Sweden is a beautiful country and there are a thousand reasons to visit this country, but if there is one festival that is really worth living there, it is the St. John’s Day. This event, also called “Midsommar” in Swedish, which means “Midsummer” is the Swedish festival par excellence. Indeed, after Christmas, it is considered the biggest Swedish holiday, and by some even the most important event of the year.
Saint John’s Day has been held for a number of years to celebrate the summer solstice. It was invented by the pagans, before Jesus Christ and since the fusion of pagan and Catholic traditions, it is now celebrated on June 24. In Sweden, festivities usually take place on the Fridays and Saturdays closest to that date. It will therefore take place this year on Friday 22 and Saturday 23 June 2018.
Midsommar is celebrated as close to nature as possible, and every year thousands of Swedes leave their towns to celebrate it in the countryside. If you are lucky enough to come during this period, you will be able to witness unforgettable Swedish traditions.
Natural elements (flowers, herbs, etc.) are picked early in the morning and then used to make the famous mast of Saint-Jean, which is the centre of the festival, and to weave the wreaths of flowers for the girls and women. Swedes make their environment magical by decorating everything around them, houses, cars etc. Midsommar stages a beautiful flowery tradition and the custom wants young single women to lay flowers under their pillows during the night, to dream of their future husband…
This is the brightest night of the year and the party continues very late. Coming to the Midsummer is the perfect opportunity to both discover Swedish traditions and celebrate. You will attend local dances around the mat, traditional songs, organized games, and generally an outstanding buffet accompanied by Scandinavian specialties and flavoured schnapps. The whole is of course sprinkled with beer. Throughout the night the Midsommarstång (mid-summer dance) takes place. The night is very clear, and in the northernmost regions, the sun never sets completely, and the festivities resound until the early morning. To refresh their spirits, the bravest then throw themselves into a river or lake. It is an experience not to be missed!
For mountain lovers, and especially winter sports lovers, you should know that as unlikely as it may seem, some Swedes prefer to celebrate the feast of nature and summer on skis. To find the snow you have to go up to the north of the country, but you won’t be disappointed. What could be better than skiing under the midnight sun?
So don’t hesitate and don’t wait to fly to this wonderful country, apply online for Visa on Sweden Visa and come to discover the Midsummer day and the most extraordinary Swedish traditions.