Travel and Tourism - Sweden - November 2010
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While it is yet to rank in the UNWTO’s top ten world tourism destinations, this may still be Sweden’s moment. Long associated with director Ingmar Bergman, the actresses Greta Garbo and Ingrid Bergman, as well as with political neutrality, in recent years, Sweden has enjoyed unprecedented media attention and visibility. New names such as IKEA, film and stage adaptations based on the musical group ABBA, the bestselling Millennium Trilogy by writer Stieg Larsson, as well as Henning Mankell’s Wallander books and BBC series have all put the spotlight on this Northern European country.
Of late, Sweden’s cuisine, architecture, fashion and design have caught the attention of the world, which is revealing a greater appreciation of the country’s social model, environmental consciousness, transparency and other values. Sweden is considered one of the safest countries in the world. Its combination of pristine and varied natural beauty and the Swedes’ own enjoyment of their country is in sync with the growth of special interest tourism – ecotourism, adventure, and gastronomic – and the demand for new travel experiences. VisitSweden, which markets Sweden abroad, is in the process of branding the destination green, and the sustainable development of tourism is supported in the industry and by government, which has prioritised tourism. Stockholm was named the first ‘European Green Capital 2010’ by the European Commission (EC) for its exemplary environmental practices and is trying to meet its goal of becoming the most accessible city in the world.
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