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  1. #1
    Moderator Squiz's Avatar
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    Things to see and do - Stockholm edition

    So I'll be going to Stockholm for a few days soon, together with my family. We've already got some things planned and I'm really looking forward to seeing the city again after what must have been an eternity. Since I know that we've got quite a few Swedish members in this here community, or just people who know Stockholm pretty well, I was wondering if you could give some advice regarding your favourite places in the city. Because I want to go there and see them! :)

    As I mentioned, we've already got some sights and evening activities planned, but of course there is always more room for a look around the corner, so to say, for one more cup of coffee at that special place, for a visit of the very best Köttbullar restaurant (just guessing wildly here) or a pint of quality beer in your favourite bar.

    Any advice welcome!
    Last edited by Squiz; 03-08-2016 at 09:32 AM.
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  2. #2
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Skalpadda's Avatar
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    Ah, you're going to the Backside of Sweden. It's bound to be horrible, expensive, people in suits walking on escalators, full of pretentious hipsters naming their children Ester and Carl-Philip. Even their sea can't be bothered to make the effort to be properly salty. Don't go.

    With that out of the way, I'm from the west coast (the Best Coast, obviously) and have mostly managed to avoid Stockholm, so I'm pretty useless when it comes to specifics. I think Fanbouy here on the forums is from Stockholm, so maybe send him a PM if he doesn't spot this thread?

    General tips:

    Get a "Travelcard" from SL that covers the duration of your stay so you can use the subways and busses as much as you want while you're there.

    It's possible to rent bicycles as an alternative way to get around town.


    Stuff (some of wot I've just heard is good and haven't seen myself so can't vouch for):

    The Vasa museum, if you want to see an old ship that's the very definition of pride and hubris being overcome by reality and basic physics.

    Gamla stan (the Old Town), if you like yourself some wandering around and looking at old architecture.

    Skansen, some historic stuff and a lot of animals. Worth it if you're bringing kids or want to see some moose and wolves and other wild animals.

    Historiska museet (History Museum), good exhibitions about Scandinavian history (Vikings and such). Free admission.

    Moderna museet (Museum of Modern Art), pretty much what it says on the tin. Free admission, except for some specific exhibitions.

    Naturhistoriska riksmuseet (National Museum of Natural History), not a patch on the bigger NHMs in the world, but they have fun exhibitions and admission is free.

    Taking a trip through the archipelago should be nice if the weather isn't awful. If there's one thing Sweden has in its favour it's easy access to pleasant nature, so if that's your type of thing, take advantage.


    The best köttbullar are, of course, the ones your mum makes.

    Also make sure to have regular "fika" with kaffe och kanelbullar while you're here. It's mandatory! :)

  3. #3
    Moderator Squiz's Avatar
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    Many thanks for your reply, much appreciated! It's unfortunately too late, I'm in your capital, eating your cinnamon rolls. Sending PMs would probably have been the most direct solution to my issue, but I figured it would be more fun to collect replies here in one spot. After all, might be that others are going to Sweden too.

    So, as for my current situation, our hotel is located in Södermalm, which I understand is a "hip" part of town. Indeed I've seen many fit looking, well dressed, blond people here, some of which might pass as hipsters. Not all of them were unpleasant to look at. There is an abundance of nice little shops in the area as well, so that's nice.

    We aleady went out eating one night at a pretty posh place, the Store Hof. That was mostly due to the fact that it was my father's birthday that night, so he got to decide (and pay the bill, hehe). The food was pretty amazing, both the lamb dish I had (with ratatouille, roasted bread and aioli) as well as the fish my family chose. Stay away from the crème brûlée though, even my own is better.

    Today we took a walk around Gamla Stan, which is as touristy as you would expect from the city's major cluster of official buildings. Still, Riddarholmen provides a very nice view across the bay, even more impressive during sunshine hours. Further on, Strandvägen and Östermalmstorg with more beautiful buildings and of course more wealthy people showing off their stuff (gotta say, that's not so different from most of the place I've been to or lived at).

    Back again to Södermalm we took on the stairway up to the Södertheatren. From the theatre's terrace you have yet another impressive view on the city below, made even more enjoyable by a cool drink in the sunshine.

    On our way back to the hotel we then got waylaid by a bunch of free-roaming rain clouds and therefore had to hurry past the above mentioned shops and cafés. We'll probably pay those another visit tomorrow though. Also, further plans include a visit of the Vasamuseum (best story of a ship sinking I've ever heard, even though the loss of so many lives remains a tragic incident), a boat trip through the archipelago and exploring the area around Östermalm. Your recommendations have been duly note too, I'll suggest visiting another museum in case the weather turns worse and Skansen if the time allows for it.

    Finally, your remark regarding Köttbullar made me want to try my hand at making my own after my return. You don't happen to know a good recipe? :)

    Further feedback to come!
    Last edited by Squiz; 04-08-2016 at 08:05 PM.
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  4. #4
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Skalpadda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Squiz View Post
    best story of a ship sinking I'vw ever heard, even though the loss of so many lives remains a tragic incident
    It was 400 years ago, I think we're allowed to laugh at it now. :)


    Quote Originally Posted by Squiz View Post
    Finally, your remark regarding Köttbullar made me want to try my hand at making my own after my return. You don't happen to know a good recipe? :)
    Well, it's not hard, the basic recipe is as follows: Take some minced meat, add salt, pepper, a diced onion and an egg, mix it all up, roll the "batter" into balls and fry them up until they're cooked through. Serve with taters and a nice creamy sauce, and traditionally you're supposed to have lingonberry jam (or what we call rårörda lingon" (raw-stirred lingonberries)) along with it. Make sure you eat enough to last through the diet of salted herring and turnips the next winter.

  5. #5
    Moderator Squiz's Avatar
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    Gotcha, very similar to the recipe I'm familiar with (minus the cut onions). If my memory serves me right, we still have some lingon-berry jam around.
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  6. #6
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus BillButNotBen's Avatar
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    #27 - Fall for captors.
    #18 - Eat Surströmming.

  7. #7
    Moderator Squiz's Avatar
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    Oh I'll stay away from Surströmming, thank you very much. As interesting as it sounds.

    Yesterday we went on a trip through the archipelago to Vaxholm. Although the weather was a bit cloudy and windy, there was still enough sunshine to make sitting outside enjoyable. If you can look past the whole peninsula being packed with tourists, it's still a lovely place.
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  8. #8
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Skalpadda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Squiz View Post
    Oh I'll stay away from Surströmming, thank you very much. As interesting as it sounds.
    Good decision. It's not the eating that's bad though, it just tastes sort of strong and salty, but the smell is truly horrid. When I was little our dog managed to lap up the foul broth from a can someone had left on the ground at a party and we had to keep him outdoors for two days because his breath smelled of death and he farted pure terror.

    Feel free to try the pickled herring though, it's not to everyone's taste but there are some lovely varieties on offer.

    Quote Originally Posted by Squiz View Post
    If you can look past the whole peninsula being packed with tourists, it's still a lovely place.
    I stayed in Sweden for my holidays this year, but the contrast couldn't be much greater; I had more company from derpy reindeer (for the record, all reindeer are derpy) than other humans.


  9. #9
    Moderator Squiz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skalpadda View Post
    I stayed in Sweden for my holidays this year, but the contrast couldn't be much greater; I had more company from derpy reindeer (for the record, all reindeer are derpy) than other humans.
    To clarify, I was referring to just Vaxholm.

    Today was full of shopping, drinking coffee in the sun and eating Köttbullar (finally!). Will update the thread with pics as soon as I get home. So far, Stockholm/Sweden has been nothing short of an amazing place to visit. Even getting caught in the rain can be fun here and has lead to some nice chatting with the locals.
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  10. #10
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Fanbuoy's Avatar
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    Sorry about my absence, I was in horrible, horrible Denmark. I'm not sure if you're still in Stockholm, but otherwise, this will perhaps aid someone else. Skalpadda is right that I'm from Stockholm (although not originally). However, I should point out that I don't really do stuff, so don't expect my knowledge to be the full extent of it all.

    I'll second most of what Skalpadda said above, especially the nature. If given the opportunity, head outside of Stockholm, perhaps to Tyresö for some forests and coastal stuff (there's a forest called Tyresta, which is quite nice). The archipelago is also an ace choice, but very weather dependent. Skansen is great if you bring kids, and Djurgården in general is very nice.

    I also like Fotografiska, a nice photography museum on Södermalm, although that is naturally dependent on the exhibition currently going (good brunch as well, with a wonderful view). I'll also recommend Mosebacke, a nice outdoor stage for concerts on Söder, with a great view of the city, some great performances and pretty decent food and beer, last time I was there. Furthermore, I've heard some visitors to Stockholm praise saluhallar (indoor marketplaces with fixed stands, basically), especially Östermalm saluhall. Skogskyrkogården (a forest cemetery) is quite beautiful and a great place for a walk with a bit of nature.

    Perhaps go for a swim in Mälaren? There are a few beaches, but I'll recommend the one on Långholmen. You can start off with a brunch in the old prison, followed by a few hours at the beach and an afternoon fika at the café there. (If you're fans of fika, I have plenty more tips for that.) If you prefer bathing from cliffs, there's Fredhälls klippbad on Kungsholmen, which you can follow up with a picnic on the awesome cliffs nearby (which are also a great walk or general hang-out anytime after lunch).

    Regarding meatballs, there's a place called... "Meatballs" on Söder, where you stay. Do note that I haven't tried this place myself and it's probably overpriced, considering its location near Nytorget. I've heard some pretty good things about it though. However, the classic restaurant for meatballs is Tranan, at Odenplan. They're not on the menu unless you're eating in the bar though, so you'll have to ask for them if you're eating in the dining hall (which you want to do). Don't worry, they won't be bothered by you ordering meatballs when they're not on the menu.

    For general Swedish cuisine, there's the old beer halls (don't worry, they're pretty family friendly): Pelikan (Södermalm), Tennstopet (Vasastan) and Kvarnen (Södermalm) (and probably a few more), with a nice old timey feel and generally good food. There's also KB/Konstnärsbaren near Norrmalmstorg with great food, or if you're willing to spend a bit more, there's Gyldene Freden and Tradition. There's a place in Vasastan called Knut, if you want a taste of Norrland (the northern half of Sweden, where no one lives). If you want to try kroppkakor (filled potato dumplings), one of many specialties of my native Småland, there's Nalle och Kroppkakan, in Midsommarkransen (which is a nice neighborhood south of Södermalm (a.k.a. "Söder om Söder")). That's just a few places with a Swedish focus, but there are a tonne of great restaurants of all types in Stockholm.

    If you're wondering anything more specific or have general ponderings, do let me know!

    EDIT: To clarify, I'm using "Söder" and "Södermalm" interchangeably here, they're the same thing.
    Last edited by Fanbuoy; 08-08-2016 at 05:35 PM.

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