I left Oslo late in the evening, by bus to head to my next destination, Malmö, Sweden. The bus ride is approximately 7 hours and 30 minutes and the ticket price is very tolerable. I took Swebus, which charges you 259 to 439 SEK, depending on the time of purchase. If you buy your tickets 3-4 days in advance you can bet on getting the 259SEK price. I bought the ticket at a higher cost, because as always I kept trying to decide, which bus to take, until the bus company had posted the maximum price tag on the journey.
It was a night bus and even to my own surprise I slept nearly all the way. Probably it was because of the tiresome Oslo scaling in the day. But anyway by the time we reached Malmö, I was fresh and ready to see the town.
Unlike before, now the buses do not go to the bus terminal, behind the railway station and drop you off at a bus stop, which hardly differs from any other urban bus stop. So if you need to take an intercity bus out of Malmö, as I had to, make sure to tag this location in your app or on your hard copy map, if you are a romantic.
The time we arrived to Malmö was too early for anything to be open, so the best and the most feasible shot was to go to the central railway station, across the street and have a light breakfast, before the shutters would start rolling up in the town.
At that early hour the station was not crowded, but not deserted. I bought a cup of coffee and a croissant from the Pressbyrän and enjoyed it in the station hall. Now interestingly enough, not only that there was free WiFi, but the Speed was way faster than Usein Bolt’s dash. I saved more than 2 GB of data to my cloud drive in a matter of minutes. I tried to do the same thing in Oslo, but the creeping Internet access frustrated me more than it assisted.
Now the second best thing was that the exchange bureau at the station opened as early as 6:00. So as early as that I could exchange currencies and head out in the town. Definitely if you like to use non-cash methods, this detail is trivial for you, but I always prefer keeping some cash for immediate use, because you don’t want to be stuck with technical problems that might sometimes surface, when making non-cash payments with overseas bank cards.
My first target was the twisted torso. As the name goes it is a twisted structure, but most importantly it still is the tallest structure in Scandinavia and one of the most energy efficient buildings.
I was hoping to go up the building, but to my disappointment this building is commercial/residential and there is no observation deck. Unless you are lucky enough to know someone, who lives in that building, you can only admire the external twists.
But things are not so desperate if you want to get an eagle eye view of Malmö. Just about half a kilometer from the railway station you can go to Malmö Live (Clarion Hotel & Congress) sky bar, which is on the 25th floor and enjoy the view, while having a cup of coffee or any other drink from the menu.
Now I don’t need to remind you that I brought the sun and actual summer with me, so by eight-o-clock it was already frying. This was good for me, because I wanted to take a shot of the Øresund Bridge. So right behind the twisted buddy I found the view point. But technical short comings and a strange grey cloud behind the bridge did not let me take a clear shot. I stayed there for more than an hour, but without any luck.
Then I returned to the center to have a real breakfast and plan the rest of my exploration. Looking at my options I decided to go to the natural history museum and the technical achievements museum. The good thing was that the entry ticket was just 40 SEK and it covered both museums.
The natural history museum is more fun for kids, with a large exhibition of stuffed animals, birds and even insects. The museum also houses an aquarium. But there are things of interest for the grown-ups also. Like I never knew about the Swedish Right of Public Access to Nature law, before visiting this museum. In short this law gives everyone equal access to nature and natural resources. You can camp anywhere, unless it is a private property. You have equal access to fishing and other such resources of livelihood. I do not know if the same law extends to such natural resources as oil and gold, but such low interest matters can be checked with the help of the big brother, Google.
I also learnt that in Sweden people engage in kitchen gardening. This term signifies the process of growing one’s own food on plots of land allotted by the state on the outskirts of towns. In places like Mexico or Bolivia you could call it subsistence farming, but believe me in Sweden the reason is not survival, but the choice. This is a good thing, because if you want to know the origins of the food that you eat, you must have the right and means to do so. Otherwise in this corporate world you cannot be sure if the carrot that you bought was in fact a carrot or some “healthy” mutation.
The second museum was of more interest to me, because the exhibits, which included fighter planes, air traffic control simulation, trains, cars, motorcycles and even a submarine, demonstrated the history of development of mechanized technology and not only.
For the first time in my life I saw a real submarine toilet with user instructions. I will not write all the procedure, but you can understand the complexity of use if I tell you that I would rather bear the agony of not using the toilet until we surfaced, than following the multiple step procedure. The funniest thing was that unless you follow the whole procedure the contents of the flush would boil out the wrong way. Try to read the procedure in this image.
I also came to know for the first time that tetra pack was invented in Sweden. So from now on I have to curse the Swedes for taking away my fresh milk.
Well if you go to this museum and you see a lot of kids with their parents, don’t be surprised, Swedish kids are curious.
Other museum options in town include a large museum of art, which I skipped, because I, as you can understand, am more interested in submarine toilets than artistic creativity. But if you are an art lover, Malmö does offer a good collection of modern art.
On my way back from the museums, I had a good cup of tea with flat pancakes at a quiet little Café (74 SEK), which is located between the two museums. Having tea I decided to spend the rest of the day exploring the old town and spotting good feasible places to eat and of course drink.
Malmö does have an area tagged as Old Town, but it is nothing like Old Town Stockholm or any other old towns that you might have seen in this region. It is more of a Modern Old Town, with a few walking streets, souvenir shops and of course many, many bars and cafes.
Walking around the Old Town you will definitely come across many interesting statues or artistic installations, but don’t bother trying to know their age, because most of them are pretty young.
So the next time around, when you decide to cross the Øresund Bridge into Denmark, don’t hurry passing through Malmö. This town has a lot more than just the twisted torso and deserves a stopover. See you soon in Copenhagen.