Ok my dear readers, not even I who has become a descendant of the Grinch 😉 since I work in retail, can escape the magic of Santa Claus especially not as I am a huge fan of Sweden.
I had the luck to visit Sweden twice: Once in 1989 on a holiday with the church I volunteered for and in the mid 1990’s. To my sadness I never made it to Lapland where Santa is supposed to reside but I am determined to save up and get my family and me there one day :-).
Video credit Visit Rovaniemi via YouTube
Uhm, to Lapland not necessarily to Santa’s many homes :-). Yes, it looks like Santa is a rather industrious creature as he has at least two homes in Scandinavia. One close to the arctic circle in Rovaniemi, Finnland and the other at Lake Mora in Dalarna in the middle of Sweden.
Video credit Tomteland via YouTube
Well, some little elf has told me that there are few other places too where they are busy creating every child’s Christmas dreams but we are not going into that today.
No matter if you are a child or an adult if you like theme parks then either Santaworld in Dalarna or SantaHouse in Lapland seems to be a great place for a fun holiday.
And it looks like the Swedish have a love for theme parks because there is also Astrid Lindgren’s World, Katthult and Loenneberga to be visited. Well, I suppose you cannot count Katthult and Loenneberga as a theme park but they are places that feature in films made from Astrid Lindgren’s famous Emil series and the Six Bullerby Children.
Video credit Astrid Lindgren Vaerld via YouTube
Both were favourite books of mine as a child. My mum had a very old version of “The Six Bullerby Children” which she gave me and I really loved the book. It was great to read how life used to be in Sweden in the early 20th century and I loved how those six kids got on with each other.
Both the Emil series and The Six Bullerby Children were much-loved children tv series in Germany in the 70’s and most of us never missed them. So, of course, when I went to Sweden in the mid 90’s I had to visit Katthult where the Emil TV- series was filmed.
Video Credit: Puller Pot via YouTube
Unfortunately, that was before digital photography and I actually didn’t take many pictures anyway because I was just so engrossed in the charm of the location and my memories of reading and watching Emil.
We also drove along the place where Bullerby was filmed but people still lived there so we did not stop out of respect for their privacy.
However, if you are not a fan of Santa or Swedish Children’s book then you can find a lot more in that lovely country: Stockholm is one of the most beautiful capitals in Europe comprising of diverse architecture, little streams and lakes, brilliant restaurants and cafe’s and history wherever you look.
Video Credit BookHunterTV via YouTube
And nature lovers will find so much nature they want to come back time and time again. In 1989 we stayed at one of the traditional red wooden houses close to a lake in the middle of woods.
One day we were asked to have a meditation day where we would go about the area we stayed in but completely on our own. I chose to go into the woods (;-) I did not know Thoreau yet) and found a place to sit under a tree surrounded by blueberry bushes. I heard birds sing, snakes rustle around and maybe that was the beginning of my meditation and mindfulness journey.
(no that’s not me but it shows Sweden’s nature wonderfully 🙂 ) Video credit Stephanie Margeth via YouTube
As Sweden isn’t a very populated country you can find solitude very easily but beware of wild animals. There are some elks about and they can be quite dangerous :-).
I will come back to Sweden throughout the “Bee’s Travel Thursday” series but for now, I leave it at these small glimpses of a great country for a holiday!
Video Credit Exposa Travel via YouTube
Resources and further reading:
Santa’s Home on Smithonianmag
Santa World near lake Mora
Santa World on VisitSweden
Santa Claus Village in Lapland
Katthult where Emil was filmed
Astrid Lindgren on Wikipedia
Pictures of Bullerby (in Swedish)
Official Sweden page