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Skane, Sweden - Where Gastronomy, Natural Beauty, and Culture Meet PDF Print E-mail
Written by Debra C. Argen   

Sofiero Palace and Gardens, Helsingborg, SwedenTo experience the Skåne region of Sweden, it is necessary to drive, and drive we did, discovering along the way charming villages, castles, windmills, yellow  fields ablaze with color, and of course, the gastronomy for which the region is famous.


After spending a few days in Stockholm, Edward F. Nesta and I took a 65-minute SAS Airlines flight to Malmö, Sweden, where we picked up our rental car at the airport to explore the Skåne region, and cover as much as possible of the 130 km of the region that runs from north to south of the southern part of Sweden.

The first city on our itinerary to visit was Malmö, Sweden's third largest city with a population of 281,934, and is located a short 20 minute train ride from Copenhagen, Denmark, making it convenient to fly internationally into either Stockholm or Copenhagen. For visitors wishing to drive, the Öresundbron, a cable-suspension toll bridge that opened in July 2000, links Malmö and Copenhagen providing an efficient way to travel between the two countries.

Oresund Bridge
Oresund Bridge

Turning Torso, Malmö, SwedenArchitecturally interesting, Malmö is an intriguing mix of the old and the new, from St. Peter's Church (St. Petri Kyrka) built in the 14th century in the Baltic Gothic style, to the ultra-modern 54-floor luxury apartment building Turning Torso built in 2005 and designed by Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava, measuring 190 meters (623 feet) that is the tallest building in Sweden.

St. Peters Church, Malmö, SwedenThe ornate St. Peter's Church (St. Petri Kyrka) has one of the largest organs in Sweden and has organ concerts on Wednesdays at 12:30 pm. What we found to be particularly interesting during our visit were the important beautiful frescoes from the medieval period, on the vaulted ceiling of the chapel inside the church, and the stained glass windows are also very impressive. St. Peter's Church is open daily from 10:00 am - 6:00 pm.

St. Peters Church, Malmö, Sweden - FrescoSt. Peter's Church (St. Petri Kyrka)
Göran Olsgatan 4
Malmö, Sweden
www.StPetriKryka.se


Malmohus Castle, Malmö, SwedenCastles abound throughout Skåne, and we made a short visit to
Malmöhus Castle, which has a fascinating history. It is Scandinavia's oldest remaining Renaissance castle, was the first citadel, became a prison in the 18th century, and in 1937 became a museum that now houses the Art Museum, City Museum, and Natural History Museum.

Malmöhus Castle is open daily September - March from 12:00 pm - 4:00 pm, and from June -August from 10:00 am - 4:00 pm. Admission is charged, but is free for children ages 0-6 years old.

Malmöhus Castle
Malmöhusvägen
Malmö, Sweden
www.Malmo.se/Museer

salt & brygga restaurant & bar, Malmo, Sweden - Chef WorkingSkåne is well known for both its gastronomy and its keen focus on ecology. We had a wonderful lunch at salt & brygga Restaurang & bar, located by the waterfront, which opened in May 2001, where owner Björn Stenbeck's culinary focus is on organic and sustainable ecological practices.

salt & brygga restaurant & bar, Malmo, Sweden - FishWe enjoyed a lovely two-course lunch, where we began with the tempting salad bar, and continued with salmon on a rich pool of sauce on a bed of new potatoes and accompanied with grilled fennel and two asparagus spears. Read about salt & brygga Restaurang & bar in the Restaurants section.

salt & brygga restaurant & bar, Malmo, Sweden
salt & brygga Restaurang & bar

Sundspromenaden 7
Västra hamnen
Malmö, Sweden
Telephone:      +46 40-611-5940
Email:            
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www.saltobrygga.se

Malmö Pedestrian Area
Malmo Pedestrian Area 

Lilla Torg is the pedestrian shopping area of Malmö, and we enjoyed browsing in the shops, and stopping to admire the architecture along the café and restaurant lined streets. There is also a daily farmer's market located in the main square of the city.

Malmö Cheese Shop on Pedestrian Area
Cheese Shop

Hotel Duxiana - Malmö, SwedenWe stayed at the 22-room Hotel Duxiana, which opened in November 2007, where if you have always wanted to sleep on Sweden's famous Dux beds, then this is your opportunity to experience the beds and Dux furniture in an attractive hotel setting. The beds and furniture are available for purchase in the shop located on the premises. Although the hotel does not have a restaurant, they do offer a lovely complimentary ecological buffet breakfast.

Hotel Duxiana - Malmö, Sweden
Hotel Duxiana

Master Johansgatan 1
211 21 Malmö, Sweden
Telephone:      +46 40-607 70 00
www.HotelDuxiana.com

Åsa Orrmell of Wallåkra Stenkårlsfabrik, Malmo, SwedenIn addition to Skåne's culinary emphasis, the region is rich with ceramics. We drove 52 km (32 miles) from Malmö to the Ceramic District located in the northwestern part of Skåne, to appreciate the nuances of this fascinating art. We visited three artists to learn more about the history and tradition of ceramics. We began in Vallåkra with a visit to Wallåkra Stenkärlsfabrik founded in 1864, where the artist, Åsa Orrmell makes traditional salt-glazed stoneware.

Wallåkra Stenkårlsfabrik is open Monday - Friday from 12:00 pm - 4:00 pm, and on Sunday from 12:00 pm - 4:00 pm. There is also a restaurant onsite. Read about Ceramics in Skåne in the Arts section.

Wallåkra Stenkärlsfabrik
Drejarstigen
260 30 Vallåkra, Sweden
Telephone:      +46 42 99-031
Email:             This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it
www.Wallakra.com

Our next visit was to the atelier of the artist, Kerstin Tillberg, who takes a contemporary approach to her colorful and fanciful stoneware.

Edward and Kerstin Tillberg
Edward and Kerstin Tillberg

The atelier of Kerstin Tillberg is open Fridays from 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm, and on Saturday and Sunday from 11:00 am - 4:00 pm. Read about Ceramics in Skåne in the Arts section.

Kerstin Tillberg
Garngränd 6
S-260 42 Mölle, Sweden
Telephone:      +46 42 34-7662
Email:             This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it
www.KerstinTillberg.com

Lisa Wohlfahrt of Molle krukmakeri, Skane, SwedenOur last stop on the Ceramic Trail was to visit the artist Lisa Wohlfahrt who opened Mölle krukmakeri in 1997 and creates stoneware, and also makes earthenware garden pots. Read about Ceramics in Skåne in the Arts section.

Mölle krukmakeri
Mölle Hamnallé 9
Mölle, Sweden
Telephone:      +46 42 34-7991
www.Mollekrukmakeri.se

To appreciate the gastronomy of the region, we visited Vikentomater, where Mats Olofsson and his family have been growing tomatoes since 1980. During the course of our very tasty education we learned that there are over 300 varieties of tomatoes, of which Vikentomater grows an impressive 82 varieties.

Kjell and Mats Olofsson of Vikentomater, Skane, Sweden
Kjell and Mats Olofsson

Vikentomater, Skane, SwedenVikentomater is open Monday - Friday from 7:00 am - 6:00 pm, and Saturday from 9:00 am - 2:00 pm. On Saturdays, other farmers bring their products to sell including vegetables, apples, cider, chutneys, and cheese, at Vikentomater. Read about Vikentomater in the Gastronomy section.

Oskar Corianne - Vikentomater, Skane, Sweden
Oskar Corianne

Vikentomater, Skane, SwedenVikentomater
Rågången 41
260 40 Viken (2 miles north of Helsingborg)
Telephone:      +46 42 40-0035
Email:            
This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it
www.Vikentomater.se

Grand Hotel Molle - Seafood with SauceAfter having worked up an appetite after our morning exploration, we had a delicious lunch at the Seaside restaurant at the Grand Hôtel Mölle, where we sat outside on the terrace and enjoyed the view of the harbor, as well as a tomato salad with Grand Restauranttomatoes from Vikentomater, followed by a main course of salmon, shrimp, tuna, calamari, asparagus, eggplant, and new potatoes, garnished with fresh sage and chopped chives.

Seaside is open Thursday - Sunday. Read about Seaside at the Grand Hôtel Mölle in the Restaurants section.

Seaside at the Grand Hôtel Mölle
Bökebolsvögen, 11
260 42 Mölle, Sweden
Telephone:      +46 42 36-2230
Email:            
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www.Grand-Molle.se
www.CulinarySkane.com

Yellow Fields of Skane, Sweden
Yellow Fields of Skåne

We continued our travels driving 67 km (42 miles) north from Mölle to the exclusive seaside resort of Torekov located on the northwest point of the Bjäre Peninsula. Along the way we were rewarded with spectacular views of bright red barns dramatically set against primary yellow fields, horse farms where we saw an endearing scene of a mare and her foal, and a church with a rooster weathervane.

Scenery around Torekov, Sweden
Scenery of Torekov, Sweden

Driving along the coast we passed adorable long hair cows in the pastures that overlooked the sea, as we made our way to the Torekov beach. Parking our car, we strolled along the charming cobblestone streets admiring the houses with tiny gardens in full bloom.

Torekov, Sweden - Cow Torekov, Sweden - Mare with Foal 

Torekov was postcard perfect with boats bobbing in the harbor, and we took advantage of the beautiful day to walk along the pebble beach where Edward took time to skip a few stones.

Torekov Harbor
Torekov Harbor

We stayed at the attractive 54-room and 3-cottage Torekov Hotell, which opened in 2007. Combined with an excellent restaurant, and a 400-meter Spa where we indulged in pampering treatments, Torekov Hotell is a small gem in the Skåne region.

Torekov Hotell - Swimming Pool
Torekov Hotell Swimming Pool

A few of our dinner selections at the Restaurant at Torekov Hotell included chili marinated carpaccio sprinkled with herbs, pinenuts, and Parmesan cheese, and accompanied with a bruschetta baked with tapenape and a mélange of mixed greens; Asparagus & Tuna, which consisted of three thick and tender green asparagus stalks served with two cubes of marinated tuna sprinkled with truffle shavings, and dressed with salmon roe and truffle butter; and a luscious trio of rhubarb and coriander desserts.

Restaurant at Torekov Hotell - Carpaccio
Carpaccio

Read about Torekov Hotell in the Hotels and Resorts, Restaurants, Chefs' Recipes in English, Chefs' Recipes in Swedish, and Spas sections.

Torekov Hotell
Torekov Hotell

Torekov Hotell
Torekov Hotell

Själaviksvägen 2
SE-260 93 Torekov, Sweden
Telephone:     +46 431-47-1600
Restaurant:     +46 431-47-1636
Email:            
This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it
www.Torekovhotell.se

From Torekov, we drove 62 km (39 miles) south to Helsingborg, Sweden's fourth largest city, passing spectacular bright yellow fields of rape dramatically poised below a startling blue sky that resembled floral interpretations of the Swedish flag.

We began our exploration of Helsingborg at the gorgeous Sofiero Palace and Gardens. Sofiero Palace, built by Crown Prince Oscar in 1864, which later became the summer residence of his eldest grandchild Prince Gustav IV Adolf, (who became King Gustav IV Adolf in 1950), who started planting rhododendrons in 1907.

Sofiero Palace and Gardens
Sofiero Palace and Gardens

Salmon Rhododendron - Sofiero Palace and GardensThe gardens were spectacular with an impressive collection of more than 10,000 plants and more than 500 different varieties of colorful and rare rhododendron. We strolled through the gardens alive with color, stopping along the way to enjoy the interesting contemporary sculptures, which featured a different design on each side, as we made our way through the twisting turns, and up and down the stone steps of the tree lined paths. It was a tranquil way to pass the morning absorbing nature's beauty, and a wonderful introduction to Helsingborg.

Sofiero Palace and Gardens Castle TourWe continued our exploration by taking a tour of Sofiero Palace, built as a summer residence, and as such, is built on a much smaller scale and while certainly stately, has a decidedly residential feel.

We culminated our Sofiero Palace experience by having lunch at the elegant Sofiero Palace Restaurant (Sofiero Slottsresraurang), where Chef Marcus Nemrin's creative menu matched the ambience. A few of our selections for lunch included asparagus brûlée decorated with tender sliced asparagus spears and accompanied with a mixed herb salad with diced celeriac, beets, and thinly sliced and marinated red onions; and baked quince, topped with a quenelle of lemon and olive ice cream, topped with a jaunty small almond cookie "cap," and garnished with chocolate poppy candies.

Asparagus Brulee and Mixed Herb Salad
Asparagus Brulee and Mixed Herb Salad

The Sofiero Palace Gardens are open April through September, with concerts during the summer months, and a culmination of the season in August with a special exhibition. The Sofiero Palace and the Orangery is open from April through September. The Sofiero Flower & Garden Shop is open year round. Admission includes entrance to the Gardens and the Palace. Read about the Sofiero Palace Restaurant (Sofiero Slottsrestaurang) in the Restaurants, Chefs' Recipes in English, and Chefs' Recipes in Swedish sections.

The Chefs of Sofiero Palace Restaurant
The Chefs of Sofiero Palace Restaurant

Photo: Mat & Vänner, David Back, Sweden

Sofiero Palace Restaurant
Sofiero Palace and Gardens

www.Sofiero.se
Sofiero Palace Restaurant (Sofiero Slottsrestaurang)
250 19 Helsingborg, Sweden
Telephone:      +46 42-14-0440 
        
www.SofieroSlottsrestaurang.se

Fredriksdal museums and gardens, which opened to the public in 1923, is another Helsingborg garden highlight, which we stopped to visit in the afternoon. There are over 360,000 square meters to stroll with historical gardens, buildings, and animal exhibits. The manor house built in 1787 is the central focus of Fredriksdal, with lush gardens, handicraft shops, and special programs throughout the year.

Manorhouse - Fredriksdal Museums and Gardens, Helsingborg, Sweden
Manor House

Fredriksdal Museums and Gardens are open 362 days per year, from May - September from 10:00 am - 5:00 pm, from June - August from 10:00 am - 7:00 pm, and from October - April from 11:00 am - 4:00 pm. Admission is charged, but there is free admission for children up to 18 years accompanied by adults, and free admission for all from November (with the exception of Christmas at Fredriksdal) until March.

Rose Gardens at Fredriksdal Museums and Gardens, Helsingborg, Sweden
Rose Gardens

Fredriksdal Museums and Gardens
Gisela Trapps Väg 1
SE 254 37 Helsingborg, Sweden
Telephone:      +46 42-10-4500
www.Fredriksdal.se

Dunkers Kulturhaus (Dunker Culture Centre) designed by the renowned Danish architect Kim Utzon, opened in April 2002, and is a gorgeous space combining an art gallery with rotating exhibitions, theatre where they hold between 15-20 concerts per month, shop selling locally produced handicrafts, workshops, studios, and a restaurant. One of the many things that we found interesting here was the ability for students to use the workshops, stage, and studios to create their owns projects, paying only for the material that they used. The space has several sewing machines as well as fabric, paint supplies, and we also saw people making jewelry. In addition, there are trained artisans to assist students with their projects.

Debra C. Argen sewing at the Dunkers Kulturhaus (Dunker Culture Centre), Helsingborg, Sweden
Debra Sewing at Dunker Culture Centre

During our visit, there were interesting exhibitions, including Plastic Fantastic, and a collection of work by the Hungarian artist Lenke Rothman.

Exhibit at Dunkers Kulturhaus (Dunker Culture Centre), Helsingborg, Sweden
Exhibit at Dunker Culture Centre

Dunkers Kulturhus is open Tuesday - Sunday from 10:00 am - 5:00 pm; Thursdays from 1:00 am - 8:00 pm, and is closed on Monday, and from June 23 -24.

Dunkers Kulturhaus (Dunker Culture Centre), Helsingborg, Sweden
Dunker Culture Centre

Dunkers Kulturhus
Kungsgatan, 11
SE 252 21 Helsingborg, Sweden
Telephone:      +46 42-10-7400
www.DunkersKulturhus.se

There is much to see in Helsingborg as we discovered while taking a walk through the city, including the red brick and beamed Jacob Hansens Hus built in 1641, located at Norra Storgatan 21, which is the oldest home.

Jacob Hansens Hus, Helsingborg, Sweden
Jacob Hansens Hus

We also visited Henckelskalgården, a delightful secret garden with interesting shaped bushes, and trees dating back to 1759. We also took a stroll along the Kullagatan built in 1961, which was the first Scandinavian pedestrian shopping area.

We walked up the steps to Castle Hill to stroll through the park and to see Kärnan, which was the home of the Danish King and a defense tower built in 1313 that was later built into a castle. The 34-meter (112 foot) tower is all that remains of the fortress, and is accessible for visitors to climb via a spiral staircase for an excellent view of Helsingborg and Denmark.

Castle Steps Karnan, Helsingborg, Sweden
Castle Hill Steps

Karnan, Helsingborg, SwedenKärnan is open April, May, and September from Tuesday - Friday from 9:00 am - 4:00 pm, and on Saturday and Sunday from 11:00 am - 4:00 pm; June - August daily from 11:00 am - 7:00 pm; and from October - March from Tuesday - Sunday from 11:00 am - 3:00 pm.

Kärnan
Slottshagen
Helsingborg, Sweden
Telephone:      +46 42 10-5991
www.Helsingborg.se

After experiencing the gastronomy, the rich culture, and the natural beauty of Skåne, it was time for us to drive to the Malmö airport for our flight to Stockholm on SAS Airlines and then continuing on to Newark Airport, savoring our memories of our trip to Skåne and Stockholm, Sweden.

Important information for Sweden

Sweden is not part of the European Union, and as such, the currency of Sweden is the Krona (SEK, SKr, or KR), Kroner are plural of Krona. As of August 2008, the exchange rate was 6 Swedish Krona (SEK) to 1 US Dollar (USD), and 9.4 (SEK) to 1 Euro (EUR). The Swedish SEK is divided into 100 öre and the öre coin denominations are: 50 öre and 1, 5, and 100 Kr. Bank note denominations are: 20, 50, 100, 500, 1000 and 10,000 SEK.

Electricity is 220 volts and uses 2 round pins. Bring a converter if your appliances do not have dual voltage and plug adapters.

While most Swedes speak English, it is always helpful to have some basic language knowledge when traveling.

Guide to Pronunciation

ej = long a

Basic Vocabulary

   

English

Swedish

   

Do you speak English?

Talar ni Engleska?

I do not understand

Jag förstår inte

Excuse me     

ursäkta mig

Hello

hej

Good-bye

hej dä

Please 

snälla

Thank you

tack

Yes

ja

No

nej

Open

öppen

Closed

stängt

Where is?

var

Airport

flygplats

Boat/Ferry

båt/farja

Bus

buss

Hotel

hotell

Train

tåg

How much is it?

Hur mycket kostar den?

May I please have the check

notan tack

Monday

måndag

Tuesday

tisdag

Wednesday

onsdag

Thursday

torsdag

Friday

fredag

Saturday

lördag

Sunday

söndag

   

Health

   

Dentist

tandkläkare

Doctor

doktor

Help

hjälp

Hospital      

klinik

Ill

sjuk

Pharmacy

apotek

   

Food

   

Restaurant

restaurang

Breakfast

frukost

Lunch

lunch

Dinner

middag

Dessert

efterrätt

Bread

bröd

Butter

smö

Beef

nötkött

Cheese

ost

Chicken

kyckling

Crab

krabba

Fish

fisk

Ice cream

glass

Lamb

lammkött

Pork

fläsk

Poultry

fågel

Prawns

räka

Salad

sallad

Seafood

skaljur

Vegetables

grönsaker

Vegetarian

vegetarisk

   

Beverages

   

Coffee

kaffe

Tea

te

Ice

is

Juice

saft

Lemon

citron

Milk

mjölk

Sugar

socker

Water/Mineral Water

vatten/mineralvatten

Beer

öl

Wine

vin

Cheers!

Skäl!

Read other articles on Skåne in the Hotels and Resorts, Restaurants, Chefs' Recipes, Arts and Antiques, Spas, and Gastronomy sections.

Read other articles on Sweden in the Destinations, Hotels and Resorts, Restaurants, Chefs Recipes, Gastronomy, and Travel News - Sweden a Green Destination sections.

For information on Sweden, please visit the websites: www.VisitSweden.com, www.Skane.com, www.Malmo.se, and www.Helsingborg.se.

For information on SAS Airlines, please visit the website: www.FlySAS.com.

© September 2008. Luxury Experience. www.LuxuryExperience.com All rights reserved.

 
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