Göteborg. Gothenburg. Gothen city. Batman doesn’t live here and hey, that sucks.

Still. What a town.

The trams rock.  I appreciate this after studying in Edinburgh, a city recently gouged for the new tram line. It would have been cheaper for the town council to put a Scot on the Moon or to pave the track-laced streets with gold. I am not making this up. Here public transport is efficient, wide-ranging, slick. The buses run on farts. How cool is that?There’s Liseberg. For the uninitiated it’s the theme park downtown where all that exuberant yelling comes from (not to be confused with the Chalmers campus). Top-notch roller coasters include Boulder, which is made from wood. Go figure. Visit on a rainy day to avoid queues. The views from the Ferris Wheel are, well, views. Expect the expected.

Choose from countless wonderful cafes perfect for a ‘fika’, approximately 10,000 of them are located on Haga Nygatan. ‘Fika’ is a unique cultural phenomenon which almost certainly does not exist in other countries. It involves comfy seats, hot caffeinated beverages, delicious baked goods and a good chin-wag.  Any suggestion it closely resembles English ‘tea-time’ would cause great offence. Swedes are very protective of their ‘fika’, even fighting a war with Norway over it. Many lives were lost. Sweden kept the ‘fika’ and Norway kept the oil. It is a touchy subject for the Swedes. Understandably.

The art scene is lively. Performance poets, actors, dancers, singers, song-writers acrobats, performers of every type have chosen Gothen city over stuffy Stockholm. Yesterday I saw a man dressed in a yellow jump-suit with tubes covering his head and arms produce inappropriate noises through a trombone. And I didn’t even pay for the privilege.

Get on your bike and explore this glorious place. And beware of bus-farts.

/ Greg

This blog post is a result of a blogger competition launched by the University of Gothenburg. The readers vote for their favorite and the blog post that gets most likes continue to blog for the University throughout the semester. Do you like this post? Then vote by liking or commenting it here or like this post on facebook Voting ends Friday 26 Sept 10.00 AM.

Greg, 24, half English, half American, from London. Studying the course Europe in the World. Greg is raring to start off his student life here and has already spent the summer in Sweden. 

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