Wednesday, July 25, 2007

10 Things To Love About Stockholm

3 months on from my trip to Stockholm and I am still fondly reminiscing about how much I loved it so I thought it was about time to share some random thoughts....

1. A great hotel

The Rica Hotel Kungsgatan is the only hotel you need if you're going to Stockholm. Clean, classy, affordable by Swedish standards, big breakfast buffet and helpful staff.

2. An old town

Gamla Stan is the ultimate must-see in Stockholm: ok it's a tourist trap but hey, it's beautiful and every street and every corner brings a photo opportunity.

3. Back to nature

Skansen is described as an "open air museum". But don't be put off by that. It's much more. It's like a trip round Sweden in a day. I can't describe it in a sentence. I can tell you though that few things in life will equate with the joy of seeing moose. But that's just me.

4. Going underground

Use the metro - a fast, effective way to island hop when you don't want to get sore feet from walking down all those cobbled streets. (Although Stockholm is walkable!)

5. Discovering you can afford to eat out

Shop around, stay away from those super-cool upmarket places and you'll discover that your kronor will go further than you first thought. Honourable mentions to the Barcelona Tapas Bar (behind Kulturhuset at Sergels Torg) and Taverna Efes on Brunkebergstorg, both in Norrmalm.

6. Shopping (ok you need money for this!)

Shops, shops, shops, there's lots and lots of them, some of them even sell clothing designed by Bjorn Borg (yes its true!). Get all your souvenirs in Drottninggatan, and while you're there, stop by Bengans record shop which is cheaper and way cooler than Ahlens.

7. Messing about in boats

Because Stockholm is a wonderful watery city you must must must take a boat trip. Where you go is up to you - everything from an excellent hour-long trip round Djurgarden to a full-blown archipelago expedition.

8. Not entirely unattractive people (no pictures here sadly!!)

Forget the stereotypes. They're not all blonde and they're not all drop-dead gorgeous but both faithful travelling companion and myself have some very fond memories....!

9. Turn the radio on

To drown in a sea of cheese, tune your radio to Svenska Favoriter, the most schlager-tastic radio station ever. If you love Melodifestivalen then you will get more than you bargained for.

10. Sodermalm

It's young and trendy, buzzing and lively. If you like that kind of thing then this is the place for you.

Of course there is much more to the Swedish capital than my top 10. All I'll say is - just go there. You will love it.


john said...

For me, #1 was seeing the Vasa! A lifelong dream since they brought it up from beneath the seas.

EuropeCrazy said...

Now there's something we never got to see on our short break: I agree that the Vasa is definitely a must-see attraction. Maybe I should do a list of "10 things I should visit next time in Stockholm"!! :-)