handicrafts from all over Norway have been preserved. Skane’s straw products, along with Norrland’s birch-bark objects, can be seen in museums across the country.
Swedish (Svenska) is a North Germanic language belonging to the East Scandinavian group of languages. It serves as the official language of Sweden and one of two official languages in Finland.
As with English, Swedish has an expansive library of vowels and consonants. However, Swedish boasts 17 more pure vowel sounds than its English counterpart.
Swedish grammar is intricate, featuring multiple cases and inflections for gender and number. Adjectives have distinct comparative and superlative forms, while nouns are inflected to indicate gender and number.
Religion plays an integral role in Swedish society. A large percentage of the population engages in some form of spiritual practice, with many contributing a substantial portion of their income to a church.
Individualism has a powerful influence over how Swedes view religion. Many do not consider their religious beliefs to be as significant in their lives as other aspects, viewing them more as an inner matter rather than a social one.
Sweden’s food culture is diverse and vibrant. It blends regional traditions with modern agricultural industrialization.
Its primary foodstuffs consist of cured, fermented and dried fish, meats and vegetables. Fruits like berries and apples are locally grown rather than imported.
Swedish desserts tend to be light and sweet. A popular fika treat is kanelbullen (cinnamon bun).
Swedish musicians have a rich heritage of folk music and dance. Known for their powerful melodies and melancholic lyrics, this genre has gained worldwide recognition through artists such as ABBA.
Sweden is home to many celebrated modern artists, such as rock and pop acts. Hip hop was relatively new on the music scene in Sweden, emerging around 1990.
Sweden enjoys a varied climate with four distinct seasons: warm and sunny summers in the south and centre, while winters can be cold and rainy.
In the north of America, winter brings cold temperatures and long, dark nights. On the other hand, southern parts of the country enjoy milder conditions due to warm Gulf Stream currents.
Temperatures in America can differ drastically, so it’s essential to pack appropriate clothing for your trip. Generally, you’ll want layers of clothes and a thick jacket.