The Top Things to Do and See in Gothenburg, Sweden

Gothenburg, Haga. Cafes, bars, restaurants and shops on Haga Nygata in the Haga district, Gothenburg, Sweden
Gothenburg, Haga. Cafes, bars, restaurants and shops on Haga Nygata in the Haga district, Gothenburg, Sweden | © Ian Dagnall / Alamy Stock Photo
Jasmina Kanuric

The second largest city of Sweden, Gothenburg was ranked as 12th most inventive city by Forbes magazine. Home to design academy Volvo and Gothenburg International Film Festival, discover the top 10 things you can’t miss in the city. Have a coffee at the highest tower; visit a tropical rainforest; shop for vintage clothes in Haga district; or try local fish specialities at Feskekörka fish market.

Have a fika in Haga district

One of the oldest districts in Gothenburg, Haga Nygata is a pedestrian zone lined with charming, country style, wooden houses. The well preserved houses are known for their distinguishing design with a stone ground floor, followed by two floors made of wood. Here you can find many shops and cafés. Stop for a traditional fika break and enjoy a cup of coffee with a cinnamon bun. Try the famous local pastry Hagabullen, which is a plate sized cinnamon bun!

Skansen Kronan

Skansen Kronan was built in 1697 as a hilltop fortification to defend the city against potential Danish attacks. In the past, the fortress has been used as a prison and military museum, while today it houses a restaurant and conference center. Next to the fortress are old army barracks, where you can find a summer café. Sit down and enjoy one of their homemade cakes or ice cream. Don’t miss out on great views over the city and harbor from the hill.

Fish market

As Gothenburg is a harbor city, it is logical that seafood is one of most popular foods here. Don’t miss the opportunity to taste some of local specialties at the indoor fish market Feskekörka. The market attracts attention because of its unusual, church like architectural design. It was built in 1874 as an experiment in structural design to build a building with no pillars. Today, it is filled with fishmongers selling fresh seafood, and restaurants where you can enjoy prepared dishes.

Explore Southern Archipelago

From Saltholmen tram stop you can board a boat, which will take you to the southern archipelago islands. There are over 20 islands in the archipelago, where you can go on a seal safari, enjoy sailing or join a boat excursion. Explore the island on foot or with a bike, as no cars are allowed on the southern part of archipelago. See the picturesque scenery and charming villages. The oldest one is Byn, meaning village, dating back to 1752.

Gothenburg Museum of Art

Gothenburg’s Konstmuseum or Museum of Art exhibits one of the finest art collections of Nordic and international artworks in the region. See the works of Carl Larsson, Albert Edelfeld, Bruno Liljefors, Rembrandt, Monet and others, all under one roof. Stop by to see photo exhibitions at the Hasselblad Center or the romantic postmodernism exhibitions that just opened. City Theatre and Concert Hall are located just around the corner of the museum too, so it’s perfect for a proper day out.


Liseberg is Scandinavia’s biggest amusement park, located just outside of Gothenburg. Enjoy one of the 42 exciting rides and attractions. Go on the Liseberg Wheel for spectacular views on the surrounding area, or try Balder, one of the biggest wooden rollercoasters in the world, measuring 36 meters at the highest point and with 70 degrees on the steepest fall! During summer months, Liseberg often hosts concerts as well.

Kronhusbodarna and the old City hall

Gothenburg’s old City Hall was built in the mid-17th century. Located behind the Gustav Adolf Square, Kronhuset is one of the oldest buildings in the city. Even though the exterior is built with red bricks, beside that and the ceiling, the city hall was built entirely of wood. It has six stories, and in the past it has also served as a warehouse for military equipment. Walk around the courtyard, where multiple other smaller buildings from the same period are located. Called Kronhusbodarna, the area is filled with cafés and stores selling chocolate, clocks, pottery and glass.

Enjoy 360° views on top Guldhedstornet

Nils Einar Eriksson designed the Guldhedstornet water tower, which opened in 1953. At 130 meters height, this is the highest point in Gothenburg. Come for a cup of coffee, tea or shrimp sandwich at the café located on top of the tower. Take your time and enjoy the spectacular view on the city, spanning from downtown and the harbor to the archipelago and close forests. If the weather is nice, you can see Vinga island and the fortress on Marstrand in the distance.

See the largest Science Center Universeum

Universeum is the largest Science Center in Scandinavia. Located over seven floors, you can explore a real rainforest, experience life sized dinosaurs and see one of the largest aquariums in Europe. Get to know Swedish wilderness or go on safari with monkeys. Don’t miss the science and forensic laboratory or the space exhibition. Universeum Café offers a great brunch menu, stop here before you start the tour.

Shop till you drop

Searching for vintage clothes, new fashion trends or looking into famous Swedish interior design, you can find it all in Gothenburg. Visit the largest shopping center in Scandinavia in Nordstan, or walk around Avenyn district for affordable street shopping. Haga district is perfect for vintage shopping. Explore Nudie Jeans and Myrorna for eco shopping and stop by Artilleriet and Röhsska to find out everything about the new trends in home décor and design.
Jasmina Kanuric
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