For the past few years, Sweden’s second-biggest city has been embracing tourism in a big way, gaining an international reputation for its cool cafés, laid-back parks and world-beating shellfish. But despite its newfound popularity, Gothenburg retains a friendly, small-town feel, and with a little effort it’s easy to find places away from the tourist trail. Here are some of the more unusual options for spending time in the city, with opportunities to meet locals along the way.
Take the plunge
You don’t need to travel far beyond the centre of Gothenburg to find the Sweden you’ve seen in pictures, with big skies, green forests and rippling blue lakes. Delsjön, just to the east of the city, is a favourite swimming spot for locals during the summer, when the sun shines brightly until late in the evening. Start at the northwestern edge of the lake where there’s easy access to the water, which ranges in temperature from goose-bump chilly to surprisingly warm, depending on whether you visit at the start or the end of summer. There are lots of peaceful spots where you can dry off – beer in hand – on the sun-warmed rocks nearby.