Let us take you on a journey to a city full of promise. In Gävle, unique adventures rub shoulders with exciting encounters, making it easy to do a great deal in a short amount of time. So why not visit our tourist attractions and enjoy the local delicacies at a restaurant down by the sea. Gävle has something for everyone.
Every year, at the beginning of December, the world-famous Gävle Goat is erected in Slottstorget in Gävle. It is made from a straw-covered wooden frame and is 12 metres high. Straight away, people begin to speculate as to whether it will burn down before Christmas or survive any malevolent arsonists. Over the last few years, people from more than 100 countries have eagerly followed the Gävle Goat’s fate via Internet webcams. But one thing is certain, with his shining horns and snow-covered back, the Gävle Goat is a magnificent sight!
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It could have been just another crazy idea hatched on a skiing vacation. Eight whiskyloving engineers were wondering why there is no such thing as a Swedish whisky – after all, Sweden has all the necessary raw materials and water of the highest quality. Now, ten years later, Mackmyra Swedish Whisky is a reality and the little distillery outside Gävle is triumphantly bringing home international awards for its high quality. The distillery is open for pre-booked tours and tastings. In the near future a visitor’s centre will be built to cater for many, many more whisky devotees from the around the world.
Who could fail to be fascinated by the playfulness and similarities with us that apes – our closest relatives – display. Chimpanzees, orang-utans and their smaller cousins all have plenty of room to entertain themselves – and us – at the Furuvik amusement park and zoo. Younger visitors are usually especially happy to visit the petting zoo where they can make a fuss of kids, lambs, piglets and chicks. And if that’s not quite enough, then take a few turns on the amusement park rides or a dip in the huge pool area.
Gilded, luxury royal coaches and Spartan prison wagons without the slightest creature comfort – the contrasts are huge at one of the world’s finest collections or railway rolling stock. Visitors are allowed to climb aboard much of it and can imagine how it felt to drive a locomotive more than a century ago. But the Swedish Railway Museum is so much more than just vintage locomotives; it is also the story of how a nation was transformed by new transportation opportunities.
Go to jail on bread and water. Visit old prison dungeons from the 1730s and walk into cells that were still in use in 1986. Two-and-a-half centuries of prison history are brought together at The Prison Museum of Sweden. Not only will you discover how hard prison life was, but you’ll also find a great many of the terrifying methods of punishment used, including the death penalty. Audio guides in English and German tell the stories behind the people and their deeds.
Watch a huge bull elk wallow and snort in the lake, cooling down in the summer heat. Ramble with a knowledgeable guide through the enclosure at Kybacka Elk Park and learn everything you didn't know about the King of the Forest. But above all, enjoy the very special sensation of being in the presence of these magnificent beasts. Maybe you’ll even get to pat one.
Art enthusiasts shouldn’t miss the County Museum's collection of pictorial art, which dates back to the seventeenth century. Works from many of the greatest Swedish artists are exhibited there. Gunnar Cyrén, Gävle’s very own internationally-renowned designer, has his own room where such things as glassware and cutlery from the Nobel dinner service are on display.
Gävle is concentrated around a lively city centre with a great variety of shops and attractions within comfortable walking distance of the hotels. Old, low, eighteenth century wooden buildings are still preserved in Gamla Gefle (Gävle Old Town). The concert hall’s exciting architecture, a beautiful nineteenth century theatre and a wealth of public art all provide the city with its character. And the river Gavleån runs right through the centre of town, from the great city park down to where it runs into the sea.