GOTHENBURG DECEMBER 2018
Goteborg has more rain than London and it often comes in sideways. Be prepared for freezing temperatures in winter. We are there in December, when sunrise is 8.30 (if there is any) and sunset is 3.30, so there’s not much daylight either. We check in to the Riverton Hotel, which gives a great view of the city from the 12th floor Skybar, in what is otherwise a pretty low-rise city dominated by waterways.
From this part of town it’s a decent 20-30 minute walk down to the excellent Natural History Museum off Linnegatan. Stroll back through the Haga district with chic boutique shops and cobbled streets. Down on the banks of Vallgraven – a circular canal that makes the city feel a bit like Amsterdam – there is a church-like structure containing a fish market and a couple of small restaurants. Inside the Feskekork is a small restaurant called Kajutan where the seafood could not be fresher.
We had a plan to take a ferry over to one of the islands – Styrso – until the lady on reception said: “What on earth do you want to do that for?” After establishing that there is bugger all to do there in winter, and possibly not even somewhere open to eat, we call the plan off. The City Museum provides a decent alternative with a complete history since the bronze age, Vikings of course, and everything up to modern day Volvo factory life. Strolling down Kungsportavenyen we stop for a decent lunch at The Parlour, and eventually arrive at Liseberg, a massive theme park presented at this time of year as a Christmas lights attraction. It’s horrible – a packed Thorpe Park full of people carrying 2kg Toblerones – so we grab a couple of glasses of gluwein and head back.
Continuing the cultural theme the next day we take a comprehensive tour of the art museum – lots of Rodin, Picasso and Rembrandt, plus some modern stuff. It’s definitely worth a look. A leisurely lunch follows at the excellent Fiskekrogen on Lilla Torget. Seafood is really the thing here – possibly the freshest you’ll get anywhere.
In summer, or with a blanket of snow, Gothenburg would be a notch up. In the drizzle, less so, as it doesn’t boast much in the way of iconic landmarks. Charming for a few nights, but not essential viewing.