The Ultimate Guide to Stockholm

Welcome to Stockholm!

For a moment, just imagine you’ve met someone really interesting; they’re young and beautiful and full of life, but when you look into their eyes there’s a pearl of deep wisdom staring back at you. They’ve got amazing stories of how wild life was, and when you ask them how all of this could ever be real, they smile back at you knowing that you have had to be there to truly understand. That is Stockholm.

All of Sweden’s geographical wonders meeting at one point, freshwater and saltwater, trees and mountains and right in the middle is a city. The Vikings were the first to settle and to claim this area for future generations. As the city grew, the people worked very hard to purposely keep this exceptional balance between nature and innovation.

The first thing you’ll notice about Stockholm is how beautifully green it is. Picture the best parts of old European architecture and the best parts of the modern world, all at the same time and in once space. The Swedes work hard, but they also understand life is for living. But don’t take our word for it, come and see for yourself.

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    1

    Stockholm’s districts

    Imagine for a moment that we had a birds-eye view of Stockholm, looking down at the city we would see that the oldest part in the centre (Gamla Stan) has pushed up, out and through time, over to all the surrounding 14 islands. What we couldn’t see from above, is that each one of these islands is almost a world of their own, some green, some hip and others just plain fascinating.

    Kungsholmen

    Kungsholmen has gone through four distinct periods. From it’s beginning as a virgin hunting ground for the nobility of Stockholm to farming land, to the industrial hub of Stockholm and today were young parents have turned it into a part of Stockholm focused on balance and livability. That’s not to say it’s a sleepy area to visit, it’s quite the opposite.

    Go for a dip at Rålambhovsparken one of the many parks on the island, or pop over to Stadshuset (the Stockholm City Hall). If you do manage to make it over there, make sure you ask the people in charge to point out the Old brewer, and tell you why he is relevant, it’s very funny.

    When you’ve used up all your energy, you’ll need some sustenance, and luckily there’s no shortage of high-quality restaurants and bars at Kungsholmen. But if we were there with you, well there’s only one place to go, Trattorian. It’s located right on the waterfront overlooking Lake Mälaren, and they serve up some of the best Italian food outside of Italy. Do yourself a favour and don’t leave without one of their sorbets.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Norrmalm

    Once it’s own city and the birthplace of Stockholm syndrome. Norrmalm is the northern part of the city. There’s a very good chance that you’ll find yourself here at some stage if you are visiting Stockholm and not just because this is where the beautiful old central station is located, but because the district offers shopping of royal proportions. Drottninggatan (or the Queens street) is 1.5km of car-free consumer delight that will quench all of your shopping needs.

    It also holds some of the best art galleries, the Royal Opera and many museums. Not surprisingly, Norrmalm has no shortage of wonderful places to eat and drink. You really can’t go wrong with any of the mid-range to high-end restaurants in the area, so choose to your heart’s content. If you’re looking for something a little more grab and go, one of our favourite places is in the city centre is La Neta who offers really high-quality Mexican at a low price.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Skeppsholmen & Kastellholmen

    Norrmalm even has its own two islands, Skeppsholmen and Kastellholmen, that you would be remiss to pass up. The small island of Skeppsholmen in the heart of the city was once the home of the admiralty. It’s since been converted and Skeppsholmen is today known as the island of modern art. On a beautiful day, this is the perfect place to stroll around after exploring Gamla Stan. The two islands also have the best panoramic sea-level views of the entire city, for that perfect Instagram shot.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Östermalm

    Östermalm has come a long way from its original roots as The Royal Ladugårdslandet (The Barn Land) to arguably the most exclusive district in all of Stockholm. If your goal is to experience the finer things in life, then this is where we would recommend you to go, here a large portion of the high-end restaurants and fashion shopping are snuggly nestled within some of the cities most elegant architecture. That’s not to say it only caters to the wealthy, no not at all. One of the best places to go and try uniquely Swedish food and produce can be found at Östermalm Saluhall. While you are there, make sure to try the Skagen toast and the Västerbotten pie.

    Afterwards, you’re within walking distance to a number of the best museums in the whole city, like the Hallwyl Museum. It’s a total gem that most people miss and it’s utterly fascinating. We won’t spoil the surprise but let’s just say it’s what money, cutting edge technology and a collection of over 50,000 “objects” could get you in the late 1800s.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Gamla Stan

    Cannot be missed. Gamla Stan or the Old Town, is where it all began. When Birger Jarl first founded Stockholm, this is where everyone initially settled. There are countless things to do and see in the Old Town, and we would recommend that all visitors get a tour of the area. Why? Well, it’s not enough to just see the beauty of Gamla Stan, you need to know what happened in the streets, hear all the tragedy and comedy that goes with it. Maybe even get insight into why the Swedes and the Danes have until recently hated one another.

    The Old Town is home to The Royal Palace, the Nobel Prize Museum, countless souvenir shops (some that are actually decently priced), the Swedish Royal Guard parading up and down the streets at different times during the day, a statue that grants wishes and much more. When you’ve been run off your feet, and your eyes are spinning in the back of your head, we would head to a few of our favourite places… Places that we feel hesitant to give out (god forbid they become too popular, haha) such as Gamla Stans Fisk and Wirströms Bar. If the latter gets you in the mood, make sure to check out Stampen an 1800s cellar bar turned jazz institution.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Riddarholmen

    Just of Gamla Stan sist the island of Riddarholmen. With its many private palaces, built in the 1600s, you’d think that this is where wealthy Swedes live – think again! Today, the island is home to courts, and governmental offices and not one single person lives on this island. So why come here, you ask? For the view! Evert Taubes Terrace offers a stunning view of the lakeside of Stockholm.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Helgeandsholmen & Strömsborg

    Helgeandsholmen

    Unless someone points it out to you, you’ll most definitely not notice that the Swedish Parliament sits on its very own island – Helgeandsholmen. Nor will you see that they are not the only ones to reside on the island. In the 1970s, when the government was looking to build a garage for the many members of parliament, they found parts of the old town wall. As a result, the island is also home to the Medieval Museum of Stockholm.

    Strömsborg

    The smallest of the 14 islands that Stockholm is built upon. Perhaps not worth a visit in itself, but worth knowing about should you happen to pass by.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Djurgården

    You should feel very lucky you’ve been born now and not 300 years ago. If you had been, then there would be no way for you to enjoy Djurgården (the animal garden) for it was strictly prohibited for the general public to enter. Instead, it was reserved and preserved as a private getaway for the Royal Family and those closest to them. In 1995 it became the world’s first National City Park, and it actually stretches much further than first meets the eye, all the way up the North-Eastern border to Ulriksdal, making it one of the biggest urban parks in the world. The portion that most visitors visit is located in the heart of the city.

    The island is littered with beautiful old palaces that have now been sold to private owners or serve as embassies. In more recent times the island has come to contain a majority of the cities very best museums, including the outdoor cultural museum Skansen and the most popular tourist attraction in all of Stockholm – The Vasa Museum. Astoundingly a near perfectly preserved warship from the1600s, the Vasa Ship is not to be missed under any circumstances. It’s also a wonderful place to bring the kids because this is the location of the happiest place in all of Stockholm, Gröna Lund. A turn of the century theme park that has the perfect mix of modern and old fashioned rides.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Beckholmen

    Just off Djurgården lies the small island of Beckholmen. After years and years of serving the city’s shipping industry, the island is today regarded as a historical monument of national interest, mostly famous for being the location where the Vasa Ship was kept as she was salvaged in the mid-1900s.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Södermalm

    Södermalm (the South Island) should almost be split into more pieces but for the sake of brevity, let’s just keep going. It’s the largest of all the islands that make up Stockholm, and for the majority of Stockholm’s existence, it has been the home of the poor and the working class. Not anymore! Today the hipsters have well and truly transformed Södermalm into the trendy place to live, work and play. You’ll want to be outside and walking to experience Södermalm at its best, walk up and down the pedestrian street, Götgatan. On either side of the street, there’ll be shops enough to satisfy any clothing need.

    Popping down the smaller streets connected to Götgatan will yield gold in the form of wonderful little bakeries, cafes and bars (Including the Willy Wonka of beer in Stockholm, Omnipollo). But this is only the beginning, this is only the gateway of Södermalm. Follow the streams of people, shops, sights and smells. No doubt they will lead you in the direction, SOFO (South of Folkungagatan). This is an enclave of trendy vintage stores, arts and crafts, restaurants, cafe bars, book stores, music and much more – all culminating to the centre point of the area, Nytorget. There’s too much to see, do and eat for just one adventure in Södermalm. This is a great place to start.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Långholmen

    Possibly one of the few places on the planet that has been improved with the invasion of human beings, Långholmen was transformed from a somewhat barren rock into what it is today a beautifully lush and slightly exotic green spot on Stockholm’s map. It was transformed, or maybe a better word is terraformed by the only inhabitants of the island in the 1800s, Stockholm’s prison population. The prisoners covered the island in mud and then planted all the flora that exists today. Nowadays, the prisoners are long gone, and the prison itself has been turned into a hotel. This is a great spot to get away to on a lovely summer’s day.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Reimersholme

    Interestingly named after its original owner Anders Riemer a famous magistrate and hatter from the 1800s 1800s. Reimersholme is a small island with a few thousand people living on it in the centre of Stockholm. The island has a long history of making both legal and illegal alcohol which unfortunately can only be remembered through the old giant cognac barrels and distillery that used to be in use. Our recommendation would be to check out the public sauna, which has one of the best locations and views in the city. But make sure you do it the Swedish way, with a dip in the ocean every 10-15 minutes.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Lilla Essingen & Stora Essingen

    Lilla Essingen

    In 1908 it was a hub of industry and the birthplace of one of Sweden’s most famous businesses, Electrolux, until a great fire in 1936 that burnt for four days and reduced most of the structures to ash. The fire forced a change in the island, and it became residential. This remains today, Lilla Essingen is now home to several fabulous beaches and restaurants.

    Stora Essingen

    Stora Essingen is a lovely little island in what is considered Stockholm centre, that was once owned by the Parish. As of late 2019, it’s going through a major facelift to make it more appealing for tourists and residents of the area. The plan is to make a number of walkways around the island to show off its terrific location next to Lake Mälaren.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    2

    Travelling to & from Stockholm

    You’ll want to start to get settled and get exploring as soon as you’ve landed, parked up or docked. However you make your way, let’s get you to your destination:

    By rail

    The hub of all public transportation is Stockholm Central Station. SL, the public transportation company, has commuter trains (Pendeltåg) that travel further outside Stockholm. The trains connect to places like Uppsala and Märsta and are predominantly used by visitors who travel to and from Arlanda airport.

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    Airport – Bromma

    Regarding Bromma airport, the best bet is to take the bus. Going to the airport, you’ll want to jump on the Flygbussarna (to Bromma) arriving/departing from Cityterminalen at T-Centralen (the bus terminal at the Stockholm Central Station). It’s a 20 minute ride. Alternatively, you can order a Taxi for around 350 SEK or an Uber for slightly less.

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    Airport – Arlanda

    Arlanda airport is the main airport of Stockholm. It’s a little further out of the city than Bromma and has a few more options of how to get there. The Arlanda Express will get you between Arlanda airport and Stockholm Central Station in 18 minutes and the slower commuter train with SL’s Arlanda service in 36 minutes. By bus, Flygbussarna travels between the Arlanda bus terminal and Cityterminalen. SL’s bus is the cheapest, but it is not advised as it is a tricky route that has a few changeovers, save yourself the hassle and choose one of the other options! Taxis are available at the airport, though they are more expensive, with an Uber slightly cheaper.

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    Port – Stadsgården

    There are two major ports in Stockholm and one port located approx. one hour outside of Stockholm. You can see the location of all of the quays at the Port of Stockholm website. Located right in the heart of Stockholm, you are only a 30-40 minute walk from Gamla Stan. Public transportation by bus service is regularly available from Londonviadukten to Slussen, which is recommended if you do not wish to walk. Please note! You’ll have to buy a ticket for the bus at the Tourist Information Centre found at the pier. Mainly because of traffic and demand taking a Taxi or an Uber might be a bit tricky as the waiting times may be substantial. However, if your circumstances dictate that you must, book ahead of time. Some cruise ships also offer a Shuttle Service.

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    Port – Frihamnen

    It’s a little too far to walk from here to the city, so the best option is to buy an SL daily pass at the Cruise Terminal, then follow the blue line painted on the ground to the bus shelter. Catch the 76 to Gamla Stan or number 1 to the city centre, from Frihamnen (the Free Port). Buses run approx. every 10 minutes. If you are looking to take a Taxi or an Uber, prepare yourself, as the waiting time might be longer than what you expect. If you’re looking to save time and you must travel by Taxi or Uber, we recommend that you book ahead of time. Some cruise ships also offer a Shuttle Service.

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    Port – Nynäshamn

    It’s quite a way out of the city, so walking is out of the question. You’ll need to first catch the shuttle bus from the port to Nynäshamn station (40 SEK) and then the SL commuter train to Stockholm Central Station (50 SEK). The trains leave approximately once every hour, and the journey will take around 55 minutes. Taking a Taxi or Uber is costly, and perhaps not an option to be put at the top of your list. Make sure to manage your time properly, you don’t want to cut your departure time too thinly when travelling back to Nynäshamn.

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    3

    Travelling within Stockholm

    It makes sense that the capital has the crowning glory of Swedish public transportation. Stockholm’s excellent transport links make it easy to see all this fascinating city has to offer; however, you can choose to get around:

    Public transport

    If you want to travel like a Stockholmer then you have to use public transport, approximately 800,000 people use the system each day which includes trains, buses, trams and boats (see all the pricing options and how to use tickets here). But don’t for one second think you’ll be jammed in like a herring, the Swedes hold these services to a high standard. Of the three metro lines Red, Blue and Green you’ll rarely have to wait longer than a few minutes, and they are rarely delayed. Stockholm has streamlined by creating a single card, an SL card, that covers all these forms of transport. We would recommend getting cards that are active for the duration of your stay, for instance, if it’s three days, then the 72-hour SL card is the way to go. You can buy your SL card from the train station or any third party that displays the SL logo in their shop front, we recommend Pressbyrån (the Swedish 7-Eleven).

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    Walking

    Walking is our favourite way to get around the city for the majority of activities as you can stop when something catches your eye. Stockholms summer might be one of the best in the entire world for walking, not too hot, not too cold, and it’s incredibly safe. Everything in the city is in pretty close proximity even if you’re going from North to South, it’ll take you about an hour to walk but all the sights in between make it worthwhile. Although we recommend any of our walking tours as the perfect accompaniment to any stroll across the city, we would say that on an especially bright and sunny day the Hipstoric Södermalm walking tour is something extra.

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    Bikes

    In the summertime, when the weather is good, riding a bicycle around Stockholm is an absolute joy. If you’ve got plenty planned out to see and do we would highly recommend you hire a few bikes. The city is highly accessible by bike with only one two gentle hills, most of the city centre was smoothed out by Alfred Nobel’s wonderous dynamite. You can hire a bike from Rent-a-bike on Strandsvägen.
 Alternatively, you can hire one from us at OURWAY, or book our Stockholm’s Green Treasures Private Bike Tour that will take you on a ride through some of the cities most beautiful destinations. This option also has the added bonus of coming in to say hello to us, maybe there’s a fresh new spot we can recommend.

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    Scooters

    A plague on the city to some, an essential escape from walking for others. The scooter has become something of a staple in major cities around the world. Although we would recommend a bike over a scooter any day, even we cannot deny the convenience they provide, especially when you just need to zip across a few streets. There’s a number of different companies that provide the service within the city such as VOI and LIME. To use the scooters, simply download the app associated with the company. Instructions are usually provided on the handlebars, be sure to always double-check where you’re going and for oncoming traffic. To be safe stay in the bike lane as much as possible!

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    Taxis

    Although Stockholm is super safe, there are many reports of Taxi drivers fleecing passengers with exuberant fares. Always check to see if it is a registered Taxi before getting into the vehicle. Look for a yellow trim on the top of the windows around the car. Another tip is to agree on the price before entering. Some reliable companies include Top Cab, Taxi Kurir, Sverige Taxi and Taxi Stockholm or ask the hotel reception to book one for you. The average price of a 5km fare is between 85-163 SEK (8-16 USD), depending on what time of day or night the Taxi is taken. Alternatively, take an Uber, Sweden is very technology forward. Most people under the age of 40 would take an Uber over a Taxi. It’s safer, your movements are tracked through the app, and most importantly, you know exactly how much it will cost.).

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    Practical information

    Get in-the-know on how things work in Stockholm.

    Card is king

    The almighty Swedish Krona/SEK (literal translation of Swedish Krona is crown) is the currency you’ll be using once you’re over here. However, unlike other parts of the world, in Sweden, cash is not king. Card is King. Sweden is on track to be the first cashless society in the world (2023). Don’t be surprised if you go to certain shops, bars, etc. and they won’t accept your cash as payment.

    That’s not to say you shouldn’t keep a little on you, it’s always good to have a backup plan if your cards go missing or something of that nature. There’s a number of currency exchange offices around the city that are as reputable as money exchange offices can be but stick to the major companies like Forex and Ria. Our advice is always to only use them as a last resort.

    Check here to see how much your home currency is in Swedish Kroner.

    Weather & Seasons

    Spring

    Winter is over, and although it’s not without charm, the people are relieved to have the sun back. The restaurants are cleaning up the last of the stubborn snow and setting up the outdoor seating. It’s still fresh, but that won’t stop the locals from getting outdoors at any opportunity they can. Dress for cold weather.

    Summer

    There’s a funny phenomenon that happens in Stockholm, people spend a good portion of there winter/spring/autumn enjoying the perfect days and bitterly complaining about the bad days. Then when summer comes, a vast majority leave the country. Which is crazy, because the Swedish summer might be the best summer of any country in the world. There’s light almost 24/7, it’s never too hot, everyone is happy, and you can be outside day and night. Usual attire in the middle of summer, for early and late summer, bring a jumper just in case.

    Weather & Seasons

    Autumn

    Like a magnificent firework, you can see it building to its crescendo before the trees explode with amazing colours before turning bare and getting increasingly cold and rainy. People are starting to move indoors so coming here should be focused on quick spurts of outdoor activities when the weather is good and cosy warm places with delicious food and drink for when the weather is terrible. Dress for cold and wet weather, the afternoons can be unpredictable.

    Winter

    There are two winters. One beautiful, with fresh snow that covers the ground in pure white making the whole city look like a fairytale. The other has old grey snow, that’s almost slush. Winter is a lot like Autumn in how you should tackle it when the weather is good to get outside and do something. Winter sports, outdoor markets, anything like that really. European winters are unforgiving at times, dress for freezing weather and wet snow.

    Health care

    Sweden’s universal health care is famously one of the best in the entire world. So if you’re visiting Sweden or staying for an extended period, don’t worry, you’ll be in the safest of hands.

    If you need to see someone while you are over here, a usual doctor’s appointment will cost around 200-300 SEK (20-30 USD). Booking is recommended; however, most clinics throughout the city provide “Emergency” visits (which is the equivalent of a “Drop-in”). Alternatively, you can go straight to the hospital in which case the average hospital visit is 300-600 SEK (30-60 USD). Even though these prices are fair and the standards are high, it is always recommended you take out travellers insurance, just in case an accident does occur.

    The tap water in Sweden is of excellent quality, so drink away! Be sure to check yourself for ticks if you spend time in nature.

    If you should ever need to call the emergency number, it is 112. It covers all emergency departments including ambulance, fire brigade and police.

    Click here for updated information about healthcare in Sweden.

    Useful information

    Visa

    Generally speaking, you can stay in Sweden for up to 90 days if you are an EU or US citizen.

    However, wherever you are coming from, with migration policy subject to change, you can check here for the latest visa status and requirements to visit Sweden from your home country.

    Tipping culture

    Tipping is not required. The overwhelming majority of hospitality workers in Stockholm are paid well for their work. With that being said, you can certainly make someone’s day by tipping them 10-20% for an outstanding service.

    Voltage and adapters

    You will need a European adaptor and possibly a stepdown transformer if you’re bringing devices from the US.

    Useful phrases

    • Hello = Hej
    • Goodbye = Hejdå
    • Thanks = Tack
    • Cheers! = Skål! (open your mouth to an O and stick your tongue out to get an Oll sound)
    • Pleased to meet you = Trevligt att träffas
    • How are you? = Hur mår du?
    • Good thanks = Bra tack
    • How much does it cost? = Hur mycket kostar det?

    Want to make sure you don’t miss any of the stops? Check out our tours in Stockholm!

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    5

    Stockholm’s top stops

    Gamla Stan (the Old Town)

    The literal birthplace of Stockholm, the rest of the city grew from this point here. There is not a single “modern” building on this island, it is an open vein to the past, and a time we can barely imagine. Each step you take through the Old Town has a story. When you go to Stortorget (the main square), an oasis with beautifully coloured buildings stretching back to the early 1600s will open up before you. In the middle of it all is the magnificent old stock exchange – now the Nobel Prize Museum.

    All the while you’ll never know of the atrocities committed beneath your feet, but you can find out about this and much more with our guides transporting you back in time on our Stockholm Old Town Walk.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    The Vasa Museum

    The Vasa Museum is, without a doubt the most visited attraction in all of Sweden, it is a warship from the 1600s near-perfectly preserved. You do not have to be into old military ships to appreciate the Vasa Museum, you don’t even need to be interested in museums. This is an experience of grandeur and awe! Getting to the museum in the peak holiday season can be overwhelming, as the museum is awash with visitors.

    For this reason, the way to experience the Vasa Museum is with our best selling tour Stockholm Must Sees which takes you through both Old Town and the Vasa Museum. It’s also available as a private option under the name Stockholm’s Old Town & Vasa Museum Private Walking Tour.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Djurgården

    Djurgården is one of the biggest city parks in the world and one of the first national parks in the world. It’s full of old Swedish palaces, the site of several entirely unique attractions and home to the happiest places in all of Stockholm, ABBA the Museum and Gröna Lund. To truly appreciate Stockholm for what it is, you need to feel the duality of the city. The city itself is built on the balance between human progress and nature, and Djurgården is the emerald in the city’s crown.

    There’s no way you could see everything there is to see here in one day, but if we could recommend a tour that everyone should do if they have time and are interested in something a little more fun, our Djurgården by Segway is an absolute gem.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

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    OURWAY’s top stops

    Hallwyl Museum

    Sneak a peek at how 1% of the population in Stockholm lived in 1898. Built to hold the extensive collection of Count and Countess Von Hallwyl it was fitted out with the cutting edge technology of its time including electricity, central heating and bathrooms. A true treasure.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Stockholms Spelmuseum

    Dedicated to kids and adults that never grew up, the Spelmuseum (Museum of Video Games) is an extensive collection of video games out on display and ready to play. The perfect place to bring the kids, or if you’re like us take a trip back down memory lane.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Rörstrandsgatan

    With its many great cafes, restaurants and bars in one spot, the area is excellent for people-watching, any time of day. When you’ve had enough of sitting still, the area offers cute arts and craft shops where you can buy smaller gifts and paintings too. Come here for a more local experience!


    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Reimersholme

    Often missed by visitors, this quiet little island is where the predecessor to Absolut Vodka was once located. However, today there isn’t much evidence of past adventures left. Surrounded by water, come here for a walk past charming architecture and through peaceful green areas. We promise it’s worth it!

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

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    If you thought Sweden was just about herring and IKEA, then think again. Delve into Swedish history and culture with some of the most popular museums in Scandinavia:

    The Vasa Museum

    A 1600s, 64-gun warship that sank on its first expedition just 1300m out to sea. Near perfectly preserved (98% original) after 333 years in the brackish waters that surround Stockholm’s eastern waterways. Surely, 30,000 people giving the museum an average rating of 4.7 on one of the most popular review sites in the industry, can’t be wrong. This is not to be missed!

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    ABBA The Museum

    ABBA might not be touring anymore, but the legend lives on and lives strong in Stockholm. The museum dedicated to the phenomenon still brings people in by the droves. It’s wonderfully interactive with short films and audio guides. You can thank us later!

    Photo credit: Åke E:son Lindman, ABBA The Museum

    Skansen Open-Air Museum

    The Grandfather of all open-air museums dating all the way back to 1891. The museum is a wonderful mix of historical buildings, shops, staff playing out traditional Swedish roles and a zoo with unique Nordic animals. If you come in the summertime make sure you time your visit with Sing-a-long at Skansen for a true slice of Swedishness.

    Photo credit: Maria Johansson, Skansen

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    Most unique museums

    The Stockholm City Hall (Stadshuset)

    When an old mill burnt to the ground, an architectural contest was held to build a new city hall in its place. Ragnar Östberg beat his rivals and what was constructed is considered to be the foremost example of national romanticism in Swedish architecture. Every detail is saturated in Swedish history from the nearly eight million bricks that were produced by craftsmen and women using traditional techniques to the 18 million tiles used for motifs depicting influential Swedes. It’s most famously known in modern times as the location of the banquet for the Nobel Prize Awards on December 10th each year.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Fotografiska

    Opened in 2010 and instantly became one of the most unique places to visit in all of the city. It holds no permanent collections, so the gallery is continuously changing seeing waves of new exhibitions from around the world. The only question that remains is, “How will you see it?” We recommend going there in the evenings, it’s open to 11pm Sunday to Thursday and 1am Friday to Saturday. Fotografiska also has a highly awarded restaurant that will always be in the top restaurants to visit when in Stockholm.

    Photo credit: Christoffer Englund, Fotografiska

    Artipelag

    Another Art Museum! Where the name is a combination of art, activities and archipelago. Located outside of Stockholm, it’s the perfect destination for an all-day adventure. Jump on the ferry in the city, cruise through the stunning archipelago and get off to stretch your legs as you indulge in nature, architecture and art! Hungry? Artipalg serves a mean buffet during the summer months!

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

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    Winter activities

    The days may be darker, it may be a little colder, but that just means there are some exciting activities to get you warm in Stockholm. Wrap up and enjoy:

    Skiing

    When it’s winter in Sweden, there are a few things you can do outside, and one of the most popular is skiing. If you want to be close to the city, a great place to go for cross-country skiing is Hellasgården, about 20 minutes outside of the city. For downhill skiing in the capital head over to Hammarbybacken, it’s about 15 minutes from most places in the city. This is where you’d come if you really had the urge to get some runs in after work or had a little time on the weekend. If you had a little more time, say a whole day, or more then our recommendation would be to get into a car, on a train or bus and head out to the mountains. Stockholm has no shortage of great Ski Towns close to the city. One of our favourites is Romme.

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    Ice-skating

    It’s a contested issue amongst numerous Baltic connected countries as to who invented the Ice-skate. Was it the Finns or the Dutch? All of this is irrelevant because the best city to ice-skate in is Stockholm. If you want to show off your Quadruple Axel in front of the masses, the ice-rink in Kungsträdgården is the perfect location. It often has events like markets around its border. If you’re feeling adventures, you can do långfärdsskridskoåkning (nordic skating) on the frozen bodies of water that surrounds Stockholm. This is a fantastic experience we would highly recommend for someone with a little bit of extra time.

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    Harbour baths & sauna

    Saunas are certainly a big thing in Sweden, for the most part, at least a few members of every family will have a private sauna either in their own house or at their summer home. For those who don’t, there is no shortage of public saunas. One of our favourite saunas is the one at Hellasgården. Here you can try the traditional style fire-heated sauna, and when it gets too hot, you just run outside and take a dip in the frozen lake (there’s a special hole made through the ice every day just for this).

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    Fika

    One of the most important events that happen in Sweden is Fika. It can take place once per day or sometimes more. If you ask the average Swede what it means there’s a good chance, all of the answers will be slightly different, but the most important things will stay the same. It’s time set aside throughout your day, where you stop what you’re doing and have something equivalent to a coffee break (only for goodness sake, never call it that). It’s usually accompanied by coffee or tea, and something sweet, like a Kanelbulle (Cinnamon Roll) which is to the Swedes as the Croissant is to the French. So while you’re here on your busy schedule, be sure to set a little time aside for a Fika, just like the Swedes.

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    10

    Summer activities

    Scandinavian summers may just be the holiday sector’s best-kept secret. Well, we’re happy to SHOUT about it! Long summer days await so enjoy the sunshine with these outdoor and indoor activities in Stockholm.

    Kayaking

    Stockholm is surrounded by water, and it also has one of the best summers in the world (sometimes – it’s obviously so good we can’t stop mentioning it!). If you’re looking for a great alternative to seeing the city a kayaking adventure or stand up paddle boarding venture could be precisely what you’re looking for. We strongly recommend joining a tour if this is your first time, only because there are some dead ends and “no-go zones” in the city as well as the fact that it can be a bit overwhelming with all your possible route choices. If you don’t believe us just look at a birds-eye view of Stockholm on google maps. Our Stockholm Kayak Adventure is absolutely perfect for any skill level and that provides the ideal mix of sights and fun..

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    Swimming: Beaches & baths

    One word. Everywhere. It’s not unusual to see people in the city, run down to a small jetty after having had a picnic and dipping in water, but a few places that really stand out are Långholmsbadet, Hagaparken and Fredhäll. If you have little ones and you’d like a public outdoor pool, look no further than Eriksdalsbadet. There’s also a really good food hall (Teatern) just around the corner from here for post-swim yum, yum!

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    Picknicking

    There are limitless options to picnic around the city of Stockholm, so let’s narrow it down a little. If you want to feel like you’re in the forest and not in the capital then Djurgården is where you’d want to go, it’s the largest park in Stockholm and the world’s first National City Park. For food Humlegården (the Hop Garden) is located on Östermalm, quite close to Östermalm’s Saluhall (the best place to get ingredients for a traditional Swedish picnic). An OURWAY favourite is Vitabergsparken, located on Södermalm, where all the hipsters live. Coming here is equal parts food, nature and people watching. There’s always a game of Kubb or Boule going on, and if you’re really polite, we’re sure they will let you join in.

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    Island hopping in the archipelago

    If you’ve spent a little time amongst the Swedes over the summertime, we have no doubt that you’ll be invited out to one of their summer homes in the archipelago. Picture thousands of islands dotted everywhere and almost all of them decorated with a tiny very Swedish looking wooden houses. But you don’t need to know a Swede to enjoy the archipelago, there is no shortage of boats and ferries to take you out there. Stay for a day or several, some of the larger islands have their own permanent communities. You can picnic here, take a swim, fish or walk around the streets, stop for a coffee at one of the many bakeries or a meal at the quaint little bistros. The archipelago should not be missed. Some notable islands to check out are Sandhamn, Finnhamn, Möja and Grinda. Decide on your preferred location and start planning your trip.

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    Activities for children

    Gröna Lund

    If you’re bringing kids to Stockholm and looking for some fun activities that they will love, Gröna Lund would have to be at the top of the list. It’s a turn of the century theme park with many different rides that you’re likely to only see here. Make sure you try your luck at some of the skill test games as well, you might just find yourself walking home with a child-sized chocolate bar.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Tekniska Museet

    An unsung hero of children’s entertainment in Stockholm. There are permanent exhibitions here that are both fun and educational. New, specialised exhibitions rotate every few months with a variety of themes; a recent one was the history of video games that allowed you to play some of the greatest games of all time. 


    Photo credit: Anna Gerdén, Tekniska Museet

    Junibacken

    Another interactive museum, this time dedicated to Astrid Lindgrens fairy tales (think Pippi Longstocking). Junibacken has genuinely done a fantastic job at making this museum feel as if you’re stepping into the pages of Astrid’s famous books, as well as other writers’ works. This is a great place to visit before or after the Vasa Museum to keep the kids happy.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

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    Parks & green areas

    If it’s summertime, you can rest assured knowing that the locals will be doing one thing and one thing only after work or on the weekends. They will be outside soaking up as much sun as they can get! Usually accompanied by friends, a one-time use grill, a few drinks, some music and a game like Kubb (a must). Here are a couple of our favourite spots:

    Humlegården

    Located in the middle of Östermalm, this park was initially used as a royal garden where they grew fruit, spices and hops. It’s the perfect place to have a stroll and relax until you hear the city calling once again

    Tantolunden

    You’ll notice something strange in a number of the parks in Stockholm, they’re often dotted with lovely tiny little houses with beautiful gardens. These are allotment hut with, given out by the state (we’ll actually you have to queue to get one, and the waiting list is long!) to people who live in the city but don’t have a garden. At Tantolunden you can walk amongst the very best of these gardens, enjoy the park and even play a little frisbee golf if you fancy.

    Rålambshovsparken

    Rålambshovsparken: The Stockholmers would say Rålis, for short. Located on Kungsholmen, this is a popular park for activities during the summer. Come here to see people play soccer, boule, beach volleyball, softball or visit the skate park. The latter is supposedly as popular with hip parents early mornings, as it is with cool kids during the day. The stunning views of Riddarfjärden (Lake Mälaren), the Stockholm City Hall, and Gamla Stan are an added extra as you sit down to enjoy your picnic.

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    Impressive view points!

    There’s really no shortage of Instagram worthy shots around Stockholm, the entire city feels as if it had this in mind. For instance, there are no “real” skyscrapers polluting the skyline (just three to four slightly bigger modern buildings that snuck through in the 70s). To help you on your journey here are some of our favourites:

    Gamla Stan

    Is saturated with beautiful photo opportunities so this is a great place to start. You really can’t go wrong anywhere you look, but if you want to get some clear shots without lots of people, you’re going to have to get here early. At around 9am, it will be swamped.when you visit. If you’re staying on that ship though you get to see your accommodation from a slightly different perspective!

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Skepsholmen

    A 5-10 minute walk from Gamla Stan, Skeppsholmen island will give you the best sea-level views of Gamla Stan and The Royal Palace. Make sure you come here early in the morning or as the sun is setting for the best results. There are also some other brilliant views to take snaps of if you walk around the border of the island.

    Fjällgatan

    For the best panoramic views of the city you should head up to Fjällgatan, which is located to the east on Södermalm about a 15 minute walk from Gamla Stan. If you come in the summer, there will be cruise ships that can add to the view (if you like them) or hinder (if you don’t).

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Monteliusvägen

    Another 15 minute walk from Gamla Stan only this time you head west on Södermalm. This 500m long walking path has a fantastic view of Lake Mälaren, and it has 5% of the visitors compared to almost any of the cities Insta-spots.

    Skinnarviksberget

    A 10 minute walk northeast of Gamla Stan, a rocky hilltop overlooking the city. Perfect for sunrise or sunset.

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    Stockholm’s hidden gems

    Stockholm’s Tunnelbana

    If you’ve got a little extra time on your hands in Stockholm and you feel like you want to have an adventure with minimal effort, then explore Stockholms metro (Tunnelbana). Known as the world’s longest art exhibition, every station has its own unique piece of artwork. There are a few stations that are more impressive than the others, for that reason you should not miss Kungsträdgården and Solna Centrum.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Mäster Mikaels gata

    This charming little street, lined with colourful wooden houses, got its name in 1939, after Mikael Reissuer, an executor of the city in the 1600s. The houses, most of them built in the 1700s, now give the city residents an idea of what housing in Stockholm used to look like.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Nystekt Strömming

    “When in Rome do as the Romans” is the call to adventure for any and all travellers visiting Rome. Nystekt Strömming is that call in Stockholm. Recently moved to Gamla Stan, this Herring stall institution has been selling freshly caught herring crumbed and fried for almost 20 years. If you want to get a taste of what Sweden’s take away food looked like before the waves of hamburgers, Nystekt Strömming is just that.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    
Nordiska Museet (the Nordic Museum)

    Built as an ark to house Sweden’s traditional artefacts as the world became increasingly smaller through the advent of industrialisation in the 1800s. It holds the heart and soul of what made Sweden its own unique culture, from fashion to traditions to jewellery and everything in between. It’s located right next to the Vasa Museum on the island of Djurgården.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

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    Activities outside the city

    Expand your Stockholm horizon with a few suggestions from us, especially if you have a few days to play with:

    Uppsala

    The fourth-largest city in all of Sweden, in the past it was considered the cradle of all Pagan worship in Sweden with a large temple dedicated to the old Norse gods. Long since gone the city is now devoted to learning with Uppsala University being one of the biggest and oldest in the country. Make sure to bring your camera and your walking shoes as the whole city of Uppsala has the feel of Gamla Stan (the Old Town) in Stockholm on a bigger scale. There are a number of small museums to check out and one of Sweden’s oldest and most beautiful cathedrals.
    You can get to Uppsala by SJ (long-distance train), Pendeltåg (commuter train) and Flixbus.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Drottningholm & Drottningholm Palace

    Although it is not the official residence of the Royal Family, Drottningholm Palace is where the current King and Queen live. Built-in the 1600s it served as the summer residence of the Royal Court all the way up the 1900s. Drottningholm is a UNESCO world heritage site mainly thanks to the wonderfully preserved Royal Palace, Chinese Pavilion, theatre and gardens that draw inspiration from Versaille. The area is as stunning on a clear day in the summertime, as it is surrounded by fresh snow in the wintertime.

    How to get here? It will depend on where you are located in the city. Your best bet is to jump on the metro’s Green Line to Brommaplan, hop-off and walk down to the bus terminal (about a one minute walk to the left of the station). This might sound overwhelming, but there will be people flocking at the bus terminal every day so follow them, or use this as an opportunity to test your Swedish. Be sure to check SL for metro and bus numbers before heading out there.

    Have you heard about a ferry to Drottningholm? It departs daily from Stadshuskajen (by the Stockholm City Hall), during the summer months. The scenic cruise along Lake Mälaren takes approx. 50 minutes and is a really nice option on a sunny day! Check Strömma for details.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Gripsholm & Gripsholm Castle

    The perfect little adventure for the day. You’ll want to start by taking a SJ train, followed by a bus to Gripsholm. A short walk from the bus stop will bring you to your treasure, Gripsholm Castle. An absolutely stunning old castle from 1709. Once the primary residence of the Royal Court it has now become a beautifully preserved museum housing several pieces of art, tapestries, armour sets and the infamous “Badly-stuffed Lion”. It’s almost worth the visit just for this!

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Vaxholm

    Often referred to as the capital of the archipelago and the perfect destination for a day trip, Vaxholm is located only an hour from Stockholm. Jump on the ferry and travel through the Stockholm Archipelago to explore this delightful seaside town, where the famous Vaxholm Fortress, built in the 1500s, coexists with fishing huts, small shops, cafés and restaurants.

    The Ferry to Vaxholm departs daily from late April to early November from Strandvägen, berth 14. The scenic cruise through the Stockholm archipelago takes approx. 50 minutes. Check Strömma for details.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Sigtuna

    The first town of the Swedish Kingdom, was founded by the great Viking King Erik the Victorious, around the year 970. Fast forward today, and you can travel back in time to visit medieval churches, ruins, castles and rune stones from the Viking Area. Located by Lake Mälaren, Sigtuna is so quaint and charming that it inspired the Chinese to build a copy of the town as they were renewing the suburbs if Shanghai. If you’re looking to explore the Swedish Countryside, this is a great place to start – don’t forget to bring your camera!
    You can get to Sigtuna by Pendeltåg (commuter train) and bus.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

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    Shopping

    Looking for the perfect gift for someone back home, or are just looking to treat yourself? Amongst typical souvenirs, you’ll find Dala Horses, colourful candy canes and even smoked reindeer meat (not suitable for vegetarians). Whatever you’re looking for, here are a few tips for shopping in Stockholm:

    Popular shopping areas

    Biblioteksgatan

    Swedish for library street and part of Bibliotekstan, located on Norrmalm. The area is the enclave for both Swedish and international luxury brands, including Prada, Gucci, etc. Orbiting around its parameters are some fine places to grab a bite to eat or something to drink after – you’ve burnt a hole in your credit card that is.

    Birger Jarlsgatan

    One of the longest streets in all of Stockholm is named after the founder of Stockholm Birger Jarl. Located within Bibliotekstan, it is home to many international and local labels. Birger Jarlsgatan is the perfect addition to a well-rounded shopping extravaganza.

    Drottninggatan

    An enormous street only open to foot traffic. It’s been called Stockholm’s answer to Oxford Street in London (but honestly it doesn’t quite compare). Drottninggatan offers “a shop til you drop” experience, with all the major European and world brands being located alongside it. There is a select number of local delights as well.

    Department stores

    NK

    Established in 1915 by Josef Sachs with the vision that “the great department store NK was to be a commercial and cultural theatre – a contemporary stage”. His vision remains true, at NK, you will find the finest of brands from fashion to food and everything in between.

    Åhlens

    Sweden’s largest department store. Akin to a more refined version of a high-quality American mall. There are three locations around the city, but we suggest going to Åhlens City, located in the heart of the city centre. Affordable shopping with a local supermarket found on the bottom floor.

    Sturegallerian

    This exclusive mall is famous for being the location of the historic Sturebadet Spa, which opened in 1885 and have served stars like Great Garbo and royalty such as King Oscar II. Today the Spa is surrounded by fashion boutiques, restaurants and cafés.

    Independent brands

    Mini Rodini

    A Swedish children’s clothing brand created by illustrator and artist Cassandra Rhodin. In a short amount of time (it all started in 2006) Mini Rodini has become one of Sweden’s fastest-growing children’s brands, her designs are whimsical childlike imaginations captured and processed into delightful little pieces.

    House of Dagmar

    Founded by three sisters, House of Dagmar draws inspiration from their Grandmother: Dagmar. She was a tailor with an incredible sense of quality and craftsmanship that permeates to this day. This is Swedish women’s fashion at its finest.

    Fjällräven

    Swedish for Arctic Fox, Fjällräven was founded in 1960. The company specializes in mid-range clothing and backpacks with the latter being one of the most iconic styles of backpacks available today. No doubt you have seen a few in your days. This is a Swedish staple not to be missed.

    Swedish interior design

    About

    Scandinavian design is modest, but not by any stretch is it simple. All Swedish design is birthed from a unifying voice that has propelled the Swedes innovation through the ages. Swedish Design is a war with the elements captured and transfigured into art for one’s own home.

    Nisse Strinning is one of many talented Swedes. He was an architect who turned is hand to design, and he is best known for the String bookshelf system which is wildly popular still to this day. There are several areas and stores dedicated to carrying Sweden’s contributions to the world of design, including:

    Designtorget

    Designtorget is the place to go to discover new Swedish and Scandinavian design. They have a very unique vision, one that nurtures the creative spirit. Not only do they sell renowned brands, but they also do something for aspiring designers. They regularly hold competitions where budding young designers can submit their products. If the panel of judges deems their designs to be of applicable standards, they will then incorporate them into the store. Currently, they have four locations throughout Stockholm.

    Swedish interior design (continued)

    Svenskt Tenn

    Located on Östermalm, Svenskt Tenn has been a Stockholm staple ever since its founding in 1924. This store has the exclusive rights to one of Sweden’s most notable designers, Josef Frank. Josef was an Austrian born architect of Jewish heritage that fled the growing Nazi movement in 1933. His prints are in strong rejection to the feelings of that time, they are bright, often of functional forms and best admired in person. They are truly special even to this day. The store only releases two prints per year, retiring the previous year’s prints and keeping them locked in storage for several years afterwards.

    Nordiska Galleriet

    Originally the vision of a farmer’s son in 1912, he saw the potential of a large building in the centre of commerce in Stockholm that would auction art and antiques. On completion of the build, the idea was scrapped and instead a shop selling high-quality furniture and cars was founded. This continued until his sister took over the company and named it what you see today, Nordiska Galleriet. Nowadays it is the ultimate in Stockholm design shops, with an extensive array of high-end interior design from both Sweden and around the globe.

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    Food & drinks

    If we could, we wouldn’t stop talking about the food culture in Sweden, because there is so much to talk about. We could talk about how it differs from age group to age group, eating at home or at restaurants, old traditions and new trends. Too much for one little guide, but maybe this will help. Stockholm, without a shadow of a doubt, has some of the finest mid-range to high-end restaurants in the world.


    Stockholm’s younger generation has also pushed for more plant-based options, so if you are vegetarian or vegan you won’t have any issues, most restaurants offer at least one to two meals tailored to these needs. The only area that it might be lacking slightly in is the cheaper options sometimes widely available in major cities, meaning that the average meal out will cost you at least 200 SEK (20 USD). Unless you’re getting a “Korv med Bröd” (sausage with bread) or falafel, and trust us when we say that both of those things are done really well here.



    You can find a comprehensive list of cafes and restaurants on our website. Here are just some of our favourites

    Cafés – for the best fika

    Rosendals Trädgård

    Located on the island of Djurgården, amongst the greenhouses that grow some of the islands most beautiful plants and flowers. Rosendals Trädgård is a hidden gem. Worth the travel just for the setting. But wait until you’ve tried the pastries.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Bageri Petrus

    Fika is all about the coffee and kanelbulle (cinnamon roll), and this place arguably has the best of both.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Vete-katten

    Most Stockholmers have visited this Stockholm institution. Famed for its baked goods, Vete-Katten offers pastries in a historical setting. If you’re in the city centre and need a rest, have it here!

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Restaurants – Cheap eats

    La Neta

    Mexico is a long way away, but thankfully someone has brought good Mexican to Stockholm. La Neta is a local favourite.

    Photo credit: La Neta

    Flippin Burgers

    The company that started the burger renaissance in Stockholm. Flippin Burgers decided not to franchise so as not to lose the soul of the place. This really might serve one of the best burgers in the world.

    Photo credit: Flippin Burgers

    Günters Korv

    When you come to Stockholm you’ll notice immediately that korv (sausages/hot dogs) is a huge thing. There are hot dog stands everywhere, but Günters stands above the rest. No frills just solid korv.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Restaurants – mid-range

    Pelikan

    For traditional Swedish fare like meatballs at a very reasonable price, we would look no further than Pelikan. This place is an institution and truly one of the best places to eat in the whole city.

    Photo credit: Pelikan

    Meatballs for the People

    Hugely popular restaurant serving, you guessed it, meatballs! It’s fun, it’s always good, and there’s a meatball for everyone here. Even people who don’t eat meat.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Supper

    At Supper, flavours are made to be explored together. A heads-up! If you don’t like to share, this may not be the restaurant for you. South-American inspired, the vibrant atmosphere and various smaller dishes make for something special!

    Photo credit: Supper

    Restaurants – Lyxury & Michelin

    Punk Royale Cafe

    Punk Royale Cafe is a fine dining restaurant with a twist. If you want to be amazed, surprised, and possibly a little uncomfortable, we would come here for a dining experience.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Ekstedt

    This restaurant is Old Sweden. Imagine hard-fought battles with the elements for unique ingredients. Fast forward to today, and these components are expertly utilised and served in a cosy setting. A really wonderful choice for a restaurant experience.

    Photo credit: David Back, Ekstedt

    Frantzen

    A highly recognised and celebrated three Michelin Star restaurant. There are videos all over the internet celebrating what is being done here, check them out!

    Photo credit: Frantzen

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    Bars & nightlife

    Let’s set the scene, the soles of your feet have that special pain that only a day of walking on cobblestones can produce, your fingers are cramped from all the pictures you’ve taken, and your eyeballs are still spinning in your head from all the sights you have visited. You need to unwind, you need a good drink and a nice place to relax for a while. Fear not! Stockholm really knows how to take care of your needs.

    There’s a bar for every want and need, with world-class drinks to match. Alcohol is taken very seriously here, there is a thriving craft beer scene, incredible wine standards and some of the finest spirits and cocktails in all of Europe. But we have to warn you, we party a little differently here. If you come from Australia or the US, you might not know that Europeans don’t really start to “party” until later in the night, so if you’re looking to rub elbows with the locals make sure you understand that it usually kicks off around 9pm and goes to about 3am.

    Omnipollos Hatt

    The perfect place to end an afternoon. Omnipollo is what you get when you take Willy Wonka’s imagination and apply it to beers. We would strongly recommend whatever is the monthly special and the beer Slushie. We know it sounds a little on the nose, but we promise it’s worth the risk.

    Photo credit: Omnipollos Hatt

    Ugglan

    Maybe you’re the type that needs a little entertainment with your relaxation and Ugglan is where you’ll find that. Have you ever wanted to find out who amongst your friends is the best at shuffleboard after a few drinks? Or maybe the best pinball player?

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Mälarpaviljongen

    In the summertime, the best place to be in Stockholm is outside and by the water. Come to Mälarpaviljongen for a magnificent view of the city, and a glass of champagne that we suggest goes brilliantly with the view.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Pharmarium

    Once Stockholms first-ever pharmacy, now one of the best places in the city to get a cocktail. The whole bar is decorated with the original equipment and ingredients used to make people’s prescriptions. Really cool.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Le Hibou (Bank Hotel)

    The newly opened Le Hibou is Parisian inspired, it oozes elegance, and serves up some of the most divine cocktails in all of Stockholm. This bar almost looks too good to have a drink in, to us, it seems like something straight out of a Bond film.

    Photo credit: Bank Hotel

    Fasching

    A famous jazz bar in the heart of Stockholm with everything from upcoming local talent to international stars.

    Photo credit: Miki Anagrius, Fasching

    Stampen

    Is the other famous jazz bar, this one, however, is located in Gamla Stan. Well worth a stop if you’re in the area. A great place to meet people.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Berns

    One of the most stylish clubs you’re ever likely to see, with chandeliers from the 1800s. It attracts some big names too, so don’t be surprised if the weekend you’re in Stockholm, you’ll see someone famous.

    Photo credit: Pax Engström, Berns

    Slakthuset

    Located in the old Slaughterhouse district this is now Stockholms most highly awarded nightclub. Three separate areas are playing different types of music, and in the summertime, they add a roof terrace in for good measure.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Trädgården

    An institution. This place is more it’s own suburb than just a club. Unbelievably popular in the summertime, make sure you come early to beat the lines.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Mosebacketerrassen

    Spectacular views of Stockholm, live music and beer – what more could you want? Mosebackterasseb is a classic beer garden located on Södermalm. On a beautiful summer night, it doesn’t get much better than this!

    Photo credit: David Thunander, Södra Teatern

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    Hotels in Stockholm

    When you’re coming to Stockholm, and you’re looking for a place to stay we want you to remember something if there is a truly bad hotel in the city we haven’t found it. Stockholm is a paragon of excellence in all of the price categories if anything it might be a little too good in some categories (You’ll never seen hostels this nice in another major city).

    There’s a caveat to all this high degree of quality, and that is that Stockholm is famously quite expensive, and the good deals are often snapped up 6-12 months in advance, so do yourself a favour and book far in advance if you can.

    Hotels – on a budget

    Mälardrottningen Hotel

    This ship from 1924 that has been converted into a hotel is moored on lake Mälaren right in the heart of the city. Well worth the modest price tag and arguably has one of the best morning and evening views of the entire city.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Lilla Rådmannen

    Perfectly located in Norrmalm, walking distance to all the major transportation and more importantly plenty of great restaurants. A great option for families.

    Photo credit: Freys Lilla Rådmannen

    Hotels – mid-range

    NOFO hotel

    A hotel that perfectly captures the feeling of Södermalm, it’s absolutely gorgeous and in a very hip area.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Hotel Sven Vintappare

    A 17th century mansion turned hotel located in Gamla Stan. This location is in old town so if you’re looking for a medieval feel with pure luxury look no further.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Scandic No. 53

    Located right in the city centre, a short walk from Stockholm Central Station, it’s close to, everywhere you want to be; shops, attractions and great eateries. Enjoy the charming courtyard or pop down to the neighbouring café Vete-Katten.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Hotels – luxury

    Grand Hotel

    Without a doubt the most famous and luxurious hotel in all of Stockholm. When you come to Stockholm it’s impossible not to be captivated by its elegance both inside and out.

    Photo credit: Andy Liffner, Grand Hotel

    At Six Hotel

    As the website claims “Luxury with a twist”. If you’re into modern Swedish design, then this is your hotel.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Diplomat Hotel

    Want a view with your breakfast? Then this stylish and elegant hotel is the way to go. Situated on Strandvägen, a skip and a jump, from the lush island of Djurgården, and the bustling city centre. Perfect really!

    Photo credit: Fredrik Ottosson, Diplomat Hotel

    19

    Events

    There’s really no shortage of Instagram worthy shots around Stockholm, the entire city feels as if it had this in mind. For instance, there are no “real” skyscrapers polluting the skyline (just three to four slightly bigger modern buildings that snuck through in the 70s). To help you on your journey here are some of our favourites:

    Food and Wine Festival, February

    Wine tasting and food, just what the doctor ordered to get you through the cold.

    Korvfestivalen, March

    A complete necessity for life in Stockholm, the humble korv gets the festival it rightly deserves, a little bit wacky but 100% delicious.

    Parkteatern (Park Theatre), All summer

    Has been running in one form or another since 1942. It operates all around the city in different locations for the whole of summer showcasing everything from music to performing arts.

    Taste of Stockholm, June

    During the first week of June, the downtown park Kungsträdgården is transformed into a culinary sensation as some of the city’s best restaurants, food trucks, bakers and local producers move into showcases locally grown produce, organic food.

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Midsummer, June

    One of the most important days on the Swedish calendar. If you have friends in the country, you should reach out and try to score an invite to a local party in late June. Otherwise, Skansen (located on Djurgården) is the perfect place to experience truly unique Swedishness.

    Stockholm street festival, July/August

    A whacky entertaining street festival located in Kunsträgården. If you like the fringe festival in Edinburgh, this is well worth your time, and it’s FREE 😀

    Stockholm Pride, August

    The Pride Park is located on Östermalm and is open for the duration of Pride week. The biggest event is the Pride Parade which takes place on Saturday. Imagine, a whole week to rejoice together with the LGBT community!

    Photo credit: OURWAY Tours

    Stockholm Culture Festival, August

    Every Stockholmer loves when the culture festival is on, significant portions of the city are closed to traffic and art, music and food spills onto the streets. All the events are free, but the food isn’t.

    Christmas markets, November-December

    One of the best things about winter is all the markets that are put on, the locations change every week so use this guide to find out where, when and what’s on offer.