Visiting Gothenburg with kids

I just replied to a booking inquiry for a group with young kids. I love showing our young visitors around town. As the father of a ten-year-old (next week) and a family who loves to travel, I know that kids and adults have different outlooks on travel, and what to experience at a destination. Here are a few things to consider and plan for when you visit Gothenburg with kids.

Kids get bored more easily

My son and I at the amusement park. He loves it.

The attention span of a child is not that of an adult. Every parent knows that. As a guide, I’m mindful not only to include their perspective in my narration, but also to make sure not to talk too much, or too long at a time. Including the kids in the process is vital.

Kids are smart! And they will usually happily go with everything, even walking tours (preferable to sitting still in a car for longer periods of time actually.) But frequent stops are crucial. Kids will also need comfort breaks and snacks to refuel their energy. Gothenburg offers plenty of everything.

Blending adult and kid activities

Adults can have fun at the amusement park, too. Make sure to balance kid and adult activities.

A city tour is normally geared toward adults with anecdotes about history, art, or culture. When you have kids with you, it’s important to also consider activities that are geared toward them. That doesn’t always have to be on a day-to-day basis but could be spending one day for adults (wine tasting) and one day for the kids (amusement park.)

These are just examples. Ideally, you can do everything because when everybody gets their fill, we’re all happier for it.

Gothenburg with kids

The rainforest at Universeum

Sweden is by definition a child-friendly city. Our amusement park is the largest one and by far the most beautiful one in the Nordics. It celebrates its centennial this year and with its focus on all age groups caters to younger kids, thrill-seeking teens, and adults alike.

Right next door is our science museum, Universeum, which is almost entirely catering to children. Its huge aquariums and the rainforest are guaranteed to be a hit with the kids.

For Swedish-speaking very young visitors there’s the Alfons Åberg (Alfie Atkins) Museum right next to the central station for book-loving kids. Finally, while I haven’t been there since its reopening, I have heard great things about our maritime museum and its huge new aquariums. There’s obviously more, a LOT more… Ask us!

Places to eat and drink with kids

Gothenburg with kids: Moreno Pizza in Gothenburg

Kids usually love burgers, and I highly recommend Max, which is a Swedish burger chain serving really good burgers. Kids love it. When it comes to refueling sugar and energy, there’s a café in Haga serving their famous and humongous cinnamon rolls. I’ve yet to meet a child who’s not licking their lips at the sight of them.

If pizza is the preferred choice, I’d suggest visiting the world’s “largest” pizzeria (their claim!) which is a converted movie theater.

Every kid is different

Our son loves sugar, too!

My son loves sushi, but none of his classmates do.

He has a thing for smoked salmon and loves to see modern dance at our opera house. None of his friends do.

He obviously also loves all of the above. This is just to say that kids are different, and your child may like something else entirely.

Ask us and we’ll find something that’ll make them happy, too. This is why Gothenburg Tours is different from the rest. We cater to your needs. Whatever they might be!

Welcome to Gothenburg!

Welcome to ancient Gothenburg

I promised you the other day that I’d showcase some of my personal favorites in this versatile city. While celebrating its Quadricentennial this year, Gothenburg has a history spanning back thousands of years.

First things first: GAII

June 4, 1621, is an important date in our city’s history, as its fourth incarnation is founded by king Gustav II Adolf. Having long served as a bridgehead into the North Sea, as all lands north and south of our city were either Danish or Norwegian, each previous attempt at founding a city was destroyed by Danish forces (who at the time also ruled Norway.) This is why we only celebrate our Quadricentennial this year, late again.

You need to know about the Ice Age

About ten-thousand years ago, the ice retreated from Sweden’s West Coast, allowing for people to migrate north. And they did. All around Gothenburg, burial mounds, stone ships, cairns, stone carvings, and even paintings bear witness to an age largely forgotten by history. Here are but a couple of examples from ancient Gothenburg to show you:

Rock carvings on Hising Island

These are difficult to find, but no less impressive once you stand there, witnessing the work of art from people thousands of years ago.

A ship carved into the rock. They are difficult to see as they aren’t filled in with color as e.g. the carvings at the World Heritage site in Tanum.

These carvings, boats, and bowl pits bear witness to a time when the ocean shore was located in a very different place and while we know little about that time or why people carved into the rock, to be able to be in such physical proximity to our ancestors’ works of art is exhilarating

One of the country’s most impressive rock paintings

A few miles further north, on a cliff, someone (or several) artists painted animals, fish, and other symbols right above the seashore. They aren’t easy to get to but most impressive to see in person.

A moose or possibly a reindeer, fish, waves, and other symbols were painted on the rock face just a few feet above the seashore thousands of years ago. Stunning to behold.

The islands tell the story of changing civilizations

In Gothenburg’s archipelago, there are many signs of how civilization changed over the millennia along with the changing coastline, as the land rises from the ocean after the literal weight of the ice had been lifted. Here you can visit where the first summer guests arrived some six-thousand years ago, bronze age burial sites, all the way to the medieval times where fishing created a short but vital period of wealth. While on the island of Styrsö, why not learn about how these past few centuries have seen a radical change in the island’s topography and appearance. That, however, is a different story.

There is so much more…

There are hundreds of sites to visit in ancient Gothenburg, and while this is not for everybody, if you love to see things that most tours don’t even mention, let me know. I’d be more than happy to take you to places most guides aren’t even aware of.

Welcome to ancient Gothenburg!

Gothenburg is ready for a new season

Here’s what we have to offer for you

Is the sea beckoning you to visit Gothenburg?

As Gothenburg celebrates its Quadricentennial this year, two years late, a local tradition, there are quite a few things happening in town. There will be a big festival in June to celebrate the city’s 400th anniversary of being founded (by the way not for the first time…) by king Gustav II Adolf, known as Adolphus the Great abroad. Our amusement park, Liseberg, was founded for the Tricentennial 100 years ago (we were late then, too, as the city was founded in 1621), will showcase a brand new hotel (with a water park opening next year) and a new roller-coaster.

Come to Gothenburg for the Quadricentennial, and stay for what we have built over four centuries

We have stunning forests if that floats your boat.

Yes, plenty will be going on this year, and they’re great reasons to come. However, we would like to invite you to stay and linger for everything else we have to offer.

In coming blog posts I’ll highlight some of my personal favorites in Gothenburg and surrounding West Sweden, regardless if it is culture or nature, sea or forest, architecture or food that makes your heart beat faster!

Welcome to Gothenburg in 2023. We’d love to show you around!