Planning a trip to visit my ancestors country and I don't travel much. Plan to start in Sweden then travel south to Denmark, Germany Switzerland and Italy. How safe is Sweden now and Europe in general. Thanks for any feedback
It sounds as if you are planning a lovely trip. Enjoy!
It is natural to feel a little apprehensive about the "unknown." Let me assure you that you will be as safe (some would say safer) as if you were traveling to Seattle or Portland. If you use the same good common sense you would at home, you will be fine.
It will be a confidence builder if you read some guidebooks. I also think the short video series on the Rick Steves website called, "European Travel Skills" could be very helpful as well.
As far as I know, all Scandinavian countries are considered the safest ones in the world.
Depending on where in Sweden you want to visit you may have to look out for bears an dwolves, moose can be a problem if you drive in forests, and mosquitoes are everywhere (in summer).
Some forests in Denmark have a small population of wolves, but though they attack sheep, there has been no reports of attack on people.
safer than the USA!
The problem is that it is expensive not unsafe compared to the USA and all the shooting here.
You will have a wonderful time!
Safety is a non-issue but, as always, even in Longview or Battle Ground, be aware of your surroundings.
Sweden - Level 1: Exercise Normal Precautions
Now that said, Sweden may be a bit less safe now that Kurt Wallender retired and is no longer available to fight crime in Sweden.
Anecdotal evidence: Last July we were in Scandinavia. We walked days and evenings all over Copenhagen, Stockholm, Uppsala, Oslo and Bergen. We never felt the least unsafe, even in the "less desirable" parts of those towns. The biggest issue we had was the price of beer.
Sweden - Level 1: Exercise Normal Precautions
Doesn't every country now have at least a level one warning from the US State Department? They redid their system, and I think it makes less sense now than it previously did. YMMV, of course.
In Copenhagen, we were warned by Swedes working there not to go in certain places in Malmo.
...Level 1: Exercise Normal Precautions...... When would you NOT exercise normal precautions? That is a silly warning if it is that at all.
This question of safety comes up a lot and has always perplexed me. Without specifics, it's hard for me to understand exactly what people are afraid of. Most of the time I've spent in Europe since my first trip in 1977 has been on my own. I was 31 then and I'm now 72. Situational awareness is a part of any trip anywhere for me.
I just got back last week from a 3+ week (short for me) solo trip which included 2 nights in Amsterdam, 2 nights in Stockholm before the RS Best of Scandinavia tour started, 2 extra nights in Bergen after it ended and 2 nights back in Amsterdam before flying back to Seattle.
Whether with the group or on my own, I never felt unsafe anywhere. Of course it was June 5 to 27, so I was back in my room before it ever got close to dark.
It would be useful for you to thoroughly explore all the advice provided in the Travel Tips on this website.
You'd also do well to take a look at what's written about your country and city destinations in the Explore Europe section of this website. It will help with what to expect.
Knowledge is often a good antidote for fear. Keep on researching and asking questions on the forum.
Thank-you everyone for your advise and wisdom. I have been to Europe twice before so I am not sure why I asked the question. It seems irrational.
I will review travel tips and plan to go to Sweden next April. I am excited to go and meet new friends.
Sweden is much much safer than the USA. Frankly, this is a ridiculous question to ask.
BBC Newsnight recently aired a 17 minute video examining claims about changes in Sweden.
Sweden is usually recognized as being innovative, transparent and progressive, with good healthcare, welfare and gender equality. More recently, however, a growing chorus of Sweden sceptics have emerged. In this report, Gabriel Gatehouse went to find out more about these competing narratives.
This morning the NY Times has a related article by their chief diplomatic correspondent in Europe,
Sweden Was Long Seen as a ‘Moral Superpower.’ That May Be Changing.
Saga Norén, Länskrim Malmö has also given up her badge. But, hopefully there will be new and upcoming Swedish cops to keep us safe and entertained.
Pertaining to Europe I don't bother with announcements from the US State Dept,... warnings, opinions, whatever.....not interested.
tcyin, there are no ridiculous questions, only ridiculous answers.
razorclams, go have a great time and dont worry.....