HomeSweden ToursSweden Guide

Top 6 Things to Do in Sweden

Ratings of Zicasso's Service
An aerial view of an Ice hotel in Kiruna, Sweden

Photo courtesy: Icehotel in Kiruna, Sweden

Sweden is a favorite among travelers hoping to explore its snowy peaks, uncover the history of the Vikings, and explore ancient castles, with the following representing the top things to do on your vacation.

Discover rich history in historic cultural villages, see the fascinating architecture that captures royal elegance, and wander the tranquil shorelines of the Stockholm archipelago. There is a wealth of marvelous things to do on a trip to the European jewel.

The following highlights are a few of the spectacular experiences to enjoy in Sweden on a dream vacation to the country’s coastline and alpine regions.

  1. 1. Explore Classic Old Towns and Villages
  2. 2. Enjoy Outdoor Adventures and Activities
  3. 3. Discover the History of the Vikings
  4. 4. Visit Castles and Fortified Towns
  5. 5. Escape to Tranquil City Islands
  6. 6. Wander Museums, Markets, and Squares
  7. Experience the Top Things to Do in Sweden

1. Explore Classic Old Towns and Villages

Visby Old town in Sweden

Visby, Sweden

Each city in Sweden boasts a quaint and sometimes quirky old town or gamia, as it is referred to in Sweden.

Cobblestone streets run between old buildings that look like they have stood for centuries, while cafés and restaurants invite you in for a taste of traditional delights.

Each old town and historic village has its own fascinating story to share through landmarks and legends depicted on doorways and in museums.

Best Old Towns and Villages to Visit: Stockholm • Malmö • Visby  • Uppsala • Norrboda Village

2. Enjoy Outdoor Adventures and Activities

Swedish lapland in Kiruna, Sweden

Kiruna, Sweden

From hiking and cross-country skiing trails to the magic of Swedish Lapland, outdoor adventures provide phenomenal sightings throughout the country.

Unveil a magnificent night sky, where the northern lights dance in winter and the sun shines at midnight in summer.

Amble through mystical forests and grassy parks, or take time to watch the surrounding waters from quiet boardwalks, antique bridges, and immersive hiking trails.

Best Places for Outdoor Experiences: Swedish Lapland • Kiruna • Padjelanta National Forest • Kungsleden Trails • Abisko and Torneträsk Lake • Sarek • Trolls Goten Forest

3. Discover the History of the Vikings

Medieval church in Uppsala, Sweden

Uppsala, Sweden

From hands-on experiences to virtual-reality battles, outdoor museums to indoor displays, you can learn about the rich history of the Vikings through captivating artifacts or immersive experiences across Sweden.

Wander burial grounds and cultural villages, gain an understanding of how the Vikings’ valued tools were made, and partake in traditional celebrations that let you engage in Viking games and delicious feasts.

Cities highlight prominent Vikings throughout history by way of statues and monuments. No matter where you go, you can sample culture and heritage guided by the Viking past.

Best Places for Viking History: Gamla Uppsala • Björkö Island • Stockholm Viking Museum • Rättvik House • Anu Hög • Sigtuna

4. Visit Castles and Fortified Towns

Obrero Castle in Obrero, Sweden

Obrero, Sweden

Travel back to the Renaissance period to discover magnificent castles and fortresses in Sweden.

Palaces stand as modern-day homes for current royalty, while other strongholds remain as a memory of the old Swedish military. Fortified towns with walls that extend for miles and dramatic castles only accessible by barge can create unique ambiances or hold one of Europe’s greatest art galleries.

Relive the medieval past through exhibitions and displays across the country in city castles or at the top of hiking trails, as you discover preserved fortresses and castle ruins.

Best Castles and Palaces to Visit: Drottningholm Palace • Gripsholm Castle • Birka • Gothenburg • Örebro Castle • Bohus Fortress

5. Escape to Tranquil City Islands

Church ruins and town in Gotland Island in Sweden

Gotland Island, Sweden

Sweden is crafted around, between, and on thousands of islands, with the Stockholm archipelago being the most famous.

Coastal gems can be found way up north and hugging the southern shoreline, with cities, parks, and other incredible discoveries that can capture your imagination. Inviting beaches and quaint villages nestled on the water’s edge all add to the tranquil setting.

From Viking museums to memorabilia, mystical sculptures to atmospheric traditions, the islands of Sweden provide an uncompromising perspective of past and present wonders.

Best Islands to Visit: Lidingö Island • Gotland • Öland • Fårö • Torso

6. Wander Museums, Markets, and Squares

Skansen Open Air Museum in Stockholm, Sweden

Stockholm, Sweden

Historical Lilla Torg in Malmö is a small town square famed for its picturesque buildings and noted as the perfect place to stop for a rest.

The tradition of fika, gathering with friends in city squares to relax, drink coffee, and connect, embodies the contemporary culture that you can enjoy across the museums, markets, and squares.

Discover Swedish culture through town-square monuments and visit markets full of local delights in major cities and quaint villages as you indulge in the authentic traditions enjoyed across the country.

Best Museums, Markets, and Squares: Stortorget Square in Malmö • Lilla Torg in Malmö • Gustaf Adolf Square in Gothenburg • Visby Town Square • Hötorget Square in Stockholm

Experience the Top Things to Do in Sweden

Swans on a lake in Stockholm, Sweden

Stockholm, Swedan

Whether you prefer exploring endless vistas, mountains, and waterways or enjoying the inviting ambiance of a city’s old-town square to bask in classic architecture and cultural delights, Sweden exudes an unparalleled beauty that sweeps from land and sea.

Relive a Viking past or relax on tranquil waterways as you capture the spirit of Sweden at your pace. Find out more in our Sweden travel guide or explore our Sweden tours and vacations.

Life-Enriching Travel Designed Just for You

  1. 1

    Trips curated by the world’s top destination experts

  2. 2

    Concierge-level service leading up to and during your trip

  3. 3

    Unique, exclusive experiences and insider access

Get Top Travel Specialists to Help Plan Your Trip