Sweden Itineraries

Sweden is a vast country, and you can't cover all of it in a single trip. Our Grand Tour concentrates on Sweden's main sights, while our other suggested routes focus on two fascinating regions, one in the south, one in the north. Each itinerary will take a packed two weeks to cover; with only a week to spare you can cover part of one, and get a flavour of the whole country or one of the regions that make Sweden special.

If you are planning your travel to Sweden yourself, use these itineraries created by our travel writers as a starting point for inspiration, perhaps also considering when's the best time to visit Sweden to make the most of your trip.

Nice Little Houses and Luxury Cottages on Stockholm's archipelago © ROUSSELLE Xavier/Shutterstock

Sweden Itinerary 1 - Grand tour of Sweden

Two weeks in Sweden and no idea where to start? Our Grand Tour puts you on the right track.

1. Stockholm

The vibrant heart of Sweden is one of Europe's saner capitals, with everything from style-conscious bars and restaurants to world-class museums and galleries.

2. Lund

Awash with students and bikes, likeable Lund boasts the country's greatest cathedral set amid its compact, cobbled centre.

3. Malmö

Sweden's gateway to Europe, Malmö is linked by frequent trains to the Danish capital, Copenhagen, and is accordingly cosmopolitan.

4. Gothenburg

Sweden's second city and Scandinavia's biggest port, handsome Gothenburg looks like Amsterdam with its canals and gabled houses.

5. Dalarna

The Swedes think of Dalarna as the most Swedish part of Sweden – all rolling hills, flower meadows and log cabins.

6. Östersund

Charming lakeside town in the centre of the country which makes a perfect break on the long journey north.

7. Jokkmokk

Tucked just inside the Arctic Circle, Jokkmokk has a strong Sámi identity and is a good place to learn more about the country's indigenous population.

8. Luleå

The most attractive of Sweden's northern cities, Luleå provides ready access to the fascinating UNESCO-listed church town at Gammelstad.

9. Sundsvall

Grandiose stone architecture immediately sets Sundsvall apart from its neighbours. The biggest city in the north, it has plenty of good restaurants and bars to sample, too.

Sweden Itinerary 2 - The best of the north

1. Östersund

Go hunting for Sweden's answer to the Loch Ness monster on Lake Storsjön, which provides a magnificent backdrop to this laidback town.

2. Vildmarksvägen

For a taste of wild Sweden, take this switchback route through some of central Sweden's most remote and haunting landscapes.

3. Vilhelmina

A handy stop on the way north; make sure you book into one of the sturdy wooden cottages of the church town for an atmospheric night's accommodation.

4. Arvidsjaur

Take a trip on a steam train or visit the traditional Sámi dwellings of the Lappstaden right in the town centre.

5. Jokkmokk

In addition to a great Sámi museum, there's also a delightful alpine flower garden.

6. Abisko

The starting point for the 500km Kungsleden hiking trail as well as the best place in Sweden to see the northern lights.

7. Kiruna

Gateway to the famous Icehotel in nearby Jukkasjärvi; get here before the whole town sinks into the ground.

8. Luleå

Visit the UNESCO-listed church town at nearby Gammelstad or ride the boat out into the stunning archipelago.

9. High Coast

The most beautiful stretch of the northern Swedish coast lies north of Härnösand and is best seen from the ferries which serve the offshore islands.

Sweden Itinerary 3 - Southern Sweden

1. Malmö

The perfect gateway to southern Sweden, Malmö enjoys some of the country's warmest weather and features a string of city beaches ideal for topping up your tan.

2. Lund

Enjoy the atmosphere in southern Sweden's most attractive city, renowned for its great bars and restaurants which cater to the huge student population.

3. Kalmar

One of southern Sweden's most underrated destinations, Kalmar is home to the fascinating Kronan exhibition.

4. Gotland

The Swedish destination, Gotland's charms are legendary: cobbled medieval streets and alleyways, superb sandy beaches and a party atmosphere that lasts all summer long.

5. Karlstad

Busy and fun city set on the shores of Sweden's biggest lake – take a tour of the city by boat or enjoy the beaches.

6. Vadstena

With its moated castle and stunning abbey, historically significant Vadstena is Sweden at its most grand and imposing.

7. Gothenburg

The Gothenburgers are said to be the friendliest people in the whole of Sweden – pull up a chair in one of the city's many great cafés and strike up a conversation.

8. Varberg

People have been coming to Varberg to take the waters for generations – join them and leave your clothes behind.

Rough Guides Editors

written by
Rough Guides Editors

updated 07.05.2021

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