Gothenburg: A Perfect Choice for Your Exchange


Jan 08 • 3 minute read

Gothenburg is a fun-filled, colorful city that is quite popular amongst university students. With its international allure, it’s easy to see why you may want to make Gothenburg your new home! So let’s have a closer look at why it’s a phenomenal choice for your exchange!

Getting Around

One of the first things to know about Gothenburg is that getting around the city is a breeze! Many residents use bicycles to get from one place to the next, utilizing the city’s bike system, Styr & Ställ. Your first 30 minutes are always free, no matter how many times you use the service.

You can also purchase a bike from Cykelköket, where you can gain access to old bicycles, and you can select one and repair it! Plus, there are bike lanes that criss-cross around the entire city, making biking safe and efficient.

If you want to get around a little faster or travel from one side of the city to the next, you might want to consider the excellent tram and bus routes. With over 200 trams, you’ll never find yourself waiting for more than 15 minutes, and the buses are excellent for transporting you to areas that are not located within the service area of the tram lines. Additionally, when you first arrive in Gothenburg, taking the tram around is a great way to familiarize yourself with the city on your own self-guided tour!

Spending an Afternoon

Once you begin to start exploring Gothenburg, you’ll quickly see its international appeal. With approximately 50,000 students at any given time, students flock to the University of Gothenburg and Chalmers.

But you can’t study all of the time, which is why it’s fantastic that Gothenburg offers plenty of things to do and places to go, including free entrance for students to several museums.

You can visit the National History Museum, the Maritime Museum, the Röhsska Design Museum, Gothenburg City Museum and the World Culture Museum and more.

You can also check out the shops around Inom Vallgraven, visit the lovely city of Skansen Kronan or explore the 19th-century gardens at Trädgårdsföreningen.

Having a Bite

When you’re running from class to class, it’s good to know where to have a sugary snack or a good cup of coffee. Some even offer sandwiches when you have a little more time to sit and eat with friends.

Gothenburg, like any other locale, also has its own host of traditions. The best just happens to be called fika. This is a time for socializing, centered around drinking coffee and eating sweets, particularly kanelbullar (cinnamon buns).

When you need a burst of caffeine, Da Matteo is the place to go! This has become a regular Monday-morning hangout spot for students who want to start the week off with the best coffee in Gothenburg. Plus, there are multiple locations.

If you’re looking for a slew of cool cafés, then Vasagatan is the place to be. Expect to see several offerings of freshly pressed juices, handmade cakes and pastries, and lovely little street-level terraces.

Listening to Music

It’s pretty commonplace to stumble across street musicians in Gothenburg, but if you want to mix it up with some lively stage performances, then you won’t be disappointed.

Be sure to pop into Bengans, which is both a café and a record store, hosting live music several nights a week. Another option is Pustervik, a concert venue boasting performances by both well-known and emerging artists.

Taking in Nature

In Sweden, people love to get out and enjoy nature. Whether it’s hiking, picking berries or having a picnic at a local park, the options are endless, and perfect for students to enjoy. In fact, the government has even instilled a law referred to as Allemansrätten, which allows people the right to walk, explore and camp in any public access areas.

Some of the best parks to enjoy are Delsjön, Slottsskogen and Änggårdsbergen. Delsjön is located in the southeast area of Gothenburg, and it’s a great place for barbequing, kayaking and swimming. Slottsskogen is in the western region of Gothenburg, and it is full of attractions, including the Natural History Museum and a small, unique zoo. Änggårdsbergen is the city’s natural reserve, playing home to the botanical garden as well.

But if you really want to escape from it all, try Gothenburg’s southern archipelago. Even though it feels like it’s far away from the city, it’s easily reachable via Tram 11 into Saltholmen, which is where you can take a 15-minute ferry ride to one of the small islands. Brännö is a great choice — a car-free island full of lush, green forests and fields, ideal for a hike or a swim. Be sure to check ahead on the weather, and try to go on a sunny day!

Dancing and Drinking

Going out at night can get somewhat expensive in Gothenburg. However, you can sometimes get free admission by signing up on Facebook for some of the clubs’ guest lists.

The most popular student bar is King’s Head in Andra Långgatan, with some of the cheapest beer in the city. It’s also home to the best “afterwork,” meaning that with a drink purchase, you can also indulge in an all-you-can-eat buffet.

Of course, you won’t find a shortage of parties on campus. Many of the student associations organize regular weekly functions, ensuring that you have numerous opportunities to make an endless supply of new friends.

One thing to remember is that buying alcohol in Sweden is a bit complicated. Alcohol is sold and regulated by the government in what is called Systembolaget, operated Monday through Friday 10.00 – 19.00 and on Saturdays 10.00 – 15.00.

Of course, now that you know a little bit more about the wonders that Gothenburg has to offer, go ahead and start searching for housing in this thrilling city. Check in with getting your residency permit for studying, and then find a trusted housing platform to begin looking. You’re going to just love Gothenburg!

Ready for your adventure?