Sweden’s capital Stockholm is the largest city in Scandinavia and offers a great blend of old Swedish culture and a fresh cosmopolitan atmosphere. It is a city of remarkable beauty, spread across 14 islands in Lake Maleren. The city’s location on and around the lake gives it both its charm and uniqueness, and is a source for countless possibilities for activities and adventures.
Stockholm has a population of approximately 1 million people and is divided into several distinct areas, each with its own draw and “personality”.
Hotels in Stockholm are quite pricy but the hotels keep a high standard and the hospitality level is second to none. The most expensive hotels are generally in the city centre and the prices are more reasonable if you stay in the suburbs or between the city and Arlanda International Airport. There are also a number of more affordable accommodations such as hostels and motels.
The city’s history dates back to the 13th century and can be experienced even today in the historic part of town, “Gamla Stan”. This must-see collection of historic forts, castles and buildings is not just a testament to the past but is a living, breathing part of the city with loads of cute small shops, bars and restaurants. Here you will also find The Royal Palace, home of the Swedish royal family. Parts of the castle is open to the public, and you can buy your entrance tickets either on-site or online. And if you would like to live among the Royals, there are actually a number of hotels nearby, including Scandic Hotel and Hilton.
This is generally considered to be the centre of Stockholm, especially the southern part which is often just referred to as “City”. City was almost completely renewed during the 1960s, when old historic buildings were torn down and replaced with rather characterless office buildings. It is not the place you go to experience the authentic Stockholm, but it does have its own qualities and is home to countless shops, bars and restaurants.
Drottninggatan is a very popular tourist street and stretches through most of the area, from Norrström all the way down to Vasastan. The street is reserved for pedestrians in most of its length and its many outdoors bars and restaurants are usually packed with people, especially during the tourist season from May through August.
As New York has Central Park, Stockholm has Djurgården. This island, in walking distance from downtown, is a vital part of the city’s pulse and is used by Stockholmers for sightseeing, recreation, sports, culture, family outings, festivities and so much more.
Some of Stockholm’s best attractions are located on the island, including Skansen, the Vasa museum, the Abba museum, and the amusement park Gröna Lund.
There is just nothing like first working your way through these central attractions and then be able to sit down afterwards and enjoy a cold drink in such a tranquil environment.
Like so many other prior working class neighborhoods, Södermalm has risen to become hip and trendy in recent years. In fact, this island was even ranked the “coolest” neighbourhood in Europe by Vogue magazine in September 2014.
If vintage clothing stores, independent galleries and intimate hipster bars is your scene, Södermalm, or just Söder as it is commonly called, is certainly for you.
This is the hub for everything glam and glitzy in Stockholm, and is the go to place for high fashion and expensive habits. Either you want to go shopping at Louis Vuitton or clubbing at some of the hotspots on Stureplan, you better have a rather fat wallet to really enjoy yourself. The concentration of bars and nightclubs is high and you can easily jump from place to place, but many take a quite hefty cover charge.
Bibliotekstan is the most affluent shopping district in the city, with plenty of exclusive Scandinavian and international labels.
The island is mainly noticable for Stadshuset (City Hall), an impressive architectural master piece and famous landmark that dominates the surrounding area. This is where the Nobel Prize Banquet takes place every year, and its tower offers a fantastic view offer of the city. Guided tours are held daily.