Random bonus country time – Sweden!


Our trip to Scandinavia was supposed to only really cover two countries – Denmark and Norway. Still, when I learned that we were going to be visiting a friend of my wife’s up in Helsingør, Denmark – just a 20 minute ferry ride across the way from Helsingbor, Sweden – I became somewhat hopeful of adding that to the trip.  That hope was realized yesterday as we headed over to Sweden on the ferry for lunch and to wander around for a couple hours.

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One of the many ferries serving the Helsingborg/Helsingor route.

The ferry ride between Helsingør and Helsingbor is quick, cheap and easy, with three different companies plying the route and ferries running several times per hour.  And at less than $10 for a return ticket the ferry is actually one of the more affordable things in Denmark.  We hopped on Scandlines’s ship Hamlet (cute, right?) and cruised across the sunny calm waters and docked in Sweden about 20 minutes later.

Entry into Sweden consisted of just walking off the boat.  No immigration checks.  No customs.  Nothing.  Even if we had wanted someone to check out our passports or if we had taxable items on which we needed to pay duty that would not have been possible as those desks were not manned at the terminal.  So we successfully invaded Sweden.  We then set off to wander about downtown Helsingborg and grab some lunch.

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Locals enjoying the beach near the ferry terminal in Helsingborg, Sweden.

Helsingborg, Sweden is a much prettier town than Helsingør, Denmark so wandering around was rather more enjoyable.  The shopping areas seemed to be a bit more upscale rather than focusing entirely on selling alcohol to Swedes who cross over to Denmark to avoid taxes on their booze (truly the backbone of Helsingr’s economy).  There are also the typical tourist sites, including the 500 year old church and remnants from an old castle.  Both are quite well done, actually, and worth wandering over to see.
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The only remaining bit from the castle at Helsingborg.

A rose out in front of the medieval church.  Lots of roses all over the region.

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One of the many shops in the shopping area of Helsingborg

SBM_7715We also dropped in to the local Italian restaurant for a surprisingly good lunch.  My preferred choice was not available and so I ended up with a curried shrimp over pasta, decidedly un-Italian but still rather delicious.  And the carbonara was pretty delicious.  As an added bonus, I also got to sample the local beer, a lager by the name of Spendrups.  Nothing to write home about, but it certainly qualified as cold, wet and beer, three things that I needed at that point.

Overall I must say that Helsingborg is definitely worth the visit.  It is a fun, quaint town and has more to offer than Helsingør, assuming that you’re not looking for Hamlet’s castle.  Plus it meant that I got another new country on this trip which is always a good thing!

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Seth Miller

I'm Seth, also known as the Wandering Aramean. I was bit by the travel bug 30 years ago and there's no sign of a cure. I fly ~200,000 miles annually; these are my stories. You can connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

2 Comments

  1. Not just an invasion….I wasn't thrown out so I consider it a conquering expedition. I'll be known as King Seth now. I accept all contributions, honorariums and genuflections. 😀

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