A few days ago I had to leave Stockholm after 7 days of a wonderful vacation there. About a year ago Rebecca, an original Swede I met in New York and me had the plan of spending Midsommar in Stockholm together this year. It didn’t work out because I had to take exams at the end of june but I decided to still go to Sweden this summer. I’ve been having a long love affair with sweden because of a) I like IKEA b) supposedly Swedish men are the best husbands c) Swedes have a reputation of being very stylish d) the country seems to be Europe’s A+ student with its high ranked education and childcare system as well as achieving great figures in terms of equal opportunities for men and women.
I did not get disappointed. Stockholm consists of 14 islands and is therefore sometimes called the Venice of the North (minus the pigeons). With its many (sailing) boats and antique ships it’s incredible beautiful and you get to enjoy this between about 4 am and 10 pm in full daylight in summer, which is something not many vacation destinations can offer.
Gamla Stan is the old part of Stockholm and full of tourist and nice cafes and restaurants. I had an amazing salmon sandwich and meatballs there. If you can pick a time of day that is not so crowded like mornings or nights. But even with all the tourist it has something to it. The seawind blowing through the alleys and the royal palace in the middle of it. This is me sitting on the sidewalk in Gamla Stan.
Rebecca had to work some days I was there so I had a lot of time to explore the city by myself. I spend my first day just walking around and watching the beautiful people pass by. I think the rumours that scandinavian people are the most beautiful are probably true. The hottie percentage is definitely high if you like blonde guys/girls, blue eyes and tall people.
Stockholmers like coffee and they also like cakes and muffins and cookies. This makes for a very friendly impression on my side :-). Apart from drinking coffee swimming seems to be a big leisure activity there. The water in the city is actually so clean that you can basically swim everywhere. But there are plenty of free public bathing sites and some people even have direct access from their apartment building to the water. A lot of Stockholm citizens seem to also have a boat, to have dinner, hang out, enjoy the beautiful scenery…
and of course there can also be some shopping be done in Stockholm. There are interesting stores in Södermalm and also in the city on Drottniggatan. I thin that Stockholm has sort of a very special style. I saw a lot of jeans shorts (cut levi’s) and transparent fabrics on the streets, a lot of times worn with chunky shoes. In stores I saw leather hot pants and loosely knit pullovers. Swedes also seem to have something for interior design. There are many stores with nice stuff to fill our apartments with.
The Blue Hall in the Stadthuset, where the Nobel Prize Banquet is held every year is actually red because the architect changed his mind during construction.
I also loved going to the museums in Stockholm and I will tell you more about this in one of my next posts.
How many cities have direct access to (sun) bathing and swimming sites? And how many of these them are so not-crowded as in Stockholm?
Chllin’ in Östermalm
Vasa Museum: the Vasa is a boat that sunk in 1628 in the bay of Stockholm. Because of the brackwater it was conserved and could be rescued in 1961. Even though the admission is pretty expensive it’s probably worth taking a look, because the Vasa is as far as I know the only ship in the world of that time that is still original and on view.
Stadthuset: I am so glad I visited this Sight. It’s not a very old building but with very interesting architectural and art elements including a fresco by Prince Eugen (1865-1947)
and a room laid out in gold mosaic with characters from swedish myths. It was built next to the water and also boast wonderful views of Stockholm and it’s surrounding waters.