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Visby, a Baltic summer paradise

by Véronique and Mike

20 July 2015 • When we arrived by tender in Visby in Gotland (Sweden) it sounded and looked as if Tomorrowland was in town. There were beautiful young people everywhere and there were lots of yachts with loud dance music. I even saw one with a DJ mixing panel on board. Apparently there is a music and dance festival every year in week 29 (and called also Week 29 or Week Stockholm), when famous DJ’s from Stockholm come to play in the clubs of Visby. 

A nice surprise, but I was looking for a somewhat quieter day. With my walk next to the 13th century city walls my wishes where fulfilled. Visby is one of the best-preserved medieval cities in Scandinavia. Since 1995 it has been put on the UNESCO World Heritage list, because of the fact that the original configuration of the town map dates from the Viking era.

Visby was once the capital of the Baltic Sea and the main centre of the Hanseatic League. In other words: history is around every corner.

Visby is picture perfect with its impeccably maintained parks, fountains, ruins, churches, and of course the impressive Botanical garden with herbs section. The city centre is touristy, in a nice way. The city library Almedalsbiblioket is worth a visit too. It has a bar, magazines, cosy chairs and panoramic windows offering a view on the Almedalen Park. 

Visby counts way too many nice bars and restaurants. So many to enjoy and so little time.

I loved the patio of Vinäger wine bar and juice bar Josbaren where I had the perfect green smoothie. Later on I tried the slightly less healthy (but gluten free and lactose free) local specialty saffron pancakes with red berries and cream at cosy Kruk Makarens Café

Other favourites:

- Happy hippy with -no not only hippie- clothes and accessories.
- Kränku Tea where they sell their own blends and everything tea related.  
- Akantus Interior offers beautiful interior objects, gadgets and antiques.
- FRIENDHs: stylish clothes for him and her.
- Bokhandeln Wessman & Petersson where they also sell English books and travel    guides.
- The view over the harbour and the bar at Krönet
- Gute Glass ice cream. I did not try it but I saw so many happy faces of people enjoying their ice cream. It must be very good.
- GKF where they sell local handicraft.

If you want to buy something typical of Gotland, you can buy one of the soft lambskins in one of the many shops.

Everywhere I go, I love to discover the local supermarket. Torgkassen supermarket is on the Storatorget square and they actually have a lot to offer for a small supermarket, even organic stuff.

Visby is a place to relax where everybody is welcome. Kids, youngsters, elderly people… This place has so much to offer for everybody. 

Text: Véronique

Photos: Mike & Véronique

We are travelling on board VOYAGER with Belgian cruise tour operator All-Ways, discovering the Baltic Sea and St-Petersburg. Mike often joins the excursion, while I mainly go explore myself. In the evening we gather our stories and share on the blog the things we loved most.