A day in Stockholm
Vibrant, eclectic and brimming with history, Stockholm a very unique city made up of 14 islands is the capital of Sweden. From the old to the new Stockholm is a city that welcomes all and wants you to embrace the excitement of discovering something new.
With famous landmarks dominating the skylines, history, art and Fika, Stockholm awaits you. But where do you begin with only a day to discover these wonders?
Let’s begin in the medieval city centre of Gamla Stan, the Old Town a beautiful pedestrian city full of restaurants, cafes, bars, shopping and interesting places to visit. The architecture is a wonderful explosion of golden tones contrasting against pops of zesty oranges, vivid reds and tranquil turquoises creating an environment that’s unique and mesmerising. Cobbled streets rich in history take you on a journey around a centre like no other, and as you wonder and explore soak up the atmosphere and embrace a new way of seeing the world.
Sweden’s national Cathedral, Stockholm Cathedral is a key place to visit while in Gamla Stan and you must see the Royal Palace. The medieval Cathedral is a stunning place to visit, full of intricate and ornate medieval details, dramatic stained glass windows and is home to unique sculptures such as St George and the Dragon piece created in 1489.
The Royal Palace is a grand affair so large and vast it has over 600 rooms, it is one of the largest Palaces in Europe and is home to the King of Sweden. The sheer scale of the building is impressive and up close the Palace feels grand and opulent. The Palace is full of museums and the Italian Baroque style architecture can be enjoyed from the outside if time is of the essence. A special moment to observe is the changing of the guards and soldiers as they parade in all their finery.
To really indulge in rich medieval history a visit to The Vasa Museum will really impress. A totally unique and amazing treasure of the sea is The Vasa, the only preserved 17th-century ship in the world.
The Vasa sank on its maiden voyage in 1628 right at the centre of Stockholm. 333 years later the ship was salvaged and to this day is still being cared for and restored to its former glory. Over 95% of the ship is original and with over 100 carved sculptures intricately detailed and adorned on the vessel this piece of Scandinavian history is definitely worth including on your visit. The museum has lots of interesting exhibitions that will inspire and leave lasting memories.
The City Hall is a famous landmark in Stockholm and creates a silhouette upon the skyline that is dramatic and instantly recognisable. Created with over eight million bricks this excellent example of romanticism in architecture is a scene not to miss. The three crowns upon the top of the towers represent the three crowns on the Swedish national coat of arms and the views are even more spectacular as the sun goes down and the bricks are highlighted in lights.
Stockholm is home to excellent examples of modern art and the Moderna Museet is a great place to take in art from the 20th Century to today. Located on Skeppsholmen Island a setting of natural beauty the art really will envelop you all around. With works including classics by Picasso, Dali and Matisse alongside present-day pieces this museum really will inspire and impress no matter how big the artist inside you is.
If photography is more your image then a visit to the Fotografiska the world’s largest place for contemporary photography is sure to be a part of your visit. Large exhibitions sit against 20 smaller exhibitions creating a special place for anyone with a passion for photography.
Whatever you choose to see or do with your day in Stockholm one of the things you will hear people of the city talk about is Fika. This is an important part of the Swedish culture and an element definitely to be embraced while visiting. Fika is about taking a break that helps to change your state of mind, a break that allows you to relax, refocus and reflect. Fika isn’t something to be done alone it is about sharing the moment with others, embracing a change in the pace of the day and adding in something warm to drink and a tasty treat to eat.
We all need to slow down in life and take moments to reflect so this concept is the perfect excuse to take time out from your whirlwind visit to Stockholm and embrace reflecting on all that you have enjoyed. Obviously, the people of Stockholm know how to Fika and so, therefore, there are many delightful places to go for coffee, cake or pastries.
Top Tip: Buy entry tickets in advance to save precious time on a day visit to Stockholm.
Embracing Stockholm is very much about discovering something new, so relax, enjoy and create memories that are exciting, varied and like no others.