Since the whole world is dealing with this crazy virus, hiking in Sweden may be hard to do. That’s why I have created some articles to help you through these isolated times. Check out things you can do at home. Or learn how hiking helps with social distancing in this article. You’ll learn how to keep to yourself and to maintain your distance from others as you hike the trails. Check it out here.
Hiking in Sweden will open you to a wide range of nature. From rugged mountains to mossy forests. The variety will keep you wanting more as you travel within Sweden. Spring time, the areas will be covered in colors from all the sprouting flowers. My favorite time has been around the end of June. That’s when MidSommar (Midsummer) happens! A wonderful holiday that’s celebrated throughout Sweden. It’s Summer’s longest day of Sun. So it can last up to 19-21 hours a day in June!
Sweden is known for their love of nature. Hiking in Sweden is one of the great ways to see their several lakes, learn a little about their culture, and how much nature has an impact on their society. Around a tenth of Sweden is nature reserves and national parks. About 97% of the country is just nature (no one lives there).
A great thing about speaking English in Sweden, is that many swedes are fluent in it and will be able to understand you. They begin learning English around 7-9 years old and have it in their education system as they grow up. It’s their second language in Sweden and many swedes may want to practice their English with you. Once you begin hiking in Sweden, you won’t have to worry about talking to many swedes. When it comes to hiking, not many swedes will start up a conversation with you. But that’s beginning to change.
When I moved to Sweden and began learning Swedish, I was a bit bummed out when I went to Stockholm. I tried to fumble over my bad Swedish, but I was too slow. So the swedes would just start talking in English instead. I guess they don’t get to practice with their English so much. Now, living in the rural county of Värmland, I get to practice a lot more. Since it’s mostly nature and farms, people here speak Swedish than English.
Many don’t have the confidence with the English language, and they feel that they speak poorly. Which, I’ve found out that it seems to be the exact opposite. They’re usually pretty good with English and many of them, you can at least understand. Hiking Varmland is always a treat! There’s so much nature and you get more of the feel of the culture there.
When I first met my hubby in Cali, boy did he have a Swedish dialect! I had so much trouble understanding him. But somehow, we still fell for each other, and over time, his English dramatically became better (he had the best teacher, haha)! Now I’m working on triumphing the Swedish languagewhile going to a university and juggling being a new mom. It isn’t an easy task, but I’m working on it.
Throughout Sweden, they have all kinds of dialects. It just depends on where the person is from and where they learned English or Swedish. When hiking in Sweden, you will be able to hear some of their dialects even in English. I have met some swedes that spoke English with a British accent. A few swedes had told me that they had moved to England at a young age or later in life, then moved back to Sweden. Others have learned much of their English from movies or games. That’s when they tend to have an American accent.
In Sweden, they don’t dub many films. So, people get to hear how the language sounds and is used. Plus, they have American music playing on their local radios. This all plays a huge role on making them fluent with English.
Even though swedes are fluent with English, it could be helpful to learn a little bit of Swedish. The locals tend to like that foreigners are trying out their language.
|Kan du hjälpa mig? (caw-n do yalp-a mae)||Can you help me?|
|Var är tåget? (vare air toe-get)||Where is the train?|
|Var är flygplatsen? (vare air fleeg-plawt-sen)||Where is the airport?|
|Var är bussen? (vare air boo-s-en)||Where is the bus?|
|Ja (yah)/Nej (ney)||Yes/No|
|God morgon (good more-ron)||Good Morning|
|God natt (good-nawt)||Good Night|
|Tack så mycket! (tawk so mi-cket)||Thank you so much!|
|Ursakta (er-shek-ta)||Excuse me|
|Pratar du engelska? (praw-tawr do an-g-el-ska)||Do you speak English?|
|Hur mår du? (her more do)||How are you?|
As you begin your journey hiking in Sweden, it will be helpful to know what some of the signs mean or language used. Here I have some of the common words that you’ll see as you hike the trails in Sweden.
Words While Hiking in Sweden
|Leden (le-den)||The trail|
|Biotopskydd (be-o-top-quidd)||Biotope Protection|
|Naturreservat (nat-er-re-ser-vaut)||Nature reserve|
|Nationalpark (na-hon-all-park)||National Park|
|Utsiktstorn (oot-sick-ts-torn)||Outlook tower|
|Berget (bery-et)||The mountain|
|Dalen (da-len)||The valley|
|Fjället (f-yel-let)||The mountain (flat area above treeline)|
There are several ways to travel so you can start hiking in Sweden. It just depends on where you want to go. Stockholm offers many ways, but more rural places may only have a few options. If you want to begin hiking Värmland county, it’s worth renting a car so you can easily make it to all the starting points of the trails.
The trains are the most common way to get around. The bigger cities have the most options of where you can go. In Stockholm, the subway system is great. While getting through the different stations, you get an eyeful of artwork at each stop. That’s an adventure all in itself! The main train companies are: SJ, Tågkompaniet, Snälltåget, MTR Express and Inlandsbanan.
It’s at or near the train stations where you can purchase and get on a bus. This is another common way swedes travel. Personally, I usually take either a bus or a train when I’m traveling in Sweden. But when I’m planning a hike, I drive to it because several of the hikes I want to do, there’s no other option to get to it. If you want to book a bus ticket, click Buses in Europe.
There are 40 free road ferries throughout Sweden. If you’re planning on doing some hikes at many of the archipelagos in Sweden, then you must pay for a ferry. There are even ferries between Sweden, Poland, and Germany. Here you can check out the ferries between Sweden and Poland.
Many of the hikes, this is going to be the best option. Then you won’t have to worry how you will get there. The main airports will have car rental companies there to make it easy. But, in order to rent a car you will need a credit card. I found that out the hard way and they wouldn’t let my hubby and I rent one. It might be different now but be aware that it’s a possibility. Rent a car here, so you can begin with your trip.
The most common airports in Sweden are Stockholm Arlanda Airport, Gothenburg Landvetter Airport, Stockhom Bromma Airport, Stockholm Skavsta Airport, Malmö Airport, and Stockholm Västerås Airport. They have several others, but the other airports don’t fly to as many places. If you’re planning on starting a hike near the Norwegian border, I recommend flying to Oslo and taking a train into Sweden. I’ve done that several times since I live closer to Oslo than to Stockholm. Are you ready to book a flight? Book a flight here!
If your adventure involves nature and hikes, then renting a cabin would be good. There are also hotels in many of the bigger cities if you plan on hiking around those areas. You can check out hotels here. Or maybe you have your camping gear with you. That’s a good thing about Sweden is that they give the right that anyone can camp anywhere in Nature. I explain more at Allemansrätten below.
The money that they use in Sweden is kronor, which means crowns. They have their own currency that is different from the EU. As of now, the conversion rate from dollars to kronor is, $1= 9.41kr. What helped me, was getting a conversion app on my phone. Then I could keep up with the conversion rate.
Usually the best place to get your money switched would be ATMs away from the airports. I would say that banks would be the best, but in Sweden, they don’t have many banks where you can walk in. Many are done online now. If you can find one, I suggest exchanging there.
One of the most important things to check before hiking is the weather and the time of season plays a huge role in that. Dress appropriately and bring extra gear for the changing of the weather. Don’t forget to be like a swede and dress accordingly.
Like the swedes say, “There’s no bad weather, only bad clothes.”
March through May is the time for the days to become longer with the sun’s rays coming down. In this time, the lakes begin to unfreeze, and the cold frost lets up. This is usually the best time for no rain. Some places in Sweden, this is the time to see the flowers and colors come to life. The temperature will vary between 35 F to 60 F.
June to August are the busy months here and especially for hiking in Sweden. Near the end of June is MidSommar(Midsummer). This is when swedes will take to the streets and many businesses will be closed for the holidays. Flowers are in full bloom and many berries are ripe waiting for the picking. Temperatures will be around 52 F to 72 F.
September to November is when the sky fills with clouds and the rain begins. This season is the rainy season. Near the end of Autumn is when the frost will start, and the cold breeze will linger in the air. But it’s still a beautiful time. You can see the leaves in several colors preparing for the winter. You’ll notice that the days will start becoming shorter and darkness will be around the corner. Temperatures will be near 35 F to 60 F.
The snow overtakes the ground but so many swedes are out playing. It’s the time to take to the slopes and ski! Even with the bitter cold, this is a time to enjoy the winter, even when the daylight last just 6 hours. Temperatures are around 23 F to 35 F.
For more information click on the Swedish seasons.
When you’re planning a trip for hiking, it’s best to have your body prepared. Train up that body of yours, especially if you’re a beginner to the trails. Check out 10 Top Tips with Training for Hiking Beginners.
If you’re a nature lover like me, then you’ll love these tours. There are several different tours varying from hiking to taking to the water or snowy hilltops. If you’re planning on staying near Stockholm, you can go on a kayak tour or just walk around town on a guided tour. Kiruna is more north in Sweden, but it offers so much for the adrenaline junkie! You can go dog sledding, ride a snowmobile, or take to Abisko National Park.
The highest mountain in Sweden is near Kiruna as well, so you can take a hiking tour up it! Check out Sweden hiking tours for more. Even some of the well known trails have tour guides. Or, if you feel up for it, you can go it alone. Check out hiking trails in Sweden.
Värmland is a rewarding place to hike in since most of the land is covered in nature. Enjoy a nice hike near many of their lakes or take in the several forests scattered over the county. Check out hiking in Värmland to learn more. Or visit Hovfjället, a beautiful Nature Reserve and Ski Resort. Half of this area is more for the winter since it’s a ski resort, while the other side is full of wonderful wilderness with hiking trails galore! Check it out here!
You can even find great hikes in the city of Värmland, Karlstad. That’s the big city of Värmland and parts of it don’t even feel like a city. If you enjoy nature, but want to go where a city is, this is the place to check out! There are many kinds of trails in and around the city.
These are some of the best places for hiking in Sweden. They have a variety of nature that you’re allowed to wander in. Tiveden National Park is one that has around 34 km of hiking trails through it. Check out this National Park and see the other activities that are offered in the area. Plus, it’s my favorite National Park so far!
National Parks I’ve been to:
You would be surprised to find out how clean it is in the capital city of Sweden. Swedes care about the environment so much that their capital is Europe’s first “Green Capital”. Stockholm has much to offer to the hiker. You can either hike through the streets of Stockholm or take to the national or nature parks that are on the outskirts of the city.
Find out more click here. Stockholm has a lot to offer to the hiker, even though it’s a bustling city. Hiking Stockholm is a huge possibility, especially if you’re on a tight schedule. Many of the places are easy to get to by the transit system within Stockholm.
The sun beat down as we began our journey to fjällstation, the valley station before we could start hiking up the mountain. The beauty of the landscape is breathtaking. Each direction I looked, my breath escaped my mouth. This place is worth visiting, even if you don’t hike Kebnekaise. You can learn more about the area at Kebnekaise hike. There are two different hiking trails up the mountain and it takes about half a day just to get to the valley. Prepare and learn more here.
Allemansrätten is called many things such as “Freedom to roam, every man’s right, or right to roam.” It’s the law that lets people venture out into any wilderness and camp out for 2 days. With this law, you must have respect for the land and people. Use dead branches if you plan on starting a fire, and don’t leave any trash behind. If there’s a house near nature that you want to wander in, you must be 230 feet away.
Swimming in any lakes are allowed, picking flowers, berries, and mushrooms you can do also. But look out for signs on private property or on nature reserves. In these areas if may not be allowed to venture wherever. With this law, it really lets you enjoy nature everywhere while hiking in Sweden.
It becomes berry picking time in July to September! It feels so good picking your own berries and mushrooms. I feel like a champion when I come back home with a boat load of them! This is a tradition that has been kept up by swedes, and since you have the right to wander in nature, you can start your search for berries or mushrooms while hiking in Sweden. There are loads of berries and edible mushrooms to pick from but beware of poisonous mushrooms. If you don’t know, then don’t pick it. It’s best to have a mushroom book with you or a knowledgeable local that can help you.
For more information click Forest picking in Sweden.
Don’t forget that some plants are protected, if you’re unsure about a plant then don’t pick it. There are rules in National Parks and nature reserves where you’re not allowed to pick there. But everywhere else is up for grabs!
Before you start hiking in Sweden, you need to be ready for the changing weather. Bring a rain jacket, water bottle, gps, maps, snacks, and good hiking boots. This will really depend on how long you plan on hiking. I have found that some trails in Värmland are poorly marked. That could be just because that path is not well known. Make sure you look at a map before you start to head out and that you have a good daypack with you!
The gear I have that I’ve been using for years now, is a Marmot rain jacket, Keen Winter boots (in the winter time), Oboz waterproof boots, Osprey daypack, and my phone for gps. My rain jacket has gotten me through sporadic rainy days as I hiked. When I keep my hood on, it keeps me super dry. I can enjoy my hike and not feel a cold dampness against my skin.
These Keen winter boots have survived a rough time with me. I have gone on several hikes with them in winter and now after several years, they’re not as good as they use to be. But they were well worth the price. I was astonished at how long they have lasted. To this day, I can still use them. They’re just not so great on the days when the snow is melting, and everything is becoming a giant slushy.
I didn’t know so much about Oboz hiking boots, but when I tried them on, it was fate. Since then, we’ve been good buddies ever since. Spring to fall is when I usually use them, and they haven’t let me down yet. 2 years and still kicking!
Since I began traveling the world in 2014, I have been using Osprey backpacks. Now, I have three different kinds. One for everyday use (aka daypack), my bigger one for when I’m traveling, and the third connects to an osprey luggage. All of them are still working great and I’m still using the crap out of them!
Let’s say that you go hiking in Sweden, and all of a sudden, you sprain your ankle. Now, in Sweden, a visit to a doctor’s isn’t so costly. But they have it mandatory for a tourist from another country to get medical travel insurance that covers a minimum of 30,000 Euros ($33,510). I have found out that swedes like to play it safe. You need to take classes to learn how to work with any machinery and get a license. On top of that, it’s common to have insurance for many of your machine items. It’s even common to have insurance on your pets in Sweden! Here’s WorldNomad travel insurance that I recommend.
For more information on insurance, check out my travel insurance page
If you want to find other information on hikes, check out Top 100 Hiking Blogs.
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