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21 Things You Realize When You Visit Scandinavia

Prepare for seafood, hot people, and drinking.

1. Finland and Iceland are NOT part of Scandinavia.

They're both great countries, but Finland and Iceland aren't technically Scandinavian. Yeah, they're considered Nordic, but not Scandinavian. That's reserved for the three kingdoms of Denmark, Norway and Sweden.

2. Seafood is such a thing.

3. And bread? ALL THE TIME.

4. Or just sandwich cakes.

5. Skiing is super duper important.

Flickr: trysil / Creative Commons

Especially in Norway, where skiing was invented. There's regular skiing, cross country skiing, ski jumping, and the biathlon, in which competitors cross country ski and casually stop to shoot rifles at targets because that is a normal sport.

6. Ditto for sailing.

Flickr: mariano-mantel / Creative Commons

Scandinavians LOVE to sail. They will sail across oceans, across lakes. They will sail until they cannot sail anymore.

7. Drinking is a favorite hobby. Drugs? Not so much.

8. Scandinavians know how to vacation.

9. People are hot.

Kevin Winter / Via Getty

Sure there are hot people everywhere but honestly, most of them live in Scandinavia. Also, people are really fucking tall.

10. There's lots of snow, but even more rain.

11. Scandinavians take their incredibly delicious chocolate very seriously.

Flickr: nayrb7 / Creative Commons

Do yourself a favor and at least try some Daim.

12. In the winter, the sun goes bye bye. In the summer, there is daylight forever.

13. Don't be surprised if your waiter has three degrees.

Flickr: jonassmith / Creative Commons

Education is free. FREE. What does that mean? A literacy rate of 99-100%. You even get healthcare (thanks, Obama) and gender equality is actually kind of a thing! Though thanks to high taxes (even though minimum wage is upwards of $20 per hour), Scandinavian countries still top lists of most expensive places to live and visit.

14. Minimalism is still all the rage.

15. People like to eat at home.

16. Graduating is way more fun.

17. Public transportation is way more awesome.

Flickr: jacobchristensen / Creative Commons

In Copenhagen, the metro comes about every 5 minutes and everything is completely computerized.

18. Festivals are weird and fantastic.

Flickr: ulfbodin / Creative Commons

Sweden's midsummer festival includes dancing around a maypole and singing children's songs. Girls wear flower crowns and apparently pick seven different kinds of flowers to put under their pillow at night. That night, they'll dream about their future husbands.

It's also a great excuse for Swedes to drink heavily in nice weather.

19. Everything is super clean.

Flickr: alex-photos / Creative Commons

Sweden even ran out of trash.

20. The royal families are way more fun.

Torsten Laursen / Via Getty

Princess Märtha Louise of Norway says she can talk to angels. What can you do, Kate Middleton?

21. And most importantly...

Flickr: seiffert / Creative Commons

It's. / Creative Commons


Flickr: kdg59 / Creative Commons


Flickr: localsurfer / Creative Commons

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