7 Gorgeous Sights Across Scandinavia

Kayak through the mountains, hike around a fjord, explore a medieval castle, and do so much more in Scandinavia.

Scandinavia is a region officially made up of three countries: Norway, Sweden, and Denmark. 

However, there’s an argument that Scandinavia reaches beyond those three countries and should include Finland, Iceland, and the Faroe Islands as well. Sometimes the whole group is referred to as the Nordic countries.

These nearby countries are similar in important ways. According to Encyclopedia Britannica, all six of these countries have “thinly populated northern regions, a relative wealth of fish resources, long life expectancies, and high levels of literacy.”

Here are seven sights for nature and city life across those six countries: Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, and the Faroe Islands.

Odense, Denmark

Frozen Nyhavn canal in Copenhagen, Denmark

From Copenhagen, pictured above, you can get to Odense in one hour by a fast train or two hours by car. This city is known for its most famous former resident: Hans Christen Andersen, who was the brilliant mind that created The Little Mermaid, The Ugly Duckling, and many more fairytales. 

In Odense, visit the home where Hans Christian Andersen grew up and take a tour of the Hans Christen Andersen House Museum where you’ll find interactive exhibits and beautiful gardens. Other sights in Odense include the Egeskov Castle, the harbor, and the art museum.

Find more information about Odense here.

Helsinki, Finland

Helsinki skyline

Helsinki is a stunning city that can’t be missed during your time in Scandinavia. Check out architect Alvar Aalto’s home, located in the beautiful Munkkiniemi neighborhood. Take advantage of Helsinki’s bike paths and cycle to the Hakaniemi Market Hall for a delicious lunch. 

Make sure you take the time to try out a sauna or two while you’re in Helsinki. Visit Loyly, which is one of the most famous public saunas in the city. Take a dip in the freezing cold water of one of its pools and then head to the sauna for some warmth and steam. 

Find more information about Helsinki here.

Blue Lagoon, Iceland

Bathers in the Blue Lagoon, Iceland

If your idea of vacation means relaxing and receiving the ultimate spa treatment, then Blue Lagoon is the Scandinavian destination for you. The Blue Lagoon is a geothermal spa on the Reykjanes Peninsula in southwest Iceland.

To take a dip in the Blue Lagoon, you’ll have to spend about $60 for entry. You’ll also receive a silica mud mask and one drink. To enjoy all the amenities of the spa, be prepared to spend quite a bit more. But if you’re looking for a relaxing and fantastic Scandinavian vacation experience surrounded by stunning natural landscapes, you can’t beat the Blue Lagoon.

Find out more about the Blue Lagoon here.

Torshavn, Faroe Islands

Torshavn is the capital of the Faroe Islands, which officially belong to Denmark, and the town is located on the coast of the island Streymoy. It was originally founded in the 1200s but did not grow until several centuries later. Named after the god Thor, Torshavn is still a small town of about 20,000 residents. 

But just because it’s small that doesn’t mean there’s not plenty to do. Visit the lighthouse at Skansin and explore the 16th-century fort there. If you’re traveling with kids, make sure to feed the ducks at the Viðarlund plantation. No matter your age, there are plenty of guided activities and tours to take that will show you what the Faroe Islands have to offer.

Find more information about Torshavn here.

Read More: Four Stunning and Unique Winter Hotel Experiences

Kalmar, Sweden

Visit this beautiful Swedish city by the sea to step back in time. History buffs won’t want to miss Kalmar. In medieval times, it was one of Sweden’s centers of power. 

These days, you can still see the evidence of its glorious history up close. “The cobblestone streets of the Old Town are lined with well-preserved buildings from the 18th and 19th centuries. This area is also home to the city’s crowning glory, Kalmar Castle, which started its days as a fortified tower in the 12th century before it was fashioned into a magnificent renaissance castle by King Gustav Vasa some four centuries later.”

Geirangerfjord, Norway

Seaside town in Norway

The Geirangerfjord area is famous for its beautiful fjords, which were carved out of the mountains by glaciers during the ice ages. You’ll be amazed by the rich greenery and soaring heights of the mountains in this region.

Check out the Fosserasa national hiking trail for stunning views. Climb up to see the Storsaeter waterfall and its enormous heights. Kayak through the mountains or zoom down a zip line and fly by the natural beauty all around you. If you’d rather not get quite so up close and personal, take a winter cruise to appreciate the region’s beauty.

Find more information about the Geirangerfjord area here.

The Aurora Borealis

The Northern Lights over the skies of Voyageurs National Park in northern Minnesota

One of the most famous sights in Scandinavia, the Aurora Borealis are the magical green Northern Lights that can only be seen from the northernmost points of the world and at certain times. 

In the Lapland region of Finland, you’ll have a great chance of seeing the Aurora Borealis in the autumn, winter, and spring. In fact, they’re visible for almost 200 nights a year in this northern area. Seeing the northern lights is said to be an amazing and even life-changing experience. 

Find out more about the best times to see the Aurora Borealis here.

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