Where Stockholm has its Dalarö, Gothenburg its Marstrand and Helsingborg its Viken, Umeå in Åheden has its very own refuge for city dwellers who want to breathe the cleanest air and live the simplest life.
Ängsvide is a low growing rice-like shrub, the bark is beautifully gray-brown. Ängsvide grows on pine moors, in forest edges and meadow slopes. There are two subspecies of the plant that are sometimes considered two separate species, therefore we have let it inspire the design with a two-color front.
When you pass an oversized cheese slicer along the E4 in Västerbotten’s coastal land, you know that you’ve ended up right. There is only one place on earth where the Västerbotten cheese can be made. Right here, in Burträsk.
Over 400 years after they were first built by farmers who needed somewhere to spend the night in connection with Sunday’s church visit, 405 cottages still remain. Since 1996, Gammelstad Church Town in Luleå has enjoyed a place on UNESCO’s World Heritage List.
Is there any Swedish place name that evokes more immediate feelings than Ensamheten (The Loneliness)? No matter how much melancholy the name entails, Ensamheten does foster great strength and power. (Yep, two world champions in arm wrestling come from here.)
In Standard Swedish, the word ”fara” is used solely when someone makes an extended trip. You can, for example, ”fara” to Australia. In the north, however, you use ”fara” for any kind of trip, whether it’s to the mountains, to the office or your next-door neighbor.
The north of Sweden is in many ways progressive, but not so much when it comes to how the language evolves. Where others make efforts to use gender neutral pronouns, people in the north still refer to most things as him. ”Where is the car?” ”I put him in the garage.”
In Swedish, there are many different words used to cover all meaning of the English verb ”put”. In the North, there is one short word that fulfills the same inclusive function as ”put”: He.
It was not until the seventies that the high-lying coastline between Härnösand and Örnsköldsvik began to be called the High Coast. Today, it is well deservedly one of Sweden’s fastest growing tourist destinations.
The best thing about Norrland is the unpredictability. Like when fine culture moves into a sheep house. In the small village of Holmnäs outside Umeå, a well-attended opera performance is held once a year in the sheep house where the acoustics send a libretto echoing far over the meadows in the bright summer night.
People of the North generally do not care all the much whether the grammar is one hundred percent adequate or whether the one you’re in dialogue with is slightly offended. If you don’t feel like doing something, you let them now by bluntly saying so: ”jag ids int” (I cannot be bothered).
Keeping things simple is of the essence for people in the north. As long as you make yourself understood, skipping out on a letter or two when speaking and/or writing is not a big issue. Inte means not, int means the same.
There is an affirmative expression – or perhaps more of a sound – that is completely unique for northern Sweden. And no, there is no proper way to spell it. Tutorial: form your lips as to prepare to whistle, inhale swiftly but carefully. There you have it. Use it generously.
A mitten, knitted with yarn and with a significant cross pattern, was all it took for a small village far north of the Arctic Circle to make a name for itself in wide circles. But then again, those mittens are something else.
The big lake outside Vilhelmina, where every year someone seems to be breaking the biggest char-record, has a name that sounds very much like a Swedish toddler trying to speak English.
Nalta means little. In Vänsterbotten, there is a proverb laconically clarifying how nalta is best used: Harta borti harta jer brano, harta borti he, he jer nalta. (You may want to Google it, or better still, ask someone from Västerbotten).
Who doesn’t want to check in at a ”kurort” (health resort) at any time in their lives? This beautiful Swedish word that rings so much more holistic well-being than the more contemporary spa. The outlet of the island Nordanskär in the Kalix River was already in the 19th century Sweden’s, and perhaps the world’s most northerly kurort.
We’ll eat, you’ll cook. So it goes, the chant (ramsa, in Swedish) that is taught to Swedish children in school to remember the names and order of rivers in Halland. To remember the name of the dark water that forms a tributary to the Umeå River, no need to chant. It’s called, in short, Ramsan (”The Chant”).
Today a desolate nature reserve, yesterday a gathering point for the fishermen and seal hunters of the area. To visit the island of Renskär in the Kalix archipelago and its well- preserved boulder block maze, is to make a dramatic guest play back in time.
If the bridge from Haparanda to Seskarö was anywhere other than in Tornedalen, it would have been one of Sweden’s most photographed buildings. And for anyone who associates the archipelago the one outside Stockholm alone – in the archipelago outside Haparanda there is a whole, and everything but crowded, island world to discover.
In the summertime, the view of the Vindel River is what makes Siksele one of the most stunning places in the Norrland countryside. In the wintertime, the same river is covered with ice and non-profit forces in the village maintain a winter road over the river. Simply because it can be done.
Outside Storuman is Stensele, a small village in large forests. In the mighty wooden church, one of the largest in the country, besides Queen Kristina’s Bible, there is also a copy of the world’s smallest Bible, small as a stamp.
We found paradise a few nautical miles outside the coast of Piteå. A vast sandy beach, a dock in the shape of a lagoon, a rich bird life and fishing to die for. Oh, and a bonus: the Västerbotten coastline tracks more hours of sun in the summer than any other pace in Sweden.
Welding – Svetsa in Swedish – is a fabrication process that joins materials by using high heat to melt the parts together and allowing them to cool, causing fusion. If you live in the north of Sweden and don’t know how to weld – it might be a good idea to consider moving somewhere else.
Where in Sweden you are from, decides how you use the word ”where”. In Standard Swedish, there are two different ways of using the word: ”var” and ”vart”. In the North, the, to amusement for people in southern Sweden, the Swedish language is less refined. Here, they simply replace ”var” and ”vart” with ”vars”, which covers covers both meanings.
Vippvedel is a rare flower that grows on c alcareous mountain slopes from Härjedalen to Tone lapland. The first find is documented from Lule lappland in 1807. We have had the small, shy and rare flower portrayed as a recessed detail in a classic pilot frame.