Scandinavia Travel Guide 2022: Stunning Experiences of a Lifetime


Blessed with picturesque rivers, mountains, cities, and other wondrous sights, Scandinavia has a way of life that has always been associated with bliss and happiness. No surprise then, that it ranks high among the world’s travel destinations—even more so now that tourism is kicking into high gear. Most of the countries in the region have lifted their Covid-related entry restrictions. However, you should note that some have yet to reopen their borders fully, so it’s best to look into the current Scandinavia travel restrictions.

Different countries have different rules, and once you’ve familiarised yourself with the Scandinavia travel requirements, let’s get into the fun part of this Scandinavia travel guide! Here you’ll discover a few of the popular destinations in Scandinavia, along with the best time to visit Scandinavian countries.


Scandinavia travel guide Wooden house
The bay area of Helsinki at sunset makes for a charming scene. | Credit: kostiolavi via Pixabay

Finland is known to the world for having natural landscapes so beautiful that no other place could compare. Snow-capped mountains and evergreen forests paint a picture of idyllic beauty. If that’s not exotic enough, picture the scene bathed in the amazing splendour of the Northern Lights. And imagine yourself in the cold crisp atmosphere, warmed by the hospitality of newfound Finnish friends, who famously welcome their guests with open hearts.

Scandinavia travel guide Finland
Helsinki Cathedral, with its green domes, are an iconic symbol of the city. | Credit: tap5a via Pixabay

It’s a vibrant and friendly culture, and you can glimpse some of it even in their urban landscape. Throughout history, Finland’s houses were traditionally built out of wood and typically painted happy shades of red, blue, and yellow. Today, in the districts of Käpylä, Helsinki, many wooden houses are still preserved and sit just as they did centuries ago. As you set eyes on places like this, it will definitely make you feel as if you’ve travelled back in time!

Scandinavia travel guide Ruisleipä
Not the rye bread you’re used to. | Credit: tookapic via Pixabay

While you’re in Finland, their Ruisleipä, which literally translates to rye bread in Finnish, is something you mustn’t miss. Voted to be Finland’s national food in 2017, Ruisleipä is very different from typical American rye bread, in that it’s made of 100% rye flour without a white flour mix. The Finnish rye bread is available in almost every corner of Finland, so try them out for breakfast, and you might not go back to the typical rye bread anymore.

This magnificent country has much to offer travellers, and the peak time to visit Finland is from May through September. Why? Because it’s during these months that Finland has the mildest weather. All the better for you to enjoy the various attractions in the country.


Scandinavia travel guide Sweden
In Sweden, even the boathouses by the sea have character. | Credit: Bru-nO via Pixabay

If you’re a nature lover, then Sweden is most definitely for you! With about 100,000 lakes, along with several impressive mountains, rolling fields, bucolic forests, the Northern Lights, and Sweden’s very own Midnight Sun, there are enough activities to keep all nature lovers entertained throughout their time there.

When travellers talk about Sweden, their stories often revolve around the capital Stockholm. As it is also Sweden’s largest city, you could find yourself discovering both Swedish culture and history for days on end.

Scandinavia travel guide Stockholm
Get up close with Vasa, an almost fully intact 17th-century ship. | Credit: monikawl999 via Pixabay

One of the main attractions in Stockholm is its brilliant Vasa Museum. Vasa was the name of a 64-gun warship intended to be the pride of the Swedish Imperial fleet. Unfortunately, it sank on its maiden voyage—predating the Titanic tragedy—in 1628. Lucky for us, Sweden managed to salvage the wreck, which was 95 per cent intact, and it now resides in its own museum as one of the popular destinations in Scandinavia.

Scandinavia travel guide meatballs
Swedish meatballs with potato and lingonberries mean a sweet and savoury dish all in one. | Credit: Emanuel Ekström via Unsplash

Oh, did you know that Sweden’s national dish is the meatball we always have in IKEA? Yeap! But just like how they say Japan’s sushi tastes very different in Japan, IKEA meatballs taste very different in Sweden! Of course, IKEA is not the only place in Sweden with good meatballs. There are tonnes of restaurants that serve gorgeously fried meatballs served with mashed potato topped with brown cream sauce and jam.

Like Finland, the best time to visit Sweden would be around May through September, especially if you’re the type to enjoy warm weather. Throughout these months, the country’s natural beauty would also be at its peak.


Scandinavia travel guide Norway
The Northern Lights occur when solar winds collide with the Earth’s magnetic field. | Credit: Photo-View via Pixabay

If you’re the type to enjoy the cold weather, then Norway is a must-visit for you! It’s the coldest country in Europe, and its geography features rugged coastlines, cliffs and mountains, and Arctic tundra.

And if you happen to love history, especially that of the Vikings, then make a beeline for Trondheim. Founded in the 10th century, Trondheim is one of the oldest cities in Norway, serving as the Viking capital for over 200 years. It’s no doubt that Trondheim is one of the most popular destinations in Scandinavia, where you’ll discover many aspects of Norway’s history, covering war, imprisonment, music, religion and culture, all from the time of the Vikings.

Scandinavia travel guide Trondheim
Nidaros Cathedral in Trondheim was built from 1070–1300. | Credit: Michelle_Raponi via Pixabay

Now, let’s not forget about food. When visiting Norway, you should definitely try out their national dish, the Fårikål, which literally means mutton in cabbage. The dish is simple—made with lamb from their mountains, potatoes freshly harvested from the fields, and cabbage which is one of the oldest vegetables in the region. But in considering these ingredients, Fårikål is emblematic of ancient Nordic culture and represents Norway in its own right.

Don’t miss out on Fårikål in Norway, a simple yet hearty mutton and cabbage stew. | Credit: Alexander Benjaminsen via VisitNorway

When it comes to the best time to visit Norway, the answer depends heavily on what you’re looking for. The season for a fjord tour is definitely during the months of June through August, but if you’re aiming to get a glimpse of the famous Northern Lights, then the best time would be between October and March.


Scandinavia travel guide Denmark
Nyhavn Pier is where you’ll get this typical postcard picture of Copenhagen. | Credit: ExplorerBob via Pixabay

According to the UN World Happiness Report, the beautiful country of Denmark is regularly ranked as one of the world’s happiest countries. So it’s no surprise that the Danish way of living places Denmark among the top popular destinations in Scandinavia. The Danes take pride in being happy, and they’ve already mastered the concept of appreciating every little thing in life. Travelling to such a country would indeed be an eye-opening experience that could potentially change your life.

When it comes to knowing the Vikings’ history, visiting Norway isn’t really enough. Denmark, too, was known for its fierce Viking warriors. As such, visiting the country will allow you to trace the Vikings’ heritage, as well as immerse yourself in their ancient castles and landmarks.

stegt flæsk
Discover the local culinary highlight of Denmark in a meal of Stegt Flæsk. | Credit: Rasmus Gundorff Sæderup via Unsplash

And you can’t possibly travel all the way to Denmark without trying its national dish, the Stegt Flæsk, otherwise better described as pork strips or crisp fried pork slices. Just imagine: thick cuts of golden-brown fried pork belly, served with boiled potatoes, coated in a creamy parsley sauce. This dish is certainly one of the region’s culinary delights!

The best time to visit Denmark is between the months of June and August. So with this Scandinavia travel guide, you can start making notes of the popular destinations in Scandinavia and prepare for that once-in-a-lifetime tour of this magical region!

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