40+ Interesting Facts About Sweden

  1. Sweden is one of the three countries in the Scandinavian Peninsula. It lies between Norway and Finland.
  2. Sweden has a mild climate related to its surroundings. It is due to the influence of the warm North Atlantic current and the moderate southwesterly winds.
  3. More than 60% area in northern Sweden is mountainous with forests. The soil in the southern part of the country is fertile.
  4. Sweden has the highest number of islands in the world. According to estimates, this Nordic country has jurisdiction over 221,800 islands. (Source)
  5. Sweden recycles 99% of its domestic waste. Furthermore, the country also imports and recycles more than 2 million tons of rubbish from Norway, the UK, Ireland, and other countries. (Source)
  6. Sweden has the largest stealth ship in the world. This corvette is 72m long and has a displacement of 600 tons. (Source)
  7. Sarek National park in northern Sweden is Europe’s oldest national park, established in 1909. The country set up a total of 9 national parks in 1909.
    A view of Sarek National Park in Sweden
    Sarek National Park is the oldest in Europe

  8. Sweden experiences midnight sun during the summer season and 20 hours of darkness during winter in the extreme north. The sunlight hours change considerably during winters and summers in Stockholm as well.
  9. Swedish, the mother language of 90% of the population, is the national language of Sweden. The country also has several national minority languages.
  10. More than 60% of residents in Sweden follow the Church of Sweden. Around 30% do not follow any religion.
  11. The Kingdom of Sweden became part of the Kalmar Union from 1397 to 1523. The kingdoms of Denmark and Norway were also part of this union.
  12. Sweden fought its last war in 1814 against Norway. In 2014, the country celebrated 200 years of peace. (Source)
  13. The border between Sweden and Norway is one of the longest in Europe. Its length is 1,630 km (1,010 miles). It is also the oldest border in Europe, which remained unchanged since 1751. (Source)
  14. Sweden is the most populous country in the Nordic region. It has a population of over 10 million, nearly double than any other country in the region.
  15. Lake Vanern in Sweden is the largest lake in northern Europe and the 3rd largest in the European continent. 
  16. A newspaper from Sweden started publishing in 1645. It is one of the world’s oldest continuously published newspapers. (Source)
  17. Several Swedish companies are known worldwide. These include Volvo (car manufacturer), Ericsson (telecommunication company), H&M (clothing company), and others.
  18. Sweden has the 2nd highest tax-to-GDP ratio in OECD after Denmark. This ratio is 48.2% in Sweden compared to 48.9% in Denmark. (Source)
  19. Sweden is the 4th most competitive economy in the world. It was ranked the 2nd most competitive economy in 2021. (Source)
  20. Sweden has performed best several times in Global Green Economy Index. It is due to several factors such as carbon efficiency, innovation, and green branding. (Source)
  21. Sweden is connected to Denmark in the south through a bridge tunnel. The Oresund Bridge is Europe’s longest combined road and rail bridge. (Source)
    Satellite image of the Oresund Bridge
    The Oresund Bridge is the Europe's longest rail and road bridge

  22. Sweden founded the Riksbank in 1668, the oldest central bank in the world. It adopted the current name in 1867. 
  23. Sweden has the highest carbon tax in Europe, closely followed by Switzerland and Liechtenstein. It is $129.89 per ton of CO2. (Source)
  24. The Nobel Prize started in 1901 at the will of Swedish chemist and engineer Alfred Nobel. Except for the Nobel Peace Prize in Norway, all the other awards distribute in Sweden. The host country has won 32 Nobel prizes.
  25. Sweden has achieved 2nd position in the Global Innovation Index 2021. The country has performed better in 2021 compared to 2019 and 2020. (Source)
  26. The world’s first ice hotel opened in the northern part of Sweden in 1989. The ICEHOTEL 365 has become the first permanent ice hotel using solar-powered refrigerating plants in summer. (Source)  
  27. Stockholm Metro stations are known for their colorful art. Around 150 artists have painted 90 of the 100 stations of this tunnel system. It is known as the world’s longest art gallery. (Source)
  28. Swedes take a traditional break during work hours, known as “Fika.” They enjoy tea and pastries once or twice a day during this break.
  29. Sweden has one of the oldest monarchies in the world. The Kingdom of Sweden established around 970 AD.
  30. A town in northern Sweden has introduced phototherapy lamps in several bus shelters. This harmless light can boost energy and treat the seasonal affective disorder. (Source)
  31. There are nearly 400,000 moose in Sweden. Their density is three times that of Canada and ten times of Russia. Around 100,000 animals are hunted yearly, but they recover their numbers after the hunting season. (Source)
  32. In 1979, Sweden became the world’s first country to prohibit corporal punishment of children by parents. This practice was outlawed in Swedish schools in 1958. (Source)
  33. In 2017, Sweden put its entire countryside on Airbnb for people around the globe. Visitors are allowed to camp, hike, and enjoy for free. (Source)
  34. Sweden is behind several beneficial inventions. These include Celsius temperature scale, ultrasound, GPS, Skype, flat-screen monitor, computer mouse, pacemaker, dynamite, propeller, telephone handset, Tetrapak, safety match, adjustable wrench, three-point seatbelt, zipper, milking machine, etc.
  35. In 1974, North Korea imported 1,000 Volvo cars and other mechanical equipment from Sweden worth $73 million. However, North Korea hasn’t paid the debt yet that has surpassed $330 million. (Source)
    Volvo cars
    N. Korea hasn't paid debt of Swedish Volvo cars for decades

  36. Sweden is one of the eight countries of the EU that are not using the euro as currency. The national currency of this Nordic country is Swedish Krona.
  37. Stockholm has been the permanent capital of Sweden for 500 years. It became the country's capital in 1523.
  38. Many houses in the Swedish countryside are painted bright red. This practice has been continued for centuries thanks to a large copper mine in central Sweden. This largest mine in Europe collapsed during the 17th Century but still provides red paint through its leftover rocks and iron ore. (Source)
  39. Sweden is located in one of the oldest and stable parts of the earth’s crust. Nearly 75% of its landscape has till soil type. 
  40. In 2007, Sweden became the first country to establish an embassy in Second Life, a virtual world. This embassy provides information about this European country. (Source)
  41. Sweden was the host of the 1912 summer Olympics, the last time when gold medals were made with pure gold. Now, silver medals with gold coating are distributed in Olympic Games. (Source)


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