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Göteborg: the warmest city in a snowstorm 

Göteborg, Sweden (Amy Goodman/YJI)

Göteborg, SWEDEN – Walking through the streets of Haga, a former working-class district of Göteborg, my friend and I are on the hunt for some lunch as our jackets gradually collect the falling snow.

While the stores lining the streets have clearly been designed with tourists in mind, an entirely unpretentious cafe, bustling with locals and visitors alike, refuses to pander to typical screaming marketing found for tourists in many big cities.

The interior is dimly lit, the only hint of any activity from the outside are the cinnamon buns, the size of my head, stacked on a small wobbling table in front of the cafe.

(Amy Goodman/YJI)

As we step inside, panic rushes through us; there are no free seats, and we really wanted one of those cinnamon buns. 

Our worries quickly dissolve as we are reassured by a friendly Swede that there ought to be place somewhere. She takes us into a very small corner of the café and squeezes us in on an old rickety spinning table. We enjoy our cake as we reflect on our trip.

Despite the snowstorm upon arrival, Göteborg treated us well. Charming canals and a confusing lack of traffic lights at so many junctions made for a brilliant adventure in the snow, with more cups of coffee than I could count.

The perfect student town, we visited museums for free. We learned about the history of the city at the Museum of Göteborg, and got an amazing view of the city from the Natural History Museums. 

(Amy Goodman/YJI)

We finished the day with a climb up to the historic Skansen Kronan, an old fortress that boasted the best view of the trip — jagged mountain faces peeking through the white-topped buildings. As with all three days we spent in Göteborg, the dry snow crunching beneath our feet as we climbed the mountain was slightly surreal. 

It was hard to say goodbye to Göteborg. While the weather had been a shock to us, coming from Southern Denmark where we were entering spring, the people we met on our weekend trip were far from cold.

Amy Goodman is a Correspondent with Youth Journalism International.

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