It’s hard to travel to a foreign country and return empty-handed. Souvenirs continue to be a favorite way for people to bring back a little piece of the country they have visited, carrying with it a piece of the culture as well as a story. Sweden has no shortage of souvenirs representing significant parts of their culture, whether they be artistically, historically, or culinarily influenced. You’ll find all kinds of trinkets and toys, candies and delicacies, accessories and tools to call your own or to gift to someone else. Look no further for a comprehensive list of what to buy in Sweden.
The Julbock, a crafted depiction of a goat, comes with a plethora of history and legend wrapped up in its long horns and promises to enchant both children and adults alike. Associated with Swedish Christmas traditions, you’ll want to pick up a julbock to decorate your mantelpiece, your tree, your table – they come in all shapes, sizes, and colors, so you’re guaranteed to find one you’ll like! If during your time in Sweden you happen upon the seasonal, gigantic julbock in Gavle, you’ll definitely want to snag one of its miniatures to immortalize your Swedish sightseeing!
2. Lingonberry jam
You won’t have to go searching high and low over the Swedish countryside to find lingonberry jam. This Swedish staple is easily available at any grocery store and is a perfect way to bring a touch of Swedish taste back home or gift to that culinary enthusiast in your family. Any Swedish native will tell you it pairs best with their classic Swedish meatballs, but it also makes a delicious topping on toast, served with steak, dolloped on top of porridge or oatmeal, or really anything you want to pair it alongside! Lingonberry jam is surely a great foodie souvenir.
3. Pärlan’s konfektyr
Before you go (and maybe a couple times even before that), you will want to drop into Pärlan’s Konfektyr for the sugar rush of your life. Salted caramels, rich chocolate truffles, and hand-dipped ice cream bars powdered with sugar keep guests coming back again and again. Stock up on quaint boxes of chocolates, handfuls of caramels, or jars of fudge sauce from the sweetest confectionery in Sweden and bring them home as gifts, or keep them locked up in your pantry for a little indulgence every now and then.
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4. Lovikka mittens
These little mittens are just as pretty as they are practical. They are authentically Swedish in their design, most being made with thick wool and lined with felt to keep out the harsh northern winter temperatures. The pairs come in a variety of colors, but are uniform in their diamond pattern across the cuff, making for a stylistic trademark identifiable no matter where you wear them! Pick up a pair for everyone in the family and stay cozy all season long!
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Schnapps is a distinctly Swedish alcohol, much like vodka to the Russians, and one the locals will chose again and again. Sometimes served with dessert, you’ll find it a rather sweet liquor, but pleasant in taste nonetheless. While in Sweden, you might find yourself sampling it once or twice at a restaurant, learning from the locals the proper way to enjoy it. Schnapps makes a great gift to bring back from your time abroad, one that can be enjoyed sitting around with a group of friends while relaying stories of your time skiing down the slopes!
Get yourself a pair of these handmade, hand-painted wooden clogs from the original Falsterbotofflan store in Falsterbo, Sweden. You can purchase a pair of the traditional shoes with signature Swedish designs painted across the top, from intricate flower patterns to quaint farm animals, or have them customize the paintings for a shoe uniquely your own. Designed with the difference of each pair of feet in mind, you’ll find a wide variety of shoe sizes and fits to choose from, so your souvenir will be not only gorgeous but also comfortable!
7. Toini Berg jewellery
Toini Berg is a Swedish native herself and takes pride in the intricate and delicate touches folded into the metals of her rings and bracelets. From earrings to rings to necklaces, you’re sure to find a piece of jewelry that speaks to your own personal style, for each piece tells a different story. Pick from a wide variety of stones and metals, styles and colors to suit your taste and bring home a beautiful, lasting piece of Swedish culture!
8. Cheese slicer
Called an osthyvel in its native language, this metal tool was originally designed by a Norwegian who decided that cutting cheese with a knife was far too difficult and thereby proceeded to find a simpler, easier method of slicing the product. The cheese slicer is a tool you will find in every Swedish kitchen, and is not only a great souvenir, but a useful one as well! Bring it home to your foodie friend so that they can serve the perfect meat and cheese board at their next party!
This Nordic candy will confuse and delight your tastebuds all at once! Saltlakrits is salty licorice, sometimes enjoyed plain, other times made into delicious confections! You will commonly find it laced into milk chocolate bars, giving you the incredible sensation of salty and sweet blended together! Or, buy it plain and enjoy as a snack on the go! Regardless of how you choose to sample saltlakrits, you’ll have to bring a couple of them back home to the states!
10. Dala horse
The Dala horse continues to be one of the most popular souvenirs to bring back from your time abroad in Sweden. This charming trinket originated in the town Dalarna, from whence it received its name, and continues to be an integral part of the culture, and identifying icon within the country. The Dala horse is not a difficult souvenir to find, as it rests on the shelves of most souvenir shops! Bring it home with you and continue to be enchanted with this little treasure!
Swedish gifts to bring back home
No matter what your personal taste is, you will find such a variety of gifts and souvenir ideas available in Sweden! Whether you want to bring home some of the country’s unique flavors, or an accessory to last a bit longer, Sweden’s souvenirs will not leave you disappointed!
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