July 12, 2012

Stunning Sweden

Grebbestad, a colorful fishing Village along the west coast of Sweden

Sweden is gorgeous!! Oh my goodness. I had so much fun on this roadtrip with my dad! Thanks so much to Volvo, the West Sweden Tourism Board, and SAS Airlines for making this possible! I know I told you guys how this all came up (it was crazy!) before we left, but just in case you missed it, I’ll save you a click. :) Volvo, the West Sweden Tourism Board, and SAS Airlines have teamed up to form this incredible program called CarPlusVacation. The way it works is if you buy a Volvo through their Overseas Delivery Program, they will send you on a free trip to Sweden. Yes! Really! After this all came up, I realized I actually know someone who did it, and they loved it! They provide you with two complimentary roundtrip tickets with Scandinavian Airlines System (SAS) and one free hotel night in beautiful Gothenburg, Sweden, where the Volvo factory and museum is located. Once there, you pick up your new car from the Volvo factory and head out on an adventure through Sweden! And when you’re done, they’ll ship your car back home to you for free. So cool!!

Volvo and Sweden CarPlusVacation Program

The CarPlusVacation partners invited me to come experience this program so I could help get the word out about this unique promotion. Here is the Volvo they hooked us up with for our roadtrip. Good thing Sweden is so far away, or I would’ve driven this thing right on home with me! :) It was pretty swanky! This car was perfect for a roadtrip. Wow. It had so many neat features — including a handy light on the side window that would illuminate if someone was coming up in your blindspot and could not yet be seen by the mirror — but my absolute favorite feature was the cruise control. At first, it’s just like any other cruise control, where you set your speed and and go. But here’s where it gets awesome. If traffic slows down, or someone pulls out in front you, this car will automatically match the speed of the car in front of you. It’ll slow down, keep a safe distance, and match whatever speed they’re going. Automatically. As in by itself. No more stopping, setting and resetting the cruise control. Then when traffic clears up, it automatically speeds back up to your original setting. Ah-mazing. I loved that.

Unfortunately Kevin had to work and couldn’t come with me to Sweden, but I knew the perfect partner in crime to bring with me on this trip. My dad! :)

Crab and Mackerel Safari with Everts Sjöbod in Grebbestad

We both absolutely love road trips, so this was perfect for us. My dad loves to drive and loves planning road trips. When I was growing up we drove cross country to Texas, through the midwest to Wyoming, up the east coast to Pennsylvania, and down the Florida coast to Key West. For my parents 40th anniversary, they took a road trip to Canada. From Alabama. He loves road trips! :) They didn’t know it when they invited me, but honestly the CarPlusVacation team could not have picked a more perfect person than my dad for this trip!! :) He used Google Earth and had all of our routes mapped out and memorized before the trip, making sure we took only the most scenic routes and even plotted out points of interests for me where he thought I might want to stop and take pictures. I need this kind of organization in my life! :)

Crab and Mackerel Safari with Everts Sjöbod in Grebbestad

The Sweden tourism board arranged some incredible, once-in-a-lifetime activities for us once we got there — which can all be easily booked through their CarPlusVacation program. Seriously my jaw was dropping as I read through the itinerary!! Our very first adventure took us up the west coast of Sweden to Everts Sjöbod (Evert’s Boathouse) in Grebbestad, Sweden. Brothers Per and Lars Everts took us on a crab and mackerel safari there around the many tiny islands in the North Sea.

Crab and Mackerel Safari with Everts Sjöbod in Grebbestad

My dad used to pull up crab traps with his dad, my PawPaw, so this was a fun and special activity for us both.

Crab and Mackerel Safari with Everts Sjöbod in Grebbestad

Okay, so not kidding when I say this guy was CRABBY! :) He was coming for me. You can’t tell from this photo, but his claw was about the size of my fist!! Hah. I see some fat, buttery crab claws in my future. ;)

Crab and Mackerel Safari with Everts Sjöbod in Grebbestad

Little starfish hanger-ons. :)

Crab and Mackerel Safari with Everts Sjöbod in Grebbestad

Per showed us a great route to take down the coast, stopping by some charming fishing villages, taking three ferries, and passing over a fjord.

Grebbestad, a colorful fishing Village along the west coast of Sweden

He also took us on a secret road to this gorgeous overlook of Grebbestad Harbor. I’ve marked it on the map for you down at the bottom of this post if you’re into that sort of thing! :)

Grebbestad, a colorful fishing Village along the west coast of Sweden

Stunning view from up here!

Fjallbacka, a colorful fishing Village along the west coast of Sweden

We had an incredible lunch at Evert’s Boathouse overlooking the sea. They served us their freshly caught crab, shrimp, crayfish, oysters and mussels with warm seaweed bread, organic butter, and horseradish cream cheese. Sounds weird, but it was delicious! And I have seriously never had shrimp like that before — I mean, I’ve had wild caught gulf and Atlantic shrimp before, but this! It was so amazing and flavorful!

Fjallbacka, a colorful fishing Village along the west coast of Sweden

Our next stop was the gorgeous, colorful, picturesque fishing village of Fjällbacka.

Fjallbacka, a colorful fishing Village along the west coast of Sweden

Wow. So, so charming here. I am in love with these rainbow houses!

Fjallbacka, a colorful fishing Village along the west coast of Sweden

There was an easy trail up to the cliffs over Fjällbacka to get the picture-perfect overlook of the village.

Fjallbacka, a colorful fishing Village along the west coast of Sweden

I took way too many pictures up there! :)

Fjallbacka, a colorful fishing Village along the west coast of Sweden

This delightful little village is totally a must-see if you are ever anywhere nearby.

Fjallbacka, a colorful fishing Village along the west coast of Sweden

I need to live right here!

Fjallbacka, a colorful fishing Village along the west coast of Sweden

Fjallbacka, a colorful fishing Village along the west coast of Sweden

Or here, in a house on this tiny private island.

Fjallbacka, a colorful fishing Village along the west coast of Sweden

Fjallbacka, a colorful fishing Village along the west coast of Sweden

Fjallbacka, a colorful fishing Village along the west coast of Sweden

Beautiful, beautiful village.

Fjallbacka, a colorful fishing Village along the west coast of Sweden

Fjallbacka, a colorful fishing Village along the west coast of Sweden

Fjallbacka, a colorful fishing Village along the west coast of Sweden

Colorful houses on the coast.

Fjallbacka, a colorful fishing Village along the west coast of Sweden

How fun would it be to hop on a boat and explore all these tiny islands of the archipelago?

Fjallbacka, a colorful fishing Village along the west coast of Sweden

Fjallbacka, a colorful fishing Village along the west coast of Sweden

Fjallbacka, a colorful fishing Village along the west coast of Sweden

Ahh.

Fjallbacka Panorama, a colorful fishing Village along the west coast of Sweden

Here’s my attempt at a couple of panoramic views from the cliffs overlooking Fjällbacka! Click on these to see a larger version.

Fjallbacka Panorama, a colorful fishing Village along the west coast of Sweden

Love. this. place.

Fjallbacka, a colorful fishing Village along the west coast of Sweden

As we made our way down the coast, we stopped at another bustling fishing village in Lysekil. Fun overlook here too.

Sweden Sunset

On our way to the villa where we’d spend our second night in Sweden, we caught this gorgeous view of the sunset as we were driving along the coast.

Sweden Sunset

I was a little worried I might not get to see one since we were so far north! :)

Sweden Sunset

But it turns out the sunset was right around 10 pm. This was at ten minutes til.

Sweden Sunset

I think I am in love with Sweden.

Sweden Sunset

After dragging myself away from the sunset, we drove not too far up the road and had to stop again when I saw this. Sunset in Sweden, ten minutes after 10 pm. Is this even real?

 


View Sweden Road Trip — Day One in a larger map

Here’s the map of our first day. We started at the green marker in Gothenburg, made our way up to the top yellow marker at Evert’s Boathouse, and ended at the red marker at Villa Sjötorp. If you zoom in, you can even see the boat path we took on our safari with the Everts bros! :) Zoom in and click on the points for more info, or click here to see a larger map with a list of all the points of interest.

Check out CarPlusVacation.com to find out more about the Volvo Overseas Delivery Program and use their interactive trip planner to pick out fun activities you’d do in Sweden! You can pick out your car, choose your activities, and submit your itinerary to their Roadtrip of a Lifetime sweepstakes to be entered to win the roadtrip you just planned. How amazing would that be?? :) Contest ends on August 15th, and I don’t think there are too many entries yet so your chances are probably good! :)

Can’t wait to tell you more about Sweden. Have a great weekend, friends! xoxo



See More Posts About: Travel

64 Comments






1
Vintage Paper Designs July 12, 2012 at 1:09 am

Looks Fantastic!

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2
Shelley Menhennet July 12, 2012 at 2:10 am

Ahhh! Your photos are just amazing. I love it when your updates arrive in my inbox. I know that ,even if just for a few minutes, I will be able to drift off somewhere else and look at a beautiful view, or drool over a delicious dessert, and forget about the chaos for a while. You are so lucky and thank you so much for sharing these amazing places!
Shelley

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3
Cristy July 12, 2012 at 2:31 am

Your pictures are un-real!! Looks like a fantastic vacation. What a great get-away. Lucky you!!!

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4
Sofia M July 12, 2012 at 2:44 am

Oh, the starfish!!!

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5
Ansam July 12, 2012 at 2:56 am

Wow, you visited Fjällbacka! Do you know about the crime novels written by Camilla Läckberg? They’re set in Fjällbacka. But not all of Sweden look like that. That’s an idyllic place =)

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6
Danni July 12, 2012 at 3:00 am

Looks like lot of fun. We want to go to Sweden and Norway by Camper one day too. Your pictures are stunning. I always enjoy looking at them. Specially because I also love to take pictures and road trips. :-) The Volvo is great. I like that Volvo Cross Country. It’s a really nice car specially because you got the 4×4 too. Greetings from Switz, Danni

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7
MaryAnn July 12, 2012 at 3:20 am

Beautiful country. I am glad you and your dad are having a great trip.

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8
Maria aka jakeline July 12, 2012 at 3:48 am

I’m so glad you liked it! I haven’t been that far south in a few years now. We usually go north on our vacations (my hubbie’s from Söderhamn). Your pictures sure shows the best side of the Swedish summer! I love them! I think I need to pack my family in the car (not a Volvo, but a SAAB) and go on a road trip!

You should check out Camilla Läckberg’s crime novels (as suggested above) if your into that kind of books. They are really great and set in Fjällbacka. I think they have been translated into English.

Lots of love, Maria from Sweden

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9
Erin @ Texanerin Baking July 12, 2012 at 7:28 am

Söderhamn?! Neat! I was an exchange student when I was 16 in Hudiksvall, which is Söderhamn’s little neighbor to the north. Hälsingland is the best. :) I’m jealous that you get to travel up north… it’s so nice, especially in the summer! Minus the mosquitoes.

10
Maria aka Jakeline July 12, 2012 at 12:39 pm

Oh Erin! That is so cool! How did you end up in Hudiksvall of all places? :P Yes, I’m born and raised in the Stockholm-area myself, but we always go to my father in law’s in the summer and, well as often as we can. He lives outside of Söderhamn in the teeny tiny village of Vallvik, which is right by the sea. It’s really great in the summer. The archipelago is awesome! Minus the mosquiotes, of course. ;)

11
Carla @ Carla's Confections July 12, 2012 at 5:04 am

I love the starfish! They are so adorable hanging on!!! Stunning sunset shots as always Amanda!!! <3

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12
Kathleen Spitz July 12, 2012 at 5:29 am

I had no idea how beautiful Sweden was. The pics are fantastic, and how wonderful to be sharing that trip with your dad. Thanks for sharing.

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13
Kathie Kirts July 12, 2012 at 5:45 am

What a fabulous trip. Your pics are beautiful. Glad to know that Volvo offers a comparable program as Mercedes and BMW… but going to Sweden would be wonderful.
Thanks for sharing your trip with your Dad and readers.
KSK

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14
Southern Gal July 12, 2012 at 6:25 am

Amazing! And that you got to share it with your dad makes it even more wonderful. The sunset photos are my favorite.

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15
Jodi July 12, 2012 at 6:40 am

Amanda, your photos are outstanding, thanks so much for taking us along on this trip through your photos. What a great experience to share with your dad.

Thanks so much for sharing with us.

Jodi

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16
Vera July 12, 2012 at 6:57 am

Once again you transport us to the place with your lovely photos! Sweden is so amazing, I want to go back someday. I only got to see a very small portion of that country and it was so unlike these photos. hehe

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17
Laurie July 12, 2012 at 7:19 am

Beautiful photos, as always. They are seducing me to add Sweden to a growing list of places I’d love to see if I ever get the chance! I really don’t know much about Sweden or it’s tourism industry. Are they happy to have tourists? Is communication (ordering a meal, buying something in a shop, etc.) something to consider? How were the roads and driving? In the meantime, I’ll have to start reading the Camilla Lackberg crime novels!!

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18
Amanda July 12, 2012 at 7:52 am

Hey Laurie! Everyone I encountered was so sweet and friendly. And everyone from cab drivers to waiters to shop owners spoke perfect English. The roads were great! Big. Lots of really neat bridges. They drive on the right side of the road, so no problems there. :) I would totally do it!! :)

19
The Mrs @ Success Along the Weigh July 12, 2012 at 7:34 am

Gorgeous! Someone is a lucky girl these days!

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20
Erin @ Texanerin Baking July 12, 2012 at 7:37 am

Your dad looks so happy pulling up that crab trap. :)

All of your pictures are amazing! I really need to learn how to use my camera and Lightroom. I’ve been to Sweden about 5 times and don’t have a single picture worth posting. And it’s really impressive that you got all of those pictures from just one day. I guess your dad is really an expert road trip planner! I can’t wait to see the rest.

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21
terri July 12, 2012 at 7:44 am

Beautiful photos.

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22
Joan Nova July 12, 2012 at 8:01 am

Stunning is right! What an amazing experience for you and your Dad! What a great offer from Volvo!

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23
TheFoodGospelAccordingtoRuth July 12, 2012 at 8:21 am

What an amazing trip! I am trying to plan a road trip up through New England and am so jealous that your dad is such a great planner….I could use his skills!

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24
Cookbook Queen July 12, 2012 at 8:23 am

Girl, you need your own travel show!!

Now my husband is trying to talk me into buying a Volvo…

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25
Kathy July 12, 2012 at 8:23 am

Fantastic pictures! Sweden has been added to my list of places to visit. Thanks!

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26
Tara @Unsophisticook July 12, 2012 at 8:34 am

Amazing photos, Amanda! Love that you were able to share this fun trip with your dad.

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27
Elizabeth Rhyneer July 12, 2012 at 8:36 am

Beautiful, Fantastic, Unbelievable and I want the car. Please tell me if you enhance the color
on your pictures or is it just that bright and clear there? The houses are just perfect in the colors
they paint them. Did you find out what color chips they used to make them all match? haha
Very nice and does your father work for Scott Bridge?

Elizabeth (¯`•.•´¯)¸.•´ ☆
.`•.¸¸.•´ ♥

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28
Susan July 12, 2012 at 8:37 am

Beautiful!!

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29
Stephanie July 12, 2012 at 8:41 am

Looks amazing! How wonderful you got to go on a trip just you and your Dad! What a gift.

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30
Sarah O. July 12, 2012 at 8:52 am

What a beautiful country! Those pictures are stunning and it looks like you had so much fun.

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31
Stephanie @ Our Marriage Adventure July 12, 2012 at 9:08 am

Good heavens Amanda – those photos. Sweden just needs to smack those up on their tourism board because those are reason enough to want to plan a vacation there. Given how far North you were – I’m curious what the average temperature was while you were there?

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32
Diane | An Extraordinary Day July 12, 2012 at 9:28 am

Amazing! Your photos are gorgeous. I love all those bright orange-red roofs! And the memory you created with your dad. Priceless. He must have been in his glory!!

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33
Beth July 12, 2012 at 10:04 am

What a special trip to have with your dad! It stinks that your husband couldn’t go, but what long lasting memories you will now have with your father! You can’t replace that! Cherish it forever, as life is too short!

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34
Ann-Charlotte July 12, 2012 at 10:18 am

Hej!
Thank you Amanda for writing such a lovely story from West Sweden. It was a pleasure to have you here. You are such a great photographer!! I love you pictures.
Many thanks & Tack!!

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35
Lisa July 12, 2012 at 10:30 am

Amazing pictures…I love all those cute little houses. I’m part Swedish, but since I’ve never been I suppose I can relate more to Swedish Fish. Hahah, that was a joke.

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36
Kathy Miller July 12, 2012 at 10:36 am

What an amazing trip for you and your dad. Such a beautiful place.

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37
Anne July 12, 2012 at 11:29 am

Amazing photography! Amazing colors! Thanks for always sharing, I truly enjoy your blog and your adventures. Happy you got to take this memorable trip with your dad.

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38
Sandy_in_MD July 12, 2012 at 12:22 pm

I think it is wonderful that you shared this adventure with your Dad. Sweden looks so beautiful – thanks so much for sharing your awesome photos and details of your trip.

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39
Karen Robertson July 12, 2012 at 1:03 pm

you have such a gift for the camera—what a great way to make a memory with your dad!

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40
aimee July 12, 2012 at 2:05 pm

i love sweden! love this!

also, are you ever home?! hahaha!

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41
Geneviève July 12, 2012 at 3:35 pm

Your pictures are amazing as always, thank you very much for sharing it!

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42
Kathleen F. July 12, 2012 at 3:46 pm

I just love your photos! They are spectacular! Thanks for sharing them. Aren’t road trips great? We are looking forward to our 11 hour road trip coming up in August, to Auburn AL! We’ll be helping our son move back to school. War Eagle!

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43
Tiffany Jackson July 12, 2012 at 3:52 pm

You have the most wonderful photos of everything, your photos make me want to take a trip

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44
Casey Dozhier July 12, 2012 at 4:57 pm

Beautiful pictures -another wow moment for you I am sure .

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45
Cary Jenkins July 12, 2012 at 7:25 pm

These pictues are fantastic!! Wow!! I was going to question Kevin’s employment until I saw your Dad went with you! Yes, color me green with envy at this point!!!

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46
Eileen July 12, 2012 at 8:17 pm

Thank you for your beautiful pictures – loved the vivid colors! Sweden is totally gorgeous! Would love to visit one day!

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47
Kim Hogan July 13, 2012 at 9:37 am

Stunning photos. You & your dad look like you’re having an amazing time. What an awesome memory to be making together. Thanks for sharing.

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48
melodee July 13, 2012 at 10:32 am

wow, totally amazing photos. thanks for sharing your adventure. you guys always have such great pix:)

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49
Kristie Blankenship July 13, 2012 at 10:40 am

Thanks so much for sharing! I’ve never seen the ocean or all these wonderful places you’ve been to. I love looking at your pictures because they are so beautiful and the colors just pop!

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50
Christina July 13, 2012 at 11:26 am

Looks like you and your dad had a great first day! Sweden looks like a beautiful place. I can’t wait to see more!! Your pictures are stunning–as always!!

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51
Sarah July 13, 2012 at 8:40 pm

Your dad sounds like a neat person. I recently took a fun (but less glamorous) road trip with my dad too. It is great to do things with your parents when you are an adult and are able to appreciate their wisdom and humor in ways you couldn’t as a child or teenager.

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52
Marissa July 13, 2012 at 9:01 pm

What an absolutely stunning place! You captured the beauty there, for sure! What an awesome trip compliments of Volvo :)

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53
marla July 13, 2012 at 10:21 pm

OMG!! I LOVE that you and your dad got to share all of this beauty and this whole experience together. Sweden is stunning and your photos captured all it’s glory!

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54
Elizabeth July 14, 2012 at 9:11 am

So jealous!!! Looks like you had a wonderful time! My paternal grandmother was Swedish, and I’ve always wanted to go there.

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55
Kristin @ The Chocolate Box July 15, 2012 at 11:26 am

Loved reading this and viewing your stunning photos! I haven’t been to the west coast of Sweden much, I have to make sure I do in the future. Gothenburg is a lovely city though, and I would encourage anyone who want to visit Sweden to go there! The archipelago outside Stockholm is gorgeous as well, but if I was to make a recommendation about which city to visit, it would have to be Gothenburg. People are more laid-back there.

Also, I just wanna say thanks for saying such great things about Sweden. I know your blog gets a lot of visitors, so hopefully more people in America and around the world will now know more about our beautiful country, and maybe even visit here one day. :)

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56
ryane July 15, 2012 at 6:27 pm

You make everything look amazing. I so appreciate you sharing your trips with us. thanks again and again

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57
Alison @ Ingredients, Inc. July 16, 2012 at 5:11 pm

fabulous Girl! Congrats!

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58
Kaity July 17, 2012 at 11:00 pm

these photos are gorgeous! makes me really want to visit Sweden now. I hadn’t given much thought to the country before, but now it’s definitely going on my wanderlust list :)

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59
Becca July 18, 2012 at 4:10 am

Beautiful photos! ♥♥ So glad I stumbled across your blog. I love traveling and have been wanting to go to Sweden, I think I will really like it. Also my boyfriend’s brother is living there so we can visit him :) Thanks for sharing this!

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60
Valerie, Belgium July 31, 2012 at 3:44 pm

Hello Amanda,
I read your blog for, maybe, 3 years, not everyday but when I have time…
I never comment but today, I can’t leave it without talking !
This road trip is wonderful ! I rode all the posts you wrote about it…
Sweden is not so far from Belgium but I never went there… this is a dream for me to go there one day.
The pictures you made are amazing, colorful and full of tenderness !
I preciously note all the places you visited for, maybe, my next trip :)

Thank you !

Valerien from Belgium but with her heart in the US ;)

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61
Karen September 4, 2012 at 1:22 pm

Amanda,

A friend just sent me a link to your blog and Swedish posts. I can see I won’t be getting my work done this morning! I love your photos–nearly as much as I love Sweden. I took my 14th trip there this summer but haven’t been up the west coast farther than Gothenburg, so now I know where I’ll be heading on trip number 15! I’ve blogged about my recent trip, but my photos are just point-and-shoot. Looks like I could learn a lot from you, so I’ll be following along now. Thank you for showing the beauty of Sweden!

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62
Delishhh September 13, 2012 at 9:53 pm

Hi I am Swedish, i am from Gothenburg but i live in Seattle now. I just found your posts on Sweden and it was so much fun to read, and your photo’s are just gorgeous. I just want to say thank you for creating such a great picture of Sweden. Awesome posts!

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63
eva December 15, 2012 at 11:28 am

Hallo Amanda,
durch Zufall bin ich auf Eure Seite gestoßen und bin von deiner Schweden_Reise fasziniert. Ich beabsichtige mit meiner Tochter im Sommer 2013 auch mal nach Schweden zu reisen. Du hast ja genug Informationen hinterlassen und ich werde mich daran orientieren. DANKE

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64
Cleu September 27, 2013 at 11:24 am

Maravilhosas as fotografias, que lugar incrível,parabéns.

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