Höstlov – yellow trees and school free days

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Less people, more free time!

If you’ve been traveling around Stockholm on the public transport systems this week you may have noticed less of a crowd. That’s probably because there is less of a crowd! A few days ago we moved the clocks back an hour which left most of us either late for work or free from school. This is because the end of DST, or Daylight Saving Time also means the beginning of höstlov. Höstlov when translated directly, means autumn break and is exactly that – a break for schoolkids (and some teaching staff) for a whole week. During this time the Tower can get really busy so if you’re planning on visiting us for lunch, make sure to book at least a day or two ahead of time! After visiting us and viewing the yellows and oranges from above you could take a walk through the park Gärdet and see the changing colors of autumn from the ground level.

Week 44 is the official week for höstlov here in Sweden although in the past it’s been different weeks for different regions throughout in the country. Höstlov isn’t only celebrated in Sweden alone – in fact it’s celebrated throughout most of Europe. A lot of European countries called it potato holiday or potato break a long time ago. The story behind this is that many countries took this time to harvest and prepare their potatoes for the year and the winter ahead. Kids would be allowed to stay home from school for a week to help put their parents with the harvest and preparations. As the need for farming declined during the 1900’s so did the need for kids to stay at home and work on the harvest. Instead of taking the age-old tradition most countries kept the school holiday so kids could simply have some time off school.

In Sweden, it’s quite common for parents to work the first part of the week and then take the second half of the week off from work to be with the kids or maybe do a short trip some where. This can be oneof our busiest times of the year in our café and Skybar which is good practice for us as we head in to “julbord” towards the end of November. More info on what exactly julbord is will be posted shortly! For now, enjoy either your time off school, work or peace and quiet on the public transport around Stockholm!