Scandinavia is a huge and beautiful region to explore but getting around can be a challenge. So we share how to travel Scandinavia.
A holiday in Scandinavia is many travelers’ dream, so if you managed to plan a whole trip around it – you are already halfway there. The countries are incredibly wealthy in culture, historical background, and all kinds of entertainment. However, you might need help navigating everything in general, so let’s look through our tips and advice on how to travel around Scandinavia.
By far, the most popular means of traveling in Scandinavia is public transport! Norway, Sweden, Denmark, and Finland all have very well-developed systems and a wide choice of transportation facilities and vehicles, allowing you to choose whichever suits you best.
That includes way more than just buses or trains. Being close to so many waterbodies, they find comfort in traveling by boats, ferries, and passenger express ferries. What at some places can be considered poor-people choice, public transport in Scandinavia is at the high end of things. There are great metro, bus, and train systems, ones you can check at scandictrains.com.
While the capital cities, Oslo, Stockholm, Copenhagen, and Helsinki, have better-developed, high-profile railway systems, the smaller towns, and more remote areas are easily reachable by buses.
However, keep in mind that in the winter season, when the roads get particularly difficult to drive through due to heavy weather, public transportation systems might not function as smoothly as they usually do, but they will still get you places!
Coach networking system in Scandinavia is one of the most thorough in Europe, especially the one in Finland, covering over 90% of public roads. Therefore, riding the coach is one of the most exciting ways to travel through Scandinavian countries overall since you get to enjoy the scenic backdrop, and while trains might not reach every remote corner, you can be sure that the coach most definitely will!
As you might already know, bike culture in Scandinavia is extremely popular, as residents choose it not for environmental purposes only, but they genuinely like crossing long distances and reaching places by them!
And, actually, we have to understand. There are plenty of cycling routes in the city, all comfortable and completely safe for you to stay in the traffic, but avoid the cars. Additionally, settling on a bike is one of the best ways to see the remarkable scenery and general cityscape. So, you get a free tour and a quick ride!
It is possible to rent bikes at most places of accommodation and tourist offices. In comparison to the overall high pricing in Scandinavia, renting a bike will cost you surprisingly adequately, so do not hesitate if you need a quick, comfortable joyride!
This one must make a lot of sense to you! Especially if you want to explore the rural part of Scandinavia. If you are full of energy and not at all scared of long walks and the fatigue from hiking, you must pack your good walking shoes and get ready to use them!
There is a vast number of hiking trails all around Scandinavia, and if you choose to take a walk across some parts of Norway, you should know that their hiking routes are particularly demanding! Not as much in complexity, but in length.
So, as fun as walking and hiking might be, just prepare for long hours and thousands of steps. A bottle of water may come in handy!
Obviously, you can always rent a car and be king of your own time! No schedules and timetables to follow, so you can relax and go exploring at your own pace. This is the most favored choice for families that come to see Scandinavia. It is much more comfortable to put the kids in the car and drive on without a care, rather than watching over them on trains, or buses, where seats next to each other are not always guaranteed.
There are both ups and downs to renting a car, though. As comfortable as it is, this is quite a luxury in the grand scheme of things. The fees are quite high, so even if you do decide to go for it, really make sure you rent for the day you need it, not for the whole week!
The roads are literally perfect in most Scandinavian regions, but you must be extra careful during winter. While the main roads are usually closed due to heavy snow, the highways are still open to use, so you must beware of precipitation and strong winds.
Other than that, enjoy the views of your ride and the smoothness of Scandinavian roads!
Yes, we have talked about hiking, but what about the simple yet invigorating act of walking? And we do not mean long trails and hiking roads, but the sidewalks and city streets.
While it is quite doubtful that you will get up and walk straight from Sweden to Finland, you can try out your luck within the country’s borders.
Avoid taxis and buses if you can, and rather enjoy the clear, crisp air of the Scandinavian climate – a good, long walk is the best way to wake up and get ready for a day full of exploration. We also suggest stopping for a chat or a meal at some local place, if only to rest for a bit.
There you go – your ultimate guide to navigation across Scandinavia. Hopefully, this will help you make the right choice when deciding which is the best for you and your holiday plan. So have the best time and the best Scandinavian trip!
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- We LOVE this camera for our travel photography.
- For a cheap, easy, and compact camera, we use this to vlog and take photographs.
- We use this travel drone (but make sure to check drone laws in your chosen destination first).
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What to pack
- No matter where we travel, I always take these trusty hand sanitizers and a mini first aid kit.
- We love these toiletry bags (especially great for smaller bathrooms) and choose a laptop bag like this as our hand luggage.
- We keep our devices charged on long travel days with these lightweight battery packs and bring these worldwide travel adaptors on all our trips.
- I still struggle not to overpack so stick to using an expandable suitcase like these and always take my trusty luggage scales to avoid being charged at the airport.