Last updated: 09:25 AM ET, Wed July 11 2018
Stortorget place in Gamla stan, Stockholm (photo via adisa / iStock / Getty Images Plus)

Sweden

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The Kingdom of Sweden is a Nordic country on the Scandinavian Peninsula in Northern Europe. Sweden shares land borders with Norway to the west and Finland to the northeast. Sweden is also connected to Denmark by a bridge-tunnel across the öresund. The country's capital is Stockholm, which is also the largest city.

Stockholm is filled with various attractions, museums and also monuments. Gamla Stan, Stockholm's Old Town, is where the Swedish Parliament (Riksdag) and the Royal Palace are located. On the outskirts of Stockholm is Drottningholm Palace, a royal residence. In the city of Uppsala is an ancient university and cathedral. Malmo is known for its skyscraper, the Turning Torso. In Tanumshede, a town in western Sweden, is a concentration of petroglyphs covering a flat rock. Birka, situated on Bjorko Island, is an unusual archaeological site, displaying the culture of the Vikings. In Angermanland are The High Coast and Gotland with the scenic town of Visby, both listed as UNESCO World Heritage Sites. The Laponian area is a region of lakes, situated behind the Arctic Circle, with the Muddus Waterfall situated in Muddus National Park.

Famous Swedish dishes include Swedish meatballs, traditionally served with gravy, boiled potatoes and lingonberry jam; pancakes, lutfisk, and Smörgåsbord, or lavish buffet. Akvavit is a popular alcoholic distilled beverage, and the drinking of snaps is also popular. Flat and dry crisp bread is also very traditional.

Motorways connect Sweden, Denmark and over the öresund Bridge to Stockholm, Gothenburg, Uppsala and Uddevalla. The rail transport is privatized, but while there are many privately owned enterprises, many operators are still owned by state or municipalities. Operators include SJ, Veolia Transport, Connex Group, Green Cargo, Tågkompaniet, Inlandsbanan, and a number of regional companies. Most of the railways are owned and operated by Banverket. The largest airports include Stockholm-Arlanda Airport, 25 miles north of Stockholm, Gothenburg-Landvetter Airport, and Stockholm-Skavsta Airport.

Most of Sweden has a temperate climate, despite its northern latitude, with four distinct seasons and mild temperatures throughout the year. The country can be divided into three types of climate; the southernmost part has an oceanic climate, the central part has a humid continental climate and the northernmost part has a subarctic climate. Sweden is much warmer and drier than other places at a similar latitude, and even somewhat further south, mainly because of the Gulf Stream. In the capital, Stockholm, daylight lasts for more than 18 hours in late June but only around six hours in late December.

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Top ten reasons to cruise from Stockholm

Top ten reasons to cruise from Stockholm

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Continent Europe

Official Language Swedish

Population 9,234,209

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