How heavy is the voice output

Why it is so difficult to learn Swedish - and tips on how it works!

The easiest way to learn a language is when you are in the country. Yes, that's true so far. It's still difficult in Sweden. Because almost everyone, regardless of age, not only speaks English well, but also likes to speak English (and many even German). On Swedish television, many films are broadcast in the original with subtitles and are not spoken in translation. Children and young people in particular learn their first English vocabulary at an early age.

It is not necessary to speak or understand Swedish to find your way around during a short stay. Nevertheless, the Swedes are happy when you join them hey greeted and met with tack thanks.

Since I have planned my stay for at least a few months, I want to be able to say more than just "yes, no, thank you, good and bye". By the way, it would look like this:

If you are looking for simple vocabulary for your vacation in Sweden, just read on here: Swedish for the vacation.

I have put together everything that is important for you briefly and clearly. From greeting and saying goodbye to calling for help and flirting. Look in here!

Or do you want to know why Swedish is the best language in Scandinavia ?!

Link tips:

  • Ricarda is dedicating her entire website to learning Swedish! On she tests various options and examines offers. Always combined with knowledge of Sweden!
  • Björn Engdahl and Uwe Zimmerman have developed another Swedish online learning course: Onlineswedish (in German and English).

Learning the Swedish language is relatively easy for Germans: the languages ​​are closely related! Many words are very similar, which makes learning vocabulary easy. The Swedish pronunciation, on the other hand, is very different from the German. I would describe these as rather difficult to learn. But accents are sympathetic and you can only learn to speak without an accent as a child under ten (and we are probably all quite a long way from that by now ...).

In the following I have selected tips and opportunities for learning Swedish. You will find book, radio and film recommendations as well as tips for offline and online Swedish courses. I hope you find the right learning method for you and make quick progress :-)

Some things are really easy to understand. For example Sawmill = Sågverk.

Learn Swedish with books

Because I would also like to be one of the more than 10 million Swedish speakers, I took a VHS course in Germany. However, this was very much geared towards beginners, so I had the feeling that there was hardly any progress. We have them to practice Javisst-Books used. These consist of a course book, a workbook and a CD. They are nicely made, neatly structured and well thought out. However, due to the many partner and group exercises, not suitable for self-study.

For independent learning, I bought the book Colloquial Swedish - The Complete Course for Beginners * on the recommendation of a friend. I cope much better with that and feel like I'm making quick progress. As can be seen from the title, the book is in English. You'd think that makes it more difficult. But it doesn't. I don't know exactly what it is. Maybe the English will open a kind of "language drawer" in the brain that makes learning easier ?! The book (plus CD) is definitely recommended for self-study!

Two blog readers have currently recommended the Tala svenska books *. I have no experience with it myself, but I am passing it on. Because it is certainly easier for many to learn Swedish from a German book than from an English one.

As a complement to learning books, reading Swedish children's books is not to be despised. Easy words, short sentences: ideal for practicing! Anyway, I am of the opinion that every adult should read a children's book by Astrid Lindgren every few years. The same goes for comics: Donald Duck is called in Sweden Kalle Anka and in the Hälge Comics, the Älg (elk) named Hälge experiences all sorts of funny stories.

And if you are a bit advanced, understand more and want to read everyday Swedish, find a Swedish blog on a topic that interests you that you can follow regularly ( has a large selection and on you can find travel blogs Sweden). Or take a look at 8Sidor or sesam - both pages are deliberately written in easy-to-understand Swedish!

Learn Swedish for free (online)

Sure, if you don't get them for free, books cost money. Various online offers offer an alternative to buying books on learning Swedish. Many of them only give a small part of their course free of charge and those who want to go deeper then have to switch to the paid option. It actually makes sense, because creating a language course takes time and money. I recommend the Swedish course from Sprachenlernen24 * or the Swedish learning program from Babbel *. Well set up, simple to use and quickly effective. Both start with a free trial. Try it out!

If you want to take the low budget language learning path, or if you are simply a better online learner than an out-of-the-book learner, there are also other options!

For example, there are two nice vocabulary trainers here and here. And here you will find three new Swedish words * every day.

You can find a completely free online Swedish language course on duolingo. However, you have to select English as the starting or learning language.

Learn Swedish by listening

The really difficult parts of the Swedish language are pronunciation, intonation and rhythm. In order to empathize with them, it makes sense to hear as much about it as possible. At first it is difficult to make out where individual words begin and end.

I often turn on the radio or a Swedish video while doing something else. I don't understand everything, but I listen to the sound of the language and have the feeling that I am better at understanding and imitating it.

At -> Sprache—> Swedish there is a bunch of Swedish radio stations to listen to online. You can also find them directly at Radioapans knattekanalen, for example, is funny: radio for children in Swedish :-)

Plain text is also particularly recommended for learning: Daily news in understandable and slowly spoken Swedish.

Also nice: atlantbib has short and rather simple texts on all kinds of topics to listen to and read along in Swedish!

After watching the old Astrid Lindgren films in Swedish, I switched to watching and hearing more recent news. Youtube has a great collection of Swedish films, short films and reports. And on SvenskaFilmer, too, the selection is very large.

Films in Swedish with German or English subtitles: My favorites

Miss Remarkable and Torkel i Knipa. The first in Swedish with German subtitles, the second in Swedish with English subtitles. Both are beautiful and funny films. Look in here!

Swedish film with English subtitles

And if you prefer the sung language to the spoken language, just turn on Swedish music! At soundcloud, spotify, youtube and co. for example, you can search for "svenska musik", "musik på svenska", "rock / pop / rap ... på svenska".

Or you can listen in here:

  • Glesbygd´n
  • Timbuktu
  • Veronica Maggio
  • Håkan Hellström

The most important thing for learning a new language is of course speaking it. There are people everywhere who are interested in learning the language you speak. In return, they will help you learn a new language. You can find tandem partners to practice speaking Swedish via craigslist, for example! Although real meetings are of course the most beautiful, the whole thing also works great via Skype (if you are not in the same country).

I hope I was able to help you a little with this list on your way to mastering the Swedish language! And maybe you have other recommendations that newcomers to Swedish would appreciate? Do you have any tips that I forgot?

How are you progressing with learning? I look forward to your comments!

Text: Rike Jütte

Photos: Arne Gerken and Rike Jütte

Thank you for reading!

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