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How to spend the longest day of the year in Gothenburg, Sweden
Step aboard and join us on our first train ride to Gothenburg. Located on the west coast of Sweden, Gothenburg is one of the best spots to spend your Midsummer holiday. Celebrated annually across the weekend closest to the 24th of June, it’s one of the most quintessential and beloved Swedish traditions to mark the beginning of summer.
Gothenburg is ideal for a weekend city break or a longer stay as there’s plenty to see and do in and around town. There are daily high-speed train services with SJ between Stockholm and Gothenburg that will take you in 4 hours. Here are some of our personal recommendations on how to get the most out of your Swedish Midsummer experience.
Before you head off to join the solstice celebrations, wind your way down the cobblestone streets or take one of the charming blue and white trams and spend an afternoon at Haga one of the oldest neighborhoods of Gothenburg. It is known for its well-preserved picturesque wooden houses, small shops, boutiques and cafés. To recharge yourself after a long stroll around the town, bring your swimwear and head over to Hagabadet spa to melt all that muscle tension away.
The traditional foods that are eaten during the Swedish Midsummer celebrations vary, but some of the most common dishes include pickled herring, freshly harvested potatoes, chives, and sour cream. Fiskekrogen is one of the most charming seafood restaurants in Gothenburg where you can enjoy a Midsummer lunch. Update your look with a neatly pressed collared shirt with a pair of tailored trousers.
The centerpiece of traditional Midsummer celebrations is the midsommarstång, the maypole. Originally a Germanic tradition from the late 16th century, the maypole is placed in central places in parks and towns but we recommend you to visit the Tjolöholm Castle, which is about half an hour away from the city. Pick up a flower wreath at a local flower shop and put on a white shirt to complete your Midsummer look.
After enjoying a night of traditional dances, holiday dishes and folk music, hop on a boat and explore the scenic rocky coast of Bohuslän. It’s a perfect place to soak in the sublimely peaceful atmosphere and the warm sunlight. When the temperature drops, pull on a sweater to keep yourself cozy.
Photos by Oscar Nord, Louise Krause, Guillaume de Germain, Kimson Doan, Florian Van Schreven