Malmö does not resemble any other Swedish city. Instead of waging a desolate struggle to assert itself against Stockholm, it is towards Copenhagen that the eyes of the Malmöites are turned. Malmö has always been closer to continental Europe and the world than the rest of Sweden, in more ways than just geographically. In this city, visitors get both a cosy small-town feeling and a cosmopolitan atmosphere. Here are our best tips on what to do on your visit to Malmö.
Cycle around the “City of parks”
To get the most out of your stay in the city by the Sound, we recommend renting a bike. The city is not only flat as a pancake, but it has also been equipped with an impressive network of cycle paths. With our hands on the handlebars, we pull out and discover why Malmö has been given the nickname “City of parks”. The city’s largest park is Pildammsparken, inaugurated before the Baltic exhibition in 1914. In addition to beautiful walking paths, the park also houses several sculptures and a pavilion dedicated to Princess Margaret leftover from the baltic exhibition.
We continue on our royal park theme by cycling to Malmöhus Castle and the surrounding castle park. Here you have the chance to experience several different park types, including the Japanese garden, the large open area Saturday plan and Lördagsplanen central square. You will also find the city’s library at the southern end of the park.
Ten minutes by bike from Slottsparken is one of Malmö residents’ favourite haunts during the summer months – Ribersborg, or Ribban as it is popularly called. In addition to a lovely sandy beach in the middle of the city, it is also home to the city’s iconic cold bathhouse, which has stood since 1898. Here you can, among other things, take a sauna, treat yourself to a massage or eat at the restaurant.
Immerse yourself in culture
Malmö is close to the continent and this is especially noticeable in its vibrant cultural life with both government institutions and private initiatives. Since 2008, the Moderna Museet is also located in Malmö. Just like the mother museum on Skeppsholmen in Stockholm, you can see some of the best modern and contemporary art, both from the museum’s own collections as well as temporary exhibitions. A large exhibition of works by the abstract pioneer Hilma af Klint is currently underway. The exhibition runs until February 2021.
If you want to continue your cultural consumption in the evening, you should not miss Inkonst, which is an independent cultural centre in Mazetti’s old chocolate factory, very close to Möllevångstorget and Triangeln. Here the focus is on performing arts and music, with performances and performances several days a week. Inkonst also has a small bar that is open in connection with events.
Find Malmö’s best falafel
The fried chickpea ball is almost synonymous with Malmö and there are as many opinions about how the best falafel should taste as there are bolts in the Öresund Bridge. In addition to chickpeas, tahini, coriander and bread, there are lots of other goodies to pimp your roll with – how about grilled peppers, halloumi, baba ganoush and hummus? Yum!
It was in Malmö in the 80s that falafel was introduced in Sweden. Infamous ‘Falafel by Youssif’ may be a bit remote in a parking lot in a shopping centre in Fosie, but since his falafel is considered Sweden’s best, it is definitely worth a detour (but keep in mind that the cart is only open between 11 am-3 pm). If you miss the opening hours, or you lack the energy to get out to Fosie, there are several good options closer to the centre. In the district Annelund, a short bike ride from Möllan, is ‘Falafel Baghdad’ where you can get freshly made falafel and shawarma in Shamoun bread served in the Iraqi way.
Exciting taste experiences
Influences from other world cuisines can also be found elsewhere in the Scanian metropolis and if you are looking for culinary discoveries, you have chosen the right city. In recent years, Malmö has received a real boost when it comes to exciting, new restaurants – something that has made foodies from near and far start coming here.
Here, creative whims, passion and daily fresh ingredients determine which dishes end up on the menu. The focus is on modern European home cooking and natural wines. When the weather allows, pizza is also baked in the restaurant’s wood oven. (Bastard, Mäster Johansgatan 11)
With a motto that translates in English to “Sort of Asian”, Pink Head has become a name to be reckoned with in Malmö. At its main restaurant and noodle bar, innovative dishes are served with inspiration taken from the Far East. During the warmer months, Pink Head’s outdoor seating offers one of the city’s best hangouts. (Pink Head, Norra Vallgatan 78)
Our last tip is a restaurant for those of you who want to discover new flavours. The Riket restaurant is located in Davidshall and offers a wide selection of natural wines as well as innovative snacks with a strong focus on local produce and sustainability. Food joy at its best! (Riket, Erik Dahlbergsgatan 5)
Time for a coffee break
What would a city vacation be without a coffee break? Around Malmö, several places compete to serve the city’s best coffee. The coffee bar on Möllan is just as the name suggests, a coffee bar on Möllevångstorget. The unassuming little place, hailed by The Guardian, has few seats, but as long as the sun is shining, you can sit on the benches outdoors.
Solde Kaffebar is in its 14th year as the Malmöites’ favourite hook for caffeine intake, and it is not difficult to understand why. The small café on Regementsgatan has its own coffee roastery and for those who like what they have in the cup, can buy the beans to take home.
If you are someone who thinks the focus should be on what to dip in the coffee, instead of the coffee itself, a visit to the classic patisserie Hollandia is recommended. The café in the centre is one of Malmö’s oldest and here the traditions live on in both the food and its beautiful interior.