Stockholm the capital of Sweden is neat and efficient, easily visited on foot even if served by excellent public transport, rich in culture, traditions but also innovation. In winter you can enjoy the traditional Christmas markets, in a magical and fairytale atmosphere that only a city in the North can offer. In the summer in the city the sun remains high until late in the evening: 19 hours of light available to explore parks, canals, design, and architecture! So here is a list of 10 things to see absolutely in Stockholm.
1. Gamla Stan
The city of Stockholm was born from this district in 1252. To date, it is considered one of the largest and best-preserved historical centers of medieval origin in Europe. Visitors can stroll through this picturesque area of the city, discovering monuments but also restaurants and shops.
The neighborhood is made up of characteristic narrow streets overlooked by the typical yellow houses, the true calling card of a unique urban area. At Gamla Stan, there is also the Royal Palace which, with its over 600 rooms, is considered one of the largest buildings in the world. Inside, there are also some museums including that of Livrustkammaren, or the Royal Armory, where royal armor and robes are kept.
2. Vasa Museum
This museum houses the only original ship from the 1600s in the world, 95% of which are authentic pieces, enriched with hundreds of carved sculptures. It is a vessel of considerable size, in fact measuring 69 meters in length! Unfortunately, this ship sank during its maiden voyage, which took place in 1628. It was recovered only after 333 years, in 1961. Its restoration lasted another fifty years, as particular attention was paid to every detail, to return to what was a wreck in all its grandeur.
This building represents one of the best examples of Swedish Romanesque architecture. The three golden crowns stand out, a symbol of the power of Sweden, present on the spire of the building, at a height of 106 meters.
The Town Hall was built on a project by architect Ragnar Östberg and was inaugurated on the evening of the summer solstice of 1923. The beauty of eight million bricks make it up, while inside you can admire the Gyllene Salen, or the Salone Dorato, space entirely decorated with mosaics made up of 18 million gold tiles.
The building is also famous because the grand reception of the Nobel Prize ceremony takes place inside.
4. Moderna Museet
The Stockholm Museum of Modern Art was designed by the Spanish architect Rafael Moneo. The museum is located on the small island of Skeppsholmen, which is located between Gamla Stan and the island of Djurgården, and to reach it you need to cross a small bridge.
At the museum, there is one of the largest and most particular collections which include works from the twentieth century to the present day. It is possible to admire, among others, masterpieces by Dalì, Picasso, Matisse, and Derkert.
A place that differs from the classic historical and artistic monuments that are usually visited in a city. It is an open-air museum, the oldest in the world, but there is also a zoo and is, therefore, an ideal place to spend a relaxing day. You can stroll among the historic buildings of Sweden in miniature and see live the typical Nordic animals such as bears, lynx, elk, wolves, seals, and wolverines.
6. Drottningholm Castle
A unique place of its kind that includes Drottningholm Castle, Drottningholm Theater, the Chinese Pavilion, and the wonderful Park. The Castle dates back to the 17th century and is one of the royal palaces, the residence of the royal family since 1981, the best-preserved one in the whole country.
It is possible to visit the park and almost all the halls of the palace, declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1991, reaching it with the boat that crosses Lake Mälaren.
If you are a lover of contemporary photography, passionate and practicing, you cannot miss a visit to this museum located in the bohemian district of Södermalm, with a panoramic view of the Stockholm skyline. In what was once an industrial warehouse, in 2010 this museum was inaugurated which, on an area of 2,500 square meters, hosts 4 major exhibitions during the year, events and retrospectives.
Open to the public since 1928, the building that houses the Civic Library was designed by the Swedish architect Gunnar Asplund and is a real spectacle. Internally it develops in a circular way and offers the feeling of a real whirlwind of books!
The library card can be obtained free of charge to borrow books, DVDs, specialized magazines, and e-books. With the card, you will also have the right to use the computers present there and have internet access.
It may seem a disturbing place but it is truly enchanting, so much so that it has been proclaimed a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Immersed in pleasant tranquility you can visit this place, designed by the Swedish architect Gunnar Asplund in 1917, which covers an area of 100 hectares.
You will be surrounded by the most genuine nature, with the tall pines that will protect you during your walk along the lonely avenues, along the paths and the gravestones, which you will notice just as they are discreet.
Here there is also the tomb of Greta Garbo, beloved actress to whom Stockholm gave birth.
10. Gröna Lund
To further underline the fun and lively nature of Stockholm there is another place loved by citizens and Swedes, the city playground. Opened in 1883, this place also hosts numerous concerts organized periodically throughout the year but also has fun on the various attractions.
It is closed in the colder months, but very popular in the summer!