The vast forests of Sweden possess both beauty and tranquillity – but also drama and mystique. Sweden invites travelers to discover the country’s myth-filled forest in a spellbinding audio story, written by internationally renowned author John Ajvide Lindqvist, only available in the Swedish forest. Through the short story, visitors receive an immersive experience of the country’s enchanted nature – home to some of the world’s most famous folkloric beings.
For centuries, the Swedish people have told supernatural stories to help make sense of events that could not be explained through logic alone. The fog sweeping across the meadows was the fairies dancing, and the roaring brook was ‘the Nixie’ luring women and children into the water. This has resulted in a rich mythological world featuring some of the world’s most famous creatures all born in Sweden’s vast, deep forests. Still today, the intersection of nature and the supernatural play an important role in Swedish storytelling and with 70% of the country covered by forest, it’s no wonder myths figure so prominently in Sweden’s collective imagination.
Ajvide Lindqvist’s new audio story Kiln brings the mythic Swedish nature to life, seducing listeners deeper and deeper into the woods. The story is experienced in the first person, inviting listeners to literally walk in the footsteps of a character who encounters the enchanting ‘Huldra’, a forest nymph from Swedish folklore. However, those looking to experience the haunting story for themselves can only do so if present in the Swedish forest. A geo-restriction has been applied to make the story fully immersive, inviting the listener to discover the mystery of Sweden with all their senses.
“The supernatural has always played an active role in Swedish culture. It is more than just a backdrop to the crime stories and Nordic noir movies that have made the country famous”, says John Ajvide Lindqvist. “Now, the world is welcome to discover it for themselves in a truly immersive experience. As a horror author, when I enter a forest, I only need a glimpse of the dark side of a stone or the knots of a tree to trigger my imagination. Nature seems to come alive and lures you to come after it.”
The audio story brings Sweden’s rich folklore history to life. More and more people travel to Sweden, attracted by its unspoilt natural landscapes and progressive lifestyle, as depicted in so many popular TV series, books, and films. For example, literary pilgrims travel to walk in the footsteps of Lisbeth Salander, the heroine from the much-read Millennium trilogy, by Swedish author Stieg Larsson.
“Looking at what travelers are seeking when planning a holiday, many have a desire to discover something new. We want to inspire the world to come and experience something completely different,” says Nils Persson, Chief Marketing Officer, Visit Sweden. “The Swedish forests have historically been home to many fascinating creatures, now we want to introduce the world to their spellbindingly beautiful home... if you dare.”
The geo-restricted audio story is available for free on Visit Sweden’s website. Here, visitors can also discover the best locations for experiencing the story, plus learn about the different mythological creatures from Swedish folklore.