Though they share common origins, as much as modern Halloween celebrations might be about flashy decorations, candy and sexy cat/nurse/Frankenstein/etc. outfits, Alla helgons dag (All Saints’ Day) in Sweden remains a sober affair, a day for remembering and honouring the departed.
Sweden.se has a post about the holiday here, explaining a little of the history and traditions. This year, this Christian holiday falls on Saturday, November 6. It is an official Swedish public holiday, or ‘red day’, and it’s quite possible you’ll see shops closing up from around noon the day before (check this link for probable opening times – Google translated).
If you don’t mind music that makes you reflect on mortality, there will be a choir concert on the evening of November 5 entitled ‘Death in Lund‘ (Google translated link) that promises to be ‘diverse and evocative’.
International students may not find graves of loved ones here in Lund where to light a candle, but here is a suggestion from The Dynamo‘s own Lydia Cardinal, if you’d like to pause for a moment to think of those who have passed on...
Why: This peaceful old place was commissioned back in the early 1800s and has a few headstones just as old. There are massive trees and wrought iron fences laced with ivy, and you can walk for hours without passing the same spot twice. There is a section in the northern corner of the cemetery dedicated to concentration camp prisoners from World War II with an incredible monument.
When: Now. Fall is in full swing and there is nothing like the colorful leaves of ancient trees falling next to you as you take a minute to nod to those who came before us.
Hours of Operation: 7.00-19.00
‘Lesser-known Lund’ text and photos by Lydia Cardinal. Find more hidden spots in our October issue!