Things we love about Kalmar

kalmarcastle6 kalmarcastle11 kalmar8


  • Anders and Arne
  • Hospitality of Linnaeus students
  • Blend of old and new architecture – combining history and functionality
  • A great tour of Kalmar Castle
  • Small, charming nature of the city
  • Källaren Kronan -a unique cellar restaurant
  • Tour of the Kalmar marine academy – simulation rooms and the roof of the tower
  • Different bird sounds
  • Lilacs and birch trees
  • Netting wildlife at the Kalmar Dämme
  • Cute boutiques and unique stores
  • Friendly people everywhere
  • Delicious seafood
  • Korv Kiosk!

kalmar castle


Play Date with the Locals

by Tamsyn Reed and Mariah Groshek


Linnaeus and Alverno students with Anders Fröjmark.

Day two in Kalmar, Sweden we woke up excited to hear we would be meeting students from Linnaeus University!

We related meeting with students at Linneaus University to a play date arranged by parents. David and Jodi thoughtfully coordinated with Anders Fröjmark of Linnaeus to arrange a casual cook-out between students. What a success! We enjoyed delicious food and delightful conversation with a variety of students. Our discussions ranged from light hearted travel talk to dep political an philosophical musings. The students were warm-hearted and welcoming. At our table, we had Siiri, a student from Finland, and Adam and Patrick from Sweden. We are all life-long Facebook friends! We learned Swedish words, shared stories from home, and offered connections for future travel meeting people along our trip has truly been a highlight of such a unique and magical adventure. Go Kalmar!


First Impressions

Nils Kreuger

Painting of Kalmar by Nils Kreuger

Last night we hopped on an incredibly large ferry, said farewell to to Gdansk, Poland and set sail on a journey across the Baltic Sea for Kalmar, Sweden.  This morning shortly after we arrived, we were greeted by the lovely Arne, the tour guide arranged for our time in Kalmar.  From the start our welcome to Sweden was delightful.  After boarding the bus, we headed toward Kalmar through the countryside.  From first sight I found the farmland and countryside to be just charming.  As we passed these quaint little towns, Arni told us some history and shared stories of his connection with Wisconsin.  Not only was he extremely kind and informative, he used to teach Swedish at UW Eau Claire.  He told us of his times in the Midwest, the states, and how he met his wife who is an American from Missouri.  As he spoke, I was in awe by the beauty of the countryside and it actually brought me to gentle tears.  The colors of homes and architecture contrasting with the backdrop of the green grass and fields was just breathtaking.  What a nice morning we had on our way to Kalmar.  I am impressed already by Sweden. by Breanne Pemberton


Photo by Kaeleen Benz

Impressive Hospitality

by David Brooker

We were amazed by the hospitality of the University of Gdansk and the City of Gdansk.  They organized an afternoon of talks and tours and then the evening ended with a beer tasting at a local brewery.  One of the high points was walking up to the Westerplatte memorial, which was created to commemorate the Polish soldiers who defended the country during the first attack of World War II.  A Big Thanks to Kamila Wardyn, Monika Zdroik and Michal Kopera.



Alverno students at the Westerplatte memorial.

Brovarnia microbrew Gdansk

Brovarnia microbrewery features gorgeous local food and delicious beer.

Things we love about Gdansk








  • Amber!
  • Impressive architecture
  • Manageable city that was easy to walk and easy to navigate
  • Strong sense of place – People know their history and are proud of their city
  • Laid back vibe makes it easy to talk to locals
  • Memorial at Westerplatte
  • The Solidarity Exhibit at the National Museum of the Sea
  • Beautiful sandy beaches and refreshing waters of the Baltic at Sopot were an easy train ride away
  • Awesome, inexpensive, easy to use public transportation!

A Strategic Location

Gdańsk’s history is one tied directly to its central strategic location. This is probably most well known in relationship to the start of World War II; but this is modern history for this city on the sea.  Gdańsk marks where the Vistula River trading routes meet the Baltic Sea and this trade and strategic location of markets where goods like grain and amber could connect to the sea has made Gdansk a beautiful, well situated, and dynamic place.

Today, it served as another strategic location – the start of the Coastal Cities course. Gdańsk has been a perfect start to our comparative approach with beautiful weather, a vibrant city center, and a welcoming community.

Gdansk city center

The Coastal Cities Course traveled from Milwaukee via Chicago and Copenhagen to Gdansk.

Preparations underway

Students enjoyed a taste of life on a 1,000 ft. freighter during a sunny winter Milwaukee day.

Students enjoyed a taste of life on a 1,000 ft. freighter during a sunny winter Milwaukee day.

Students and faculty are preparing for our trip to the Baltic Sea. As each day passes, it feels more and more like spring. After a long, hard winter of studying Milwaukee, we will welcome the spring days in Gdansk, Kalmar, Malmö, and Copenhagen May 22-June 1!