Last weekend I was invited by the Tourism Office of Malmö to spend a few days in their charming city Malmö. The tour was organized in collabortion with my friend and fellow blogger Niki of My Scandinavian Home and I was up for a new discovery – it was my first time in Malmö! I did not know what to expect. So I was pumped with excitement – not only to discover Malmö in Sweden but also to meet some of my good ol’ blogger friends – Stefan from Trend Stefan, Agata from Passion Shake, Mette from Monsters Circus and Elisabetta from Italian Bark. Holly from decor8 was supposed to be part of the trip too, but had to cancel due to other obligations. But let me tell you more about Malmö! First let’s answer one important question: Where to stay in Malmö?
Hotel Duxiana: This boutique hotel is located right in the old town of Malmö and is very close to the central station. Upon arrival it takes roughly 10 minutes to walk there. This hotel is the best place to immerse yourself into Scandinavian design right from the beginning. The rooms are beautifully equipped and styled featuring a line-up of Scandinavian design classics and real plants. Moreover, you will sleep like a baby in the divine beds because this hotel is the extension of the renown Swedish bed design brand Dux. You can thank me later!
Here are five good reasons why you should visit Malmö in Sweden:
1) Mix of European Vibes: Malmö is located in the far south of Sweden, in a region called Skane. It’s proximity to Denmark makes it easily accessible through the Copenhagen airport. Additionally, Malmö is a very vibrant city with a big population of mixed origins. But not only the people add to a certain mix, also the city itself has a great mix of European vibes. To me, it felt a bit Swedish, a bit Danish, even a bit Dutch. You might wonder how come Dutch? Well, first of all the Netherlands are not that far away. But mostly I got this feeling due to the canals stretching through the city. They connect the city center with the port, industrial areas as well as residential parts. The canals meander through a green park with a windmill – I could literally see a loaf of Gouda around the corner. But then again I am a very imaginative person:-) Our captain Niki took us on a wonderful boat trip along the canals on a sunny Sunday morning courtesy of ‘Book a Boat’. Definitely something you should consider when in Malmö! It is so much fun!
2) Perfect Size: Size matters – and when it comes to a city weekend, a smaller size is what you should be aiming at. Why? Because it makes a weekend getaway much more pleasant! Malmö is a perfectly walkable city and offers sights, galleries, great shops, cool cafés and fine restaurants all in walking distance. The old town is a compact entity with cute little streets, small and colourful houses, lovely cafés. Speaking of cafés: When in Sweden, never miss the traditional fika time – a little coffee & cake break in the afternoon. I have two café tips for you:
Noir Kaffekultur: A very cool & urban little café in the old town. Great seating space outside, it has almost a Parisian vibe. Inside think of dark walls, the scent of fresh coffee and cinnamon rolls. Great for a little break!
Konditori Katarina: Very beautiful pâtisserie in the old town with a great selection of pastries, chocolates, and bread. Go for a cup of good coffee and a cardamom-cinnamon roll, so delicious! And very instagrammable!
3) Good Design: One of the main reasons for our visit in Malmö was the design scene. Malmö is a great place for anyone interest in Scandinavian design as well as art. Luckily, we had two experts on Scandinavian design in our group, Niki and Stefan, so we got a few first-hand insights into the history of Scandinavian design as well as its definition. Little did I know that Scandinavian design as we know it today was induced by the state in order to make Scandinavian dwellings brighter, better and healthier for its citizens! But let me give you a few top design addresses and shops to visit in Malmö:
Form Design Center & Shop: Located in a dream like courtyard, this gallery will satisfy all your cravings for art, design and Scandinavian craftsmanship. On three floors you can visit exhibitions of varying international artists, enjoy a coffee in the café, and shop Scandinavian and local design in the shop.
Olsson & Gerthel: A great design shop with renown Scandinavian design labels as well as designs by local creatives. I loved the ceramics and art in this place.
Formargruppen: This design shop unites the work of several local artists and desingers offering local arts & crafts. Great shop to find a unique souvenir or gift. Look out for nice ceramics there!
AB Smaland: Now here your vintage and plant loving heart will skip a beat! At least mine did! This huge concept store features a fabulous collection of vintage and contemporary items ranging from furniture over home textiles to decorative pieces. I had a huge crush on their vintage ceramics. Also swoon worthy is their plant shop and cute café space. Plan some extra time for this gem!
Grandpa: A pretty hipster mix of home items, stationery and fashion can be found at Grandpa. Funky name for a funky shop! Go there for the typical outdoorsy Scandi look!
Konsthall Malmö: Another great gallery if you like contemporary art. A good adjacent shop offers books on design and art as well as come creative postcards.
Florista: A beautiful florist with an extraordinary selection of flowers, plants and dried flowers. They also offer workshops to create wreaths – we attended a cool workshop and created our own dried flower wreaths.
Blomster Pigan: Another great florist with great flowers, plants, and pots to take home!
Roy & Son: In case you feel the urge for a hipster haircut or barber service, go to Roy & Son. You will be served drip coffee and listen to vintage records.
4) Good Food: As much as I love design, I also loooove good food. So this is a crucial factor too when choosing a travel destination. In a nutshell: Malmö did not disappoint on that level either. I enjoyed some delicious treats while in Malmö. Here are a few great addresses for you:
Bastard: This Michelin starred restaurant is focused on nose-to-tail food with a Scandinavian twist and earthy flavors. Very popular among Malmö citizens. Think of open kitchen, bar area, dark industrial style. And good and delicious plates!
Raw Food House: A great address for an organic lunch in town. Healthy food choices are on offer and the atmosphere is airy, bright and relaxed. It can get crowded at noon though.
Mineral: Very urban, very cool, very young – this restaurant looks like a creative hub for young chefs and is very popular among a younger, hip crowd. My personal highlight: the huge Ficus plant indoors. Ha!
Smak: Smak means ‘taste’ in Swedish and they are not short of delicious tastes here! Next to the Konsthall Malmö, this is a great option for lunch. Don’t be fooled by the canteen like system – the food is exquisite!
Malmö Saluhall: This market/food hall is a safe option if you are unsure what you want to eat. A wide selection of food stands and indoor restaurants offer culinary delights. And afterwards you can stroll away and do some food shopping for home too. Look out for delicious local chocolates!
5) Green Spaces: Another reason why you should consider a visit of Malmö are the abundant green spaces in Sweden’s third largest city. As a coastal town there is already plenty of nature and water around. The canals stretching throughout the city add more natural vibes to the city. Additionally, the city has several parks to enjoy and relax in the midst of greens. Lush and centrally located is the ‘Slottsträdgarden’, the ‘castle park’. The park offers playgrounds, a café, gondolas to enjoy the canals, greenhouses for plant lovers, and even a windmill. Opposite of it is an old cemetery in a park-like ambiance, and even though it might sound bizarre, but I love to stroll through old cemeteries. Malmö has a great balance of urban vibes and laid-back green spaces so it’s a great weekend escape for anyone looking for a bit of city buzz and nature alike.
This tour was organized by Malmö Tourism. As always all opinions and photos are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands who support this blog!
Photography by Igor Josifovic, hotel room & Grandpa shop picture by Agata Dimmich, group and gallery pic by Stefan Nilsson