Why go to Visby?
History fans will adore this quiet, beautiful destination, which is one of the best preserved medieval towns in Scandinavia
There's not a whole lot to do here. And watch your step on the uneven cobblestone streets
Travel back in time at this historical "city of roses and ruins," a UNESCO World Heritage Site
Visby Cruise Port Facilities?
Outside the tender station entrance, turn left and just across the road you'll see the Tourist Office, a modern building that is well staffed and equipped with maps and brochures, some of which are free (and available in English and other languages)
There's also an Internet station (SK 2 per minute) and a shop (with a good stock of sheep-related mementoes!). It is open Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. On Saturdays and Sundays it's open 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Good to Know?
Volvo drivers with their lights full blaze, driving along at 15 miles per hour (Swedish traffic laws are ferocious, so motorists tend to take things slow and steady in this part of the world). Oddly, this does not appear to apply to flocks of cyclists, who can whizz by at startling speed while you're waiting for one of those interminable Volvos to pass.
Also, watch your step as Visby's cobbled streets look very charming but can be steep and ankle-wrenchingly slippery in the wet. Wear flat, sensible shoes for exploring; this is not the place for tottering about in stilettos.
Most of Visby is walkable, and if you need to go further afield, the form (according to the locals) is simply to stroll into any hotel or boarding house you pass and ask them to call you a taxi.
There are also taxis at the ferry terminal (near the tender station) or you can call Taxi Gotland on 0498 200 200.
A taxi (for four) to the Botanical Gardens or anywhere in town should cost no more than SK 60 (about $ 8.50). An island run costs SK 145 for one to four people; SK 215 for five to eight, so a gang of you could get an island tour without breaking the bank.
Currency & Best Way to Get Money?
The currency is the Swedish Krona (SK 7 is roughly $1; SK 11.5 is approximately £1, but see www.oanda.com or www.xe.com for the latest conversion rates).
There is an ATM machine set into the wall on the right hand corner of Donnersplats (the main square); look for the 'Automat' sign.
Swedish, naturally, is the island's language. English is not widely spoken. Take a phrasebook if you really want to connect with the locals, but here are few phrases to start you off, like "hello" and "goodbye" (hej / hejda), and "please" and "thank you" (vanligen /tack).
Where You're Docked?
Ships must anchor at Visby as there's no cruise dock. Passengers are tendered into town past a long breakwater, with the medieval town within easy walking distance of the tender pier. On arrival you'll see a 'Welcome to Visby' sign and there are basic maps and toilets at the landing site, but no passenger terminal.