Uppsala is one of Sweden’s four major cities, located only 18 minutes by train from Stockholm Arlanda Airport. It is a vibrant university town with students from across Sweden and the rest of the world. Today, about 220,000 people live here and the number is steadily increasing.
The peace city
Uppsala is often named “The peace city of Sweden”. It has been home to four of the five historical Swedish Nobel Peace Prize Laureates: Hjalmar Branting, Nathan Söderblom, Alva Myrdal and Dag Hammarskjöld. Today, many academic and civil society organizations with a strong international peace commitment are housed in Uppsala.
Some of the sights in Uppsala
Uppsala Cathedral is the largest and tallest cathedral in the Nordic countries. Construction on the cathedral began around 1270, with consecration taking place in 1435. Uppsala is the seat of the Church of Sweden’s archbishop since 1164 and the place where bishops of other dioceses are consecrated and priests and deacons of Uppsala diocese are being ordained. Until 1719 many coronations took place in the cathedral. The cathedral is used for services every day all year round.
Carolina Rediviva is the main building of the Uppsala University Library. It is one of the oldest research libraries in the Scandinavian countries, and holds rich and valuable collections with cultural heritage materials. The library was founded in 1620. In the exhibition hall you find the famous Codex argenteus, a 6th-century manuscript containing a 4th century translation of the four gospels into the Gothic language.
Building started on Uppsala Castle in 1549 during the reign of Swedish King Gustav Vasa who intended it as a fortress. Look up from almost any location in Uppsala and you’ll see it on the skyline at Kasåsen. The castle is the location of several major events in the history of Uppsala and Sweden. For the last centuries it has been the home of the Uppsala County Governor. During his childhood years it was the home of Dag Hammarskjöld, whose father served as the Governor. Today, the castle also houses two museums – Uppsala Art Museum and Vasaborgen.
The Botanical garden is one of the most popular sights in Uppsala, with a magnificent baroque garden, a 200 years old orangery and even a rainforest. The garden functions as a living plant museum.
The Linnaeus Garden is the oldest botanical garden in Sweden, founded in 1655 as a place where medical students could learn botany and study medicinal plants. It was badly damaged during the great Uppsala fire of 1702, but in 1741 Carl Linnaeus was appointed Director and transformed it into one of the foremost gardens in the world. Through his world-wide network of contacts he was able to bring in thousands of plant species. They were grown in a particular order determined by Linnaeus.
On Destination Uppsala you can find more information and city guides to Uppsala.