10 romantic Swedish towns to visit in 2018

10 romantic Swedish towns to visit in 2018
Vadstena castle. Photo: Paul Kleiven/NTB Scanpix
Everyone knows about the big cities, but smaller towns are an equally important part of the Swedish experience. With a new year upon us, The Local rounds up 10 of the most romantic Swedish towns to visit in 2018. Time to start planning.


Recently voted Södermanland county's most beautiful place, Trosa is only an hour's drive from Stockholm but it's a different world compared to the big city. Flanked by the sea, islands and forest, this spot is a popular summer destination and a favourite among tourists in the region, and looking at the storybook buildings as well as the scenery it's easy to understand why.


Autumn light.

A post shared by Linda (@443an) on Oct 29, 2017 at 9:04am PDT


Another town by the water, this time on Sweden's second biggest lake Vättern, Vadstena is an ancient place known for having a remarkably well preserved castle from the time of Gustav Vasa, not to mention a 14th century abbey.

Green, historic and with a small population of just over 5,000, it regularly features on lists and polls of Sweden's prettiest towns.



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Sitting on the Blekinge archipelago in the south of Sweden, Karlskrona is a charming town with a beautiful view of the sea from just about every angle. The water is the key feature, but the abundance of pretty buildings, ranging from old-fashioned cottages to grand museums, also help make this Unesco World Heritage site worth visiting.

Gammelstad Church Town

The old part of Gammelstaden, Luleå, in northern Sweden is a Unesco World Heritage site, with a 400-year-history and rows of wooden cottages that make every image look like a postcard.

Said to be the world's best preserved example of a church town, it's best seen during the winter months when the lantern tours provide particularly spectacular lighting.


Early morning ❄ #gammelstadskyrkstad #worldheritage #theluleaway

A post shared by Gammelstads kyrkstad (@gammelstad) on Dec 8, 2017 at 2:38am PST


Easily accessible from Stockholm, the best way to get to Mariefred is to take a relaxing steamboat journey across the Mälaren lake from the capital. With plenty of cafes, restaurants and small shops to keep you interested, it has its own historic castle from the Gustav Vasa era in the form of Gripsholm.


Dagens datum 2010 #mariefred Väder mer i min smak.

A post shared by Olle Rådström (@olleradstrom) on Jan 3, 2018 at 2:52am PST


Sweden's west coast has a number of gems but Varberg has been enduringly popular for hundreds of years, and understandably so. The ideal combination of a sandy beach, nature trails, a famous spa and a pleasant town centre with an abundance of good eateries is a big draw.

READ ALSO: Ten reasons why Varberg is the best place in Sweden


Put the images of fictional local murders out of your mind (thanks, Wallander) and see this southern Swedish gem for what it is: cobbled streets, quaint cafes, sea and at the right time of the year, maybe even some sun.

There's also plenty of pleasant walks to be had, not least at the megalithic Ales stenar just 10 kilometres away.


A nice walk in Ystad! #ystad

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Sitting on Sweden's east coast, Kalmar is a Swedish favourite in the summer thanks to its incredible beaches, iconic (and historically important) castle, bustling squares and … kiss stop (pusshållplats) a sort of bus-stop reserved as a place to, well, kiss.

READ ALSO: Why Kalmar is Sweden's best summer city


With its well-preserved wooden buildings, cobblestone streets, lakeside location and still relatively calm tourist season Nora near Örebro is something of a hidden gem. Catch it before that changes (popular Swedish travel site Allt om resor recently flagged it up as one of the most beautiful towns in the country).


The train station/info center in Nora is very photogenic.

A post shared by Adam Hlavac (@adamhlavac) on Dec 31, 2017 at 3:18am PST


No list of romantic towns in Sweden would be complete without Visby, Gotland's medieval centre marked by its city wall, cute houses, ruins and gardens. There's also the possibility of decent weather in the summer time, and plenty of nearby beaches to visit if that's the case.