LivingTravelWalpurgis night in Sweden is the other Halloween

Walpurgis night in Sweden is the other Halloween

Walpurgis Night in Sweden is a very special event and a great way to experience Swedish traditions. Walpurgis (Swedish: “Valborg”) on April 30 is a widely celebrated event in Scandinavia, especially in Sweden.

Walpurgis night precedes Labor Day in Scandinavia on May 1, and many Walpurgis events continue through the night from April 30 through that holiday.


The forms of celebration in Sweden vary in different parts of the country and between different cities. One of the main traditions in Sweden is lighting large bonfires, a custom that began during the 18th century. Lighting popular bonfires began with the purpose of warding off evil spirits, especially demons and witches. As a final highlight, there are fireworks.

Today, Walpurgis night is generally seen as a celebration of spring. The Skansen Open Air Museum, for example, is home to Stockholm’s largest Walpurgis historical celebration. Many Swedes now celebrate the end of long, dreary winters by singing spring songs. These songs were broadcast for the student spring festivities and Walpurgis Night celebrations are especially common in university towns like Uppsala – nightlife in Uppsala is especially active at that time.

A double vacation

Walpurgis (Valborg) which is celebrated on April 30 creates a double national holiday in Sweden. On this day, King Carl XVI Gustaf celebrates his birthday. Then you will see Swedish flags all over the country to salute the King and show him respect.

May Day / Labor Day (May 1) follows the Walpurgis night celebrations with a wide variety of events, parades and festivities.

More history

The joyous celebration around the fire is an ancient Germanic and Celtic tradition. In Sweden, the land of trolls, witches and elves, Christianity could not eradicate this celebration. At the end of April in Sweden, the days get longer, temperatures rise, and farmers start visiting their fields again. This celebration is an annual tradition.

The namesake of the event is Abbess Walburga (also Walpurga or Walpurgis), who lived in the 8th century (710-779). She grew up in England and was from a good family, but was orphaned as a child and lived in the monastery as a missionary. Later it was sacred.

If you plan to attend such an event during your visit to Sweden, be sure to pack whatever clothes you can wear. The weather at this time of year is still quite unpredictable and you may need warmer clothing than expected. Also, weather-resistant shoes or boots will come in handy, as this is always an outdoor event and may even take place in the middle of a field where it recently rained.

Walpurgis in Swedish is “Valborg” and Walpurgis Night in Swedish is called “Valborgsmassoafton .” Learn more useful Swedish phrases.

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