Preview: Midsummer in Stockholm

Adam Lowe

#VadaonTour will be rocking up in Stockholm later this month to taste some of the city’s LGBT+ delights. Stockholm has some great LGBT+ credentials and, with Midsummer just around the corner (20-22 June), there’s bound to plenty to keep the Vada team busy.

Midsummer is hugely popular in Sweden. Skansen, for instance, goes all out with maypoles that pop up in the parks around town. The archipelago is home to some great festivities, with the islands of Sandhamn, Grinda and Vaxholm hosting their festivities on Midsummers Eve itself (20 June).

Because Midsummer is generally a time Stockholm residents leave the city, tourists will find a welcome peace descending upon the city. This is, of course, the best time to check out the shops and museums, and to snag that elusive table at one of the city’s most popular restaurants.

Midsummer is the start of the five-week annual Swedish holidays. Because Midsummer Eve is traditionally celebrated in the countryside, everyone leaves town on 19 June – so this is when the city empties but the roads around the cities become very busy indeed. It’s best, then, to avoid travelling during peak times.

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As with English May Day and midsummer celebrations, the Swedes mark the occasion by making floral wreaths to place on maypoles, which they then dance around. Evenings come alive, instead, with parties and music.

Food-wise, Midsummer is typified by a starter of pickled herring, boiled new potatoes with fresh dill, soured cream and chives. Spare ribs, salmon or another grilled dish will then follow, and with a dessert of summer strawberries and cream. Drinks include cold beer and spiced schnapps accompanied by plenty singing.

Vada heads to Stockholm later in the month, and will report back with plenty of pictures and insider tips. You can keep up to date via our Twitter (@vadamagazine), Facebook and Instagram (@vadamagazine).

Image courtesy of Visit Stockholm.

About Adam Lowe

Adam Lowe is an award-winning author, editor and publisher from Leeds, now based in Manchester. He runs Dog Horn Publishing and is Director and Writing Coordinator for Young Enigma, a writer development programme for LGBT young people. He sometimes performs as Beyonce Holes.