Stockholm

“Welcome to Stockholm,” he said. “Don’t come back. And don’t you dare move here.”

We heard this again and again, from friends, and from strangers.

Why? Because while we were there, Stockholm had the most addictively perfect weather. And apparently, we landed for the ONLY 3 perfect days of the whole year when the sky isn’t shitting on you.

If Crete was my favorite, Stockholm was Kyle’s.

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Subway Art, on our self-guided tour of the Blue Line

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You have not lived until you’ve had a cardamom bun:

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Transport between the islands on the archipelago
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Stockholm is an archipelago, a conglomerate of islands. We really enjoyed exploring each island, each which had a very different feel.

Sodermalm

Our “home” island of Sweden’s archipelago

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My favorite island was Sodermalm, where we stayed. It is a very neighborhoody-type island, and complete hipsterland (basically San Francisco). The Hotel STF Zinkensdamm, which provided us with a tiny little sterile unit with fold-down bunk beds felt much like a ship and suited us well for the trip. While perhaps not my favorite sleeping experience, it was private and clean, I could see grass out the window, and it had a lovely communal porch. It was also next to a block of community gardens and if you walked a couple blocks to the nearby seaside park, you could dive off a diving board attached to the small pier.

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Some of the best food we had was also on that island:

  • Nystekt Stromming- Traditional fish sandwich food truck. Phenomenal.img_4252
  • Meatballs for the people: One night we happened out for dinner, and I insisted on a “first” dinner upon passing Meatballs for the People, before second dinner at Nytorget 6. I regret nothing.

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  • Nytorget 6, a fancier restaurant with a classy bar, amazing drinks, a phenomenal traditional blood pudding dish and a fish dish

Blood Pudding with blood mousse, sitting in a vat of fat. It was pretty damn good.

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Shopping:

The Swedes like their caviar. And food that comes in tubes.

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And beautiful displays…

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Gamla Stan

The medieval part and original home to the royal family

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We spent a day visiting Gamla Stan, the medieval old town, where we took the fantastic “Sinister Side of Stockholm’s Old Town” walking tour and learned about the various hideosities of living in a medieval town, of dumping garbage into the streets and a fire plaque one had to purchase from the city and place on the outside wall if they wanted their house saved from a fire.

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If you touch the walls and walk all the way down Sweden’s narrowest street, you can make a wish.

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Norrmalm

Normal island. Boring island.

We jaunted through Norrmalm, where we went to a lovely little milonga and saw Milly!

Norrmalm is too boring for photos.

Djurgarden

A big ridiculous royal garden. And some museums. Royalty left boring building-y Gamlastan to come live amongst the flowers of Djurgarden.

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And we spent an afternoon with Yulijah and her man and went to the Vasa museum. The Vasa boasts an old viking-type ship that was dredged out of the bottom of the bay. It never actually sailed because some overzealous nut decided he needed ALL THE THINGS on it, so it made no haste and tipped over with the first real wind.

We then biked to over to the actual Djurgarden (name of the island AND a garden that dominates most of the island), where we stumbled on an afternoon community garden festival, where people basked in the sun on the grounds of an apple orchard, and in the next field, people picked flowers from labelled rows to create bouquets they could purchase.

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img_4447Notes:

  • Free tour: http://www.stockholmfreetour.com/

 

 

 

 

 

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