Stockholm is the capital and the largest city of Sweden and constitutes the most populated urban area in Scandinavia. It is the site of the national Swedish government, the Riksdag (parliament), and the official residence of the Swedish monarch as well as the prime minister. Since 1980, the monarch has resided at Drottningholm Palace outside of Stockholm and uses the Royal Palace of Stockholm as his workplace and official residence. As of 2010, the Stockholm metropolitan area is home to approximately 22% of Sweden’s population. Stockholm is the most populous city in Sweden, with a population of 851,155 in the municipality (2010), 1.37 million in the urban area (2010), and around 2.1 million in the 6,519 km2 (2,517.00 sq mi) metropolitan area (2010).
Founded circa 1250, Stockholm has long been one of Sweden’s cultural, media, political, and economic centers. Its strategic location on 14 islands on the south-central east coast of Sweden at the mouth of Lake Mälaren, by the Stockholm archipelago, has been historically important. Stockholm has been nominated by GaWC as a global city, with a ranking of Alpha-. In The 2008 Global Cities Index, Stockholm ranked 24th in the world, 10th in Europe, and first in Scandinavia. Stockholm is known for its beauty, its buildings and architecture, its abundant clean and open water, and its many parks.
It is sometimes referred to as Venice of the North.
Stockholm is a major international city with great natural beauty, good eateries, fabulous standard hotels, an internationally renowned club and music scene and a vibrant cultural life.
Stockholm, as a city, is over 700 years old and spreads across 14 islands as it faces proudly out to the Baltic Sea. You can get to just about all of Stockholm’s many wondrous sites on foot, a perfect way to see the city. You can also take a boat trip that will give you a different facet of Scandinavia’s largest and probably most beautiful city.
Attractions in Stockholm:
One of Stockholm’s top attractions, Djurgården (English: Game Park) is an island right in the middle of Stockholm, known for its beautiful green spaces, many sights, events, parks, and tourist attractions. The island Djurgarden has more than 10 million (!) visitors each year. The location is perfect for an interesting 2 hour Djurgarden walking tour across Stockholm’s popular island.
Gamla Stan is one of the largest and best preserved medieval city centers in Europe, and one of the foremost attractions in Stockholm. This is where Stockholm was founded in 1252.
The Vasa Museum
The Vasa is the only preserved seventeenth-century ship in the world, and a unique art treasure.
Skansen Open-Air Museum
Skansen consists of the oldest open-air museum in the world and the Stockholm zoo, with a beautiful location on Royal Djurgården and a view over all of Stockholm.
Fotografiska is one of the world’s largest meeting places for contemporary photography. Fotografiska presents four unique major exhibitions and about 20 smaller exhibitions annually.
The City Hall
Stockholm City Hall is one of the country’s leading examples of national romanticism in architecture. The City Hall was designed by the architect Ragnar Östberg, and opened on Midsummer Eve in 1923. The City Hall is built from eight million bricks, and the 106 meter tall tower has the three crowns, which is the Swedish national coat of arms, at its apex. Behind the magnificent facades are offices and session halls for politicians and officials, as well as splendid assembly rooms and unique works of art
Experience one of Europe’s foremost collections of art from the twentieth century to today, featuring works by artists including Picasso, Dali, Derkert and Matisse.
The leading museum of art and design in Sweden, with collections of older paintings and sculptures as well as drawings, graphics, handicrafts and design up to the present day.
Royal National City Park
The world’s first national urban park is a green lung forming an arc more than six miles long, stretching around and through the city.
The park abuts the adjoining forests around the city, ensuring an exceptional wealth of species. You can encounter deer and hares, even foxes and moose, and spot rare birds, butterflies and insects, right inside the city. You can walk for days through the Ekoparken, discovering ever new lovely spots.
Food & drink!
Stockholm is recognised as one of Europe’s most dynamic and exciting gastronomic metropolises.
Regardless of what you prefer to eat, Swedish, international, ethnic or a fusion of all of these. Stockholm’s restaurateurs and chefs are renowned for their culinary creativity, and the restaurant atmosphere are very much part of the total experience.
There are a huge number of good restaurants, bars, cafeterias and cafés, many with an ethnic flavor.
For casual dining, every district in Stockholm has local restaurants that serve a wide range of dishes in various styles and frequently function as local meeting places as well, often with adjoining bars.
Fine dining in Stockholm
At the top of the scale Stockholm has a number of restaurants with a Michelin star, including the well-established F12 and Esperanto, where diners can enjoy modern fusion cuisine, and the chic Lux in the up and coming area of scenic Essinge Island.
Stockholm never sleeps
Nightlife in Stockholm
Most bars and nightclubs are open until around 3 am. All restaurants, bars and nightclubs in Norway are smoke-free indoors but often have a sheltered smoking area outside.
Oslo’s nightlife is anything but boring. Clubs and bars in Oslo are inviting and friendly and DJs from all over the world help keep the action and mood going in the city’s bars and nightclubs.
Blaa is situated in the Grünerlokka district and is popular among people over 25 in Oslo. It is well known for having new and upcoming bands and bringing in different popular international DJs at the weekends. The music varies between techno, soul, hiphop, house, electronica, rock and pop. The club is situated in an old factory by the river.
Looking for some great nightlife in Helsinki? Keep in mind that Finns love late nights: Clubs in Helsinki often don’t open before 10 pm and close at 4 am. At most nightclubs, you have to be 20 to get in.
Some of the most popular nightlife locations in Helsinki include The Lux Nightclub. If you’re looking for nightlife with class, go party at the Lux. It’s got five bars and big terraces, along with a suitable dress code, and is more expensive than other nightlife locations in Helsinki.
Ever heard of ice hotels? Well, Helsinki has an ice bar, located at Yliopistonkatu 5! The Arctic Icebar (temperature: -5 C) is a unique nightclub that provides you with gloves upon entering. EUR 10 admission includes a drink.
Looking for the nightlife scene in Sweden? Well, Malmo offers countless bars and clubs in different styles, so you’re sure to find something good. Most clubs stay open until 3 am or 5 am – nightlife starts late here. Slagthuset , which translates to “slaughter house” is Scandinavia’s largest night club with three different dance floors and a party on every weekend. Go bowling at Big Bowl, Malmo’s hangout for bowling, dining, gaming, and even dancing.
Very few cities offer nightlife on a par with Stockholm’s – a scene that really lives, seven nights a week, year in, year out. In this respect, Stockholm has very little competition from anywhere north of Paris and London. The various Stockholm districts abound in meeting places – pubs, cafés and club-style restaurants with different profiles depending on age group and musical preference.
The ‘shopholm’ of Stockholm
Stockholm is known as a leading design center, and design in the broadest sense – both contemporary and traditional – is an important part of the city’s exciting shopping scene.
The City area is home to department stores Nordiska Kompaniet (NK), Åhléns and PUB.
By: Adma Dababneh
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