Made up of 14 islands, Stockholm is a beautiful city with many charming seaside areas. It’s unique and colourful architecture amidst countless natural parks, and its quaint walkways surrounding a vibrant city centre mean that whether you’re a big city person or a small town person, Stockholm has a little something for you. The Swedes take great care to preserve their beautiful city, as they’re all about eco-friendly everything (even their airport train, the Arlanda Express, runs solely on renewable energy). It certainly pays off, as Stockholm has some of the freshest air and most greenery I’ve ever seen for a city that size. Because of all the water and nature, I rank Stockholm as one of the most beautiful (if not THE most beautiful) cities I’ve ever visited. My best of Stockholm:
1. Old Town (Gamla Stan). Though it’s a bit touristy, Stockholm’s colourful Old Town is fun to explore. The cobblestone streets and old-fashioned architecture give it a picturesque setting, and there are so many little alleyways full of cute cafes, boutiques, and galleries that you could explore for weeks and still discover new places. Great sights to see include the Grand Palace, Tyska Kyrkan (German church), and Stortoget (central square), And don’t forget to pay Mårten Trotzigs Grand a visit. At only 90 cm (~3 feet) wide, it’s the narrowest street in Stockholm!
2. Djurgården. This may be my favourite of Stockholm’s islands, simply because it is so green. Though it has many nice attractions (museums, restaurants, the zoo, etc), in my opinion, the nature is the best part. The grassy meadows to picnic on, colourful flower gardens, and canal-side jogging paths make Djurgården the perfect place to go escape for a day.
3. Boat Tour. Because it’s built across 14 different islands, Stockholm is best seen by boat. There are a variety of different tours, but the Under the Bridges of Stockholm boat tour for 240 SEK (~$30) is probably the most comprehensive and best value for money. This tour gives some beautiful panoramic views of the city’s shoreline during its 1.5 hour trip, which passes under 15 of Stockholm’s 57 connecting bridges.
4. Himlen (Skrapen), Södermalm. An extremely flat city, Stockholm doesn’t have many high places to get a panoramic view. Skrapen (meaning skyscraper) in Södermalm is one of the few, and there’s a laid-back little lounge-type bar at the top named Himlen (meaning Heaven), which is a great place to sit back, relax, and watch the sunset over the city. Skrapen is located in the hipster district called Söder, which is also a fun area to wander around and enjoy the coffee culture and stress-less vibe.
One more thing I’m sure I would have loved, but didn’t get a chance to do since it’s outside of summer/tourist season is to explore the archipelago by boat. Regardless, my time in Stockholm was pretty close to perfect. Definitely a place I’d return to, and a city I’d recommend visiting if you get the chance.
As always, keep on livin’ pura vida ✌