Taylor-Gothenburg1

The city of Gothenburg during summer.

Gothenburg, or Göteborg, is the second-largest city in Sweden and the fifth-largest in Scandinavia. It’s a fascinating city on the western coast of Sweden that blends history with modernity and cannot be missed during a Nordic summer trip. There are also many incredible things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden for all!

What makes Gothenburg one of the most epic European cities to travel to is that it’s classified as the most sustainable metropolis in the world according to the Global Destination Sustainability Index. It was founded in the 17th Century under King Gustav II Adolf. It shortly became one of the most prominent commercial fishing and shipbuilding hubs you can experience along the water and offers an incredible culinary scene.

Another reason Gothenburg is one of the best summer destinations is that it boasts an archipelago with many unique islands to explore.

I visited Gothenburg, Sweden with Caitlin of My Darling Passport at the beginning of July 2023. Discover what to do in Gothenburg during your Northern Europe trip.

**Please note that this blog post uses affiliate links meaning that if you make a purchase via my affiliate link, I receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. I only promote and talk about products and services that I have used and like.


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Things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden in Summer

Traveling to Visit Gothenburg, Sweden:

Enjoying the best things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden in summer.

Gothenburg is the perfect place to include in a Sweden itinerary! The airport to fly into for a trip to this incredible city is Göteborg Landvetter Airport.

It’s not the largest international hub, so if you’re traveling from outside Europe, you’ll most likely have a layover in Oslo, Helsinki, Amsterdam, London, etc. You can find affordable flights through Skyscanner.

In addition to taking a flight into Gothenburg, there are a plethora of public transit options within Sweden and Scandinavia. Before visiting this awesome city, Caitlin and I were in Stavanger, Norway.

If you’re like us and traveling from Norway, you can hop on a flight or take the bus from Oslo bussterminal to Göteborg Nils Ericson Terminal. It’s a three-and-a-half-hour bus ride from Oslo, Norway to Gothenburg, Sweden.

The train and bus stations are in the heart of Gothenburg’s Resecentrum neighborhood. Public transportation can be booked through Omio.

From Gothenburg, we traveled to the country’s eastern side, where we explored the Swedish capital, Stockholm. The high-speed train takes around three hours to travel from Gothenburg to Stockholm.

You don’t need to rent a car for all the best Gothenburg activities. However, you will need your own vehicle if you plan to visit rural areas in the Swedish countryside or even suburbs further from the city.

Just like Copenhagen, Gothenburg is a walkable and bikeable city! Since it is a larger metropolis in Sweden, you will need to take public transportation to certain areas. All of the city’s trams, trains, ferries and buses are operated through Västtrafik.

Please note that all public transportation is included when you purchase a ticket or public transport card on Västtrafik’s app. In addition to the app, you can also buy tickets at kiosks at Pressbyrån convenience stores, 7-Eleven stores or any grocery store.

During your time in Sweden’s second-largest city, you can purchase a single ticket from 356 SEK ($33 USD), a 24-hour ticket from 115 SEK ($11 USD) and summer tickets.

While we were in Gothenburg, Caitlin and I took the ferry from Saltholmen to the archipelago. One thing to note about the archipelago is that the islands south of the city are car-free, while the ferries to the northern isles allow cars.

We mainly got around by tram. The city trams date back to 1879, and nowadays, there are over 260 of them named after famous citizens. They are easy to use and a relaxing experience.

Another way to get around the city of Gothenburg during the summer is through rideshare or city taxis. Uber operates in this fantastic city.

Where to Stay in Gothenburg in Summer:

The Gothenburg canals in Sweden.

It’s no secret that when enjoying a summer trip to Gothenburg, the Centrum neighborhood within the canal ring is the best area to stay in. During our two nights in the city, Caitlin and I stayed at Radisson Blu Scandinavia Hotel. It’s in the heart of the city center near Central Station, the canals, The Palm House and Nordstaden Mall.

In addition to this property, there is another hotel of its kind in Gothenburg called Radisson Blu Riverside Hotel. You can also find other great accommodation options to suit all budgets, along with a plethora of rental properties.

Below are great options:

Luxury Accommodation: Hôtel Eggers

Boutique Accommodation: Dorsia Hotel

Mid-Budget Accommodation: Hotel Pigalle

Budget Accommodation: Backpackers Göteborg

Things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden: Must-Do Summer Activities

A woman exploring The Palm House in Gothenburg, Sweden.

As you plan your summer trip to this fun city, I recommend getting the Go City Gothenburg Pass, which will help you save up to 50 percent on all attractions.

The All-Inclusive Pass allows you to visit unlimited Gothenburg attractions. Starting at 469 SEK ($43 USD), you can choose between a 1-day, 2-day, 3-day or 5-day pass and easily download it to your phone on the app. What’s great about the Go City Gothenburg Pass is that you can choose your activities as you go!

Like other destinations in Scandinavia, the weather can be chillier during the summer months. I have packing options located at the bottom of this article. I suggest bringing a light jacket, sweater and long pants for cooler days and evenings.

Regarding summer weather in Gothenburg, Sweden, you can experience average highs in the upper 60s°F with average lows in the lower 50s°F and around eight days of precipitation in June; highs in the lower 70s°F with lows in the upper 50s°F and around nine days of rainfall in July, and average high temperatures in the lower 70s°F with average low temperatures in the mid 50s°F and around 10 days of rain in August.

There are many ways to make memories during a summer trip to Sweden’s second-largest city. Below are the best things to do in Gothenburg:

Enjoy the Haga District:

The charming Haga District.

The Haga District is a great place to head to when you first arrive in Gothenburg. It’s one of the city’s most charming and oldest neighborhoods and boasts the best coffee shops, boutiques, restaurants, flower stands and more.

The main street in the Haga neighborhood is Haga Nygata. Stroll through this area and make your way into the independent shops and cafés. Admire the historic buildings and timber wooden houses that feature the landshövdingehus style with brick and wood flooring.

One of the best things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden during winter is to stroll through the Christmas market here. There are also farmer’s markets that take place in Haga during spring and summer.

Haga, the first suburb in Gothenburg, was established in 1648 by the order of Queen Christina. It was located outside the fortified city and had been burnt down numerous times to provide a clear field to fight off attackers.

The Peace of Roskilde was established in the mid-17th Century so that Haga could become an area for trade and developing industry. It then was nicknamed Little London. When seamen and dockworkers settled in the area, it became overpopulated and had a bad reputation.

It wasn’t until the late 1970s that significant renovations took place in Haga, making it the idyllic area it is today. I recommend all history buffs sign up for a walking tour to learn more about Gothenburg’s history.

Savoring Hagabullen, a giant cinnamon bun from Café Husaren in Haga.

A must-visit in Haga is Café Husaren, home to the Hagabullen, a giant cinnamon bun! Locals and visitors have enjoyed this delicious treat since the end of the 1980s and it makes for a perfect breakfast or afternoon fika, which means a coffee break in Swedish.

Hagabullen is enormous, which is great for sharing! Caitlin and I visited this excellent location with our friend Katie from Katie’s Away, who lives in Gothenburg, and we loved everything this timeless spot had to offer.

In addition to the Hagabullen, you can savor Café Husaren’s famous carrot cake, as well as its delicious fruit pies, oat cakes, sandwiches, soups and salads. The coffee here is also comforting!

Eat at the Best Gothenburg Restaurants:

Kafé Magasinet in Gothenburg.

Even though this area of Sweden, is known for its scrumptious cinnamon buns, you must savor the open shrimp sandwiches, mackerel, cardamom buns, and, believe it or not, hot dogs with mashed potatoes!

Below are the best restaurants to eat at during your Gothenburg summer trip:

The famous fish church in Gothenburg.

Feskekörka: If you’re a seafood lover like me, one of the best things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden is to visit the city’s “fish church,” as stated in the name.

Feskekörka is an indoor fish market that resembles a Neo-Gothic church. It opened in the late 1800s and is one of the best places to buy and savor fresh seafood. You can purchase fresh shellfish like crayfish, lobster and crab, along with local catches like cod, salmon, herring, etc.

What’s nice about visiting Feskekörka is that there are also sit-down restaurants like Ekmans, Haldis Kök, Victor von G and Åstols Rökeri.

Kafé Magasinet: Located outside of Haga, in the Långgatorna neighborhood, this industrial-chic eatery, café and bar is perfect for socializing, remote work and enjoying a delicious meal and drink.

This trendy hub offers coffee, toasts, pizza, salad, wine, beer and cider. During our time at Kafé Magasinet, Caitlin and I enjoyed a glass of rosé and Aperol spritz and split a burrata pizza. Everything was tasty, especially the pizza!

Enjoying delicious pizza from Kafé Magasinet - one of the best things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden.

Da Matteo: If you’re looking for a great place to grab a cup of coffee while you make your way around the city center of Gothenburg, look no further than Da Matteo.

With multiple locations throughout the city, Da Matteo offers the best coffee and fika experience. Don’t forget also to try their freshly baked bread and pastries!

Norda: One of the best restaurants to visit during a summer trip to Gothenburg, Sweden is Norda. Based in a central location, near the train and bus stations, Norda is a beautiful Swedish and North American restaurant in the post office building.

This fine-dining restaurant serves delicious and fresh Atlantic fish, steak, renowned wines and more. Norda is also the perfect brunch spot in Gothenburg, boasting a scenic rooftop bar.

An open shrimp sandwich from Sweden.

Sjömagasinet: Situated on the waterfront in Klippan, Sjömagasinet is a Michelin-rated seafood restaurant in the 1775 East India Company warehouse.

At this rustic fine-dining restaurant, you can enjoy award-winning wines, fresh fish and shellfish, comforting soups and meat dishes. I had an open shrimp sandwich there and it was delicious!

Brogyllen Hamngatan: If you’re looking for a great brunch spot in Gothenburg City Centre, there’s no better place to go than Brogyllen Hamngatan.

This lovely patisserie and bakery is located along the canal and faces the Museum of Gothenburg. I had the coffee and soufflé pancakes here, which were delicious, but you can also get quiches, pastries, sandwiches, salads and seafood.

Explore The Palm House and Roses of Gothenburg:

Exploring Trädgårdsföreningen - one of the top things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden during summer.

Located in Gothenburg City Centre, The Palm House, or Trädgårdsföreningen, is a beautiful place to escape to in the city.

The Palm House is part of The Garden Society of Gothenburg, founded in the mid-19th Century. It’s one of Europe’s best-preserved parks from that time period. Visiting this beautiful horticultural society is one of the best free things to do in Gothenburg in the summer!

Before entering The Palm House, you must walk through the exquisite Rosarium! It’s one of the most fascinating gardens in Northern Europe and every summer, you can admire over 2,500 roses and 1,200 different plant species.

At this Rose Park, the roses grow together with perennials and ornamental grasses. There is also a Rose Oval consisting of 40 flower beds laid out in an oval shape. The difference between the Rose Park and the Rose Oval is that more modern ranges of roses are consistently renewed in the Oval.

During a visit to Trädgårdsföreningen, you must admire the beautiful King’s Garden by Jane Schul, The Sunken Garden by Nina Thalinson and Gert Wingårdh and the Persian Rug by Piet Oudolf. This lovely location also features captivating sculptures.

On a stunning summer day, you can picnic here. (This spot also has breathtaking foliage during autumn!)

The Palm House in Gothenburg.

Overall, The Palm House is one of the most “Instagrammable” places in Gothenburg, Sweden. It’s inspired by the Crystal Palace in London and boasts exotic plants and picturesque palm trees.

The Palm House has five departments: the Palm House, the Mediterranean House, the Camellia House, the Tropic House and the Water House.

While in The Palm House, you can admire 30 species of palm trees and tree ferns. The most popular ones here are the fishtail palm and the fan palm. The tallest palm tree is around 36 feet tall.

In the Tropic House, you’ll come across the cocoa plant, where every 1,000 flowers that grow on it become an exotic fruit. You can also find the pine palm tree here, which has existed for 160 million years.

The Water House is the most humid part of The Palm House. During summertime, you can admire the giant water lily, originally from the Paraná River basin in southern Brazil and northern Argentina. You’ll also find Spanish moss in this area.

In contrast, the Mediterranean House has the most dry and mild climate at The Palm House. As the name mentions, the plants in this area are from the Mediterranean and Canary Islands regions. You’ll find olive trees, mistletoe, figs and cork oak.

When strolling through the Camellia House, you can admire over 40 camellias around 60-70 years old. There are 10 different species in this area, including the tea Camellias sinensis and Camellias japonica.

In addition to picnicking in the rose garden, you can enjoy the onsite Rosencaféet or Café Grindstugan.

Another beautiful spot in the city to enjoy stunning gardens and plants is the Gothenburg Botanical Garden.

Visit a Gothenburg Museum:

One of the best things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden is visiting a museum.

Checking out a museum is one of the best Gothenburg activities. If you’re wondering what to do in this city on a rainy day, you must visit the below museums:

World of Volvo:

Volvo Cars is headquartered in Torslanda in Gothenburg. If you’re into cars, visiting the World of Volvo must be added to your Gothenburg itinerary. (Please note that the Volvo Museum was moved to the World of Volvo.)

Featuring Scandinavian architecture, the World of Volvo explores the history of the Volvo brand, showcases the most iconic Volvo vehicles and boasts an incredible event space. Click here for opening times and pricing.

Göteborgs Konstmuseum:

Also known as the Gothenburg Museum of Art, the Göteborgs Konstmuseum is the largest art museum in Sweden.

It’s an award-winning art museum with some of the most significant Nordic, European and international artwork. These talented pieces span the 15th Century to the present day and feature pieces from Anders Zorn, Rembrandt, Monet, Picasso and many more. Overall, around 70,000 artworks are showcased at the Gothenburg Museum of Art.

One of the top exhibitions to see when you visit this epic art museum is Vincent van Gogh’s Olive Grove, Saint-Rémy in Focus.

The Gothenburg Museum of Art is open Tuesdays and Thursdays from 11 am to 6 pm, Wednesdays from 11 am to 8 pm, and weekends and public holidays from 11 am to 5 pm. It is closed on Mondays and specific holidays like Christmas, New Year’s, Easter and Midsummer.

It costs 70 SEK ($6 USD) to visit the art museum for adults 20 years and older. There is free entry for children and teens 19 and under. Additionally, discounted pricing is available for those who have a Museum Card.

Göteborgs Naturhistoriska Museum:

The Gothenburg Museum of Natural History showcases the history of the planet and the development of human and animal life. What makes it unique is that you can also observe Nordic bird species!

Two epic things you can’t miss seeing at this fascinating museum are the world’s only mounted blue whale and the mighty African elephant. Don’t forget to check out the updated exhibitions!

You can visit the Gothenburg Museum of Natural History on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from 11 am to 5 pm and Thursdays from 11 am to 8 pm. The museum is closed on Mondays and there are irregular opening hours during public holidays.

It costs 70 SEK ($6 USD) to enter Göteborgs Naturhistoriska Museum for anyone 20 and older. Admission is free for kids and teens 19 and younger.

Maritiman:

Another interesting place to visit in Gothenburg is the Maritime Museum. It consists of 15 museum vessels, on which you can experience a day in the life of a seaman from the past.

While visiting Maritiman, you can walk through the submarine HMS Nordkaparen, check out the largest warship in Scandinavia – Jagaren Småland and savor Swedish waffles at Café Matrosen.

Universeum:

One of the most fun things to do in Gothenburg, especially if you’re traveling with kids, is to visit Universeum. It’s one of the most prominent science museums in Sweden.

Universeum offers various exhibitions, activities and shows. Some of the top things you and your family cannot miss are Legend of the Enchanted Reef, which dives deep into our underwater world (no pun intended); Vast, a 3D cosmic journey through outer space and time; and Chemistry of Life, an immersive show that educates visitors on living organisms.

Admire Amazing Views of Gothenburg from Skansen Kronan:

Enjoy the best views from Skansen Kronan.

The sun stays out later in the summer than in Sweden’s other seasons. If you’re looking for a great place to watch the sunset, head to Skansen Kronan. It’s an old fortification outside the Haga District in Risåsberget that offers spectacular city views.

Even if you don’t make it to Skansen Kronan for sunset, visiting it any other time is one of the best things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden because it boasts a lot of history!

Opening in 1700, Skansen Kronan was used for military purposes with 23 canons. During the 19th Century, it became a prison and then an emergency residence. Once the 1900s came around, Skansen Kronan became a military museum.

In addition to being one of the most important historical landmarks in Gothenburg, Skansen Kronan is an event venue that holds weddings, corporate parties, birthday celebrations and a Christmas dinner during the festive season.

Sail the Gothenburg Archipelago:

A woman on the charming island of Styrsö on the Gothenburg Archipelago.

If you’re looking for memorable day trips from the city center in summer, take the ferry to one or a few of the islands in the southern archipelago. It’s one of the leading things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden.

You can take the ferry from Saltholmen, which costs 65 to 100 SEK. From Central Station, take tram 11; Saltholmen is the final stop. Ferries run every half hour to an hour.

The Swedish islands that Caitlin and I visited were Styrsö, Donsö and Vrångö. To get to Styrsö from Saltholmen, you must take ferry service 281 or 282 to Styrsö Bratten. From Styrsö, walk over the pedestrian bridge to Donsö. Then, you’ll have to take ferry 281 to Vrångö and the same line back to the Saltholmen.

Styrsö:

The beautiful island of Styrsö.

Styrsö is a quiet but charming Swedish island with around 1,400 residents. This beautiful island is car-free, so I suggest renting a bike! (There is a small shop across from the Styrsö Bratten ferry terminal that will rent bikes at an affordable cost.) This picturesque island is also walkable!

One of the best things to do in Styrsö is to simply wander by foot or bike and admire the traditional wooden homes. I adore Scandinavian architecture and the islands are where you can see the best of it!

While in the Bratten neighborhood of Styrsö, you must enjoy lunch or a comforting fika at Café Öbergska. From there, head to Brattenbadet to admire the beautiful red bathhouses. You can cool off to a nice swim during a hot day in this area. Unfortunately, it was too chilly for us to get in the water during our time here.

Another adventurous thing to do on Styrsö is to enjoy a leisure hike to Stora Rös, the highest point on the island. It’s an easy 3.3-mile loop trail that takes around an hour and 15 minutes to complete. This trail is also great for bird-watching!

Donsö:

Exploring the southern archipelago - one of the best things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden in summer.

A pedestrian bridge separates Styrsö from the island of Donsö. Exploring this stunning destination is one of the best things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden during summer.

During your time on Donsö, you can wander aimlessly or bike ride. Located up the road from the Donsö ferry terminal is Donsö Havskajak, where you can rent bikes, canoes, kayaks and more. This idyllic island also has timber wood homes, picturesque bath houses and breathtaking scenery.

While on Donsö, you must enjoy the nature trails, such as the 1.5-mile Donsö Nature Trail loop, cool off with ice cream on a hot sunny day at Popsicle Café and swim at the Korsholmebacke bathing area.

Vrångö:

Mussels and fries from Fiskeboa on the island of Vrångö.

The island of Vrångo is the southernmost of the Gothenburg archipelago. Like Strysö, it’s a peaceful island with no cars and fewer than 400 residents. From Donsö, take ferry 281 to Vrångo.

There is no bike rental shop, so it gives you a reason to stroll the island and admire its natural beauty. The Vrångö Southern Loop is an easy 1.5-mile trail that is perfect to follow here. If you prefer to relax, I suggest doing so at Notholmen, which is a tranquil beach.

The highlight of visiting Vrångö is enjoying one of the best seafood dinners at Fiskeboa. It’s located on the waterfront of Fiskehamnen.

At this eatery, you can order at the counter and savor your meal along the water or in the glasshouse. I loved how this restaurant was decorated with buoys and fish nets.

Caitlin and I appreciated the smoked blue mussels with fries, which were incredible. We also had a refreshing glass of rosé and a piece of blueberry pie for dessert.

Discover a more in-depth island hopping guide for the Gothenburg archipelago.

Celebrate Swedish Midsommar:

Midsommar in Sweden.

Summer in Gothenburg is incomplete without experiencing Midsommar or Midsummer. It takes place during the summer solstice, the year’s longest day. Since Sweden experiences more daylight during summertime, locals have a reason to celebrate and party the night away!

Over 10,000 years ago, in agrarian times, the Swedish people arranged celebrations to welcome summer and the season of fertility. During a Midsummer celebration, the Swedes dress in traditional clothing, women wear flower crowns, and everyone comes together to dance, sing, eat and drink.

Midsummer in Sweden usually takes place on a Friday between June 19 and June 25. In addition to Gothenburg, Midsommar parties also happen in Swedish Lapland, where the sun doesn’t go down at all during the summer due to being above the Arctic Circle; Stockholm, the capital city; and Darlarna, which is in central rural Sweden.

Make Memories at Liseberg Amusement Park:

Liseberg Amusement Park during summer.

Another one of the best things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden, in summer is to spend a day or afternoon at Liseberg Amusement Park.

Liseberg is located in Central Gothenburg and only allows a certain number of visitors to enter daily. Because of that, it’s a must to pre-book your tickets.

What’s great about visiting Liseberg Amusement Park during your trip to Gothenburg is that there are attractions for everyone to enjoy! If you’re a thrill seeker like me, you must ride Helix, Scandinavia’s longest and fastest rollercoaster; Balder, the best wooden rollercoaster in the world and AtmosFear, Europe’s largest free-fall.

In addition to thrilling rides, the park has children’s attractions, such as the coffee cups called Kaffekopparna and friendly rabbits roaming around.

Liseberg Amusement Park also has good food spots and fun events take place around Halloween and during the holiday season. You and your loved ones can enjoy live music and concerts at this fun hotspot!


A woman on the island of Vrångö on the Gothenburg Archipelago.

In addition to Gothenburg, you’ll also love:

I hope you all enjoyed discovering memorable summer activities in Gothenburg, Sweden. If you have any questions, please email me at info@browneyedflowerchild.com.

Basic Facts of Sweden:

Currency: Swedish Krona, Capital: Stockholm, Time Zone: Central European Standard Time

*Anything could happen during your travels. Always make sure you are insured in case there are unforeseen circumstances such as lost luggage/theft, natural disasters, personal liabilities and more. Click here to get insured for your next trip.

In addition, a great and secure luggage storage option for your summer Europe trip is Nannybag! It is easy to use; all you do is download the Nannybag app, type in the city you will be visiting, and when you plan to arrive and depart. At a small cost per bag, Nannybag will list the stores, restaurants, or hotels where you could drop your bag off in the city you are visiting.

Nannybag is also insured against theft, loss and breakage. It’s a convenient way to store your bags when you are traveling from one city to the next in Europe.

Shop my Gothenburg Look:

Click here to shop my Poshmark closet!

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2 Comments

  1. Kim Deer on May 3, 2024 at 12:03 am

    Gothenburg, Sweden looks so lovely. I really need to see this part of Europe. It looks like there are some really interesting museums to see when visiting Gothenburg! The architecture looks so beautiful. The Liseberg amusement park looks like so much fun! I need to get to Gotheberg. The restaurants look amazing too! Great blog on another beautiful city in Sweden. Love you, mom xoxo 😘

    • Taylor Deer on May 3, 2024 at 12:21 am

      It really is such a great city! I loved it!

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Taylor-Gothenburg1

The city of Gothenburg during summer.

Gothenburg, or Göteborg, is the second-largest city in Sweden and the fifth-largest in Scandinavia. It’s a fascinating city on the western coast of Sweden that blends history with modernity and cannot be missed during a Nordic summer trip. There are also many incredible things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden for all!

What makes Gothenburg one of the most epic European cities to travel to is that it’s classified as the most sustainable metropolis in the world according to the Global Destination Sustainability Index. It was founded in the 17th Century under King Gustav II Adolf. It shortly became one of the most prominent commercial fishing and shipbuilding hubs you can experience along the water and offers an incredible culinary scene.

Another reason Gothenburg is one of the best summer destinations is that it boasts an archipelago with many unique islands to explore.

I visited Gothenburg, Sweden with Caitlin of My Darling Passport at the beginning of July 2023. Discover what to do in Gothenburg during your Northern Europe trip.

**Please note that this blog post uses affiliate links meaning that if you make a purchase via my affiliate link, I receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. I only promote and talk about products and services that I have used and like.


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Things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden in Summer

Traveling to Visit Gothenburg, Sweden:

Enjoying the best things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden in summer.

Gothenburg is the perfect place to include in a Sweden itinerary! The airport to fly into for a trip to this incredible city is Göteborg Landvetter Airport.

It’s not the largest international hub, so if you’re traveling from outside Europe, you’ll most likely have a layover in Oslo, Helsinki, Amsterdam, London, etc. You can find affordable flights through Skyscanner.

In addition to taking a flight into Gothenburg, there are a plethora of public transit options within Sweden and Scandinavia. Before visiting this awesome city, Caitlin and I were in Stavanger, Norway.

If you’re like us and traveling from Norway, you can hop on a flight or take the bus from Oslo bussterminal to Göteborg Nils Ericson Terminal. It’s a three-and-a-half-hour bus ride from Oslo, Norway to Gothenburg, Sweden.

The train and bus stations are in the heart of Gothenburg’s Resecentrum neighborhood. Public transportation can be booked through Omio.

From Gothenburg, we traveled to the country’s eastern side, where we explored the Swedish capital, Stockholm. The high-speed train takes around three hours to travel from Gothenburg to Stockholm.

You don’t need to rent a car for all the best Gothenburg activities. However, you will need your own vehicle if you plan to visit rural areas in the Swedish countryside or even suburbs further from the city.

Just like Copenhagen, Gothenburg is a walkable and bikeable city! Since it is a larger metropolis in Sweden, you will need to take public transportation to certain areas. All of the city’s trams, trains, ferries and buses are operated through Västtrafik.

Please note that all public transportation is included when you purchase a ticket or public transport card on Västtrafik’s app. In addition to the app, you can also buy tickets at kiosks at Pressbyrån convenience stores, 7-Eleven stores or any grocery store.

During your time in Sweden’s second-largest city, you can purchase a single ticket from 356 SEK ($33 USD), a 24-hour ticket from 115 SEK ($11 USD) and summer tickets.

While we were in Gothenburg, Caitlin and I took the ferry from Saltholmen to the archipelago. One thing to note about the archipelago is that the islands south of the city are car-free, while the ferries to the northern isles allow cars.

We mainly got around by tram. The city trams date back to 1879, and nowadays, there are over 260 of them named after famous citizens. They are easy to use and a relaxing experience.

Another way to get around the city of Gothenburg during the summer is through rideshare or city taxis. Uber operates in this fantastic city.

Where to Stay in Gothenburg in Summer:

The Gothenburg canals in Sweden.

It’s no secret that when enjoying a summer trip to Gothenburg, the Centrum neighborhood within the canal ring is the best area to stay in. During our two nights in the city, Caitlin and I stayed at Radisson Blu Scandinavia Hotel. It’s in the heart of the city center near Central Station, the canals, The Palm House and Nordstaden Mall.

In addition to this property, there is another hotel of its kind in Gothenburg called Radisson Blu Riverside Hotel. You can also find other great accommodation options to suit all budgets, along with a plethora of rental properties.

Below are great options:

Luxury Accommodation: Hôtel Eggers

Boutique Accommodation: Dorsia Hotel

Mid-Budget Accommodation: Hotel Pigalle

Budget Accommodation: Backpackers Göteborg

Things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden: Must-Do Summer Activities

A woman exploring The Palm House in Gothenburg, Sweden.

As you plan your summer trip to this fun city, I recommend getting the Go City Gothenburg Pass, which will help you save up to 50 percent on all attractions.

The All-Inclusive Pass allows you to visit unlimited Gothenburg attractions. Starting at 469 SEK ($43 USD), you can choose between a 1-day, 2-day, 3-day or 5-day pass and easily download it to your phone on the app. What’s great about the Go City Gothenburg Pass is that you can choose your activities as you go!

Like other destinations in Scandinavia, the weather can be chillier during the summer months. I have packing options located at the bottom of this article. I suggest bringing a light jacket, sweater and long pants for cooler days and evenings.

Regarding summer weather in Gothenburg, Sweden, you can experience average highs in the upper 60s°F with average lows in the lower 50s°F and around eight days of precipitation in June; highs in the lower 70s°F with lows in the upper 50s°F and around nine days of rainfall in July, and average high temperatures in the lower 70s°F with average low temperatures in the mid 50s°F and around 10 days of rain in August.

There are many ways to make memories during a summer trip to Sweden’s second-largest city. Below are the best things to do in Gothenburg:

Enjoy the Haga District:

The charming Haga District.

The Haga District is a great place to head to when you first arrive in Gothenburg. It’s one of the city’s most charming and oldest neighborhoods and boasts the best coffee shops, boutiques, restaurants, flower stands and more.

The main street in the Haga neighborhood is Haga Nygata. Stroll through this area and make your way into the independent shops and cafés. Admire the historic buildings and timber wooden houses that feature the landshövdingehus style with brick and wood flooring.

One of the best things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden during winter is to stroll through the Christmas market here. There are also farmer’s markets that take place in Haga during spring and summer.

Haga, the first suburb in Gothenburg, was established in 1648 by the order of Queen Christina. It was located outside the fortified city and had been burnt down numerous times to provide a clear field to fight off attackers.

The Peace of Roskilde was established in the mid-17th Century so that Haga could become an area for trade and developing industry. It then was nicknamed Little London. When seamen and dockworkers settled in the area, it became overpopulated and had a bad reputation.

It wasn’t until the late 1970s that significant renovations took place in Haga, making it the idyllic area it is today. I recommend all history buffs sign up for a walking tour to learn more about Gothenburg’s history.

Savoring Hagabullen, a giant cinnamon bun from Café Husaren in Haga.

A must-visit in Haga is Café Husaren, home to the Hagabullen, a giant cinnamon bun! Locals and visitors have enjoyed this delicious treat since the end of the 1980s and it makes for a perfect breakfast or afternoon fika, which means a coffee break in Swedish.

Hagabullen is enormous, which is great for sharing! Caitlin and I visited this excellent location with our friend Katie from Katie’s Away, who lives in Gothenburg, and we loved everything this timeless spot had to offer.

In addition to the Hagabullen, you can savor Café Husaren’s famous carrot cake, as well as its delicious fruit pies, oat cakes, sandwiches, soups and salads. The coffee here is also comforting!

Eat at the Best Gothenburg Restaurants:

Kafé Magasinet in Gothenburg.

Even though this area of Sweden, is known for its scrumptious cinnamon buns, you must savor the open shrimp sandwiches, mackerel, cardamom buns, and, believe it or not, hot dogs with mashed potatoes!

Below are the best restaurants to eat at during your Gothenburg summer trip:

The famous fish church in Gothenburg.

Feskekörka: If you’re a seafood lover like me, one of the best things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden is to visit the city’s “fish church,” as stated in the name.

Feskekörka is an indoor fish market that resembles a Neo-Gothic church. It opened in the late 1800s and is one of the best places to buy and savor fresh seafood. You can purchase fresh shellfish like crayfish, lobster and crab, along with local catches like cod, salmon, herring, etc.

What’s nice about visiting Feskekörka is that there are also sit-down restaurants like Ekmans, Haldis Kök, Victor von G and Åstols Rökeri.

Kafé Magasinet: Located outside of Haga, in the Långgatorna neighborhood, this industrial-chic eatery, café and bar is perfect for socializing, remote work and enjoying a delicious meal and drink.

This trendy hub offers coffee, toasts, pizza, salad, wine, beer and cider. During our time at Kafé Magasinet, Caitlin and I enjoyed a glass of rosé and Aperol spritz and split a burrata pizza. Everything was tasty, especially the pizza!

Enjoying delicious pizza from Kafé Magasinet - one of the best things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden.

Da Matteo: If you’re looking for a great place to grab a cup of coffee while you make your way around the city center of Gothenburg, look no further than Da Matteo.

With multiple locations throughout the city, Da Matteo offers the best coffee and fika experience. Don’t forget also to try their freshly baked bread and pastries!

Norda: One of the best restaurants to visit during a summer trip to Gothenburg, Sweden is Norda. Based in a central location, near the train and bus stations, Norda is a beautiful Swedish and North American restaurant in the post office building.

This fine-dining restaurant serves delicious and fresh Atlantic fish, steak, renowned wines and more. Norda is also the perfect brunch spot in Gothenburg, boasting a scenic rooftop bar.

An open shrimp sandwich from Sweden.

Sjömagasinet: Situated on the waterfront in Klippan, Sjömagasinet is a Michelin-rated seafood restaurant in the 1775 East India Company warehouse.

At this rustic fine-dining restaurant, you can enjoy award-winning wines, fresh fish and shellfish, comforting soups and meat dishes. I had an open shrimp sandwich there and it was delicious!

Brogyllen Hamngatan: If you’re looking for a great brunch spot in Gothenburg City Centre, there’s no better place to go than Brogyllen Hamngatan.

This lovely patisserie and bakery is located along the canal and faces the Museum of Gothenburg. I had the coffee and soufflé pancakes here, which were delicious, but you can also get quiches, pastries, sandwiches, salads and seafood.

Explore The Palm House and Roses of Gothenburg:

Exploring Trädgårdsföreningen - one of the top things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden during summer.

Located in Gothenburg City Centre, The Palm House, or Trädgårdsföreningen, is a beautiful place to escape to in the city.

The Palm House is part of The Garden Society of Gothenburg, founded in the mid-19th Century. It’s one of Europe’s best-preserved parks from that time period. Visiting this beautiful horticultural society is one of the best free things to do in Gothenburg in the summer!

Before entering The Palm House, you must walk through the exquisite Rosarium! It’s one of the most fascinating gardens in Northern Europe and every summer, you can admire over 2,500 roses and 1,200 different plant species.

At this Rose Park, the roses grow together with perennials and ornamental grasses. There is also a Rose Oval consisting of 40 flower beds laid out in an oval shape. The difference between the Rose Park and the Rose Oval is that more modern ranges of roses are consistently renewed in the Oval.

During a visit to Trädgårdsföreningen, you must admire the beautiful King’s Garden by Jane Schul, The Sunken Garden by Nina Thalinson and Gert Wingårdh and the Persian Rug by Piet Oudolf. This lovely location also features captivating sculptures.

On a stunning summer day, you can picnic here. (This spot also has breathtaking foliage during autumn!)

The Palm House in Gothenburg.

Overall, The Palm House is one of the most “Instagrammable” places in Gothenburg, Sweden. It’s inspired by the Crystal Palace in London and boasts exotic plants and picturesque palm trees.

The Palm House has five departments: the Palm House, the Mediterranean House, the Camellia House, the Tropic House and the Water House.

While in The Palm House, you can admire 30 species of palm trees and tree ferns. The most popular ones here are the fishtail palm and the fan palm. The tallest palm tree is around 36 feet tall.

In the Tropic House, you’ll come across the cocoa plant, where every 1,000 flowers that grow on it become an exotic fruit. You can also find the pine palm tree here, which has existed for 160 million years.

The Water House is the most humid part of The Palm House. During summertime, you can admire the giant water lily, originally from the Paraná River basin in southern Brazil and northern Argentina. You’ll also find Spanish moss in this area.

In contrast, the Mediterranean House has the most dry and mild climate at The Palm House. As the name mentions, the plants in this area are from the Mediterranean and Canary Islands regions. You’ll find olive trees, mistletoe, figs and cork oak.

When strolling through the Camellia House, you can admire over 40 camellias around 60-70 years old. There are 10 different species in this area, including the tea Camellias sinensis and Camellias japonica.

In addition to picnicking in the rose garden, you can enjoy the onsite Rosencaféet or Café Grindstugan.

Another beautiful spot in the city to enjoy stunning gardens and plants is the Gothenburg Botanical Garden.

Visit a Gothenburg Museum:

One of the best things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden is visiting a museum.

Checking out a museum is one of the best Gothenburg activities. If you’re wondering what to do in this city on a rainy day, you must visit the below museums:

World of Volvo:

Volvo Cars is headquartered in Torslanda in Gothenburg. If you’re into cars, visiting the World of Volvo must be added to your Gothenburg itinerary. (Please note that the Volvo Museum was moved to the World of Volvo.)

Featuring Scandinavian architecture, the World of Volvo explores the history of the Volvo brand, showcases the most iconic Volvo vehicles and boasts an incredible event space. Click here for opening times and pricing.

Göteborgs Konstmuseum:

Also known as the Gothenburg Museum of Art, the Göteborgs Konstmuseum is the largest art museum in Sweden.

It’s an award-winning art museum with some of the most significant Nordic, European and international artwork. These talented pieces span the 15th Century to the present day and feature pieces from Anders Zorn, Rembrandt, Monet, Picasso and many more. Overall, around 70,000 artworks are showcased at the Gothenburg Museum of Art.

One of the top exhibitions to see when you visit this epic art museum is Vincent van Gogh’s Olive Grove, Saint-Rémy in Focus.

The Gothenburg Museum of Art is open Tuesdays and Thursdays from 11 am to 6 pm, Wednesdays from 11 am to 8 pm, and weekends and public holidays from 11 am to 5 pm. It is closed on Mondays and specific holidays like Christmas, New Year’s, Easter and Midsummer.

It costs 70 SEK ($6 USD) to visit the art museum for adults 20 years and older. There is free entry for children and teens 19 and under. Additionally, discounted pricing is available for those who have a Museum Card.

Göteborgs Naturhistoriska Museum:

The Gothenburg Museum of Natural History showcases the history of the planet and the development of human and animal life. What makes it unique is that you can also observe Nordic bird species!

Two epic things you can’t miss seeing at this fascinating museum are the world’s only mounted blue whale and the mighty African elephant. Don’t forget to check out the updated exhibitions!

You can visit the Gothenburg Museum of Natural History on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from 11 am to 5 pm and Thursdays from 11 am to 8 pm. The museum is closed on Mondays and there are irregular opening hours during public holidays.

It costs 70 SEK ($6 USD) to enter Göteborgs Naturhistoriska Museum for anyone 20 and older. Admission is free for kids and teens 19 and younger.

Maritiman:

Another interesting place to visit in Gothenburg is the Maritime Museum. It consists of 15 museum vessels, on which you can experience a day in the life of a seaman from the past.

While visiting Maritiman, you can walk through the submarine HMS Nordkaparen, check out the largest warship in Scandinavia – Jagaren Småland and savor Swedish waffles at Café Matrosen.

Universeum:

One of the most fun things to do in Gothenburg, especially if you’re traveling with kids, is to visit Universeum. It’s one of the most prominent science museums in Sweden.

Universeum offers various exhibitions, activities and shows. Some of the top things you and your family cannot miss are Legend of the Enchanted Reef, which dives deep into our underwater world (no pun intended); Vast, a 3D cosmic journey through outer space and time; and Chemistry of Life, an immersive show that educates visitors on living organisms.

Admire Amazing Views of Gothenburg from Skansen Kronan:

Enjoy the best views from Skansen Kronan.

The sun stays out later in the summer than in Sweden’s other seasons. If you’re looking for a great place to watch the sunset, head to Skansen Kronan. It’s an old fortification outside the Haga District in Risåsberget that offers spectacular city views.

Even if you don’t make it to Skansen Kronan for sunset, visiting it any other time is one of the best things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden because it boasts a lot of history!

Opening in 1700, Skansen Kronan was used for military purposes with 23 canons. During the 19th Century, it became a prison and then an emergency residence. Once the 1900s came around, Skansen Kronan became a military museum.

In addition to being one of the most important historical landmarks in Gothenburg, Skansen Kronan is an event venue that holds weddings, corporate parties, birthday celebrations and a Christmas dinner during the festive season.

Sail the Gothenburg Archipelago:

A woman on the charming island of Styrsö on the Gothenburg Archipelago.

If you’re looking for memorable day trips from the city center in summer, take the ferry to one or a few of the islands in the southern archipelago. It’s one of the leading things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden.

You can take the ferry from Saltholmen, which costs 65 to 100 SEK. From Central Station, take tram 11; Saltholmen is the final stop. Ferries run every half hour to an hour.

The Swedish islands that Caitlin and I visited were Styrsö, Donsö and Vrångö. To get to Styrsö from Saltholmen, you must take ferry service 281 or 282 to Styrsö Bratten. From Styrsö, walk over the pedestrian bridge to Donsö. Then, you’ll have to take ferry 281 to Vrångö and the same line back to the Saltholmen.

Styrsö:

The beautiful island of Styrsö.

Styrsö is a quiet but charming Swedish island with around 1,400 residents. This beautiful island is car-free, so I suggest renting a bike! (There is a small shop across from the Styrsö Bratten ferry terminal that will rent bikes at an affordable cost.) This picturesque island is also walkable!

One of the best things to do in Styrsö is to simply wander by foot or bike and admire the traditional wooden homes. I adore Scandinavian architecture and the islands are where you can see the best of it!

While in the Bratten neighborhood of Styrsö, you must enjoy lunch or a comforting fika at Café Öbergska. From there, head to Brattenbadet to admire the beautiful red bathhouses. You can cool off to a nice swim during a hot day in this area. Unfortunately, it was too chilly for us to get in the water during our time here.

Another adventurous thing to do on Styrsö is to enjoy a leisure hike to Stora Rös, the highest point on the island. It’s an easy 3.3-mile loop trail that takes around an hour and 15 minutes to complete. This trail is also great for bird-watching!

Donsö:

Exploring the southern archipelago - one of the best things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden in summer.

A pedestrian bridge separates Styrsö from the island of Donsö. Exploring this stunning destination is one of the best things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden during summer.

During your time on Donsö, you can wander aimlessly or bike ride. Located up the road from the Donsö ferry terminal is Donsö Havskajak, where you can rent bikes, canoes, kayaks and more. This idyllic island also has timber wood homes, picturesque bath houses and breathtaking scenery.

While on Donsö, you must enjoy the nature trails, such as the 1.5-mile Donsö Nature Trail loop, cool off with ice cream on a hot sunny day at Popsicle Café and swim at the Korsholmebacke bathing area.

Vrångö:

Mussels and fries from Fiskeboa on the island of Vrångö.

The island of Vrångo is the southernmost of the Gothenburg archipelago. Like Strysö, it’s a peaceful island with no cars and fewer than 400 residents. From Donsö, take ferry 281 to Vrångo.

There is no bike rental shop, so it gives you a reason to stroll the island and admire its natural beauty. The Vrångö Southern Loop is an easy 1.5-mile trail that is perfect to follow here. If you prefer to relax, I suggest doing so at Notholmen, which is a tranquil beach.

The highlight of visiting Vrångö is enjoying one of the best seafood dinners at Fiskeboa. It’s located on the waterfront of Fiskehamnen.

At this eatery, you can order at the counter and savor your meal along the water or in the glasshouse. I loved how this restaurant was decorated with buoys and fish nets.

Caitlin and I appreciated the smoked blue mussels with fries, which were incredible. We also had a refreshing glass of rosé and a piece of blueberry pie for dessert.

Discover a more in-depth island hopping guide for the Gothenburg archipelago.

Celebrate Swedish Midsommar:

Midsommar in Sweden.

Summer in Gothenburg is incomplete without experiencing Midsommar or Midsummer. It takes place during the summer solstice, the year’s longest day. Since Sweden experiences more daylight during summertime, locals have a reason to celebrate and party the night away!

Over 10,000 years ago, in agrarian times, the Swedish people arranged celebrations to welcome summer and the season of fertility. During a Midsummer celebration, the Swedes dress in traditional clothing, women wear flower crowns, and everyone comes together to dance, sing, eat and drink.

Midsummer in Sweden usually takes place on a Friday between June 19 and June 25. In addition to Gothenburg, Midsommar parties also happen in Swedish Lapland, where the sun doesn’t go down at all during the summer due to being above the Arctic Circle; Stockholm, the capital city; and Darlarna, which is in central rural Sweden.

Make Memories at Liseberg Amusement Park:

Liseberg Amusement Park during summer.

Another one of the best things to do in Gothenburg, Sweden, in summer is to spend a day or afternoon at Liseberg Amusement Park.

Liseberg is located in Central Gothenburg and only allows a certain number of visitors to enter daily. Because of that, it’s a must to pre-book your tickets.

What’s great about visiting Liseberg Amusement Park during your trip to Gothenburg is that there are attractions for everyone to enjoy! If you’re a thrill seeker like me, you must ride Helix, Scandinavia’s longest and fastest rollercoaster; Balder, the best wooden rollercoaster in the world and AtmosFear, Europe’s largest free-fall.

In addition to thrilling rides, the park has children’s attractions, such as the coffee cups called Kaffekopparna and friendly rabbits roaming around.

Liseberg Amusement Park also has good food spots and fun events take place around Halloween and during the holiday season. You and your loved ones can enjoy live music and concerts at this fun hotspot!


A woman on the island of Vrångö on the Gothenburg Archipelago.

In addition to Gothenburg, you’ll also love:

I hope you all enjoyed discovering memorable summer activities in Gothenburg, Sweden. If you have any questions, please email me at info@browneyedflowerchild.com.

Basic Facts of Sweden:

Currency: Swedish Krona, Capital: Stockholm, Time Zone: Central European Standard Time

*Anything could happen during your travels. Always make sure you are insured in case there are unforeseen circumstances such as lost luggage/theft, natural disasters, personal liabilities and more. Click here to get insured for your next trip.

In addition, a great and secure luggage storage option for your summer Europe trip is Nannybag! It is easy to use; all you do is download the Nannybag app, type in the city you will be visiting, and when you plan to arrive and depart. At a small cost per bag, Nannybag will list the stores, restaurants, or hotels where you could drop your bag off in the city you are visiting.

Nannybag is also insured against theft, loss and breakage. It’s a convenient way to store your bags when you are traveling from one city to the next in Europe.

Shop my Gothenburg Look:

Click here to shop my Poshmark closet!

2 Comments

  1. Kim Deer on May 3, 2024 at 12:03 am

    Gothenburg, Sweden looks so lovely. I really need to see this part of Europe. It looks like there are some really interesting museums to see when visiting Gothenburg! The architecture looks so beautiful. The Liseberg amusement park looks like so much fun! I need to get to Gotheberg. The restaurants look amazing too! Great blog on another beautiful city in Sweden. Love you, mom xoxo 😘

    • Taylor Deer on May 3, 2024 at 12:21 am

      It really is such a great city! I loved it!

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