An eventful culture season

Gothenburg offers plenty of autumn events – shows, exhibitions, concerts, plays and much more.

Gothenburg’s stages are back on track

On September 18, the first plays premiered at the renovated Gothenburg City Theatre at the square Götaplatsen. From the opening night onwards you can see Samuel Beckett’s Endgame and Pontus Stenhäll’s interpretation of Selma Lagerlöf’s classic novel The Emperor of Portugallia. And later this autumn The Tempest, Yeah! Yeah! Yeah! and The Silence are added to the mix.

The Concert Hall, on the opposite side of the square Götaplatsen, opened the season in September with the Chinese star pianist Yuja Wang. In October, Gunilla Backman, Kalle Moraeus and Johan Boding sing their thank you to Björn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson in the show Thank you for the music; and Darnita Rogers makes a tribute to the queen of soul, Aretha Franklin, with the show Respect. Since 1992, Gothenburg Symphonic Orchestra have staged an annual Proms concert and this year it takes place on October 30, with Anna-Lena Brundin and Nils Landgren as guest performers.

At the Göteborg Opera, you can enjoy classic works like The Barber of Seville and Tosca, the musicals Boye & Hörberg, Rakel and the Oracle and Kärlek skonar ingen (based on the popular Gothenburg artist Håkan Hellström’s songs). In October, the new dance work Unfold by Sharon Eyal, premieres.

Did you know that Lisebergsteatern, the classic stage at Liseberg Amusement Park, started out as a planetarium? Here visitors could enjoy spectacular views of starry skies from the opening in 1944 and four years onwards. Since 1948, however, other stars have taken the stage and this autumn you can enjoy the musical Sound of music as well as comedy shows with Niklas Andersson and Sissela Kyle.

Lorensbergsteatern, on the main boulevard Kungsportsavenyen, has been entertaining Gothenburg since 1916. This autumn they offer a variety of shows and concerts: Mamma ljugerGott & blandat, Lill Lindfors, Värmländsk voodoo, Johanna Nordström’s Ring polisen, Tommy Emmanuel and Claes Eriksson’s Vardagsmat.

Folkteatern, by the square Järntorget, also offers an exciting culture autumn. Last year’s success Misantroperna is on again, the documentary film club Doc Lounge hosts four different screenings, and there will be live music too! Everything from jazz, pop and soul, to Lithuanian folk music and desert blues.

Stora Teatern is also back in business, and here you can enjoy a programme packed with theatre, contemporary circus, dance and music. Ebbot Lundberg, Ellen Sundberg and Darin are some of the artists on stage. Musikens hus presents an exciting mix of local bands, international stars and literary forums, and this autumn you’ll find a folk music festival, a Bowie tribute, synth-pop, funk and more in the programme. Legendary band Alphaville visits Trädgår’n and rock icon Plura performs at Kajskjul 8.

Sparkling dinner shows for every taste

Gothenburg is the perfect place for floor show lovers, and this autumn offers plenty of options. Park Lane presents the best music from the 70s, 80s and 90s in the show Generations. Kajskjul 8 mixes comedy and music in Malmberg full av Livh and at Rondo you can enjoy Mamma Mia! The Party. At Trädgår’n, the artist Eric Saade and star chef Johan Jureskog create a unique experience called The Dinner Show together.

Festival frenzy with a cultural smorgasbord

The festival Kulturnatta, where anyone is welcome to contribute, turns 30 this year and celebrates by extending itself to two days/nights. The programme was released on September 24 and on October 29–30 it’s time to dig into Gothenburg’s “cultural smorgasbord” at theatres, museums, libraries, galleries, art studios, cinemas and culture centres.

Enjoy an exhibition indoors

When the autumn weather gets chilly, why not step into a cosy museum? There are many options in Gothenburg. The international biennial for contemporary art, GIBCA, is named The Ghost Ship and the Sea Change this year, and focusses on Gothenburg’s colonial past. You can visit the exhibitions until November 21 at Röda Sten Art Centre, Göteborgs Konsthall and other spaces.

At the Museum of World Culture, you can admire beautiful kimonos in the exhibition Kimono: Kyoto to Catwalk, Röhsska present new perspectives on design in Migration – the Journeys of Objects and Pablo Picasso’s Acrobat Family returns to the Gothenburg Museum of Art.

Do you prefer design exhibitions? Check out the special one about the 60-year-old Volvo P1800 at Volvo Museum! Here you’ll find the very first prototype of the car, as well as the one owned by Sir Roger Moore.

Find even more autumn events in our events calendar!

Don’t miss Halloween at Liseberg – lots of scary fun in late October. Credit: Peter Kvarnström

Fun and scary for the kids

The first week of November means autumn break for all the kids in Gothenburg, and that in turn means lots of fun activities around the city. Liseberg Amusement Park puts on a scary costume from October 2–November 7 and welcomes all ages to Halloween at Liseberg. Universeum Science Centre celebrates halloween with spiders, slime and black holes from October 30–November 7. October 29–30 there are Día de Muertos, the Day of the Dead, celebrations, at the cathedral Domkyrkan in the city centre. There will be music, dancing, games and Mexican food.

At Alfie Atkins’ Culture Centre, you can enjoy some scary cosiness with ghostly shows and thrilling readings on October 29–November 7. Still haven’t got enough of monsters and nastiness? Check out the show Häxfeber (Eng. Witch fever) at the Museum of Gothenburg!

There are many different kind of thrills, why not try Upzone’s high-altitude trails among the treetops and nerve-racking ziplines in Skatås? They are open on November 3–7 during the autumn break and on October 30–31 they hand out surprises to all kids who arrive in a costume! Want even more thrills? Try the event Upzone by night on October 28, 30 and 31, where you climb in the dark with a headlight in a park lit up in different colours.

Aeroseum, the exciting underground aviation museum, also arrange special autumn break activities during the first week of November. Why not try a helicopter hoist, or a flight simulator? At Maritiman, the maritime experience centre by the square Packhusplatsen, you can climb aboard ships, flatboats, and even submarines! They’re open weekends during September and October, and every day on November 1–7.

Gunnebo house and gardens arrange four guided tours for kids in November with the theme of “Dangers and horrors from the past”. And on October 28–November 1, Göteborg Film Festival invite young film lovers to the festival Prisma. Enjoy films from all over the world, along with seminars, workshops and other activities!

Enjoy freshly caught lobster and go mushroom hunting

Autumn is the peak season for Gothenburg’s restaurants with plenty of amazing in-season ingredients. Now is the time to enjoy fresh fish and seafood at their best – lobster, langustines, crabs, shrimps and more – and to discover what the city’s chefs have found in the forest.

The Swedish lobster isn’t threatened, but to protect it the fishing is strictly regulated and only permitted between September and April. Lobster season always starts at 7 am the first Monday after September 20, and this year that means September 27. The taste of freshly caught lobster from the cold waters surrounding Gothenburg is something really special. In our guide to fish restaurants in Gothenburg, you’ll find everything from shrimp sandwiches and fish soup, to creative sushi and fine dining.

Lobster safari is a popular autumn activity in Gothenburg. Credit: Peter Kvarnström

Want to get even closer to the ingredients? Join a lobster safari with Burfiskarna, Kastor Boat Trips, Kajkanten Vrångö or Marine Events – or go mushroom hunting in the forest! In our guide you’ll find some of the best spots for mushroom picking in Gothenburg.

Gothenburg Botanical Garden is one of many parks and gardens where you can enjoy the trees’ colourful autumn display.

Go for an autumn walk between colourful parks and cosy shops

Autumn is also a perfect time for strolling around Gothenburg’s parks and gardens bursting with autumn colours, discovering new favourite shops and getting to know the city’s history during a city walk. Check out Crime Walks and Walknet that both offer unique experiences!

Tired after all that walking? Enjoy a “Swedish fika” (coffee or tea with something sweet) at one of Gothenburg’s many cafes! In Haga you’ll find huge cinnamon buns at Café Husaren, Kafé Gapet in Majorna offers pastry that is both beautiful and tasty, and in Linné Bar Italia you can have a fika the Italian way.

Autumn sightseeing tours at sea

The Gothenburg archipelago offers splendid views and fresh air in autumn. Strömma has a wide range of boat trips; choose between a brunch cruise, shrimp and salmon cruise and a tour around the island Hisingen. Prefer calmer waters? Ocean Bus takes you around the canals and the river Göta älv while you learn about the sights and history of Gothenburg.

Enjoy the lighting festival Lights in Alingsås on October 1–November 7. Credit: Patrik Gunnar Helin 2020

Day trips for every taste

There are many interesting destinations right outside Gothenburg that are well suited for a daytrip this autumn. The magnificent Bohus fortress in Kungälv is open on weekends until October 31. Here you can enjoy guided tours, try out archery, listen to fairy tale readings and much more.

Alingsås once again lights up during the lighting design festival Lights in Alingsås on October 1–November 7. Here, lighting designers and students from across the globe illuminate urban environments together along a three-kilometre trail.