Photo: Lena Granefelt/imagebank.sweden.se

Travelers to Sweden in Midsummer can immerse themselves in special happenings that celebrate pagan rites and the power of Mother Earth for an unforgettable cultural journey. One can become a Swede for the day by participating in the country’s local customs and traditions at Midsummer.

In Midsummer Sweden is lush and green evoking magical power in natural things. In the north there is round the clock sunshine. In Stockholm and points south is scarcely gets dark. Midsummer’s Eve is celebrated all over Sweden (June 20, 2014), with dancing and singing around the Maypole. Maypoles are part of an ancient fertility rite that would ensure good harvests. Swedes begin the day by picking wildflowers and making wreaths to place on the Maypole and young girls. Once the Maypole is raised, fiddlers play and there is joyful singing, laughing and dancing which continues under the Midnight sun until morning. Swedes load their picnic hampers and festive tables with herring dishes, fresh boiled potatoes and dill, Swedish meat balls, crisp bread, Vasterbotten cheese and fresh strawberries as well as Swedish beer and plenty of schnapps.

http://www.visitsweden.com/sweden/Things-to-do/Swedish-Lifestyle/Swedish-traditions/Midsummer/

Photo: Erik Wahlström/Folio/imagebank.sweden.se

Carloads of families and friends head for summer cottages in anticipation of outdoor dancing, singing, and the great taste of traditional Swedish Smorgasbord.

For an authentic Midsummer celebration, visit the folklore district of Dalarna.

http://www.visitdalarna.se/en/Events/Celebrate-Midsummer-in-Dalarna/

 

Photo: Conny Fridh/imagebank.sweden.se

Travelers to Sweden in Midsummer can immerse themselves in special happenings that celebrate pagan rites and the power of Mother Earth for an unforgettable cultural journey. One can become a Swede for the day by participating in the country’s local customs and traditions at Midsummer.

In Midsummer Sweden is lush and green evoking magical power in natural things. In the north there is round the clock sunshine. In Stockholm and points south is scarcely gets dark. Midsummer’s Eve is celebrated all over Sweden (June 20, 2014), with dancing and singing around the Maypole. Maypoles are part of an ancient fertility rite that would ensure good harvests. Swedes begin the day by picking wildflowers and making wreaths to place on the Maypole and young girls. Once the Maypole is raised, fiddlers play and there is joyful singing, laughing and dancing which continues under the Midnight sun until morning. Swedes load their picnic hampers and festive tables with herring dishes, fresh boiled potatoes and dill, Swedish meat balls, crisp bread, Vasterbotten cheese and fresh strawberries as well as Swedish beer and plenty of schnapps.

http://www.visitsweden.com/sweden/Things-to-do/Swedish-Lifestyle/Swedish-traditions/Midsummer/

 

Photo: Ola Ericson/imagebank.sweden.se

http://www.vastsverige.com/en/products/77344/Herring-Day-Special/

Swedes go crazy for herring – they eat it in different, creative incarnations at celebrations across the year as part of a Smörgåsbord buffet. Herring even has its own National Day, on 6 June 2014 – The Day of the Herring - and Klädesholmen on Sweden’s west coast is a great place to celebrate.

 

Photo: Carolina Romare/imagebank.sweden.se

Walpurgis Night is celebrated on April 30 all across our long country. This holiday marks the end of winter and the spring gets a warm welcome with an enormous bonfire. At Skansen open air museum in Stockholm, the celebration starts early in the afternoon and continues all through the night. There will be spring speeches, music, games, and the traditional Walpurgis bonfire.

www.skansen.se

www.visitsweden.com

 

Photo: Lola Akinmade Åkerström/imagebank.sweden.se

Perhaps the most famous sweet is the spettekaka cake, made from meringue. The spettekaka, which is classed by the EU as a regional speciality, used to be baked on a spit over an open fire, although that is rare these days, but it is still often made by women in small, local bakeries. It is formed over a hot metal cone and can have up to ten layers. Spettekaka is often eaten at family get togethers, weddings or traditional celebrations. Beware, cutting the spettekaka is a delicate art requiring a special spettekaka knife to avoid an explosion of meringue but, once divided up, is excellent served with ice cream, berries or whipped cream.

http://visitskane.com/en/article/traditional-food-skane

Photo: Lola Akinmade Åkerström/imagebank.sweden.se

Swedish families usually gather for an Easter Buffet during this time. Typical Easter dishes include pickled herring, eggs, lamb, salmon, Jansson’s temptation (potato and sprat bake), cheese, crisp bread and potatoes, to which you drink the traditional Swedish soft drink ‘påskmust’, Easter beer and snaps. Homes are often decorated with branches of silver birch, adorned with colorful feathers, too.

www.westsweden.com

On the 25th of March every year, Swedes dust off their waffle irons to indulge in newly baked waffles with jam and lightly whipped cream.

Swedes started making waffles baked in square irons used directly the open fire already in the 17th century. The nowadays so characteristic rounded iron making heart shaped waffles came around in the 19th century.

The whole idea with waffles, in Sweden and anywhere else, is to get them crispy; this is really what differentiates them from pancakes. To do so one need a hot iron and good batter. The batter can be varied in infinite ways, but is usually based on flour, water, butter and cream or milk.

Enjoy them on March 25!!!

Photo: Mikaela Gustavsson/imagebank.sweden.se

Photo: Joel Wåreus/imagebank.sweden.se

Swedish meatballs are a specialty, immortalized by the Swedish chef in the Muppet Show. Swedes eat them with pickled cucumber, a cream sauce, potatoes  and of course lingon berries.

Swedish meatballs are a must on every Smorgasbord and don’t miss this dish when you visit Sweden.

http://sweden.se/culture/classic-swedish-food-meatballs/#start

 

On the 25th of March every year, Swedes dust off their waffle irons to indulge in newly baked waffles with jam and lightly whipped cream.

Swedes started making waffles baked in square irons used directly the open fire already in the 17th century. The nowadays so characteristic rounded iron making heart shaped waffles came around in the 19th century.

The whole idea with waffles, in Sweden and anywhere else, is to get them crispy; this is really what differentiates them from pancakes. To do so one need a hot iron and good batter. The batter can be varied in infinite ways, but is usually based on flour, water, butter and cream or milk.

The jam is preferably made of either half and half of blueberries and raspberries or cloudberries.

Photo: Mikaela Gustavsson/imagebank.sweden.se