7 September 2015

11 things to do in Gothenburg

Retro trams clattering along the streets, waterways weaving through the city and a huge dose of cosmopolitan culture make Gothenburg a seriously appealing place to visit.

Are you going? Wheeeeee! Here are my top 11 things to do in the beautiful city.

1. Get a city pass
The Göteborg City Card gives you access to loads of sight-seeing stuff (museums, amusement park etc) as well as travel on the cute blue trams, which is pretty useful if you're venturing out of the town centre. You can get a pass for 24, 48 or 72 hours from gotoborg.com but I'd recommend going to the tourist information centre because it's near to a huge Cos. No big deal.

2. Jump on a boat
Hop on one of the 50 minute Paddan City Boat Tours when you first arrive for the best way to get to grips with the city. Boats leave from Kungsportplatsen and take in the city's beautiful canals as well as Gothenburg's impressive industrial harbour - shipbuilding was a huge part of the economy until the 80s. The guides add
plenty of fun to the informative tour. Make sure you laugh loudest at jokes about Stockholm, Gothenburg's biggest rival.

3. Walk the Avenyn
It's called Gothenburg's Champs Elysees but don't let that put you off - there aren't quite so many chain restaurants and naff tourist shops here. The magnificent Poseidon is there to greet you at the top.

4. Prosecco in the park
The parks are beautifully kept and a real draw for the Gothenburg natives. We grabbed a bottle of prosecco from the SystemBolaget (see here for more on Sweden's alcohol rules), snaffled some glasses from our hotel and bagged a spot on the banks of the King's Park. Languish in the sunshine, watch the world go by and breeeeeeathe.

5. Visit art museum Röda Sten
OH BORE OFF, HANNAH! No but wait, this art musuem is seriously cool. It's a former power plant and totally covered in graffiti. When I visited they were holding a sound installation which was moving, mesmerising and at one point down right terrifying. When you've climbed the concrete stairs and spent time on each of the four floors, head back down to the cafe for cake and a seat by the river.

6. Eat all the food
Fresh fish is a must here. We went to Haga district, full of vintage shops and chic people, to dine at seafood restaurant Sjöbaren, hunkering down in the cosy courtyard and devouring inordinate amounts of fish.

There are loads of other awesome options too, like Hello Monkey for asian food. It's got a really fun, relaxed atmosphere and their dim sum is The One.

7. Go see the fish church
Looks like a temple, sells fish. Gawp at the enormous amount of prawns at the Feskekörka, stop for some food or grab a takeaway box and munch your lunch outside by the water.

Just watch out for these peckish scamps...

8. Buy snacks at the food market
You'll find all manner of Swedish goodies in here. Cured game, picnic essentials, chocolates and SO many amazing sweet treats. I chose a hazelnut and meringue roll filled with whipped cream, which I got all over my face ate really elegantly.

9. Stroll the Palmhouse
Set in the middle of 19th century parkland, this little beauty is an ideal spot to walk around if the weather's taken a turn. The lily pads are HUGE! Back outside, you can walk around the pretty grounds and rosarium, home to a casual 1200 different types of roses.

10. Hop on a train
Trust me on this one. The restaurant coaches have actual booths and when you buy wine, it comes in half bottles. Dreamy!

11. Go coastal
The Swedish west coast is STUNNING. Head to Gothenburg's train station (the oldest in Sweden) for a short ride up coast or hire a car from Centralstationen. We bezzed up the E6 motorway and found ourselves in beautiful Smögen in no time.


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