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CHRISTMAS

Stockholm Syndrome: catch up on the autumn’s stories

'Stockholm Syndrome' - when a hostage sympathises with, or even falls in love with, his or her captor - perfectly sums up our correspondent's attitude towards the Swedish capital.

We’ve gathered together all of the autumn’s stories of crazy Swedish classes, hamfisted attempts to understand – and explain – real Swedes, and varied experiences of fellow foreigners so you can catch up over Christmas.

Stockholm Syndrome will be back in the New Year.

Networking is not working

16th December 2005

Not since Rubik’s Cube has there been a fad more time-consuming and pointless than networking. But, as our Stockholm Syndrome correspondent discovers, everyone’s at it.

Nothing private about property

9th December 2005

Sweden’s property fad comes to the language class – giving our Stockholm Syndrome correspondent useful vocab for the bizarre experience of a Swedish apartment viewing.

Did you hear the one about the Swede?

2nd December 2005

Well, if you did, chances are it wasn’t another Swede who told it. At an Anglo-Swedish wedding, our Stockholm Syndrome correspondent wonders why Swedes never tease each other.

It’s not what you say…

25th November 2005

…it’s the way that you say it. That’s our Stockholm Syndrome correspondent’s conclusion after two new teachers’ accents have very different effects on his Swedish class.

I want to grow old in Sweden

18th November 2005

If old age is when your descendents outnumber your friends, our Stockholm Syndrome correspondent finds that moving to a Swedish retirement home could be the way to stay young.

A clean sweep

11th November 2005

Clearing out junk from the apartment block cellar on a group cleaning day, our Stockholm Syndrome correspondent is surprised to rediscover the best of the Swedish spirit.

Men are the new women

4th November 2005

After considerable effort our Stockholm Syndrome correspondent realises that when it comes to appearance, he cannot hope to compete with the men of Sweden.

One beer please

28th October 2005

Ah, Sweden, where it’s all for one and one for all, share and share alike – but as our Stockholm Syndrome correspondent discovers, don’t expect to be bought a drink.

Teacher training

21st October 2005

There’s shock for our Stockholm Syndrome correspondent’s Swedish class this week as their popular teacher announces that he is moving on.

The anonymity of fame

13th October 2005

Obliviously bumping into celebrities left, right and centre, our Stockholm Syndrome correspondent concludes that there’s no better place to be famous than Sweden.

Communication breakdown

6th October 2005

Our Stockholm Syndrome correspondent meets an Englishman who, despite one setback after another in the Swedish capital, just won’t give up and go home.

Carpets and wood

29th September 2005

An immigrant with troublesome kids gives our Stockholm Syndrome correspondent her very own theory about what makes Stockholmers who they are.

The Waiting Game

22nd September 2005

Hopping from one queue to another, our Stockholm Syndrome correspondent discovers one good thing about bad service in Sweden: at least it’s distributed fairly.

Together but slowly

15th September 2005

Film night at our Stockholm Syndrome correspondent’s Swedish class and the choice of film, while Swedish to the core, is not appreciated by all the students.

Rush hour madness

8th September 2005

Our Stockholm Syndrome correspondent has a close call on one of the city’s blue buses and finds out that Swedes on public transport have a more immediate fear than terrorism.

Young Swedes need to grow up

1st September 2005

From Anders Celsius to Carl von Linné, Swedes love to measure and categorise. But today’s young Swedes measure how grown up they are by an intricate scoring system: adult points.

For members

CHRISTMAS

Sweden’s best Christmas markets for 2021

After many Christmas markets were cancelled last season, you may be wondering where you will be able to get this year's dose of Christmas cheer. Here are our suggestions for some of Sweden's best Christmas markets.

snow on stockholm's gamla stan christmas market
Stockholm Old Town's Christmas market may be one of Europe's oldest. Photo: Ola Ericson/imagebank.sweden.se

SOUTHERN SWEDEN

1. Malmö Mitt Möllan

The trendy and multicultural area of Möllevången in Sweden’s third biggest city has become the spot for a special Christmas market for those looking for a modern and hipster-ish atmosphere. The Mitt Möllan traders’ association organises a market that promises art, culture, food and fashion. Busy that weekend? Malmö’s traditional annual Christmas market in Gustav Adolfs square, focusing on local products, is being held in three sessions, from December 9th-12th, 16th-19th and 20-23rd. 

When: December 2nd-5th

Tickets: Free

2. Kalmar Castle, Kalmar

This spectacular 800-year-old castle has established itself as one of the largest Christmas markets in Sweden. For four days, the whole building will be opened to the public and visitors get the chance to wander around in the historic decorated halls. Listen to Christmas and winter music, and walk around the castle and visit some of the about 120 craftsmen from all over Sweden who set up their stands and sell handmade items. 

When: November 25th-28th

Tickets: 90 kronor (free for under-12s)

Kalmar Castle in Småland provides a scenic location for one of Sweden’s largest Christmas markets. Photo: Emmy Jonsson/Scandinav Bildbyrå/imagebank.sweden.se

Katrinetorps Landeri, also known as Gourmetgården, is Malmö’s Christmas market for foodies. This market, situated in the house and gardens of Katrinetorp, built in the 1800s, will have a focus on Christmassy food such as glögg (mulled wine), as well as a horse and cart, antiques, a Lucia parade and dancing around the Christmas tree. They will also be offering their own handmade products in their deli.

When: December 3-5th

Tickets: 80 kronor for adults, free for children under 15

4. Jul på Bosjökloster, Höör

Christmas at Bosjökloster monastery is also back for 2021! As in previous years, this market will feature Christmas concerts in the church, as well as locally produced gifts and food for perfect Christmas gifts. Visitors will also be able to eat a traditional Swedish julbord, meet Santa, ride a horse and cart and “look for presents in the maze”. This market is taking place on the first weekend of advent, meaning you can start getting into the Christmas spirit as early as November!

When: November 26th-28th

Tickets: 100 kronor for adults, dropping to 50 kronor after 2pm on Sunday and free after 3pm on Sunday. Free for children under 16. Over-65s pay 80 kronor on Friday

CENTRAL SWEDEN

5. Liseberg theme park, Gothenburg

Sweden’s biggest amusement park, Gothenburg attraction Liseberg, lights up every year with millions of Christmas candles. A traditional Christmas Market and an old-fashioned Christmas market in different areas of the park offer everything from carol singing to pony carousel rides. Ice shows, Santa’s grotto, an ice skating rink and the park’s rabbits are sure to keep your little ones entertained. More information here.

When: Thursdays-Sundays between November 19th and December 30th. Check website for more details.

Tickets: Entrance from 95 kronor (free for children up to 110 centimetres) to 245 kronor for unlimited rides. The price varies depending on which day you visit as well as whether you want to go on the rides or not.

 

Gothenburg’s Liseberg theme park is host to a Christmas market complete with festive lights. Photo: Pontus Lundahl/Scanpix/TT

6. Skansen, Stockholm

Take the ferry over to Stockholm’s Djurgården island from Slussen and stroll over to Skansen, Europe’s biggest outdoor museum, which has organized its own Christmas market since 1903. It’s a great place to snap up some presents in the form of traditional Swedish arts and crafts, as well as having a feel of how Christmas was celebrated in the past.

When: Fridays-Sundays between November 26th and December 19th.

Tickets: 70 kronor for children aged 4-15, 160 kronor for adults and 140 kronor for concessions.

7. Old Town, Stockholm

Around 40 stands set up shop right in the middle of Stockholm’s Old Town ahead of the festive season, selling Swedish Christmas sweets, smoked reindeer, elk meat, a range of Swedish handicrafts and decorative arts, and much more. The setting alone is enough to get anyone into a romantic Christmas mood. This market might actually be one of the oldest in Europe, since the first Christmas market in the square was held as early as 1523 (although it started in its current format in 1837).

When: November 20th-December 23rd

Tickets: Free

8. Wadköping Christmas Market, Örebro

The Wadköping outdoor museum, which is an echo of what Örebro looked like centuries ago, organises a Christmas market full of the usual traditions: Christmas decorations, sausages, cheeses and arts and crafts. 2021’s Christmas market will also feature outdoor Christmas songs and pony riding.

When: November 21st and 28th, December 5th and 12th

Tickets: Free

NORTHERN SWEDEN

9. Gammelstads Kyrkstad, Luleå

Brave the cold (and it will be cold) for a Christmas market in the far north of Sweden. The Gammelstad Church Town is the country’s largest and best preserved church town, and a UNESCO World Heritage site. It is over 400 years old, and comprises of 405 cottages, six stables and a privy, sprawling around a large medieval stone church. The Christmas market takes place at the Hägnan open air museum, where around 80 exhibitors sell products from home-baked goods to arts and crafts. Visitors this year will be able to make their own candles, meet Santa and go on a candle-lit walking tour through the museum.

When: December 4th-5th

Tickets: 30 kronor

10. Jokkmokk Christmas Market, Jokkmokk

Jokkmokk is located in the north of Sweden, in the Arctic Circle. It is an important place for the Sami people, the only indigenous population in Scandinavia. It is famous for its winter market in February, which first took place in 1605. At their recently-established Christmas market, held in celebration of the winter solstice, visitors will find traditional Sami handicrafts – called duodji – and learn more about their history and culture.

When: December 11th-12th

Tickets: Free

Traditional Sami handicrafts – called guksi or kåsa – wooden drinking cups available at the Jokkmokk Christmas and winter markets. Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/Scanpix/TT
 

11. Christmas Market at Nordanå, Skellefteå

Are you in Skellefteå this December? Pay a visit to the Christmas market at Nordanå, which started in 1975. It is particularly known for its arts and crafts, and in past years visitors have been able to buy handmade ceramics, knitted baby clothes, and tin thread jewellery.

When: December 5th

Tickets: Free

12. Christmas Market at Västerbotten Museum, Umeå

This Umeå museum dedicated to the region of Västerbotten organises its annual Christmas market again. It promises a candy shop, horse-drawn carriage rides, a bakehouse and more than 80 artisans selling locally produced food and quality wares. Hungry visitors can also learn about what Christmas dinner from this region may have looked like in the 1870s.

When: December 4th-5th

Tickets: Free

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