No stay in Skåne is complete without visiting some of the characteristic towns and cities that add culture, pulse and vibrancy to this fascinating area. Here are five towns you should add to your itinerary.
Full of energy, rich multiculturalism and refreshing green spaces, Malmö greets visitors with open arms. The city has become iconic for its focus on culture, innovative architecture and a vibrant social scene.
With more pubs and restaurants per capita than anywhere else in Sweden, Malmö is the perfect place to stop by for lunch, a beer or an exotic meal. Visit colourful Möllevångstorget, known locally as Möllan. Stroll among the open-air market stalls, and get your fresh, five-a-day greens grown in local farms. The market is open six days a week. If you’re looking for a cosy night out, come on down to Lilla Torg, the town’s buzzing piazza. It’s a great place for lunch or ending a long day. Have dinner at one of the many cosy restaurants, take a drink with friends, people watch, or just stroll through the squares and admire the medieval architecture.
Malmö, also called ”the city of parks” is full of green spaces, small lakes and a network of canals. With blossoming flowerbeds and well-stocked vegetable gardens, the city parks create an intercity oasis, favourites with locals and tourists alike. Stroll around and enjoy the innovative architecture in the Western Harbour before you hit the beach just a stone’s throw from the centre of town. Want a winter shock? Visit the open-air baths where people steam naked in the sauna, then hop into the freezing water. Go native. Go natural.
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Lund is a vibrant city of contrasts where you can experience a thousand years of history, all in walking distance. Among cobblestones and half-timbered houses you’ll meet some of the world’s smartest people. The University and its close on 40,000 students make a big impact, with burlesques, student bars and lively cafes.
Right in the centre is Lund Cathedral, Sweden’s most visited church, attracting around 700,000 visitors per year. Built around 1,000 years ago, the mighty twin towers dominate the skyline, while inside the artefacts and stools date back to the 13th Century. Interested in how Swedish people lived life in the past? Visit Kulturen. This excellent outdoor museum satisfies the senses of children of all ages with its exhibitions of homes and clothing. And don’t miss Lunds Botanical Gardens for quick break and a bite to eat in one of the city’s most picturesque places.
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Skåne’s second largest city offers a mix of metropolitan big city and charming idyllic small town. It’s full of history: ancient and modern, Danish and Swedish. Stroll through the boutiques and shopping centres, unwind at one of the cosy restaurants, or survey the architecture, from Middle Ages to modern functional. Drop in at Dunkers arts centre, with art gallery, urban and cultural history exhibitions, music and theatre, as well as an excellent restaurant.
Sofiero Palace and Gardens on the outskirts of town is one of Skåne’s most popular attractions. Surrounded by velvety lawns and lush green trees, the castle gives you a stunning view over the Sound above a magnificent flowering ravine. The garden is an oasis of more than 10,000 plants, and 300 different varieties of rhododendrons with their spectacular flowers and vibrant colours. Add even more beauty to you life by visiting Fredriksdal Museums and Gardens and experience one of Sweden’s best open-air museums, complete with historic buildings and old town quarters.
Ystad is a beautiful town with medieval, pastel-coloured half-timbered houses on cobblestone streets and sun-dappled squares. Leap back in time and visit museums with different, sometimes off-beat themes, visit the quaint shops and cosy cafés, or jump on a steam train and explore the beautiful countryside.
Ystad captivates and fascinates. Once one of the region’s most important fishing towns, it’s now known as Sweden’s Hollywood. At Cineteket film centre you can find out all about film production, try out blue screen technology, create your own animations and learn about filmmaking. Explore movie locations, such as the collection of Wallander Props and photo exhibition about ”The Bridge” television series. Go behind the scenes of Ystad Studios, or take a Wallander tour and see his house, where he drinks coffee and other locations from the films.
This historic city centre of Kristianstad, surrounded by a moat, offers superb shopping in medieval streets in the old city centre. Right across the street from the train station you’ll see Trefaldighetskyrkan, considered the most beautiful renaissance church in the Nordics. If you’re a film buff, make sure you swing by the film museum to see the lights, cameras and still action of the early days of the Swedish movie industry.
A stone’s throw away from the city centre you’ll find Kristianstad’s Vattenrike, Designated as a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO. The Visitor Centre and 21 different observation towers, footbridges and open-air museums. It’s wilderness as only south Sweden can do it. Fish, canoe or take a safari, spot the lively cranes, catch a trout, or watch at the teeming life on the meadows. Summer is the time for gazing at colourful flowers, and pleasant boat trips.