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Malmö is a small coastal city located in southern Sweden. It is not the first place you will search for traveling while visiting Sweden. Most tourists stick with Gothenburg and Stockholm. But the beauty of most European countries, especially the Scandinavian countries, is that there is so much beauty in the smaller and lesser-known cities and towns which are less traveled. And Malmö is one such beautiful city. It might not be where you spend a long time, but it is perfect for a day trip or a weekend getaway to explore more relaxedly.
How Did I Get to Know About Malmö?
To be honest, we didn’t plan Malmö well ahead. I was not even aware of it before I started planning my trip to Copenhagen (more on that in a separate post later). While planning on traveling to Copenhagen, the first thing that struck my mind was the location of the Danish capital.
Copenhagen is very close to Sweden. So, I was hoping I could go on a day trip from Copenhagen to somewhere in Sweden, adding a new country to my list. I know it might sound very silly, but I wouldn’t have just crossed the border for namesake just to add it to my list. While researching, I found two charming Swedish cities close to each other: Malmö and Lund. Unfortunately, I only had time to explore Malmo. It was such a beautiful place, and I will tell you all the things you can do in Malmö and everything you need to know to plan your day trip.
How to Reach Malmö From Copenhagen?
The cities of Copenhagen and Malmö are connected by the Öresund/Øresund Bridge, a combined motorway and railway line running through the Øresund strait. So pick your choice, roadways or railways?
I love traveling by train, and hence that was my first choice. It is very convenient and takes around 40 minutes from Copenhagen City Central. You could also board the same train from Copenhagen Airport. (My stay was closer to the central station, so I boarded from there.)
Cost! The return ticket cost me €26. This also includes the conversion fee from DKK to Euro charged by my bank. You can use your international debit or credit card for payments in the ticket machine.
By FlixBus or Car
If you are not a fan of riding the train, then you could book a ticket for the Flixbus. You could also drive to Malmö, but check the toll fares, as they could be a little pricey.
Tip! As obvious as it sounds, carry all your travel documents, as authorities could check for the relevant documents while entering the Swedish borders.
Best Things to Do in Malmö
Let’s see all the best things to do in Malmö now that we have reached Malmö. Before braving the cold winds outside on a cloudy day in February, I wanted to have my morning coffee, so we were looking to see if there was a small cafe inside Malmö Central. To our surprise, it had a very cute food court within the station which had so many food and coffee options.
After exiting Malmö Central, you could start the day by exploring the old town of Malmö, Gamla Staden. It is a charming district of historic Malmö filled with cute little squares, Malmö Castle, colorful houses, picturesque alleys, and more. There is a lot to explore in this neighborhood, and most of the things I have listed below are part of Gamla Staden.
1. Check Out Lilla Torg
Lilla Torg is a small square part of the old town of Malmö, lined with colorful half-timbered houses, bars, cafes, and cute little handicraft shops from where you can get some nice souvenirs.
Photo tip! All the alleys around this area are filled with cute little houses. If you are looking for colorful ones to click some fun pictures, walk through Jakob Nilsgatan, known for its brightly colored houses with cobblestone roads.
Good to know! While these are some cute houses to click some great pictures, they are also the living space of the locals, so please be considerate.
2. Experience Fika at Stortorget
Stortorget is the town square of Malmö, where the Malmö Rådhus is located, which is the town Hall of Malmö. It is also filled with many cafes and food joints. It is a perfect place to experience Swedish Fika. Fika is ideally a coffee break with some cake or sweet dish, but it is not just about having a coffee or a snack. It is an experience of enjoying the moment while having something warm.
While you are there, take a walk inside Lejonet Passagen, a lovely little passage through historic buildings. If you love plants or flowers, check out Bara Blommor Hos Hanna Grindal, an adorable little plant boutique. If only I could carry them, I would have bought a lot of plants from them. Walking around a plant shop is nice, even if I am not looking to buy. It absolutely puts you in a good mood. Plants and flowers have that effect on us.
3. Visit the St. Peter’s Church (Sankt Petri Kyrka)
While you are around Stortorget, walk around the corner to visit St. Peter’s Church which is a stunning 14th-century gothic brick church. The walls and the church’s vaulted ceiling are filled with murals from medieval times. It is intricate and relatively well preserved. The church also houses some unusual furnishings. Walk around the church to see the impressive brick exterior from different angles.
4. Explore the Gustav Adolfs Torg
Gustav Adolfs Torg is the second biggest square in Malmö. Check out the Royal Opera, which is located in this square. A little further from it is the Davidshalls Bridge, where you can see interesting bronze sculptures of shoes lined up on either side of the bridge, pointing in different directions. There are 19 pairs of shoes similar to the ones of some of the famous artists of Sweden. The shoes are placed in such a way that they point in a direction towards a place that is important to the artist.
Tip! It was pretty interesting to see the shoes, as it was not very usual. Still, it is not worth taking a complete detour if you are not around the area just to visit the bridge.
It is a nice place to relax, sipping a cup of coffee or an ice cream sitting on the stairs around the water, especially during the summer. We visited at the end of winter on a freezing and windy day, so it was not a great option to sit by the water at the time.
Fun tip! There is a museum for “Disgusting Food” just across the bridge. I have heard some good reviews about it. You should try it if you have the stomach for it.
They even have a board with the number of people who threw up during their visit. I wasn’t brave enough to try that!
Interested in Comics or Superheroes?
The Science Fiction Bookstore in Södra Förstadsgatan has a vast collection of exciting stuff. Not just for kids; there are also some cool things that can interest everyone. We accidentally stumbled upon this store and wanted to buy everything.
5. Hit the City Library
Library? Oh, yeah, you heard me right. Malmö’s library is one of the most incredible libraries, consisting of three interconnected buildings. The old brick building known as “The Castle”, was the oldest of the three buildings but was later renovated. “The Calendar of Light” is a modern building with glass walls from which you can enjoy absolutely amazing garden views from the inside. The third building is the cylinder which connects the old brick building with The Calendar of Light.
Good to know! If you want to take a quick break from all the walking, take a Fika at the Cafe in the library.
6. Take a Stroll in the Kungsparken (Kings Park)
For a city, it is filled with so many parks and green spaces even in its most central location, and Kungsparken is one of the largest parks. On a bright summer day, you could pack a picnic, enjoy an outdoorsy lunch, and enjoy some ice cream. Even on a cold winter day, we could see many locals taking their dogs for a walk along the trails. It is also filled with biking trails.
This English-style park also surrounds Malmö Castle. Make sure to check out the castle mill, which is on the other side of the park.
Of course, the park also has a cafe called Slottsträdgårdens Kafé, which is an excellent photo spot.
Fun tip! If you don’t mind a little extra splurge, consider riding the Gondola.
7. Admire the Malmöhus Slott
The Malmöhus Slott (Malmö Castle) might not be one of the most spectacular castles you could see in Europe. However, it is still rich in history and an important sight in Malmö. The castle has a lot of history about the past rivalry between Denmark and Sweden. It was also used as a prison for a few years in the past. This 16th-century castle is the oldest preserved renaissance castle in the Nordic region. This castle is currently a museum.
Tip! If you don’t have the time to actually visit the castle museum, I still recommend visiting the castle from outside and taking a stroll around the castle.
8. Spot the Turning Torso
The Turning Torso is not exactly a tourist attraction, or maybe it could be considered one due to its popularity? I really don’t know. It was the tallest building in the Nordic region until recently. But it is more famous for its appearance, which reflects its name, “Turning Torso”. (I cannot stop imagining it to be the torso of an actual person standing there). But yes, this twisted tower is one of the popular locations. Well, it was pretty distinctly visible from the flight just before landing in Copenhagen. (Since I knew it already, I silently screamed from the flight that it was Malmö.)
It is visible from quite a distance, and what better way to see a tall tower than capturing it from a distance?
9. Have Lunch at Malmö Saluhall
This could be your perfect lunch spot. Enjoy some Swedish Smørrebrød (open-faced sandwich) or any other cuisine you enjoy. It is also a place to get fresh local produce. Malmö Saluhall has an excellent ambiance to sit both inside and outside. It is one of the best ways to experience the city.
10. Take a Dip in the Ribersborgs Open-Air Bath
Saunas are an integral part of Swedish culture. Ribersborgs open-air bath is a Swedish sauna and ice bathing facility popular among locals and tourists. On a clear day, this is a perfect location to enjoy sunset views by the sea. If you have the time, don’t miss out on indulging in the local culture.
We visited during a very windy day, and it was almost impossible to walk along the coast. So, we didn’t dare go to this place, but it definitely is a must-try.
11. Enjoy Sunset at the Malmö Harbor Lookout
Another beautiful place to enjoy the sunset is the harbor lookout. You can see fantastic sunset views with the Turning Torso in the backdrop. You could also spot Malmö’s lighthouses (yes, not one but two). The lookout is located in the Västra Hamnen. This neighborhood is quite the contrast to the old town center.
Västra Hamnen is a former industrial area (until the 21st century), recently designed into a sustainable urban district. It is also called “The City of Tomorrow” as it is Europe’s first district to be claimed as carbon neutral (which is quite a feat, no wonder it is expensive). However, it is an amazing place to watch the sun go down, and I envied the area’s residents who could enjoy such views every day.
12. Travel on the Øresund Bridge
If you visit Malmö from Copenhagen, this is the first thing you will strike off your list. It is Europe’s longest combined rail and motorway, and you can see mesmerizing views as you cross the bridge. If you are in a hurry to get back and probably unable to catch the sunset at Västra Hamnen, try to time your train ride back around this time as you still enjoy stunning views from the train as it rides past the bridge.
These are some of the best things to do in Malmö in a day. Scandinavian countries are some of the most expensive ones to visit. Still, you can easily take an affordable, budget-friendly day trip to Malmö from Copenhagen. It could be a little tricky to get to know the public transport system of a new place and especially it could be a lot if you are only going to be there for a day. In Malmö, you could do everything without a car or public transport by just walking around the city. This also saves a lot of bucks!
Interested in knowing what the perfect “Instagrammable” locations in Malmö are? Check out our post on Malmö’s best photo spots.
24 thoughts on “Malmö From Copenhagen: 12 Best Things to Do on a Day Trip”
Oooh what a good idea for a day trip! The idea of the museum for “Disgusting Food” sounded fun, until you mentioned so many people threw up! I like the look of Malmöhus Slott and the pretty areas along the water.
“Disgusting Food” had really good reviews. I wonder what actually made people threw up! 😀
Yeah, it was nice to walk around the castle and its park. Could have even had a picnic if the weather had been pleasant. 🙂
Wow, looks like such a great travel destination to explore. Love both the nature and the architecture. Seems to have wonderful variety.
Yeah, Malmo is a perfect combination of old and new architecture. They also have a lot of green spaces for a city. 🙂
I love Mälmo! But thanks tongpiercings post I know that I haven’t seen about 30% of the highlights. Now I have to go back. 😊
Always nice to revisit places and explore the things that we missed the last time. 🙂
Wow! I honestly had never heard of this in Sweden before but now I’d love to go! The architecture is stunning, as is the harbor! Thanks for sharing!
Happy that you liked the post! We would love to see your pictures of Malmo when you visit. Tag us on Instagram. 🙂
This down is SO adorable! I’d love to see it. Sounds like a perfect day trip. Thanks for sharing!
Glad that you liked our post! Yeah, Malmo is indeed a perfect day trip destination. 🙂
What a splendid way to spend the day in Malmo! I would live to visit some day.
Hope you get to visit Malmo soon! 🙂
I’d never heard of this spot either… Coppenhagen always gets the glory lol… thanks for the inspiration!
Malmo is indeed a hidden gem! Always nice to escape the crowd in Copenhagen during peak season. 🙂
We just booked cheap flights to Oslo for September and are trying to decide where all we want to explore in the Nordic Region during our 2 1/2 week trip– this guide definitely put Malmo on our radar!
Glad to hear that you want to visit Malmo during your vacation! Smogen is also a great place to visit in Sweden on your way to Malmo from Oslo. 🙂
I skipped out of Malmo while was in Copenhagen and now I regret it🙈 Kungsparken looks beautiful!
Ah, that happens! Kungsparken is indeed beautiful and you can always visit Copenhagen again and do more day trips. 🙂 We too missed a few things during our first trip due to time constraints.
This is a great idea for a day trip! I love how close the two countries are.
Yeah, the two countries are very close to each other. Thanks to the Øresund bridge we can reach Malmo from Copenhagen in about 40 minutes. 🙂
I’ve been to Malmo but only shortly. I need to return, because it looks great!
Sounds like a great plan! 😀
Malmö will definitely be a stop on my next trip to Scandanavia!
That’s great! Hope you have a great time in Malmö. 🙂