Sigtuna

Welcome to Sigtuna

Warmly welcome to fascinating Sigtuna! A small, beautiful town located just north of Sweden's (and Scandinavia’s) capital, Stockholm. Sigtuna is situated in the same municipality as Arlanda International Airport. So, it is really easy to reach for international guests. Sigtuna is located by the lake Mälaren, one of Sweden’s largest lakes. The centre of Sigtuna offers picturesque cafes, restaurants, shops and hotels.

Sigtuna's proud history goes a long way back and you will, during your World Congress week, have the opportunity to learn more about exciting aspects of its history stretching as far back as the Viking era. Even the very buildings we will live and stay in during the week have all played a role in the democratic development of Sigtuna and Sweden over the last century.

Since the town is small everything is “nearby”. It’s also a unique opportunity to get in touch with the locals. You will find both accommodation, congress hall, seminar rooms as well as cultural and leisure time activities in walking distance.

THE FIRST TOWN IN SWEDEN

Sigtuna is a town of 8,000 inhabitants, founded in AD 970 by King Erik the Victorious, making it the first town in Sweden. You read that right: Sigtuna is the first town ever built in Sweden.

INSPIRED BY CONTINENTAL EUROPE

Around year 970 King Erik the Victorious pointed out where Sigtuna town should be built. He was a modern Nordic king, who wanted to create a kingdom resembling the kingdoms of continental Europe.

VISIONARY KING

He knew how a town should be constructed and that he should cooperate with the new Christian church to achieve his goals. The goal was to form a kingdom with one king under one god. He, himself, would be the king as well as the head of the Church – the Man of God of the new kingdom.

Erik knew how to build loyalties with the right people. By donating land plots in the new town, tradesmen and landowners became his allies and he created a power and trading center with an international flavor. Several archaeological excavations in the three-meter deep “black earth” show the sizes of the plots and the town plan. The town’s original structure is largely preserved to this day. Sigtuna town center is about the same size and shape today as it was when it was founded. Which makes it unique in Sweden.

MELTING POT

Right from the start there were a multitude of languages, cultures and influences in Sigtuna. In the 11th century about 1000 people lived in the town. Archaeological findings show the trade of exotic goods from Byzantium, Russia, Poland and Ukraine. Everything indicates that there were many international permanent residents who contributed their knowledge, skills and contacts to developing both Sigtuna and Sweden.

WHERE PAST INSPIRES FUTURE

Today Sigtuna town has given name to the whole Municipality, which also comprises Arlanda, Märsta and Rosersberg. Today King Erik the Victorious’ main street, Stora Gatan, is lined by picturesque wooden houses. All year round, visitors from near and far come to walk in his footsteps, on Sweden’s first pedestrian street. Just like a thousand years ago.

We are excited that you, too, will be walking along these paths. Together, we will make Sigtuna and the 69th World Congress the place where past inspires future.

For more information, visit the website of Destination Sigtuna 

Learn more about Sigtuna through this short presentation of the story of Sweden’s first town.