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Driving in Sweden

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Driving in Sweden

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Driving around in Sweden takes you to places outside the big cities. This is a good way to travel if you are interested in seeing some countryside.


The European road network goes through Sweden and are the best and biggest road. The biggest ones are:

Most of the European roads are freeways.

Then there are the national roads (riksvägar) that have two digit numbers. They are the next best roads.

The three digit numbered roads (länsvägar) come in two flavors. The big ones (numbers 100 - 400) and really small ones (all other number).

The European roads and the national roads are very well marked with signs telling what road you are on and where to go to get onto these roads. The three digit numbered roads with numbers up to 400 are also marked. Roads with lower numbers are situated south of roads with higher numbers.

The small ones, and in some cases 4 digit roads that might show up on your GPS map are never marked with their numbers. They are just numbered for some administrative purpose and you cannot use these numbers while driving.

Finding directions

The best marking is made with big blue signs telling the name of the upcoming towns. If the road leading there is a freeway, the signs are green instead of blue. Unless you are going on a very big roads, make your directions based on what towns or villages you are passing and keep an eye out for these signs instead of the road numbers.


The current speed is very well marked by signs. The speed signs have the new speed in km/h. The signs you see are normally 30, 50, 70, 90 and 110. Two speed signs on each sign of the road means from this point this is the new speed. One sign on the right means that this is the speed on this road but there is no change in speed.

Since 2001 there are some new signs introduced or had altered meaning to also mean speed. These are:

  • The Freeway (Motorväg) sign now also means 110.
  • The Highspeed road (Motortrafikled) sign now also means 90.
  • The new start of village sign mean 50.
  • The new end of village sign mean 70.

The respect for driving in the correct speed is rather poor. Often when you driving at the correct speed on a 70 or 90-road you constantly get passed by other cars or they might urge you to get out of the way to let them pass.


Wild animals! The biggest roads normally have fences against wild animals. But the smaller roads have not. There you need to be on the watch for deer and elks that could cause a serious accident. In the north you will also have to watch out for reindeer.

In some cases there are fences along part of the road and then the fences stops for the purpose of letting the animals pass. In such cases and in other places where wild animals are often seen there are normally warning signs.

These animals are mostly moving at dusk and dawn. They go for drinks in the lakes so while driving along lakes be especially observant. Also, if driving in September, the hunting season, the wild animals might be scared up by hunting parties and moving around more than usual.

If you hit an animal and it wanders off into the woods wounded, don't forget to mark the spot where it wandered into the forest. Your car should be fit with a special paper ribbon for this purpose. The purpose for this is to be able to use dogs to hunt down the wounded animal.