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Copenhagen-Gotenburg-Stockholm-Oslo

Hi! I’m looking for a little help with the Sweden part of a summer trip itinerary. Flying into Copenhagen, staying there for a few days, then have five days in Sweden before heading to Oslo, which I think will be a combination of Stockholm and Gotenburg. Traveling with two older teens and using all rail transport, no rental car.
After departing Copenhagen, should we go first to Gothenburg and then to Stockholm before heading to Oslo or vice-versa? It looks like there are high speed trains between two of the three routes, but the geography has me confused.
Or are there other recommendations of somewhere to see instead of Gothenburg? We are nature lovers, but also feel like with this being our first trip to Scandinavia, we really do need to also see Stockholm. I also looked at Kalmar but am torn, and don’t have enough time to do everything so trying to be selective.
After Oslo, we are doing NIN and then flying out of Bergen, and that part of the trip is pretty much set.
Wisdom is welcome!

Posted by
1049 posts

It makes a bit more sense if you think of Copenhagen, Gothenburg and Stockholm as a triangle. Copenhagen to Stockholm direct is the longest leg. When we did this route we flew Copenhagen to Stockholm and then came back by train Stockholm to Gothenburg then onto Copenhagen. The train from Gothenburg to Copenhagen was the most enjoyable section as it is reasonably scenic. Stockholm to Gothenburg is pretty boring scenery; mostly farms.

In Gothenburg, we really enjoyed our trip to the Volvo car museum. It's a really well curated museum so it's enjoyable even if you aren't super into cars.

Swedish nature is very different to Norwegian nature. Hands down Norway is spectacular and Sweden (unless you go a lot further north) is kinda boring. Lots of trees but no spectacular fjords or mountains.

If you are nature lovers then I hope you have planned an overnight somewhere on the NiN route. There are so many options for things to do from Flåm - biking, kayaking, hiking etc.

Posted by
15720 posts

If you go Copenhagen to Gothenburg to Stockholm to Oslo you are virtually backtracking between Stockholm and Gothenburg.

My suggestion is Copenhagen-Stockholm-Gothenburg-Oslo.

The Copenhagen to Stockholm part should be the one sort of hugging the southern coast.

Also look at the actual schedule. Part of the rail route between Gothenburg and Oslo is having maintenance work and there is a bus replacement. It may be finished by the time you travel.

Posted by
3 posts

Thank you both for the input! I’ll change my plans to do Copenhagen-Stockholm-Gothenburg-Oslo, in that order, and will check out the rail maintenance impact. Thanks @FrankII.
And it sounds like we are on the right track @Aussienomad with our time in Norway then, too!

Posted by
6682 posts

After departing Copenhagen, should we go first to Gothenburg and then
to Stockholm before heading to Oslo or vice-versa? It looks like there
are high speed trains between two of the three routes, but the
geography has me confused.

That really doesn't matter. Total travel time is roughly the same no matter if you choose to travel Copenhagen-Gothenburg-Stockholm-Oslo or Copenhagen-Stockholm-Gothenburg-Oslo. There are high speed trains on all routes except Gothenburg-Oslo. Have a look at the schedule and price and see what suits you the best.

Regarding views, all routes have some scenic parts.

Gothenburg is a great city and very much worth seeing, but there are other options as well. You could e.g. consider a stop in Norrköping. Or if you're looking for small town, one night in Eksjö perhaps?