The Five Best Places to See in Stockholm
February 25, 2019
by Veidehi Gite
When I first set off on my magical trip through the enchanted lands of Sweden, I didn’t know I was signing up for a Nordic dream date. It was a miraculous journey that slowly progressed from breathtaking landscapes to isolated islands perched on sapphire blue seas to the magical-phenomenon of Aurora Borealis. Stockholm, in particular, piqued my interest with its impeccable taste weaved in timeless detailing. Sweden is so much more than just an extensive archipelago, I thought to myself. Then the real journey began when I started strolling the quiet cobblestone streets of Stockholm that led me to some of the world’s best architectural designs and natural assets. No matter which place, Stockholm’s grandeur went hand in hand with all things exquisite. (as well as democratic)
If you are planning on visiting Stockholm anytime soon, then I highly recommend you take a trip to these five landmarks that will give an in-depth insight into the magnificence of the Swedish enclave.
1. Explore Stockholm Noble Prize Venue
My first stop in Stockholm was its waterfront headquarters, the Town Hall, which is also the esteemed Noble Prize Venue. Built in the late 18th-century, Stockholm Town Hall features a grand work of architecture through its 8-million blocks story. I was truly mesmerised by the 3-starlet towers, Oriental-Venetian engineering, elemental courtyards, and the spectacular Golden Hall featuring mosaics artwork in pure gold. Not to be missed, are the aesthetically decorated Swedish poles, and the Blue Hall exhibiting the largest organ in Scandinavia with 10,270 pipes. Please note that since Town Hall is a political-building, it can only be visited, with a public or a private guided tour.
Entry Fee Per Adult: $13 (Senior citizens and students can avail discounts)
Time Required: 60 – 90 minutes
Best Time to Visit: Afternoon (All through the year)
2. Visit Stockholm Royal Palace and Cathedral
A light stroll from the Noble Prize venue is the 13th-century Royal Palace of Stockholm that you can’t miss. The Swedish Kungliga Slottet, as locals call it, is the official royal residence of the Swedish monarch representing the centre of King’s official duties. The experience of walking through the Rococo-styled palatial chambers of Stockholm Royal Palace gave me a chance to admire its splendid interiors laden with Nicodemus Tessin’s sixteenth-century designs. That feeling of walking the red carpet like a regent while observing grand facades, wall-sized paintings, antique furniture, and unique artefacts is indescribable.
Entry Fee Per Adult: $16 (Free admission with Stockholm Pass)
Time Required: 150 minutes between 10 AM to 4 PM
Right next to the palace is the 12th-century Royal cathedral which I would say is, absolutely worth the money you spend to see it. Storkyrkan, as locals call it, is the church that will leave you spellbound with its vaulted ceiling, and the masterpiece sculpture of Saint George and the Dragon. The other elemental objects worth admiring are the Parhelion painting, royal pews, silver altar, gilded pulpit, candle globe and the 15th-century seven-branched candlestick. Whether you are religious or not, visiting this Royal Cathedral will impress you with its remarkable artwork. You can avail free admission with Stockholm pass or pay a small fee of $6.50 to get through.
3. Tour Vasa Ship Museum
Vasa Ship Museum or Vasamuseet is one of the most visited tourist destinations in Stockholm. For the reason that it has impounded the great Vasa Ship that sank during its maiden voyage. Well, only to be, rediscovered intact on a seabed after three centuries. Befitted with the best of bronze cannons and ornamentations, this impressive 16th-century ship was built to serve as military aid to Gustavus Adolphus, the former King of Sweden. How it remained undamaged for 333 years underwater, is still a mystery for all. Perhaps, you can find an answer when you browse through the collection of artefacts that were salvaged, with the ship. (And they are thousands in number) I’d say visit this museum to get introduced to the ideogram of the great power-period of Sweden and also to comprehend the historical significance of Swedish shipwrecks.
Entry Fee Per Adult: $16
Time Required: 60 minutes between 10 AM to 5 PM
4. Gondola Ride at Ericsson Globen Arena
Besides showcasing Sweden’s national romanticism, Stockholm also epitomises modernist spots of wonderment. Which I would say, is best represented by Ericsson Globen Arena, the Earth’s largest hemispherical building. This venue stands for the Sun of the Swedish Solar System which is the largest scale model of the Solar System in the World. But that’s just one reason to visit! Another would be the spectacular views of Stockholm that you get to see from the top of this spherical building. To get to the top, all you have to do is board the contemporary glass gondola and enjoy the spectacular ride. The Arena, on the other hand, is the most visited concert hall of the city where artists like Michael Jackson and Jon Bon Jovi have performed.
Entry Fee Per Adult: $17 (Free admission with Stockholm Pass)
Time Required: 120 minutes
5. On the Rocks at The Absolut Ice Bar
In the end, wrap up your Stockholm trip is by hitting the Absolut Ice Bar in the Nordic C Hotel. Built in 2002, AIB is the world’s first permanent ice bar and a tempestuous hotspot frequented by Hollywood celebrities. What’s interesting about this place is that it guarantees -5 degrees temperature throughout the year, with ravishing interiors, furnishings and glassware, all made from pure ice harvested from the Torne River. To survive the freezing venue for a 40-minute experience, you will be given a warm cape and gloves upon arrival. The entry fee covers your first drink in an ice glass. Although to experience the real thrill of the bar, I highly recommend you try their sizzling appetisers dished out in freezing ice bowls.
Entry Fee Per Adult: $24 (includes one drink on the house)
Time Required: 40 minutes
Experience Sweden in Stockholm
A trip to Stockholm is must to truly experience Sweden in its most authentic form. In addition to the above-listed five best places to see, I highly recommend you to tour some of the city’s most prominent museums to learn about Sweden’s art and cultural history. What more, most of these museums charge nothing for admission. Then whether it be the Moderna Museet or the Natural History Museum or the Nobel Museum, Stockholm’s Medieval Museum, or Dansmuseet if dance and performing arts is your thing. Works by Dalí, Picasso, Warhol, and Matisse are the ones paying attention! Wherever you decide to go, a trail of contemporary restaurants, musical harbour, narrow alleyways and the ochre-coloured vintage homes seem to follow you.