Ah, Florence. A city that doubles as a living museum, filled with centuries worth of art and culture and history. You might be wondering is Florence worth visiting? Well, I’m convinced that it’s impossible not to fall for this city. Whether you’re gazing up at the intricate details of the Duomo, staring directly into the eyes of David, or walking the immaculate hallways of the Uffizi, you’ll find yourself constantly reminded that some of the most famous creatives to ever live have found their inspiration while wandering these exact Florentine streets.

How Many Days in Florence?

So you’ve decided you want to visit the city but you’re wondering “how may days in Florence is enough?”

Despite it’s small size, Florence is the type of city that you could spend weeks in. Weeks getting lost in the narrow cobblestone streets, trying all the gelato shops to determine the best one (more on that later), and visiting the 72 museums that are scattered across city. It may seem like there is never enough time. But, how many days in Florence is enough to see the highlights?

With so much to do in Florence, planning a trip to this iconic city can be a bit overwhelming. We personally spent 5 days in Florence and I’m still left with so many reasons to go back. I firmly believe that Florence is a city that should be explored slowly and thoughtfully, but I realize that most of us don’t have the luxury of spending weeks in the city (but what a dream that would be, right?).

That’s why I’ve consolidated this guide into 14 things that you could easily fit into a 3-day Florence itinerary. In 3 days in Florence, you can see many of the highlights, and some non-touristy things too. 

Unusual things to do in Florence city guide

The Highlights: 3-Day Florence Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Florence, late lunch at All’Antico Vinaio or Mercato di Sant’Ambrogio, wander around Santa Croce, climb The Brunelleschi Dome at sunset, go for a late dinner
Day 2: Early morning at the Duomo di Firenze, Galleria dell’Accademia (Statue of David), an afternoon walk at Boboli Gardens, sunset at Piazza Michaelangelo, dinner and drinks in Oltrarno
Day 3 : Moring visit to Mercato di San Lorenzo, take a Florence food tour, visit the Uffizi Gallery, dinner at Trattoria ZaZa

14 Touristy and Unusual things to do in Florence

get up early to experience the marvel of david

You know what they say … early bird catches the worm. If there’s one thing worth booking an early ticket for, it’s the Statue of David at Galleria dell’Accademia. Yes, THAT David.

In order to fit as many things as possible into your 3-day Florence itinerary, cannot stress enough how important it is to book your ticket ahead of time for the museums in Florence. Otherwise, you risk waiting hours in the standby line instead of our roaming the Florentine streets. 

We opted for the first time slot of the day at 9:00 and wow – it was so worth it. We came fact-to-face (feet?) with the iconic David with almost no one else around. It felt surreal. Within 15 minutes, the room was packed with other visitors so this is an attraction that’s worth the early wake up. 

Tickets: Book Galleria dell’Academia tickets on the official website here. The cost of booking ahead is 16€.

Statue of David
Come face-to-face with some of the world's most famous art at The Uffizi Gallery

The Uffizi Gallery is home to some of the most important art in the world. Housing the works of artists like da Vinci, Botticelli, Michelangelo, Raffaello and more, it is an attraction that cannot be missed.

As you’d imagine, every Florence tourist wants to visit Uffizi. So, similar to Galleria dell’Accademia, you should absolutely book tickets in advance to avoid waiting in lines all day in the hot Florence sun. We want to fit as much as possible into our 3-day Florence itinerary after all, don’t we?

Tickets: You can buy tickets in advance here. The price of 24€ might seem a bit steep, and you may be tempted to buy tickets the day-of and save 4€ but buying in advance will save you (potentially) hours of time.

Uffizi Gallery Florence
Skip the crowds + Experience early morning golden hour at the Duomo di Firenze

Perhaps the most iconic building is the Duomo di Firenze, or the Florence Cathedral. We’ve all seen the photos of pink, green and white-sided masterpiece, but in real life, it is truly mind-blowing. The details are immaculate.

As you can imagine, the area around the complex gets really busy during peak daytime hours, which is why I really recommend an early wakeup for this one. During the early morning hours, the rising sun hits the building and highlights it in the perfect shade of gold. This is the perfect time to walk around the exterior, and take in all the intricate details of the building. It’s an incredible work of art.

If you’re interested in a hotel room with Duomo view, keep reading to see where we stayed.

Florence Duomo
Florence Duomo
Florence Duomo
Florence Duomo
Climb 463 steps to the top of Brunelleschi’s Dome

Now, there’s lots to do at the Duomo di Firenze. And the cost of visiting all these different attractions can add up quickly. You can visit the Cathedral for free but make sure to go early because the line gets very long. In my honest opinion, the Cathedral is beautiful, but it wasn’t a highlight for me which is why I didn’t include it in this 3-day Florence itinerary.

However, there is one thing that is really worth doing. If you’re going to pay for one thing to do at Duomo di Firenze, then I can really recommend climbing to the top of Brunelleschi’s Dome.

And I know what you’re thinking – 463 steps sounds really intimidating (especially if you’re visiting during a summer heat wave like we were). But the stairwell itself was surprisingly cool and I promise it is worth the effort to see the incredible work of art that is Brunelleschi’s Dome. Then, once at the very top, you’ll be welcomed by the most beautiful open-air views over Florence and the Tuscan countryside in the distance. It’s a must-do!

Tickets: Brunelleschi’s Dome tickets must be purchased in advance here. The cost is 20€ and the tickets are known to sell out many days in advance so be sure to plan ahead to avoid disappointment. 

Eat your heart out in FLorence's food scene

From traditional Tuscan fare and trendy apertivo bars to very local markets, there is no shortage of good eats in Florence. I’m a firm believer that cities are best experienced through your palette – here’s a few of the best restaurants in Florence to indulge at:

Il Santino Bevitore: You’ll see this trendy osteria show up on a lot of foodie lists, and for good reason. It’s wildly popular with locals and foodie tourists both trying to snag tables. The menu features classic Florentine staples with a bit of a modern twist, and everything is made with such high quality ingredients. If you can’t get a table at Bevitore, you can head next door to the restaurant’s wine bar (that’s what we did!). There you can taste some of the best natural wines the region has to offer and order small plates off the restaurant menu.

Trattoria ZaZa: From the outside, Trattoria ZaZa looks like everything I would avoid in a restaurant while travelling: touristy location, massive menu, and a patio over-looking a big square. It has all the characteristics of a tourist trap. I had read a lot about it but I wasn’t going to go, But, I had a couple locals reach out to me on Instagram and tell me that despite being touristy, the restaurant is a cultural institution for both locals and tourists alike. So, I gave in and we decided to try out this iconic spot. And you know what, the food was fantastic. Everything we tried was so well-made (I still have no idea how they do it with the size of their menu), and it was such a good value. Don’t write off ZaZa!

All’Antico Vinaio: You’re probably heard of this super famous panini spot, it’s on literally every food recommendation list in Florence. If you walk past, it’s hard to miss the seemingly mile-long lineup of people waiting to get a panini. I’ve heard stories of people waiting as long as two hours to try this world-famous panini. Before we stopped by I was so confused by the hype – I mean, how good can a panini really be? We lucked out and walked past around 3:00pm, after the lunch rush calmed down and only waited about 15 minutes in line. The panini was a great value at around 5 euro for a huge sandwich. And it was really delicious. But, was it the best panini I had in Florence? Not quite. To me, it’s more about the hype and experience. Keep reading or skip to the local market section to hear about my favourite panini in Florence…

Vin & Delizie: If you’re looking for a spot to grab a pre-dinner apertivo, this is a great little patio with a nice drink selection and a super friendly host. For some other fun apertivo spots, head to Oltrarno and check out some of my favourite spots there.

Hosteria il Desco: For a traditional Florentine meal, this is a great spot to go. Here they serve of local must-try dishes like Florentine steak and regional pastas. 

iO Osteria Personale: If you’re looking for something a bit less traditional, and a bit more trendy, iO Osteria Personale is putting their own spin on traditional Florentine food and serving a tasting menu filled with creative dishes with local influences. This spot is a bit of a splurge, but was a good value for the high quality.

Piazza Santo Spirito: If you’re looking for a quick lunch or afternoon drink in the sun, I loved the square called ‘Piazza Santo Spirito.’ Here there are tons of options for food. I particularly liked Tamero Pasta Bar for lunch. And GustoPizza is another popular local spot to grab pizza.

Feeling overwhelmed by the Florence food scene and are looking for a local experience, I’ve got you covered… 

All'Antico Vinaio Florence
Pasta in Florence
Il Santino Florence
Il Santino Florence
Experience of the best of Florentine food culture with a Florence Food Tour

If you’ve been following me for awhile, you know I love a good food tour. I fact, I almost always try to do one when I visit a new city because it really helps you get a better feel for the local food culture. The food culture in Florence is deep-rooted in tradition, and as a newcomer to the city, it can be a bit overwhelming to know what to eat. Thankfully, Streaty Tours has you covered. 

I absolutely loved the morning we spent wandering a bit deeper around Florence’s local neighbourhoods with Streaty Tours. Operating in various cities across Italy, we had the pleasure of meeting the company’s Palermo-based owner Marco who was visiting Florence while we were there. His passion for food and sharing authentic Italian food culture radiated. Together with the brilliant local guide Gaia, we learned all about Florence’s local food culture and a bit of history of the city.

We started our tour with a visit to a local market – there wasn’t another tourist in site. Here, we tried local meats and cheeses and wine, and learned about the history of these foods. As the tour went on we ate in a very local hosteria where we tried regional delicacies, and were treated to perhaps the most ‘popular’ street food in Florence – Lampredotto (tripe). It was surprisingly pretty delicious.

Click here to book a Streaty Food Tour in Florence.

The best Florence food tour
The best Florence food tour
Things to do in FLorence at Night: Bar-Hop at the trendiest bars in Oltrarno

Are you looking for things to do in Florence at night? Head across the river to Oltrarno to some of the cities coolest bars and restaurants. Here’s a few of my favourites.

 Il Santino Wine Bar: Serving some of the best natural wines in the city and a delicious assortment of small plates, we loved Il Santino Wine Bar so much we went there twice! It’s the perfect spot for an Italian apertivo and the staff was so fun and friendly. Shown bottom left.

Bulli & Balene: Looking for a funky cocktail bar in Florence? Bulli & Balene serves an assortment of fun and innovative spritzes. Shown bottom right.

Le Volpi e l’Uva: Another amazing natural wine bar in Florence with a big selection of local products and a patio made for sipping wine in the sun.

Babae: Another cool place to grab a drink in the area! They also have an iconic Florence wine window that was recently revived to serve drinks.

Il Santino Wine Bar Florence
Bulli & Balene Florence
Admire the best views of the city at Piazzale Michelangelo

Looking for the best view of Florence? Head up to Piazzale Michelangelo. Head over to the south side of the Arno River and take a walk through the narrow local streets to this iconic lookout. You’ll be rewarded with the most beautiful views of Florence and the Duomo in the distance. 

If you’re travelling on a budget – or just want to have the most picture perfect picnic – this is a great spot to do it. Many people say that Piazzale Michelangelo is best visited at sunset, but be prepared to be competing for “the shot” with many other tourists. Even still, the way the city glows at golden hour is worth it.

I’ve included this spot as a sunset stop on this 3-day Florence itinerary, but Piazzale Michelangelo is beautiful at any time of day. Just look at these photos!

Piazza Michelangelo Florence
Visit a touristy florence food market - and then head to a more local spot

So if you’ve been reading other Florence itineraries, you’ve probably read about the famous market Mercato di San Lorenzo (Mercato Centrale). It’s right in the middle of the city, filled with vendors, and surrounded by the famous Florence leather market. It is an institution in the city and deserves a visit.

Our hotel was close by Mercato di San Lorenzo so I really enjoyed going in there in the morning, grabbing coffee and breakfast, and then wandering around Florence as the city woke up. 

However, Mercato di San Lorenzo has also become very touristy and I was told that many locals now have stopped shopping there. So, if you want a bit more of a local market experience in Florence, head outside of the centre to Mercato di Sant’Ambrogio.

Not only were the Sant’Ambrogio and Santa Croce neighbourhoods some of my favourites to roam in Florence, but this market is a true local experience. Here we shopped at tiny local vendors, and ate the best panini I had during my entire trip. The women working there was so friendly and even though she spoke no English, she gestured around to make us each a custom panini. I’m still not exactly sure what was on them but it was one of the best things I ate during my entire time in Italy. 

Food market Florence
Local food market Florence
Take a stroll around Boboli Gardens

Boboli Gardens is a massive 11-acre park in Florence that dates back to the mid-1700s when it was designed for the Medici family. Today it serves as an open-air museum filled with sculptures, statues, fountains, grottoes, and buildings from a variety of eras – and of course, gardens.

I absolutely loved walking around the gardens. You can cover most of the gardens in 1.5 hours and it is definitely worth fitting into a 3-day Florence itinerary.

Tickets: You have to pay for a ticket to visit Boboli Gardens. Tickets are 6€ for adults and can be purchased in advance here.

Boboli Gardens Florence
Cross the river via Ponte Vecchio - a few times

The Ponte Vecchio is an arched bridge that crosses the Arno River and is famous for having shops built along either side of it. Having shops alongside bridges used to be quite a common practice, and it’s believed that this iconic Florence landmark dates back as far as Roman times.

Today, you’ll find mostly jewellers occupying the bridge, and it often gets a bit congested with visitors. However, as touristy as it may be, it’s a fun way to experience an important part of Florence’s history.

Ponte Vecchio Florence
Make it your mission to find the best gelato in FLorence

Okay, there are more Gelateria’s in Florence it can seem overwhelming. Lucky for you, I tried a bunch of them so you don’t have to. Here’s, in my opinion, some of the best gelato in Florence:

  • Caminia
  • Perche No
  • Gelateria della Passera
  • Gelateria de Neri
  • Gelateria La Carraia

Be mindful that there are gelato tourist traps everywhere in Florence. As a rule of thumb, avoid Gelateria’s that have super bright-coloured gelato (they’ve added something to make it that bright). Also, if you see gelato that is piled SUPER high, it also has something unnatural added to it and it’s just for tourists. 

Perche No Florence
The best gelato in Florence?
Take a day trip from Florence to the Tuscany Countryside

Run out of things to do during your 3-day Florence itinerary? I find this hard to believe. But either way, you should make time in your Italy itinerary to head out to the Tuscany countryside! 

During my recent trip to Italy, we rented a car and spent six days in the Tuscan countryside. However, planning a trip to Tuscany can feel overwhelming.

That’s why we also spent two days slow travelling in Tuscany with KM Zero Tours and I cannot recommend this tour company enough. They take you to tiny local wineries, introduce you to their friends in Tuscany, and offer a truly local and personally curated Tuscany experience. Read more on that here. 

Terrace at Podere Il Casale
Just wander the narrow city streets

Perhaps my favourite thing to do in Florence is just wander and daydream. This city is made for wandering off-the-beaten path. Beyond the city’s most touristy areas, I got lost in my camera in the tiny corners of local neighbourhoods. 

After a few days wandering in the city, the cozy neighbourhoods of Santa Croce, Porta Romana, San Frediano, and Oltrarno became quick favourites of mine. 

Where to stay in Florence

When I first started looking for where to stay in Florence, I really wanted to stay on the south side of the Arno River because it felt more local and trendy. However, after a lot of research, it felt like it would be a bit complicated to get our bags from the train station to the other side of the city. Florence is a small city, you can walk almost anywhere in 20-30 minutes. So there is no particularly “bad” place to stay in the city centre.

I decided that staying close to the train station and airport tramline would be best for getting in and out of the city. I stumbled upon Soggiorno Rubino, a small boutique hotel which is located on a main transit line.

We spent five nights total here and it was an amazing value. The rooms are spacious and have incredible views of the Duomo, and owner Andrea was helpful and so kind. I can’t recommend this spot enough!

If you’re looking for a Florence hotel with Duomo views of the Duomo, you’ll want to book this now. 

Where to stay in Florence - the best Florence hotel

Need help finding these unusual things to do in Florence? Here's a map!


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View of the Tuscany Countryside

If the past year has taught the world anything, it is that we all need to slow down. To “stop and smell the roses.” To linger a little longer and appreciate the small joys in life. I’ve always preferred to travel deeply. Like, really deeply. I’d rather spend 10 days in only one place, instead of one day in 10 different places. But the thing is, finding a tour company that shares this travel philosophy is an almost impossible task. In recent years, the “bucket-listing checking mentality” has paved the way for tour operators that offer jam-packed itineraries to explore just the highlights of a destination. On the other end of the spectrum, you have sustainable service providers like KM Zero Tours that are challenging traveller to slow down, stay a little longer, and – in their case – experience the art of slow travel in the Tuscany countryside.

Tuscany has been on my radar for a very long time, but there is so much to do I really didn’t know where to start planning. The Tuscany countryside is a very popular tourism destination. When you search “Tuscany” online you’re likely to see photos of the rolling hills of vineyards, winding cypress tree-lined roads, and maybe even couples driving around in suits and fancy dresses with their convertible tops down. But to quote Arianna, co-owner of KM Zero Tours and a native to the Chianti region, “you’d never see a local dressed like this, we are all just small town country people.” The Tuscan locals don’t wear suits. Instead, they are farmers, wine makers, labourers, creatives, and culinary artisans. These people share a passion for their craft, and are truly the beating heart of the “real” Tuscany.

Want to meet these inspiring locals? Keep reading to hear about my personalized experience in the Tuscany countryside.

Lunch at Podere Il Casale

KM Zero Tours: Slow Travel in the Tuscany Countryside

KM Zero Tours Owners - Alessio and Arianna posing in the Tuscany Countryside

Meet your new Italian friends – Arianna and Alessio – who live locally in Chianti and own the slow travel tour company KM Zero Tours. After meeting in Bologna, the couple moved back to Arianna’s home of Tuscany and have been living locally in the Chianti region for many years. Recently, they decided to lay down more permanent roots in Chianti and bought their own villa in a tiny Tuscan hamlet, complete with an olive grove, vineyard to make their own wine, and a whole bunch of animals (including a growing number of pet dogs and pigeons).

Arianna and Alessio believe wholeheartedly in the slow travel movement – in exploring deeper, supporting the local economy, preserving the unique history of the Tuscany countryside, and sharing their special home with the world. They named their company “KM Zero” or “zero kilometres,” which reinforces their travel philosophy of eliminating the distance between the producer and consumer by buying, staying, and supporting local. 

They aren’t one of those companies that is using greenwashing to pass as a sustainable company. They practice what they preach in seemingly every aspect of their life. After spending two days with them, their passion for sustainability and responsible travel radiates.

Who doesn’t want to have their own friends in the Tuscany countryside? I know I do! While living in Chianti, Arianna and Alessio have developed a wonderful network of local friends and small business owners who share a mutual love for preserving the traditions of the Tuscan countryside – both past and present. With KM Zero Tours, they aim to take you on a journey through their home, into the homes of their friends – who welcome you with open arms and make you feel like you’re part of their family.

During our time in Tuscany, we had the pleasure of spending two full days with Arianna and Alessio exploring both Chianti and Val d’Orcia. Here are some of the highlights.

Day 1: Chianti Tuscany Slow Travel

Arianna and Alessio picked us up on a very hot August morning. Despite only communicating back-and-forth through email prior to our trip, it instantly felt like we were meeting old friends that we’d known for years. We hopped into their car and headed out into the Chianti countryside. 

We started our day in the tiny hilltop village of Montefioralle. Arianna explained the typical characteristics that many of these Chianti villages share, told stories of what life looks like for locals in the village, and showed us some of the typical village plants, trees, and crops, including capers that grew all over the walls. Suddenly, the that everything coexisted together in this small village just made sense. After visiting a few other Chianti villages the day prior, having someone to guide us completely changed the way I viewed them. The day was off to a great start!

Montefioralle, Tuscany
Montefioralle, Tuscany

The great thing about KM Zero Tours is that they curate itineraries to your specific interests. Prior to the trip, I had told Arianna that I was a huge wine enthusiast and was really eager to learn more about Tuscan wine culture, so she curated a perfect day-long itinerary around this interest. 

We went to a small local farm where we enjoyed a farm tour, homemade lunch, and a wine tasting of their own certified Chianti Classico wines. We met the family who owned the property and learned about their business, including how they have had to adapt their crops overtime to meet different market demands. Specifically, Arianna explained how the iris flower used to be a main export of the region to France for perfume. However, the rise of synthetic scents halted the Tuscan iris production, which meant many farms had to begin making more wine in the 80s and 90s. In recent years, natural scents are beginning to grow in popularity again, so iris production is also increasing and we were able to see the iris harvest during our farm visit.

Wine tour in the Tuscany countryside with KM Zero Tours
Tuscan farm cow

After the most delicious lunch of meats, cheeses, and homemade zucchini pasta sourced from the farm, we hopped back in the car and Alessio drove around the Chianti countryside. Arianna and Alessio shared more about the region including how “Super Tuscan wines” are made (and the funny of story of how they got this name). We also learned about how some vineyards plant rose bushes at the heads of the vines. This is because in the early years of wine making if there was something wrong with the grape vines they believed you would notice the first signs on the rose bushes, and some farmers have still held onto that tradition.

Both Alessio and Arianna had an incredible knowledge of the region, and their words were filled with so much passion. Our day in Chianti was full of information and stories like these, but in order to tell them all I’d have to write a book. So you’re best just to go and experience it for yourself.

Learning about Super Tuscan wines
Chianti vineyards

After driving around the Tuscany countryside it was time to go to our second wine tasting at another small family-owned vineyard and olive oil farm. After a tour of the cellars we were able to chat more about their wine-making process, meet their adorable tailless cat Dante who insisted I give him unlimited belly rubs, and enjoy a wine tasting overlooking their gorgeous property.

Wine tasting tour in Chianti
Wine tasting tour in Chianti

Just when I thought the day could not get more perfect, Alessio and Arianna had one more surprise for us: Sunset dinner at the most beautiful local wine bar. And while we surely would have enjoyed dinner here on our own, sitting with our new local friends indulging in the most delicious smoked burrata, and hearing the story of resilience the restaurant owner made it so much more special

Bar DiVino Chianti

This wine bar called Bar DiVino has gained a lot of popularity with the locals, but it is actually quite new to the restaurant scene in Chianti. Arianna explained that the owner, who is now a close friend, lost his job a few years ago and became very worried about how he would take care of his family. His mother offered him her backyard to open a wine bar overlooking the vineyards. The only problem was, neither him or his wife had any restaurant experience. But they decided to give it a shot. Now, a couple years later, it has become wildly popular. We met the owner and I can see why it is such a great success – his spirit was contagious and made our visit here a bit extra special.

It was the perfect way to end our day with KM Zero Tours slow travelling around Chianti.

Bar DiVino Chianti
Bar DiVino Chianti

Day 2: A Dreamy Day in Val d'Orcia Tour

After spending a day in Chianti with KM Zero Tours, I was so thankful that the fun wasn’t over yet. Three days later, Alessio and Arianna arrived at the Tuscan agriturismo we were staying at to take us to the more southern region of Val d’Orcia, Tuscany.

Val d’Orcia is a region you’ve probably seen a lot of photos of. Rolling golden wheat fields and roads lined with cypress trees are characteristic of this region. It is truly breathtaking!

Val d'Orcia, Tuscany Countryside

I always envisioned Val d’Orcia as a place where movie stars spent their summer, but as we walked together through the town of Pienza, Arianna explained to us that Val d’Orcia only started to become a popular tourism destination in the 1990s. Prior to that, it was actually home to wheat farmers, who were generally quite poor. The wheat farmers were actually a bit jealous of the more prosperous regions, like Chianti, that produced profitable products like wine.

After our walk through town, we drove outside of Pienza along winding dirt roads to Podere Il Casale, a famous organic cheese farm and winery. The successes of this farm aren’t unknown to the world, they have been featured in many global publications so I was thrilled to hear that they were close friends of KM Zero Tours.

Cheese tour at Podere Il Casale
Goats at Podere Il Casale

On our tour of the farm with owner Sandra, we learned how this Swiss family moved to Val d’Orcia in 1991 before the tourism boom and bought this now-invaluable property. They were drawn to the beauty of the region and knew nothing about wine-making or cheese production, but they learned and turned the farm into a successful business and restaurant. After our tour of Podere Il Casale where we learned about cheese making and met the farm animals, we enjoyed a wine and cheese tasting of their very own products. The views from their terrace are incredible.

While we tasted the cheeses, Arianna explained that despite the many successes of Sandra and her family, the last year and half had been very difficult for their business with restrictions preventing tourists from visiting Tuscany. When they were forced to close their restaurant, they had to find ways to diversify their business model by selling more of their products locally and expanding their outdoor seating space. Now, they are back stronger than ever and excited to begin welcoming visitors again.

Terrace at Podere Il Casale
Cheese tasting at Podere Il Casale

Knowing my love of wine, Arianna and Alessio had one very special final stop for us in Val d’Orcia: Wine tasting at an organic Brunello di Montalcino winery. As we drove down another bumpy, winding dirt road that led up to the winery, we were greeted by the owner’s dog who was so excited to see Alessio. We weren’t arriving at some stuffy internationally-owned winery to taste some pricey mass-produced Brunello. This was the beautiful home of a winemaker who was clearly passionate about his craft.

The front door of the villa opened and the winemaker’s young apprentice came outside to greet us with a big smile on his face. His passion for wine radiated as he explained that he had just moved to the Tuscany countryside from Austria to learn more about organic wine making. He enthusiastically shared about the business, and showed us around the beautiful property which completely blew me away. Afterward, we sat on the patio overlooking Abbey of Sant’Antimo in the distance and tasted the best glass of wine I had during my time in Tuscany. 

Brunello di Montalcino winery tour
Brunello di Montalcino winery tour

After a scenic journey back to our agriturismo, Sebastian and I said goodbye (for now) to our new Tuscan friends and reflected on the days we spent with them over dinner. After a year and of half of staying (mostly) home, it’s special experiences like this one – the ones I won’t ever forget – that remind me of exactly why I love to slow travel.

Book a Tuscany countryside tour with KM Zero Tours

The great thing about KM Zero Tours is that their packages are completely customizable to you! Whether you’re a wine-lover, culinary enthusiast, or just simply interested in learning more about Tuscan culture, there is no shortage of things to do and see in the Tuscany countryside. 

Travelling with kids in Tuscany? KM Zero Tours also enthusiastically welcomes families and will curate a special itinerary that is suitable for all ages.

Their itineraries range from Tuscany day trips from Florence to all-inclusive multi-day itineraries including accommodations. Imagine having two locals design your entire vacation for you, and all you have to do is show up?

You can read all about different experiences KM Zero Tours offers. Or get in touch with Arianna to start planning!

Can't make it to Italy? Enjoy a taste of Tuscany at home!

I understand that a trip to the Tuscany countryside isn’t always an option, especially right now. But thankfully, KM Zero Tours is making it easy for you to enjoy a taste of Tuscany at home!

There are a lot of places to buy Italian products, but it’s difficult to know where they are being sourced from. Arianna and Alessio are making it easy to support small Tuscan businesses by curating gift boxes filled with artisan products produced locally in Tuscany. Each box features a rotating assortment of seasonal products, so you can enjoy the flavours of every season in Tuscany. 

While in Chianti, we visited their shop where they put together their gift boxes, and I was blown away by the selection of local products. I wish I had more room in my suitcase to bring one of every single product home with me, but I can’t wait to order my own curated box.

Read more about ordering your own taste of Tuscany at home: KM Zero Tours gift boxes.

KM Zero Tuscany gift box
KM Zero Tuscany gift box


Slow travel in Val d'Orcia Tuscany
Tuscany countryside tour
Slow travel in Chianti
Slow travel in the Tuscany Countryside
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Things to do in Helsingborg - Including where to stay

The historic seaside city of Helsingborg is home to just over 100,000 people, and sits along Sweden’s south-west coastline about 45 minutes north of my home, Malmö. Despite it’s close proximity, until recently, I hadn’t spent much time in Helsingborg. So when the local Helsingborg tourism board reached out to invite me for a weekend visit, I was so excited to learn more all the things to do in Helsingborg (hint: it’s a lot!).

A bit of a fun fact: Helsingborg was actually the first place that I ever visited in Sweden. When I first came to visit Sebastian here in 2017, he was living and working in the city at the time. It was the middle of December, which meant it was very cold and dark, and I never really had the chance to experience the city.

Now, after spending three full days exploring Helsingborg, I can confirm that this walkable city is full of charm and fun things to do. Here are some of my favourites!

Rapeseed fields in Helsingborg

Here's 10 things to do in Helsingborg to have the perfect weekend getaway in Sweden

1. Climb the steps up to Kärnan watchtower

Sitting high a top the city of Helsingborg, this watchtower is one of the most popular places to visit in Helsingborg. It dates back 700 years to when Helsingborg still belonged to Denmark and is perhaps the most famous symbol of the city. From the 35-metre high tower, you can enjoy the most beautiful views of the city, waterfront – and even Helsingør, Denmark in the distance. You can also learn more about the city’s history during the Middle Ages.

Best view in Helsingborg

2. Step back in time at Sofiero Palace and Gardens

Located on the outskirts of Helsingborg, Sofiero Palace is perhaps the most famous place in Helsingborg – and I’d argue the most beautiful, too. Sofiero Palace was built in the mid-1800s as a summer house for the Swedish royal family, and other nobility across Europe. 

The castle is beautiful, but the main attraction of Sofiero Palace is the gardens, which has actually been named Europe’s most beautiful garden. The 15-hectare waterfront property is filled with beautiful gardens, a ravine, and northern Europe’s largest collection of rhododendron. In fact, the garden features over 10,000 rhododendron shrubs and over 450 species collected from all over the world, which bloom throughout May and June.

Princess Margareta’s perfectly curated flowerbeds are another highlight of Sofiero Palace. I’d recommend taking a tour of the property to learn more about the history of the palace and gardens.

And if you have time, the castle restaurant is a can’t miss. We had a wonderful seafood lunch here overlooking the sea.

Sofiero Palace
Sofiero Palace
Sofiero Palace
Sofiero Palace

3. Explore the city by bike

My favourite way to explore a new city is always by bike. And luckily, Helsingborg is very bike-friendly. Both the city and countryside are mapped with bike trails, so you can rent a bike and take it to the countryside locations in this itinerary, like Sofiero Palace or Wallåkra.

If you’re planning on spending several hours biking like we did, I really recommend renting an electric bike – speaking from experience, the countryside wind is no joke. You can rent a variety of bikes from the Helsingborg Travelshop.

Biking in Helsingborg
Biking in Helsingborg rapeseed fields

4. Go beer tasting at a local brewery: Barski

If you’re looking for the best beer in Helsingborg, I’ve got you covered. Barski brews their own assortment of beers, affectionately called ‘Brewski,’ and offers beer tastings at their location in central Helsingborg. In addition to their own beers, they often feature beers from other breweries, which is served alongside huge bowls of ramen soup.

Sebastian opted for an assortment of lagers which he said were fantastic, while I tasted four different sour beers with unique flavours including hints of mango and coconut. We collectively tried eight different beers and weren’t disappointed by a single one … which, I mean, says a lot.

Book a table at Barski here.

Beer tasting at Barski Helsingborg
Beer tasting at Barski Helsingborg

5. Take a pottery class at Wallåkra Stenkärlsfabrik

A highlight of my time in Helsingborg and an absolute must visit is Wallåkra Stenkärlsfabrik for a pottery tour and class. During your visit to Wallåkra, you’ll take a tour around the facility and learn how the famous stoneware has been made since the 1800s. The process is completely unique to the region, and involves burning goods made of unique centuries-old clay at 1300 degrees Celsius.

If you opt to take a class, you’ll learn the ins-and-outs of pottery local pottery making, and why it is so important to preserve this local tradition.

6. Eat famous tomato pie at Miss Alice Krog & Delikatesser

Miss Alice Krog & Delikatesser is a countryside cafe and restaurant that has become very famous for a specific dish: Tomato pie. Many people have tried to recreate the secret recipe with little success, so it is absolutely worth the trip here to experience it for yourself.

After lunch, make sure you head across the street to Tomatens Hus (Tomato House), where Miss Alice sources their tomatoes from. Here you can shop for a large assortment of tomatoes, plants, peppers, baked goods, and other delicacies. 

Tomato pie at Miss Alice
Miss Alice Helsingborg

7. Take a walk along the water at Groningen (+ go swimming if you dare!)

The Helsingborg waterfront is really beautiful, especially in the warmer months. If you’re looking for the perfect seaside walking path, head over to Groningen. Here you’ll find the best spot to watch the Helsingborg sunset, or go for a swim – which you’re bound to see brave locals doing all months of the year.

8. Enjoy a seaside dinner with a view at Sillen & Makrillen

If you’re looking to eat at one of the best restaurants in Helsingborg, you must book a table at Sillen & Makrillen. It is located along the water with the most beautiful views – you really can’t get much closer to the sea than this!

Helsingborg is quite famous for seafood, and this restaurant in the best place to enjoy fresh fish. The quality is exceptional, using local ingredients to craft well thought-out dishes.

In the warmer months, you can sit out on the terrace with a view of the sea. But, even if the weather is a bit chilly, the views from inside are spectacular with floor-to-ceiling windows.

Book at table at Sillen & Makrillen here.

SIllen och Makrillen Helsingborg
SIllen och Makrillen Helsingborg

9. Chocolate-tasting at an award-winning chocolatier: Chocolatte

Chocolatte is an award-winning chocolatier in Helsingborg, having been awarded several medals in the International Chocolate Awards. It is a great place to enjoy a Helsingborg fika, or you can take some chocolates home as a souvenir.

There are so many options to try ranging from chocolate bars, to pralines and fudge. I can personally really recommend salt kola + lakrits (salted caramel and licorice), kolacreme + brynt smor (caramel cream + burnt butter), and virgin mojito.

Chocolatte Helsingborg

10. Take the Helsingborg to Helsingør ferry to visit the famous Hamlet castle in Denmark

If you’re spending a bit more time in the city and are looking for a day trip from Helsingborg, take the Helsingborg to Helsingør ferry to Denmark for the afternoon. Here you can visit the famous Kronborg Castle, which inspired Shakespeare’s Hamlet. While in Helsingør, you should also try Danish open face sandwiches, called Smørrebrød. You’ll find plenty of cozy cafes serving these open rye bread sandwiches, which the Danes traditionally pair with a beer and a shot of aquavit.

The Helsingborg to Helsingør ferry is a fun experience in itself. Because the cost of alcohol is significantly cheaper in Denmark compared to Sweden, it is common to see local Swedes riding the ferry to purchase beer on the Danish side of the border. In fact, once the ferry crosses the Swedish-Danish border, a bell goes off and Swedes flock over to the Duty Free Shop to make their purchases. It’s a fun cultural experience!

Where to stay: The best Helsingborg hotel

The Elite Hotel Mollberg is located centrally at Stortorget in Helsingborg, inside a beautifully preserved historic building that dates back to the 14th Century. The hotel itself has been newly renovated, with modern rooms and all the amenities you could need.

Elite Hotel Mollberg
Elite Hotel Mollberg

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Things to do in Helsingborg including the best restaurants, fika, hotel, and more.
Places to visit in Helsingborg
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Places to visit in the Helsingborg countryside
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Tucked away in the southeast corner of Skåne, in southern Sweden, Österlen is a little Swedish paradise that embodies absolutely everything I love about living in southern Sweden. A popular summer haven for city dwellers, Österlen is a place where creatives and artists live and congregate. It is a region full of century-old cottages, antique shops, art galleries, incredible restaurants and farm hotels, hiking trails, quaint fishing villages, and the most beautiful Swedish beaches.

When I first visited Österlen I fell in so in love. I was completely wrapped up in the charm of it all – I understood the hype. What amazes me is that this little Swedish paradise remains largely off the radar of international tourists. But then again, I can totally understand why Swedes want to keep this spot all to themselves.

Ready to have the absolute best time in Österlen? Here’s everything you need to know!

Talldungen Gårdshotell in Österlen

Where to Stay: Österlen Hotels

There are so many fantastic hotels to stay at in Österlen, ranging from spa resorts to cozy farm hotels, and everything in between. I would just love to hotel-hop around the region because there are so many hotels I’m interested in staying at. But, here’s three of my favourites that I have been to so far:

Talldungen: I have written about this special hotel in other blog posts. In fact, I have a whole blog post dedicated to this Brösarps backar hotel here. This spot is really, really special. It’s eclectic and fun. The owners are such wonderful hosts. And they serve some of the best food and wine I’ve had in all of Sweden. Talldungen is located in Brösarps backar, a beautiful region of rolling hills in northern Österlen. This is a great hotel to base yourself at if you’re exploring north Österlen.

Talldungen Gårdshotell in Österlen

Örum 119: This hotel is all about aesthetic and it is seriously beautiful. The rooms are comfortable, and the common areas feature floor-to-ceiling windows looking out over the farm fields. Onsite they have a pizza restaurant, homemade ice cream shop, and farm shop. If you’re in southern Österlen, you must spend a night or two at Örum 119.

Örum 119 in Österlen
Örum 119 rooms in Österlen

Ystad Saltsjöbad: If you’re looking for an Österlen spa, Ystad Saltsjöbad is located on the southwest coast of Österlen and offers a premium spa experience. 

Things to Do in Österlen

Nordic Sea Winery: Wine may not be the first thing you think of when you think of Sweden, but there have been plenty of wineries popping up around southern Sweden in recent years. Nordic Sea Winery is a great spot to learn about local wine, and to do a tasting. 

Brösarps Backar: The hilly region of Brösarps backar is one of my very favourite places to hike in Sweden. The rolling hills are reminiscent of Tuscany, offering some of the best hiking views in all of Sweden. To read my tips for visiting Brösarps backar, check out my Skåne hiking guide.

Brösarps backar
Brösarps backar

Knäbäckshusen: This beautiful beach has trees that follow the coastline and hang over the water, and is absolutely beautiful. It is also common to see surfers at this beach, as the water can get a bit rough.

Knäbäckshusen beach in Österlen
Knäbäckshusen beach in Österlen

Sandhammaren beach: This is my favourite beach in all of Sweden. The long white sand beach will make you feel like you have been transported to the Caribbean, and the sand dunes that line the coastline are dramatic. Read about my other favourite Swedish beaches here.

Simrishamn: The artsy village of Simrishamn is a place where creatives meet. You’ll find art shops, live music, and charming cobblestone streets lined with historic homes. Make sure you head down to the seafront, where you’re likely to see locals fishing.

Kiviks Musteri: Kiviks Musteri is well-known across Sweden as the leader in all things apples. They own a large orchard in Österlen, and produce products made from their own apples, berries, and other plants. You can visit the Musteributiken, a farm shop where they sell all their goods, take a tour of the facilities, or attend a cider tasting. While you’re in the area, head into the fisherman’s town of Kivik too.


Ales Stenar: This is Sweden’s version own version of Stonehenge. Ales stenar is an oval-shaped ring of large boulders that sits high above sea level, and is believed to be over 5000 years old. The story of the stones is unclear; some have predicted to be a Viking ship, and others a sun dial. It is an absolute must-visit.

Kåseberga: A charming little fishing village located along Sweden’s southernmost scenic coastline, locals flock here to buy freshly caught fish (most famously at Kåseberga Fisk). Here you’ll find red-sided fisherman’s huts and a really beautiful coastline. I’d recommend walking east from the town along the coast for some really beautiful views.


Österlenkryddor: Tucked away in the Österlen countryside is this little farm shop selling homemade spices, herbs and more. In June/July, they grow their own lavender and sell many lavender products – including their award-winning lavender ice cream.


Stenshuvud National Park: This coastal national park is a great stop for an easy hike along the eastern coastline. Read more about Stenshuvud here.

When in doubt, just drive. Some of my favourite places in Österlen have been the spots I have stumbled upon. The region is littered with flea markets and antique shops (keep an eye out for signs that say ‘loppis‘) and art galleries. There is so much to be discovered!

The Best Österlen Restaurants: Where You Must Eat!

I have said it 1000 times, but I will say it again, because the local culinary scene here is truly world-class. Copenhagen paved the way over a decade ago when world-famous Noma was named the “best restaurant in the world” for it’s take on new Nordic dining. Using primarily locally-sourced ingredients and curating a menu based on what’s in-season is no easy feat, especially in the Nordics where the growing conditions aren’t exactly optimal year-round. But there is something about this experimental yet simplistic dining culture that has everyone buzzing – myself included.

New Nordic dining has expanded across the Baltic sea to southern Sweden, where many restaurants have adapted the concept, and made it their own. In Österlen, you can find some of the very best restaurants in all of Sweden. Here are some of my favourites.

Pastafabriken in Ingelstorp Österlen
Pastafabriken in Ingelstorp Österlen
Show above: Pastafabriken in Ingelstorp, Österlen

Talldungen: I already mentioned this as a place to stay, but it is also one of the best places in Österlen for dinner. The use local ingredients from Österlen to curate a seasonal menu that changes regularly. They also have one of the best wine selections I have come across in Skåne. Make sure you book a table!

Pastafabriken: Homemade pasta in middle-of-nowhere Österlen? After moving to Sweden from a Canadian city with a huge Italian population, I have been really critical of Swedish Italian food. It’s just generally not very good. But this spot changed my mind. Located in Ingelstorp, a small village in south Österlen, you’ll find impeccable handmade pasta, wine, and authentic desserts like tiramisu. 

Hörte Brygga: Serving up food from local farmers and growers in the area, Hörte Brygga is “inspired by their surroundings.” The menu is simple, and leans of the flavours of premium produce. This seasonal restaurant is wildly popular, and people have known to cue down the street in their car to visit this drop-in-only spot. But trust me, the wait is worth it.

Örum 119: I also recommended Örum 119 as a play to stay, but this is also an amazing place to eat. Onsite, you’ll find a pizza restaurant serving up wood-fire-based sourdough pizza, a homemade ice cream shop, and on Sundays, a 7-course “långfrukost” (long breakfast). I can really recommend all of it.

Kronovalls Vinslott: Kronovalls is a beautiful castle located in the middle of nowhere. But it is also a really great spot to grab pizza! If you’re roaming around northern Österlen and are looking for lunch, you can sit on the terrace and enjoy pizza with a view of the castle.

Bella på Österlen: Using influences from Italian cuisine, this is another spot that changed my mind about Italian food in Sweden. Like many chefs in the region, the owner moved down from Stockholm for a quieter life in Österlen. And the food here is really amazing.

Madame Blå Creperie: If you’re looking for a quick lunch, this is a great spot for French-inspired crepes. Located in a historical home with ceilings so low that Sebastian had to bend down, they serve sweet and savoury crepes suitable for every palette.

Talldungen Gårdshotell breakfast
Örum 119 breakfast
Örum 119 pizza
Talldungen Gårdshotell breakfast
Shown above: Talldungen and Örum 119

The Best Österlen Fika Spots + Cafes

If you’re roaming around Österlen, stopping at one of Österlen’s best cafes for fika is an absolute must. And thankfully, there is no shortage of cafes for a coffee and sweet. But here are some of my favourites.

Olof Viktors: No fika list would be complete without this spot – it is an Österlen institution and has received countless awards as one of the best bakeries in Sweden. They use all-natural ingredients and bake using a wood-burning stove oven, and in the summertime, you can sit outside and have your fika on their terrace overlooking the surrounding farms.

Backagården: Here you can have your fika in a beautiful greenhouse. They also have a really charming shop filled with home goods and art.

Österlenchoklad: Österlen’s very own little chocolate factory. The chocolate shop and cafe is located in an old school in Skåne-Tranås and they curate incredible chocolates. You can sit in the cafe and have a fika, and purchase chocolate to-go at factory prices.

Kiviks Musteri: The cafe at this famous apple orchard serves all kinds of delicious apple-flavoured baked goods (and other things, too). You can also try many of Kiviks other popular products, like ciders and jams.

Backagården Österlen
Shown above: Österlenchoklad and Backagården

When to Visit Österlen

Despite being largely unknown outside of Sweden, Österlen draws huge crowds in the summer months. It isn’t unusual to see people cuing in their cars to get a parking spot at a trendy cafe, or waiting outside ahead of their favourite antique shop opening.

I can confirm that summer in Österlen is pure magic, but that isn’t the only time to visit. Österlen is just as beautiful in the shoulder season, in the spring or autumn. And there will be significantly less crowds, making it easier to make reservations at the many of the spots I talked about in this post.

If you’re looking to visit Österlen in the winter, keep in mind that many local businesses close in the winter months. Most local businesses open for the season around Easter weekend and stay open during the autumn. Just make sure you check the opening hours at your must-visit attractions and restaurants before booking the trip.

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One of my very favourite things about southern Sweden is all the nature. If you’ve been following me for awhile, you’ll know that there is no shortage of beautiful nature in Skåne – the southernmost part of Sweden that I call home. Sweden is a big county (surface area-wise), but is home to only 1 million people. This means, it is largely uninhabited – and there is tons of space to roam. Throughout the empty diverse landscapes of southern Sweden, the Skåne region has mapped trails for locals to get out and enjoy nature. In fact, there is over 1300 kilometres of hiking trails all over the Skåne region, called the Skåneleden trail.

Now, 1300 kilometeres is a lot of hiking … and it’s safe to say I still have a long way to go to explore all of it. However, I have spent a lot of time on various segments of the Skåneleden trail, and I’m here to share with you a few of my favourite segments of the trail.

My top Skåneleden trail hikes feature everything from rolling hills, forests, unique coastlines – and, my favourite, lots of cute farm animals.

A quick tip for locating the Skåneleden trail markers: Keep an eye out for orange! All Skåneleden trails are marked with orange markers with a photo of a hiker, and the word "Skåneleden."
1. Glumslövs backar (Glumslövs hills)
Glumslövs backar - best Skåneleden hikes
Difficulty level: Easy

Located just outside the town of Glumslöv along the coastline, you’ll find Glumslövs backar (the area can also be called Hilleshögs dalar). True to its name, it is a region of hills, valleys, and a rocky cliff-lined coastline. The landscape is very similar to the popular tourist island of Ven, which you can see across the distance in the sea. However, it is much more accessible since you can easily get there by train or car.

The hike starts through the valleys of Glumslöv, where you’ll walk through cow pastures surrounded by rolling hills. Once you hit the coastline, you can turn left or right and follow the trails along the water. Here you can see the cascading cliffs, abandoned WWII bunkers, and – my favourite part – the very unique coastline.

What is so unique about the coastline? It’s full of multi-coloured rocks (and bricks)!

Historically, there used to be several brick factories along the coastline between Helsingborg and Landskrona. Many colourful bricks still lay along the coastline, and the residue has changed the colours of the rocks as well to hues or red, orange, and yellow. You can read more about the history here.

How to get to Glumslövs backar

If you have a car, enter “Glumslöv” into your GPS as your destination. Once you have arrived in the small town, head just outside of town, south down Glumslövsvägen. Keep an eye out for the orange trail markers and parking alongside the road. Once you park your car, you can start following the trail markers toward the sea.

If you are travelling to Glumslöv by train, get off at Glumslövs train station and walk south down Glumslövsvägen until you hit the trail head.

Best time of year to visit Glumslövs backar

This hike is worth doing any time of the year, because the unique coastline is beautiful in any season. I’ve been in both the autumn and winter.

Looking for similar landscapes? See also: My guide to visiting Ven island.

2. Brösarps backar (The hills of Brosarp)
Difficulty level: Easy

If you’ve read some of my other Skåne posts, you’ll know how much I love the Brösarps backer area. This region of Skåne, located just outside the town of Brösarp, is very reminiscent of the rolling hills of Tuscany. The hiking trails in this region will take you through pastures and forests, up-and-down hills, and even along some abandoned train tracks. 

How to get to Brösarps backar

To do my favourite hike of the region, you’ll actually want to follow two hiking trails: Skåneleden and Backaleden.

You’ll start on the Backaleden trail through Brösarps southern hills. Here you’ll be able to hike to the top of the hills for the very best views. To get here, park in the town of Brösarp and head past Talldungen gårdshotell to the trail head. You’ll want to keep an eye out for yellow markers.

Follow the yellow Backaleden trail markers until you reach the train tracks. From there, you will turn left and walk about five minutes along the abandoned tracks until you see the orange Skåneleden trail markers. You’ll then follow the orange trail markers through the forest trails back to Brösarp.

The best season to visit Brösarps backar

I have been here in both summer and autumn, and the autumn was an easy favourite for me. The colours in this region around late October and early November are stunning. If you’re visiting this area, I can also really recommend spending a night at Talldungens gårdshotell (which just so happens to be my favourite hotel in Sweden – read a blog post about that experience here).

See also: 7 Places to Experience Autumn in Sweden. 

Brösarps backar
Brösarps backar
3. Söderåsens nationalpark
Difficulty level: Easy

Söderåsens nationalpark is a very popular hiking spot in Skåne, so it has been a bit more commercialized. The trails are likely to be busier than some of my other recommendations, but it is popular for a reason and worth checking out for the beautiful views. The national park is home to dense forests, lakes, and an incredible lookout point over a deep valley of trees. It has been affectionately called “Skåne’s Grand Canyon.”

Which Söderåsens nationalpark hike is the best?

The park has mapped out many trails, so you might be wondering which one you should choose. I haven’t hiked all the trails, so if you want details on all of them, you should check out this link. The most popular Söderåsens nationalpark hike is to Kopparhatten, which is home to the canyon-like views. This is guaranteed to be the busiest trails.

I can also really recommend the Härnsnäsrundan loop, which brings you to beautiful lakes and through dense forests. In the autumn it is a canopy of red, orange and yellow, and you will rarely encounter other hikers around this area.

How to get to Söderåsens nationalpark?

Since this is such a popular spot. Skåneleden has mapped out in detail everything you need to know about getting to this national park. Read it here.

Best time of year to visit Söderåsens nationalpark?

Easily the best time to visit is in the autumn, although it is beautiful all year round. If you plan to go in the busy summer or autumn months, go early. The parking lot has been know to get full (especially on weekends) by late morning.

Söderåsens nationalpark
Söderåsens nationalpark
4. Romeleåsen Ridge
Romeleåsen Ridge - the best Skåneleden trail hikes
Difficulty level: Medium

Romeleåsen Ridge is a hike located about 20-30 minutes from Malmö, near Dålby. It is most known for it’s beautiful lookouts over the surrounding hills, but the trails are very diverse taking you through pastures, forests, and up-and-down hills.

I have rated this one as medium, because there are a lot of steep, rocky inclines. As a result, make sure you bring some good shoes. We also noticed many hikers bringing along full picnics to cook food at the fire pits in the area, so this could also be a really cozy option for a break.

How to get to Romeleåsen Ridge

Skåneleden shares a 12 km route, but this 12 km hike would be quite difficult. If you’re looking for a shorter 6 km hike, you can instead put “The Lodge Resort” as a starting point, park your car there, and follow the trail markers from the hotel. From here you’ll still be able to experience the best views from the highest points in the region.

Best time of year to visit Romeleåsen Ridge

I may be a bit biased, but this is a fantastic winter hike. Temperatures rarely dip below 0 degrees Celsius in southern Sweden, but if they do, you must visit Romeleklint. The trees were covered in ice and it looked like a winter wonderland. My best advice is to go early, because as the day progressed the ice began to melt. And also make sure to have a waterproof jacket on, too. That being said, I imagine it would be beautiful here in the summer.

Romeleåsen Ridge
Romeleåsen Ridge
5. Kullabergs naturreservat (Kullaberg Nature Reserve)
Kullabergs naturreservat - the best Skåneleden trail hikes
Difficulty level: Easy-Medium

Kullaberg is another one of the most popular hiking spots in Skåne – and it’s easy to see why. It’s beautiful! Located in the Höganås municipality, Kullaberg is a nature reserve that protrudes out of the western coast of Skåne. The region is full of cutesy villages and beautiful coastlines, which I found to be very reminiscent of the California coast.

The rocky cliffs that line the coastline lead down to grottos and caves that you can explore. But be careful when heading down to these caves, some of the pathways are very steep and slippery. Most people head out to the tip of the peninsula, but I recommend stopping at Josefinelust along the way. This particular grotto was an easy favourite for me.

For a really great hike, park at Josefinelust and explore the grotto, and then head west toward the tip of the peninsula. Once at the tip, make sure you hike along the southern coast for the most beautiful views.

How to get to Kullaberg

Kullaberg is a popular spot, so if you’re arriving by car, I’d recommend getting there early. There are a few parking lots in the region. The most popular spot to park is “Parkingplatz Kullaberg,” which is near the tip of the nature reserve. However, if you want to hike the loop I described above, you can park at “Josfineslust Rastplats.”

Best time of year to visit Romeleåsen Ridge

Kullaberg is a really popular summer spot for swimming and hiking. I haven’t been in the summer, but I can imagine it would be absolutely beautiful to swim there. However, I have also hear that it is very busy in the summer months. I have only visited in the off-season, and it is so quiet and serene. When we visited on a sunny day in March, we had entire popular spots to ourselves. So really, it is always beautiful and depends what you’re looking for.

Kullabergs naturreservat
Kullabergs naturreservat
6. Måkläppen naturreservat (Måkläppen wildlife sanctuary)
Difficulty level: Easy-Medium

Looking for a unique hike in Skåne? Måkläppen is a great choice!

The Falsterbo peninsula off the southern coast of Skåne is home to Måkläppen nature reserve, and the wildlife that calls the nature reserve home. Here visitors are able to hike out to the tip of the peninsula to watch the harbour seals, grey seals, and diverse species of migratory birds in their natural habitat. It is truly a can’t-miss experience.

I have rated this as easy-medium difficulty, because the coastline is comprised of loose sand, which is a bit difficult to walk on. Additionally, even on mild or sunny days, it can get very cold as you hike out on the peninsula. For this reason, make sure you dress very warm, and wear sturdy waterproof shoes. I’d recommend bringing along water and a hot beverage, and a snack too.

The hike is about one hour each way.

Which months is Måkläppen open for visitors?

Måkläppen is only opened for 12 weeks every year in the winter months, between November and January. Otherwise, there are barriers put up at the opening to the peninsula to protect the wildlife. 

How to get to Måkläppen

As you can imagine, this unique experience does get quite busy in the winter months. If you are arriving by car, your destination should be “Falsterbo Golfklubb.” I would recommend arriving early in the morning as parking fills up quickly. 

Alternatively, you can take the the Bus 100 from Malmö Central Station to Falsterbo.

Skåneleden shares more about visiting Måkläppen here.

Måkläppens naturreservat
Måkläppens naturreservat

Check out this map of the best Skåneleden trail hikes


The best Skåneleden trail hikes
A guide to the best Skåneleden trail hikes
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The best restaurants in Malmö

The most common question I get about the Malmö food scene is easily: What even is Swedish food? And truthfully, before moving here, I had no clue what it was either … aside from meatballs, I guess.

While I’ve been living here in Malmö, and consumed a lot of delicious Swedish farm-to-table fare, I can say that Scandinavian food isn’t the only thing Malmö does well. Everyone talks about the world-class culinary scene in Copenhagen. But what many people don’t realize is that you don’t have to cross the Øresund Bridge to have an exceptional food experience. 

If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll know a lot of my local content centres around me eating my way through this city. Dare I say my favourite thing about Malmö is the food culture?

After spending so much time exploring the food scene in this city, I’m excited to share with you all my favourite hotspots and hidden gems. So here it is, everything you need to know about to where to eat in Malmö Sweden in 2021.

See Also: Visiting Malmö? Read my guide of all the things to do in Malmö – from a local’s perspective!

Where to eat in Malmö: A Complete Guide

the best brunch in malmö

Kärleksgatan 3: Tucked away in Davidshall, this tiny little brunch spot offers great food, coffee, and the most adorable interior [I mean, just look at this pastel tiled floor!].

JordThis spot offers my favourite vegan brunch in Malmo! With a cosy cafe setting and brunch options that range from toasts to oatmeal, and more!

Atrium: Atrium is the perfect cafe to grab brunch, and is absolutely one of my favourite brunches in the city. The ambiance is perfection, and I am obsessed with their very affordable breakfast platters, filled with everything from a yogurt parfait, to cheese and fresh bread (and don’t forget the bottomless coffee!).

Nam Do: Okay – so this isn’t really traditional brunch. Served on Saturday and Sunday from 11-4, Nam Do offers a Vietnamese “brunch,” which includes a full buffet spread of alllll your Vietnamese favourites, coffee, tea, and oter assorted drinks.

Cafe Grannen: Looking for vegan brunch in Malmö? This breakfast buffet is served everyday in the cutest little cafe. The spread includes an assortment of homemade pies, breads, and other treats. And the best part? At only 79 SEK on weekdays, it is surely the most affordable brunch you’ll find in the city.

Laziza: If you love Lebanese food, this spot is a treat. Laziza offers a Lebanese brunch in Malmo and it is one of my favourites.

Jord Malmo
Left: Atrium; Right: Jord

the best lunch in malmö

Saltimporten Canteen: If you’re looking for a premium lunch experience in Malmo, this is in my opinion the best lunch in Malmo. Everyday they make only one daily lunch option (plus a vegetarian option for the week) using seasonal, local ingredients. It is fantastic!

SMAK: The name of this Malmo Konsthall translates directly to “taste” and they offer a really great dagens lunch (“lunch of the day”). They make premium food, and you can take your own salad, bread, dessert, and coffee from the buffets.

Noir Kaffekultur: This place is so much more than just coffee. The avocado toast paired with a kaffe latte is my go-to, preferably outside on their perfect little Parisien-inspired patio.

Malmö Saluhall: The local “salluhall” or “food hall” offers a variety of restaurants in a cool indoor market setting, and is a great spot to grab lunch if you’re exploring the city. Plus, their diverse food offerings mean that there is guaranteed to be something for everyone. [must try: raman at Pink Head Noodle Bar].

AB Småland: This lifestyle concept store not only carries the most beautiful home goods, but it also offers a great vegan buffet lunch and coffee shop.

Far i Hatten: Located in the middle of one of Malmö’s coolest parks, Folkets Park, this is the perfect spot to grab a patio beer and pizza.

Spoonery: Offering a variety of different different bowls, with a rotating seasonal menu, Spoonery is a great lunch spot. If you’re in the mood to try a Scandinavian classic, opt for the meatballs!

Fiskehoddorna: Also known as Malmö’s fish market, this spot lines the street with colourful huts. Here, you can pick up the local catch-of-the-day to bring home and cook, or you can opt to eat to eat on their back patio. You won’t find better fish ‘n chips in Malmö, trust me.

Slottsrädgårdens Kafé: Nestled in the middle of Kungsparken, a park located in the centre of the city, you’ll find this cafe. This is the perfect summer patio spot for lunch or fika in the sun. [must try: the hummus plate!]

Boru Bowl Bar: Boru Bowl is your spot for the most delicious Asian-inspired bowls. The Crispy Pork is their most popular, but my personal go-to is the Boru Salmon.

Spoonery Malmo
Left: Spoonery; Right: Fiskehoddorna

the best dinner in malmö

Ruths (formerly Bastard): This is a really popular spot in Malmö – and for good reason. Ruths offers a really premium food experience. Using high-quality, locally-sourced ingredients, the chefs at Ruths serve up incredible Scandinavian-inspired cuisine. With a selection of small plates to choose from, you get to experience some of the best food Malmö has to offer. And, if you’re looking for something a bit more casual, you can opt for pizza in their courtyard in the warmer months. Other great news: as of winter 2021, Ruths is now opened all day! So you can go here for breakfast, brunch, lunch, or dinner. They also have a shop at the front with homemade goods, and it is my favourite spot to buy supplies for charcuterie night.

Lyran Matbar: This is my favourite restaurant in Malmö. Which, in a city full of world-class food options, that’s a huge statement. But it really is so good. In this tiny little restaurant, chefs use only seasonal, primarily local ingredients, so the menu changes everyday. When you arrive, you’ll be presented with the ingredient list for the day, but there is an element of surprise the specific menu items will be presented to you throughout the evening. At Lyran, you must opt for the tasting menu (although you can choose from a meat or veggie option). Make sure to make a reservation far in advance, because there is less than ten tables and this spot is popular.

Mutantur: I really love Mutantur. Like, a lot (notice a theme here). Mutanture serves a variety of gastronomic small plates with flavours inspired from around the world. I love the small tasting portions, because you’re able to try a variety of different options, all thoughtfully curated from fresh ingredients. If you’re lucky, you can find a drop-in bar seat. But I’d also recommend booking this spot well in advance.

Riket: This place is fun and trendy, and the food is incredible. Another spot with small plates made from in-season locally sourced ingredients, Riket serves up some pretty incredible food from their tiny bar side kitchen. They also have an impressive wine list with lots of natural wine options, plus a lively patio alongside the restaurant in the summer months.

Saiko: Step into this restaurant and I swear you’ll feel like you’ve teleported to Japan. To say I am obsessed with Saiko would be an understatement. This Japanese restaurant in Malmö offers small sharing plates, and recommend roughly three plates per person, which means you can virtually try the entire menu. And don’t forget to wash it down with a glass of sake.

LU: This is the best spot for premium yet affordable Chinese food in Malmö. It is really some of the very best Hong Kong-influenced Cantonese food I have ever had, with a variety of meat dishes and dumplings.

Opopoppa: Serving unique flavours of pizza by the slice, cans of beer, and a selection of natural wines, this intimate spot is a local favourite.

Casual Street Food: Looking for the best burger in Malmö? Look no further. The high quality burgers here blew me away (this coming from someone who doesn’t even really burgers…).

Soi 29: The best spot for premium Thai food in Malmo. I really love this spot. The space is cool and the food is so well done. If you’re looking to splurge, I would go for the five-dish tasting menu for the ultimate experience. It is fantastic!

Nam Do: If you love Vietnamese food as much as I do, this is a great place to go. The ambiance is cool, the food is delicious, and portions are very generous. I have tried other options, and in my opinion, this is best Vietnamese restaurant in Malmö.

Malmö Brewing Co.: With a large selection of in-house and international beers, paired with some good old southern cooking (think mac & cheese, pulled pork, and creamed corn), this is a great spot for a casual bite.

400 Grader: If you’re looking for excellent pizza in Malmo, 400 Grader is definitely the best I’ve tried!.

Mutantur Malmö
Ruths Malmö
Riket Malmö
Clockwise: Lyran; Ruths; Riket; Mutantur

the best cafes in malmö

The list of best fika spots in Malmö is LONG. So instead of including it here, I have rounded up a list of the best 15 cafes in Malmö. You can read the post here.

the best bars in malmö

Care/Of: This is my favourite cocktail bar in Malmö for high quality cocktails. It also has a perfectly intimate and cosy vibe.

LiketLiket is a new spot, affiliated is one of the best restaurants in Malmo – Riket! This cosy courtyard space offers a fantastic cocktail menu that changes every day.

MJs: To say I am obsessed with the aesthetic here would quite frankly be an understatement. And the cocktails are great too!

Mineral: This is a perfect little wine bar in Malmö with tapas-style food. I’m also obsessed with their pretty outdoor patio space.

Julie: Julie is the perfect intimate wine bar in the middle of the old town and offers a very extensive wine selection. The staff at Julie definitely knows their wines, so prepare for a top notch experience.

L’enoteca: This central location is great and they host the most amazing wine garden down/across the street this summer. It quickly became one of my favourite go to summer spots to enjoy a glass of wine with friends.

Gustavino: Another central location, I love this spot for an after work drink.

Malmö Brewing Co.: With a large selection of both in-house craft beers, and featured international beers, this is the best brewery in Malmö.

Mikkeller Pop Up: The popular Danish craft beer brand hosts a summer popup up in Folket’s Park.

Liket Malmo
L'Enoteca Malmo
Mineral Malmo
Gustavino Malmo
Clockwise from top left: Liket, Mineral, Gustavino, L’Enoteca.

the best falafal in malmö

Did you know that falafel is basically the unofficial food of Malmö? You’ll find it everywhere and it is easily the cheapest food you can buy for only 30-40 SEK. There are many awesome falafel restaurants in Malmö to choose from. However, if you were to ask me where to find the best falafel in Malmö, my answer would easily be Värnhem’s Falafel. Not only is the falafel tasty, but they actually make you a fresh pita right in front of you. And really, it doesn’t get better than that. 

Need help finding the where to eat in Malmö? Take a look at this map!


Where to eat in Malmö, Sweden
Where to eat in Malmö from a local's perspective
Where to eat in Malmö
The best restaurants in Malmö
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