5 Things I’ve Learned About Lund, Sweden in 5 Days

IMG_13281. Sweden is BEAUTIFUL.

From cobblestone streets to ivy climbing up brick buildings, there is not a building or street corner that doesn’t catch your eye. What strikes me most about this gorgeous city is the architecture. I have yet to find an “ugly” building. I am convinced no such thing exists here. It honestly seems like there’s a castle on every corner (I counted five castle-like buildings on my way to the grocery store). Everything is so green and full of life here that you can’t help but smile at the natural beauty all around. There have been two separate occasions where I actually have stopped to smell the roses because they are just that potent from the other side of the cobblestone street that I couldn’t help but take a closer whiff. IMG_1235There is so much I have yet to see and already I am blown away by the beauty of this town. It is as if I am walking down the streets that my great-great-great-grandfather once roamed. The old-town architecture with it’s pink and yellow houses, wood-checkered walls, and bright blue skies is simply breathtaking and to think that I am lucky enough to spend five months living and exploring in this town still leaves me speechless.

2. You can walk everywhere.

You best put on those boots that were made for walking because that’s just what you’ll do! Nearly everything is accessible within a 10-20 minute walk which is so nice and convenient. Sure, when you’re lost for 45 minutes and carrying a 15 pound backpack and rolling a 40 pound suitcase in each hand over IMG_1214uneven cobblestone streets with an orthopedic foot brace that goes up to your calf and running on virtually 4 hours of sleep in the last 35 hours, yeah, walking doesn’t seem too fun. But when you’ve woken up to the sun shining through your window and the promise of a new and exciting day, walking around the city and getting lost seems like the most amazing way to explore your brand new surroundings. And it is. Not only is everything accessible by foot in Lund, Sweden, but it is beautiful to walk through as well. I have definitely found my new favorite means of exercise.

3. The Swedes do not deserve their reserved reputation.

Every single Swedish person I have had the pleasure of meeting thus far has been kind, welcoming, and accommodating to my 3-word knowledge of the Swedish language. From cashier clerks, to waiters, to new roommates, everyone has been sweet and helpful, which has made this transition infinitely easier than I anticipated. I would say, “hej dΓ₯!” to the stereotype that Swedes are reserved, shy, and reluctant to interact with you, as my experience has been quite the contrary. In fact, let’s all make an effort to say, “bye-bye!” to stereotypes in general as they serve no purpose other than to promote false beliefs and negativity.

4. The Swedes sure love their candy.

Okay, you caught me. I guess I am generalizing (aka perhaps stereotyping Swedes) when I say that they love their candy. But oh my! I have seen more candy stores and varieties of candies than I have ever seen in my 20 years of existence in America! If you can think of the strangest combination of foods, the Swedes have probably made a candy out of it. That being said, I have not actually tried any of their candy (yet). While some of it looks quite strange, the majority looks amazing and I am sure is fantastic! Bottom line, there are a million different types of candies to choose from here in Lund, and I may or may not attempt to try them all. πŸ˜‰

5. Being restricted is actually quite liberating.

Because I do not have a Swedish phone plan, I can only use my phone when I have access to wifi, which basically means I only use my phone when I am in my room. Sure, the coffee houses have wifi, but why be on your phone when you could be reading a good book or enjoying fika with a friend? It turns out that this very restrictive phone use has been one of the most liberating experiences of my life. I have already made a core group of friends within the last five days, and that is more than I can say during my entire first two years at college in California. The fact that I am not constantly checking my phone for the latest feed or retired old twitter quote has liberated me immensely. IMG_1175I feel like I am no longer dependent upon technology, and that I can just roam around the town taking in the beauty and culture around me all while being immensely, incredibly content. I have had great conversations with even greater people, and I have finally broken down my self-conscious barrier that had always kept me from talking to new people. If my phone worked, I’m sure I’d continue to hide behind it like I have all of these years. I do not have that luxury while I am out and about, and as a result I have explored my incredible surroundings and have made some awesome friendships.

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38 thoughts on “5 Things I’ve Learned About Lund, Sweden in 5 Days

  1. Annie

    I’m spending this semester in Lund as well, moving on 18 August! So good to read your kind of “first impressions” 😊, made me all excited to start exploring it!
    X

    Liked by 1 person

  2. If you’re interested in meeting a new friend, just let me know! 😊 I’ve lived here my whole life, but your post made me realize that I don’t really appreciate Lund as much as I should….

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Ian

    Oh and I forgot, let us know what you think of all the salty licorice – we’re fans here in Scandinavia but others seems to dislike it (djungel vrΓ₯l, turkisk peppar etc)

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Cade Delaney

    I’m unsure if you guys have read up on the history of Lund.
    If not, I could maybe meet you guys up and give you a short tour through the city and tell you about some of its history?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That would be absolutely amazing!! My friend (also from the states) and I were just talking today about maybe visiting a museum to learn more about the history of Lund and Sweden in general. We would love that!! πŸ™‚

      Like

      1. Cade Delaney

        Well, how about you add me on Facebook and we could talk this through?
        Cade Can Delaney, shouldnt be too hard to find.

        I’m unsure about your plans but I’m free almost the entire comming week so I guess that could maybe be a good time to do it?

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Stefan Bergman

    When the November rains hit, with sleet at 1 degree c and howling winds, you will learn the meaning of the southern Swedish dialect word “rΓ€ligt”!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. casperdanielsson

    Hi! My name is Casper Danielsson and I’m the web content manager of Lunds student newspaper LundagΓ₯rd. I really like your blog, and I’d like to get in touch with you, but I cannot find any contact info. It would be great if you could contact me on casper.danielsson@lundagard.se when you get the chance.

    All the best,

    Casper Danielsson

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Hello and welcome to Lund!

    Yes, as Sara pointed out: charge your batteries now because come November-February we are on the other end of the spectrum when it comes to our beauty, openness and warmth, both literally and figuratively. πŸ˜€

    The upside is that in Lund and Scania we get out of that slump before everyone else in the country. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! I will definitely take that advice!! πŸ™‚ As a California native I’m used to living in 75 F (I think that’s 23 Celsius) year round so this winter will definitely be an adjustment for me! But I’m looking forward to experiencing seasons (even though that means rain and cold) since we don’t really have them in Southern California. I’ll be sure to soak up the sun while I can!!

      Like

  8. Cherry

    I was in Lund more than two decades ago and the way the author has described it here is how I still remember the lovely place! I hope to be able to go back sometime sooner rather than later. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Elias Ingraham

    It’s great to read such positive first impressions of Sweden and Lund! I’m half Swedish and half American, and will be studying at Lund also. I look forward to reading future posts from your blog. Here’s to a wonderful Fall semester!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Joseph

    Welcome to Lund!

    If your interested in radical politics, or just Lunds cheapest coffee and tea, be sure to check out our cozy book cafΓ© India DΓ€ck. We are located behind the AF-borg on the super-quaint street Stora Algatan.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I’m sorry, you can’t stereotype Swedes from Lund (which btw, for practical purposes was the capital of Denmark during the Middle Ages). Lund and Scania is different in many aspects and there’s unique Scanian architecture, nature and actually also still a Scanian culture.

    Like

    1. I think you are completely correct! I did my best to acknowledge that stereotyping is silly; I’m sorry that point did not come out strong enough for you. I am definitely looking forward to learning as much as I can about the history of Sweden as whole (I’m enrolled in a Swedish History course) and the many different regions, cultures, and histories that have shaped the development of Sweden. Thank you for the information! πŸ™‚

      Like

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