While traveling has become accessible at virtually every price point, nothing compares to luxury travel. Specially designed to cater to the most discerning traveler, the luxury travel market has seen increased demand over the last two years. As a matter of fact, by 2030, Bloomberg estimates that the worldwide luxury tourism market will be worth $82 billion. That said, because luxury travel can deliver the most exclusive and immersive experiences, it is undoubtedly one of the best ways to explore Scandinavia. Widely regarded as among the most enigmatic regions in Europe, Scandinavia has much to share from coast to coast.
Indulgent Heritage Journeys
Unlike many European countries that are landlocked, the countries that make up Scandinavia are blessed with beautiful coastlines. The iconic fjords are among the most stunning and storied of these waterways. Today, these waters that ancient Vikings once sailed can still be enjoyed via luxury ocean journeys. Explora Cruises outlines how travelers taking luxury ocean journeys can enjoy specially curated all-inclusive Nordic fjord experiences. This includes sailing down UNESCO-recognized fjords like the Norwegian Geirangerfjord before retiring to the ship for distinct dining concepts, wellness programs, and thermal spa areas.
Of course, aside from the fjords, the Scandinavian countryside is also worth exploring. While buses and car rides will do, a luxury train ride is unforgettable. Rated among the world’s best luxury trains by The Society of International Railway Travelers, the Bergen Line weaves through snow-capped mountains and picturesque villages. Although this journey does not include overnight accommodations or dining options, it does offer the Komfort Coach. For an additional fee, travelers can book a private carriage with half-recliners, newspapers, tea, and a coffee machine. All year-round, this 110-year-old railway offers the one-of-kind opportunity to travel through 200 tunnels, 18 miles of snowsheds, and over 300 bridges.
Opulent Artistic Performances
The Nordic culture is among the most vibrant around the world. In the Scandinavian region, private and government efforts have made it a point to preserve culture through music, art, and dance. Over the years, one of the most popular attractions in the area has been the Royal Swedish Opera. Home to world-class operatic singers, classical musicians, and the oldest ballet companies in the world, the Royal Swedish Opera was built in 1782 by King Gustav III. Since then, it has continued to propel artistic expression with a diverse company and repertoire. Quite recently, the company even welcomed a new principal dancer, the Scottish performer Calum Lowden. Fairly often, other artists from neighboring countries also come to perform. Aside from watching special performances, patrons can also take part in special tours to understand the history behind the pristine chandeliers and ceiling paintings. Afterwards, visitors can dine at their upscale Restaurant Brasseriet which is decorated in lavish Baroque style.
Since Scandinavia is also renowned for its ability to honor tradition while embracing innovation, many cities feature art exhibits featuring contemporary mediums. In Stockholm, an NFT art exhibition called “Something Ethereal” is on display until later this month. The exhibit features work from some of today’s premiere digital artists like Andrés Reisinger who was featured in the Forbes 30 under 30 list. NFT art can be some of the most expensive and controversial around, which makes the bold Scandinavian region a perfect host.
Scandinavian cuisine has been celebrated for decades. Known for its masterful utilization of seasonal and local ingredients, Nordic cuisine has elevated organic farming and sustainable dining. In fact, in 2004, a dozen Scandinavian top chefs signed the New Nordic Food Manifesto. Through this, chefs have been encouraged to reinvigorate classic dishes with modern twists. Thanks to this support, locals have even been able to find dozens of new species of berries and root vegetables to be used in evolving the cuisine.
As a testament to their culinary ingenuity, Scandinavia is also home to many award-winning concepts. In Denmark, there is Noma. Recipient of two Michelin stars, this restaurant recently won the new “green clover” sustainability designation. In the same country, Geranium has topped the most recent list of “The World’s Best Restaurants”. On the same list, there is Frantzén of Stockholm. Should travelers be looking to dine in Norway, there is no shortage of spectacular restaurants there either. RE-NAA, Omakase, Under, and Bare are all Norwegian concepts with Michelin stars.
Scandinavia is a diverse region that’s full of color and culture. While it remains a welcoming destination for travelers from all walks of life, those who discover Scandinavia in luxury are in for an unforgettable experience.
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