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Sweden's capital Stockholm is situated on the east coast of southern/central Sweden. Its coastal location is not easy to overlook when visiting the city situated on 14 islands. All the water in the city has earned it the nickname "Venice of the North", but unlike Venice the water is clean and clear as you would expect in Nordic countries. You can even see fishermen fishing right off the sidewalks and bridges, with salmon and sea trout being the main targets. At the right time of year you can even see salmon climbing the small waterfalls.
At Stockholm’s heart lie the cobbled streets of Gamla Stan ("Old Town") where most buildings date from the 16th to 19th century and house numerous little shops, cafés, restaurants, museums and hotels, in addition to the 18th century Royal Palace. Although many of the stores lining the main narrow streets contain the usual tacky items associated with popular tourist attractions, the area is unique, cozy and beautiful. The moment you turn off the main streets you are greeted by a plethora of old buildings and tiny backstreet courtyards, adding to the charm that has made this area so popular. Originally founded in the 13th century, Stockholm's roots might go back even further than Gamla Stan lets on but the city itself is as modern as they come and it's considered one of the most trendy and fashionable cities of Scandinavia. Stockholm also houses over 100 art galleries and 70 museums, no small feat for a city with a population of just 1.6 million, including the metropolitan area.
Stockholm is by far the largest city in Sweden and has many neighbourhoods and suburbs. The one that is most important for travellers though is the inner city, or innerstaden in Swedish.
The inner city consists of:
Finally, outside the inner city you'll find large areas with residential areas:
Drottningholm is a small locality in the Ekerö municipality to the east of the city of Stockholm itself. The only reason to come here, makes for a nice half daytrip: The Drottningholm Palace and its gardens. This royal domain is on the UNESCO World Heritage List and was originally built in the late 16th century. It served as a residence of the Swedish royal court for most of the 18th century. Apart from being the private residence of the Swedish royal family, the palace is a popular tourist attraction. Apart from the palace and its gardens, there are also the theater and Chinese Pavilion which deserve a visit. Drottningholm is easily reached by taking the metro to T-Brommaplan and an onward bus (lines 301-323 and 176/177 go there on a regular basis).
Skogskyrkogården (The Woodland Cemetery) is one of those extraordinary examples of beautiful cemeteries. Scandinavian cemeteries are almost designed to walk in and are an attraction in its own right and this one tops the list for sure. Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1994, it combines a natural setting with the development of architecture, making a great mix to walk around for a couple of hours. It was designed in 1915 by Gunnar Asplund and Sigurd Lewerentz and work began in 1917. It is located in the Enskededalen, south of Södermalm and easily reached by metro in 5 minutes or so. The cemetery is just east of the metrostation and excess is free of charge. Please not that there are hundreds of funerals each year, so respect the fact that people might not be here to see the cemetery but instead bury a loved one! The most famous person that has its final resting place here, probably is Greta Garbo.
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The Vasa museum is a very special maritime museum as it is build around its mean piece: The Vasa, the only almost complete original warship from the 17th century on display in the world. The warship Vasa sank in 1628 on it's maiden voyage after only a few kilometres in the harbour of Stockholm. The ship was salvaged in 1961 and could be seen in an improvised museum, until the new museum was opened in 1990. In the museum there are guided tours, and it is recommendable to watch the film about the ship that is shown. Besides the ship itself, the collection also shows how it was built, how lives would have been on board and why it sunk. The museum also showcases four other floating museum ships: the ice breaker Sankt Erik (launched 1915), the lightvessel Finngrundet (1903), the torpedo boat Spica (1966) and the rescue boat Bernhard Ingelsson (1944).
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An inclusive event for any gender or sexual preference, the Stockholm Pride festival is a celebration of Sweden’s gay and lesbian community. It began in 1988, and hosted the Europride Festival in both 1998 and 2008. Most of the events take place in Pride Park, which includes plenty of music, food, and performances. Thousands of people come to Stockholm for the event at the end of July every year, which usually runs into the beginning of August.
Now in its 21st year, the famous Stockholm International Film Festival lures thousands of film buffs and critics to the capital ever year. Held the last two weeks of November, dozens of films from around the globe are screened at venues throughout Stockholm, with some of the most acclaimed directors taking part in the festivities.
Stockholm has moderately warm summers, between 19 °C and 22 °C from June to September, but 35 °C the record. Nights are around 13 °C or 14 °C. Winters last from December to March with temperatures around zero during the day, -5 °C degrees at night and an absolute low of -28 °C. Precipitation is evenly distributed throughout the year, but with some more rain in summer and quite some snow in winter.
|Avg Max||-1 °C||-1 °C||3 °C||9 °C||16 °C||21 °C||22 °C||20 °C||15 °C||10 °C||5 °C||1 °C|
|Avg Min||-5 °C||-5 °C||-3 °C||1 °C||6 °C||11 °C||13 °C||13 °C||9 °C||5 °C||1 °C||-3 °C|
|Rainfall||39 mm||27 mm||26 mm||30 mm||30 mm||45 mm||72 mm||66 mm||55 mm||50 mm||53 mm||46 mm|
Scandinavian Airlines System (SAS) is the national airline of Sweden (and Denmark and Norway) and in Sweden it is based at Stockholm-Arlanda Airport (ARN). International destinations with SAS from Stockholm include several dozens of destinations in Europe like Amsterdam, Bergen, Berlin, Brussels, Burgas, Copenhagen, Dublin, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt, Geneva, Helsinki, Istanbul, London, Manchester, Milan, Moscow, Munich, Newark, Oslo, Paris, St Petersburg, Split, Trondheim and Zürich. Most of these are also served with many other airlines from European countries. They also fly from here to Chicago and seasonally to Athens, Edinburgh, Malaga, Malta, Nice, Palma de Mallorca, Prague, Rome and Tromso. The airport has 5 terminals. Other places served outside Europe with several airlines are Bangkok, Baghdad, Tehran, Kuala Lumpur, Addis Ababa, Erbil, Doha, Amman, Aleppo, Damascus, Tel Aviv, New York and Beijing. Many charter airlines and lowcost airlines use the airport as well, like Norwegian Air Shuttle.
To/from the airport
There are two more airports near Stockholm: Stockholm-Skavsta Airport and Stockholm-Bromma Airport. The first is actually near Nykoping, about 100 kilometres south of the capital, while Bromma is nearest to the city centre but operates fewer flights (mainly domestic flights).
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Stockholm has good train connections to Norway, Denmark and Germany, with onward connections further away, for example to London.
NSB (Norwegian State Railways) operates trains between Oslo and Stockholm. Trains also link Narvik in the north of Norway with Stockholm.
Trains from Hamburg travel directly to Stockholm, via Copenhagen.
Eurolines, Säfflebusen and Swebus Express all have connections to and from Copenhagen in Denmark. There are also connections from Stockholm to Oslo with these operators. There are a few direct buses from Stockholm to Tornio in Finland each week, provided by Tapanis Buss.
Stockholm has a system where you pay to enter the centre, which costs even more when entering during morning and late evening rush hours. Add to that high parking rates and you'll see why visiting the city by car is not the most welcoming way.
SL is the company running all public transportation in Stockholm. The city is separated into three zones; A, B and C. Tickets are valid in all modes of public transport for one hour in the respective zones. There are also Travelcards available for unlimited journeys during the time of validity. For comprehensible information about the Stockholm public transport in English please see this guide.
Stockholm's centre is easily navigated on foot, especially if you stay in and around Gamla Stan, Södermalm and the southern part of Norrmalm. Even walking along the Strandvägen towards Skansen and Djurgarden doesn't pose any problems if you are reasonably fit. And remember there is always a metro, tram or ferry that can take you back again.
For a wide range of restaurants in Stockholm Allt om Stockholm offers many tips, and has addresses to most restaurants in Stockholm with ratings as well. Unfortunately only in Swedish. Cafes and restaurants in Gamla Stan are lovely places to have a meal.
Address: Götgatan 59
There are hundreds of bars and trendy drinking places in Stockholm. Although the ones in Gamla Stan are relatively touristy and pricey, they are nevertheless fine for a coffee or beer. Every neighbourhood has its own cafe culture, but Södermalm is know for having the best places to have a drink and combine it with some food or club afterwards.
|2kronor Hostel - Old Town||Skeppsbron 40||Hostel||79|
|2kronor Hostel - Vasastan||Surbrunnsgatan 44||Hostel||82|
|Acco Hostel||Ansgariegatan 10||Hostel||71|
|Alfa Hotel||Stockholmsvagen 35 Lidingo||Hotel||-|
|Archipelago Hostel Old Town||Stora Nygatan 38||Hostel||78|
|Best Hostel City||Luntmakargatan 14||Hostel||78|
|Best hostel Old Town||Trangsund 12||HOSTEL||-|
|Best Hostel Old Town Skeppsbron||Skeppsbron 22||Hostel||84|
|Castanea Old Town Hostel||Kindstugatan 1 Old Town||Hostel||88|
|City BackPackers Hostel||Upplandsgatan 2a 11123||Hostel||90|
|City Lodge Stockholm||Klara Norra Kyrkogata 15||Hostel||69|
|City Hostel - Central Station||Fleminggatan 19||Hostel||86|
|Colonial Hotel||Västmanngatan 13||hotel||76|
|Connect Hotel Stockholm||Gotalandsvagen 218||Hotel||-|
|Crafoord Place||Hlsobrunnsgatan 10 113 61||HOSTEL||82|
|Helen's Bed & Breakfast||strandsvgen Enskede||GUESTHOUSE||-|
|Hostel Bed & Breakfast||Rehnsgatan 21||HOSTEL||78|
|Hotel Attache||Cedergrensvägen 16||Hotel||79|
|Hotel Haga Kristineberg||Hjalmar Soderbergsv 10||Hotel||-|
|Hotell Dialog||Dialoggatan 1||Hotel||79|
|IYHF Youth Hostel Zinkensdamm||Zinkens väg 20||HOSTEL||82|
|Jumbo Stay STF/IYHF||Stockholm Arlanda||Hostel||85|
|Langholmens Vandrarhem STF/HI||Langholmsmuren 20 Box 9116||Hostel||86|
|Liljeholmens stadshotell||Nybohovsbacken 43||Hotel||-|
|LogInn Hotel||Sodermalarstrand kajplats 16||Hotel||-|
|Old Town Apartments Stockholm||Stora Nygatan 9||Apartment||-|
|Renstierna Hotel & Hostel||Renstiernas Gata 15||HOSTEL||65|
|Rygerfjord Hostel||Södermälarstrand, Kajplats 11-15 S-118 25 Stockholm||HOSTEL||80|
|Sadelmakartorp Bed and Breakfast||Sadelmakartorp||guesthouse||-|
|Skanstulls Vandrarhem||Ringvagen 135||Hostel||82|
|Solna Youth Hostel||Enköpingsvägen 16,||hostel||-|
|STF / IYHF Fridhemsplan||Sankt Eriksgatan 20||Hostel||-|
|STF/IYHF af Chapman||Västra Brobänken||HOSTEL||85|
|STF/IYHF Skeppsholmen||Flaggmansvagen 8||HOSTEL||80|
|The Red Boat Mälaren||Södermälarstrand kj 6||HOSTEL||78|
|Three Crown B&B Central station||Kungsholmsgatan 13A||GUESTHOUSE||78|
|Vanadis Hotel||Sveavagen 142||Hotel||77|
|Wasa Park Hotel||S:t Eriksplan 1||Hotel||-|
|Hostels By Nordic||Drottninggatan 83||Hostel||-|
|Gustaf af Klint||Stadsgårdens Kajplatser 153||Guesthouse||-|
|Belman Hostel||Sankt Goransgatan 151||HOSTEL||73|
|Mosebacke Hostel||H�gbergsgatan 26||HOSTEL||76|
|Old Town Lodge||Baggensgatan 25||Hotel||78|
|Arsta Holmar Guesthouse||Arsta Holmar island office: Tantogatan 65||Guesthouse||-|
|Stockholm Hostel||Alstroemergatan 15||HOSTEL||80|
|Apartment in the city center, Upplansgatan||Upplandsgatan 18||APARTMENT||-|
|Hotel Vastberga||Vretenborgsvagen 14||Hotel||-|
|Best Western Capital Hotel||Marknadsvaegen 6 Aarsta||Hotel||-|
|2kronor Hotel City||Kammakargatan 62||Hotel||-|
|Ersta Hotell och Konferens||Erstagatan 1K||Hotel||-|
|Apartment Södermalm||Hornsgatan 142 Södermalm||Apartment||-|
|Hotel Sätra||Kungssätravägen 33||Hotel||-|
|All Seasons Hotel Stockholm Jarva||Vallgatan 7 Solna||Hotel||-|
|Hotel Stureparken||Sturegatan 58||Hotel||-|
|Best Western Kom Hotel/Hostel||Dobelnsg. 17||Hostel||79|
|Hotel Ãppelviken||Vasterled 14||HOTEL||-|
|Hostel Kvarnholmen||Kvarnholmsvagen 52||HOSTEL||-|
|New World Hotel||Abyvagen 20a rsta||HOTEL||-|
|Old Town Hostel Stockholm||Stora Nygatan 22||HOSTEL||-|
|Stf Vandrarhem Utö||Gruvbryggan Utö||HOSTEL||-|
|Hotel Månen||Månskärsvägen 9 Kungens Kurva||Hotel||-|
|Ariston Hotell||Stockholmsvägen 70 Box 1308 Lidingö||Hotel||-|
|Hotel Micro||Tègnerlunden 8 Vasastan||Hotel||-|
|Hotel Hornsgatan||Hornsgatan 66B||HOTEL||-|
|Hotell Anno 1647||Mariagränd 3 Södermalm||Hotel||-|
|Connect Hotel Skavsta||General Schybergs Väg 23 NYKÖPING||Hotel||-|
Internet is widely stretched out in a very modern way and you can find 3G network (and soon 4G as well) almost everywhere, though in the higher northern parts and in the mountains it is of course harder or impossible.
The number of WiFi access points are growing and fast food chains, libraries, hotels, cafés and malls and others may offer free wireless internet access. Fixed terminals where you can pay for internet access exist as well, although many libraries can provide the same service for free. Some buses for longer distances have free wifi and most of the trains do have it as well but at cost sometimes.
Almost every household does have internet and it is fast and modern. You barely see any internet cafés because of the influence by high-tech phones with internet access and the cheaper and more comfortable internet at home, but there are some places like Pressbyrån that offers computers with internet access (not free).
See also: International Telephone Calls
The general emergency number is 112. Sweden's international calling code number is +46. Payphones are available (however extremely rare), with older models only accepting cards (special smartchip phone cards as well as credit cards), and newer models that accept coins. Collect calls are possible by dialing 2# on a pay phone.
Sweden has excellent wireless GSM and 3G/UMTS coverage, even in rural areas except in the central and northern interior parts of the country. The major networks are Telia, Tele2/Comviq, Telenor and 3 (Tre). Swedish GSM operates on the European 900/1800 MHz frequencies. You can choose to buy a local SIM card or bring your own cellphone. Be careful for roaming costs though and try to use wifi only.
Prepaid USB 3G modems can be bought in many shops. They are a good alternative to WiFi in Sweden. They cost around 100 SEK/week and 300 SEK/month to use. Data limits are high (typically 20 GB/month). The prepaid 3G data package of the provider 3 bought in Sweden can be used in Denmark without incurring any roaming charge. It is, however, not possible to buy refill vouchers for this products in Danish stores.
Posten AB is the Swedish postal service, with fast and reliable services. They have a wide range of services including a track and trace system and different options regarding the sending of postcards, letters and parcels. There are both express and economy services and if you are not in a hurry the latter option is fine enough.
The postal service was abandoned at the public post offices in 2001. The public today deals with its postal business at Postal Service Points. Mail and parcels can now be picked up at a number of places, including gas stations, supermarkets and kiosks. Look for the blue and yellow sign above or by the entrance of outlets providing this service. You can also buy stamps and there are quite a few more services in these places, many of which stay open late in the evening and on weekends. Yellow post boxes are for national and international letters and blue for regional letters. Postal Service Centres are maintained for business clients and Svensk Kassaservice, a chain which deals with simple financial transactions but offers no postal services. There are also traditional post offices offering the full range of services. They are usually open between 9:30am and 6:00pm and may have extended opening hours once or twice a week.
One of their competitors is Bring Citymail AB, formerly privatised but now nationalised by Norway. Otherwise, for sending parcels internationally, try and use international companies lik TNT, DHL, UPS or FedEx.
Ask dvpfig a question about Stockholm
Leaving here for a couple of years now, can give good hints on what shouldn't be missed outside the too touristy hits.
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