What sights worth seeing in Stockholm?
Let’s make a brief overview of the sights of Stockholm, provide their description and photos, and list what to see when you first visit the capital of Sweden. The city is a northern port and will please those tourists who do not feel well in hot countries. Here you can enjoy leisurely walks through the most interesting and secluded places.
To make a plan of excursions, you should decide what is most important to you. After all, in Stockholm you can admire the ancient architecture, learn the history of the Scandinavian peninsula, plunge into the world of scientific discoveries, see the paintings of great artists, walk through botanical gardens and parks, or have fun with the whole family at the playgrounds. If you are interested in guided tours, see the most interesting tours and book a ticket to them on the websites Musement and Weatlas .
This is the historic center of the city. It is here from the first buildings and the fortress, built on the island of Stadsholmen in the XIII century, began the formation of the Swedish capital. All the buildings that can be found in the streets of the old city mostly belong to the XVI-XVII centuries. And only some buildings have survived from earlier times.
Miguel Virkkunen Carvalho / flickr.com
Gamla Stan as an area of modern Stockholm, occupies no more than 36 hectares and on its territory there are many interesting sights that must be seen when you first visit the capital. This street Morten Trotzig, the narrowest in the city, the monument to the Iron Boy, Nobel Museum, the Cathedral and the building of the Noble Assembly.
Vasa Ship Museum.
This is one of the main and most interesting museums in Stockholm. Here as an exhibit is a unique ship. Back in the 17th century it was decided to build it on the orders of Gustav Adolf II. This was done by more than 400 people for two years. This sailing ship was to be the flagship of the Swedish Navy.
Melinda van den Brink / flickr.com
But on her first trip to sea, she capsized on her side and sank. For years they tried to get it out. Over time, it was possible to remove the expensive weapons, guns and ammunition. And only in 1961 it was possible to lift to the surface completely. In 1990 a museum was opened to present to the world the artistic value of one of the greatest examples of shipbuilding of former times.
The Boy Staring at the Moon.
This is an incredibly small and at the same time adorable monument in the world. Its dimensions are only 15 cm in height. It is made of iron and is installed in one of the courtyards of the Old City. The inhabitants have nicknamed him “Olle” and are constantly sewing items of clothing for him. Tourists often leave sweets and coins nearby. It is believed that if you stroke the boy on the head and make a wish, it will come true.
It is especially difficult to find such a landmark in winter, because due to its small size it is completely covered with snow. The author of the composition embodied in the monument his memories of his childhood, when he spent long sleepless nights looking at the moon and dreaming about something.
And yet tourists are more accustomed to seeing the stunning majestic buildings. This is one of them. The history of the building dates back to the Middle Ages, when it was necessary to erect a defensive structure to protect the city and sea territory. It was the site of a military fortress, and eventually a Renaissance-style annex for the royal family.
Håkan Dahlström / flickr.com
The castle was almost completely destroyed in the middle of the 17th century, due to a large fire. The castle acquired its present appearance closer to 1697, when it was rebuilt using the Baroque style. In order to complete it, the royal family had to introduce an additional special tax for city residents.
Today, be sure to visit this building with a guide, because there are so many interesting rooms. The Armory, the Winter Garden, the apartments of the Queen and the King, the Mint, the inner Palace Church, the Throne Room, the Treasury, the library, the various sculptures and paintings, the costumes of famous monarchs, etc.
The symbol of Sweden’s capital is located on the island of Kungsholm and is visible from the pier of Klara Malarstrand. This majestic building was erected in the early twentieth century. Several million red bricks were used to build it.
csw27 / flickr.com
The inside of the building is also worth a tour. And while from the outside it seems rather modest, the decorations of the rooms strike with luxury and originality. For example, the Blue Hall annually holds the Nobel Prize Banquet with its winners. The largest organ is also installed there.
In the Gold Room, the walls are lined with gilded ceramic tiles and a mosaic panel depicting the patroness of Stockholm – the fairy of Lake Malaren. The meeting room is more business-like and often hosts various conferences. But the ceiling is surprising – it depicts an inverted Viking ship drakkar, reminiscent of the war councils of olden times.
There is also a hall for weddings. It is decorated by a talented artist – the youngest son of King Oscar II. The waiting list to get married here is booked up for a year in advance, since almost everyone wants to get married in such a solemn atmosphere.
Another remarkable feature of the building is the tower, which today serves as an observation deck. There are 365 steps leading up to it, and only the middle of the tower can be reached by elevator, then you have to walk on foot.
One of the most beautiful buildings in the city is rightly considered a palace complex called Drottnningholm. It sits on the shore of Lake Mälaren and is surrounded by a stunning Chinese garden. Here locals love to spend time, especially in the summer when everything is fragrant. There’s also the Royal Theater on the grounds.
denisbin / flickr.com
The history of the building begins even before it was built. There used to be the castle of Queen Katerina Jagiellonka and only at the end of the 17th century a modern summer residence for the family of monarchs was erected in its place. It is still in operation today, hosting the most high ranking persons. But in the absence of guests it can be visited by all who wish.
If you do not know what to see in Stockholm in one day, you should definitely pay attention to this one among other important architectural buildings. It was built in the first half of the 20th century by architect Johansson in a neoclassical style with some neo-baroque elements.
Jorge Láscar / flickr.com
The building was originally intended for the people’s deputies and the State Bank. For this purpose two separate wings in different styles were made. But over time it was converted for meetings and the rooms were connected by special passages. Today during the discussion of any state issues everyone can attend the hearing, sitting on the balconies.
The sculptural group installed above the pediment of the facade deserves special attention. It depicts Mother Svea, at whose feet are the figures of Vigilance and Suspense. There are also statues of a priest, a peasant, a townsman and a nobleman, representing all the estates existing in the state. To the left of the group are statues of Gustav I Vasa and Gustav II Adolf.
In addition, during a tour around the Parliament building you can find a lot of paintings on the walls, and in the halls and passages sculptures and other works of art made by masters in different artistic techniques.
Royal Opera House
Since members of the royal family are very fond of art, including opera and ballet, it is impossible to do without a similar building in the Swedish capital. Gustav III used to frequent it, but after he was assassinated in the same building, the opera closed down for years.
Richard Mortel / flickr.com
Over time the authorities decided to demolish the old building, which was a constant reminder of the sad and terrible event, and erected a new one. Its project was taken up by architect Anderberg and he worked on the details for several years during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The new building of the opera is made in the neoclassical style. The interior is highlighted by gilded paintings and snow-white marble.
A great place for those who have 2 days to spare and are vacationing in the Swedish country with the whole family. The attraction is a park for children, where everyone can find a favorite character from the fairy tales of Astrid Lindgren and other Scandinavian authors.
The tour and recreation begins with a small train for the little ones, which will take them through the whole area. Then you can walk through the park and enter Pippi Longstocking’s house, see the family of mummy trolls, see dragons and knights and all kinds of fairy tale characters.
This is a modern sports stadium of Sweden, made in a rather original style. The building is a spherical structure and reaches 85 meters in height. It holds up to 16,000 spectators and in winter when watching hockey – 14,000.
Alexandar Vujadinovic / flickr.com
In addition to the beautiful and original exterior, it is also worth paying attention to the premises inside the sphere. So, on the territory of the complex there are many restaurants, cafes and other facilities for a relaxing holiday. And for those who wish, there is a cable car that takes you to the highest point of the building. From here you can enjoy stunning views of the city and its surroundings. It is not uncommon to propose marriage here, as it turns out quite a romantic setting.
This is a special place where you can not only take an interesting tour, but also do something more inspiring. So, locals are here every day, because there are always some amazing exhibitions, events, concerts, etc. in this area.
Dan Lundberg / flickr.com
There are separate rooms for children where they can read books. There is also an urban theater. Almost every night in Kulturhüst there is an event – workshops, debates, training, presentations.
Separate attention deserves the local subway. On its own, it is unremarkable, taking up to 100 stations. But many of them are originally decorated. Local artists decided, thus, to make the interior of each stop in its own way and slightly diversify the underground passage.
Ed Webster / flickr.com
For example, at the “T-Sentralen” station you can see ornaments of leaves and tree branches. At “University” station, the vaults of the subway are made in the style of a stone cave, which evokes a special feeling. On the Tekniska Högskulan street, scientific themes, laws of nature, physics, etc. prevail.
Grön Lund and Kungströdgården Parks
Worth a visit if you have at least 3 days or more left for walking around the city. So, the first of them is an entertainment area with various attractions. It was founded 130 years ago and gradually added modern and interesting merry-go-rounds.
Dan Lundberg / flickr.com
Children and adults most like to visit the Viking Ship, the Haunted House and the Funhouse, which seems quite unstable. It’s also the place to go for rock concerts or festivals of national importance.
Kungströdgården Park is especially beautiful in the summer and spring, when the trees bloom and give off an incredible fragrance. The area is notable for the fact that it used to be used by the royal servants to grow vegetables and fruits for the dinner table. Today, the park has been transformed into a beautiful recreation area for all comers.
If you want to see as much as possible in a short period of time, it is better to get a map of the city with a brief description of attractions and indicating their location. Then you can create a good itinerary and have a chance to visit all the museums of the Swedish capital.
sbamueller / flickr.com
And there are quite a few of them here:
- The National – located on the island of Blasicholmen. Founded by Gustav III, with over 500,000 exhibits. The building itself, which you can see today, was built a little later, in 1866. There is also an art library.
- Stockholm City Museum – tells the story of the founding and development of the Swedish capital. Among the exhibits are not only paintings and art, but also coins, religious items, products and utensils of ancient everyday life of local residents. In some rooms is partially reconstructed city, depicting life in the XV-XVI centuries.
- Nobel Museum is dedicated to the world famous Swedish scientist after whom the most prestigious prize is named. With money from the foundation, the museum was founded, which has exhibits relating to the great achievements and Nobel himself. It also often hosts debates, discussions, informative and fascinating thematic exhibitions.
- The Museum of Modern Art is similar to any of the other galleries that feature paintings by famous and great painters of the last centuries. But this place is notable for the fact that there are paintings by Picasso, Malevich, Matisse, Giorgio de Chirico, etc. The collection has up to 100 thousand exhibits.
- Tom Titus Museum of Experiments is the most appealing to young people and children. Here they are allowed to do anything, even break exhibits, run, crawl and disassemble individual models. The place itself was conceived not so much as an exhibition, but rather as an institute or laboratory where the development of children’s intelligence is stimulated. By engaging in active games with special exhibits, children learn about the world of technology, science, nature, human anatomy, and so on.
- Skansen has become a household name in Sweden. It can often refer to any museum in the country. In fact, it is the name of a special territory in the open air, where the life, architecture and history of the state is displayed. The collection includes houses brought from remote corners of the country, built in different periods. Entire neighborhoods and farms have been reconstructed here. There are exhibits about the beginning of book printing, production of dishes, glass, etc.
- The AVVA Museum is of interest to those who still remember the music of the 70s and 80s. The famous four-piece band not only authorized the creation of such a hall of fame, but also took an active part in the development of the exposition. Here you can find a collection of music albums, photos from performances, instruments, costumes, and documents.
- Architectural Museum – the most bizarre buildings and monuments are on display here.
- Historical Museum – More oriented for children and presents the whole history in a very visual and simple way, in a way that can be easily understood and remembered.
- Millsgården – another open-air exhibit featuring extraordinary sculptures surrounded by a beautiful garden.
- Museum of Natural History – will be of more interest to teenagers who are already bored with the rides. The curious mind will find here many unique exhibits that reveal the mysteries of the universe.
- Longholmen Prison Museum – founded on the site of the original prison. There is also a hotel, restaurant and conference room.
- Nordic Museum – housed in a magnificent building, which is interesting in itself. The exhibits are an important historical and cultural asset.
Video: Stockholm – the best places.
It is advisable to allocate enough time for walks and tours to have time to see absolutely everything in this amazing city. It mixes science and fairy tale, nature and architecture, history and modernity. And if you have a desire to conquer the neighborhood, it is worth to take a ferry and enjoy a boat trip.
What to do not to burn in the sun or if you have already burned. Last minute tours from Travelata.
Stockholm’s best sights with photos and descriptions
Stockholm is one of the most popular tourist cities in Europe. In recent years, tourists from the former Soviet Union, satiated with resorts of Egypt and Turkey, are increasingly turning their attention to the Scandinavian countries and begin their acquaintance with the peninsula is most often with Stockholm. Once here, you understand why the Swedes are consistently ranked among the ten happiest nations in the world.
The main sights of Stockholm are
Royal Palace in Stockholm
The history of Stockholm began on the site of the Royal Palace. In the XII-XIII centuries, a castle was built to protect water trade routes, which in time turned into a Renaissance palace, which became the residence of Swedish kings and the seat of the government. In 1697, a huge fire broke out in the palace, which almost burned down the entire royal family alive.
Did you know? The fire at the Royal Palace broke out in the chambers of the fire marshal, who was charged with preventing fires.
Due to economic difficulties in the kingdom, rebuilding the palace was delayed. A special tax was even imposed to raise funds for this purpose. The royal family could move into the palace only in 1754, and the complete reconstruction was completed in six years.
- Of the more than 600 rooms and halls of the Royal Palace, of greatest interest to tourists is the Armory, with weapons and armor, as well as the uniforms, everyday and holiday attire of Swedish monarchs and their families.
- Also go to the Treasury to see the jewelry and royal regalia. In one of the rooms, you can admire the Italian sculptures that King Gustav III acquired during his visit to this country.
- You can also see examples of Swedish art and artifacts connected with the history of the Royal Palace and medieval Sweden.
Important: During ceremonies related to official dates and visits of dignitaries, the Royal Palace is closed to the public.
Stockholm City Hall
Of the things you must see in Stockholm in one day, it is worth highlighting the Stockholm City Hall. This place is famous for hosting the Nobel Banquet . The banquet hall itself impresses by its harmonious beauty and grandeur of the interior design. To feel yourself a part of the action, watch a video of one of the Nobel banquets beforehand. Although the guide will tell you everything so colorfully that the imagination itself will draw these pictures.
In the Municipality you can also admire the beautiful wedding hall and the stunning views of Stockholm. Around the building itself there is a beautiful park with comfortable avenues, sculptures, fountains and benches, where you can relax admiring the beauty that surrounds you. For connoisseurs of architecture we can recommend this cultural program:
- Experience the hospitality of the monks at Wadstone Abbey . The Gothic cathedral from the 14th century, located on the island of Lake Wettern, will delight you with its large collection of medieval works of art. You can also stay here overnight in a guesthouse;
- You can admire the rich decoration of the Riddarholmen Church. The facade of the building, whose tall spire can be seen from almost every corner of Stockholm, is also noteworthy. This church is also the burial place of Swedish kings;
- admire the equestrian statue of St. George in St. Nicholas Church. Be sure to stop here for souvenirs and, if possible, attend an organ concert;
- Admire the majesty of St. Gertrude’s Church. It’s a German church in Gamla Stan with a tall spire, rich interior and beautiful stained glass windows.
Where to go in Stockholm: Museums and art galleries
Stockholm has a rich and interesting history, being also one of the cultural centers of Europe, so for museum lovers this city is always attractive. It is difficult to go around all the Stockholm art galleries and museums, of which there are more than seventy in the Swedish capital, even in a month.
Therefore dwell on the most popular of them:
- Stockholm City Museum . A good museum, lively and interesting story about the history of the city. Natural figures of local residents of different eras depict scenes from medieval life of Stockholm residents;
- National Museum of Sweden . The largest art gallery in Sweden, where collected about 16 thousand works of high art and more than 30 thousand – of folk art and crafts. You can see the works of Renoir, Rembrandt, Degas, Goya and other great masters. Unfortunately, like the City Museum, the art gallery is under renovation until 2018, so the art collection can be seen at the Academy of Art;
- Nobel Museum . A relatively young (2001) museum dedicated to the achievements of Nobel Prize winners. This place will be of interest to tourists of all ages. Interesting and informative films are broadcast here about the achievements of the world’s most prominent figures of the 20th and 21st centuries;
- Historical Museum . This is probably the most interesting museum attraction for children in Stockholm. In the Golden Room, your child can dress up in a naturally made Viking costume and admire himself in the mirror. And you, of course, take unforgettable pictures. Besides that, there are a lot of interesting historical artifacts, including gold jewelry of the Vikings, including skillfully made necklace of V century, which can be without pathos call a real masterpiece. When you see it, you’ll understand why;
- Livrustkammaren . The Royal Treasury, located in the basement of the Royal Palace. Some of the decorations and symbols of power are still used today in royal ceremonies;
- Vasa Museum . The museum is built around a perfectly preserved 17th century sailing ship. Even if you’re not a fan of history or adventure novels, you’ll be struck by the beauty and grandeur of this ship;
- Stockholm Natural History Museum . Be sure to go to this museum with your children. Films about the structure of the earth, processes in the human body, space and other spheres are shown on a 23-meter IMAX projection cinema screen!
Stockholm City Museum
Stockholm’s nature and parks
Like any Scandinavian city, Stockholm pays great attention to its parks, which are in harmony with the urban landscape.
Stockholm’s parks are a combination of scenic nature, sculptures, fountains, rides, cozy cafes and all the other attributes of a pleasant holiday. In the summer lawns sparkle with color, and in the cold season trees and park architecture create an atmosphere of a sad but mysterious Scandinavian fairy tale. Therefore, the parks are something to see and go to in Stockholm in winter. Among the most picturesque parks and squares are the following:
- Djurgarden . A huge park in the city center with rides, an aquarium, a retro tramway, cafes and a pier of pleasure boats,
- Prins Eugens Waldemarsudde . Prince Eugen’s palace with an art gallery and a wonderful aristocratic park;
- Rosendals Garden . A great orchard, where you can not only have a delicious lunch in the café, which cooks with local products, but also buy seeds of flowers and fruit trees you like. It is best to go in the warm season;
- Hagaparken . A lovely park in the center of town with beautiful architecture, an aquarium and a butterfly house. Excellent place for picnics;
- Kungstradgarden Park . A great park with lovely flowerbeds and plenty of blooming sakura trees. A place for various festivals and celebrations, the most spectacular and fun of which are the Christmas festivals.
Popular places and views of Stockholm
Not visiting this area of Stockholm would be like not visiting the Swedish capital. Gamla Stan is located on the island of Stadsholmen and covers about 36 hectares. It is located here the most remarkable sights of Stockholm, such as the Royal Palace, Nobel Museum, St. Nicholas Church and others.
But tourists come here primarily for the unique atmosphere, created by the archaic architecture, cozy cafes on the paved streets and bright colors, which painted the facades of houses. It’s bustling with tourists during the day, so if you want to get into the spirit of Stockholm, take a late afternoon or morning stroll. If you’re passing through the Swedish capital, go straight to Gamla Stan. The sights of the old city are the most interesting things to see in Stockholm in one day.
A forty-minute walk north on Rorstrandsgatan 15 is one of Stockholm’s best cafes, Xoko . This bakery makes amazing desserts and pastries. Residents of the city make out here individual orders for sweets for family celebrations. Tourists, in addition to a varied dessert menu, are attracted here by the hot pizza and traditional Swedish cuisine. There are seasonal restrictions on the menu, because everything is prepared from natural products. But even in winter you will have plenty to choose from. No less noteworthy is the cozy interior in the French style.
To the south of Gamla Stan is Stockholm’s largest island, Södermalm. Here is the 38-meter-high viewing platform Katarinahissen, which offers a stunning view of central Stockholm Also, be sure to visit the open-air park-museum Millesgården . Tourists come here to see the original works of the architects Carl and Olga Milles family, marvelous fountains, relax on a bench and just stroll through the picturesque alleys. There is also an art gallery with the same name.
What to see in 1 day
On the first day, for the convenience of the itinerary, go straight to City Hall and then go to Gamla Stan, where you can visit these places in succession:
After having lunch at one of the cafes, go across the bridge to Helgeandsholmen Island , where the Medieval Museum and the Swedish Parliament Riksdag are located . The Royal Opera is a three minute walk from the museum, and there’s a cozy café nearby.
What to see in 2 days
For the second day, head to the island of Djurgården, where the attractions are compactly located:
- Stockholm Circus;
- Grena Lund Tivoli amusement park;
- Prins Eugens Waldemarsudde Park;
- Rosendals Garden Park;
- Djurgarden park.
You are unlikely to have time to visit all the attractions, so you will have to choose from them the most interesting places for your family.
What to see in 3 days
On the third day tourists usually visit the sights of the island of Djurgården, to which there was not enough time on the previous days. But we recommend that you do not forget about these places, located nearby:
- City Museum and the Natural History Museum of Stockholm;
- Katarinahissen Lookout;
- Kungstradgarden Park;
- Hoko Café.
Head & Tails – Stockholm
Zhanna Badoeva was not afraid and climbed on the roof to find the very house of Karlsson. And, as you know, he who seeks, he always finds. Children’s stories come to life on the streets and rooftops of Stockholm.
What to see in Stockholm with children
Unibacken. The Astrid Lindgren Museum, located on the island of Djurgården, is a must-see in Stockholm. It is a place of interest not only to children, but also to adults who grew up with the stories of this, undoubtedly, great Swedish writer. Here you will meet your old acquaintances – Pippi Longstocking, Karlsson, and heroes of fairy tales of other authors (for example, mummy-trolls of the Finnish writer Tuve Jansson).
Did you know? Swedes, in contrast to the inhabitants of the former Soviet Union, do not consider Carlson a very positive character.
- The introduction to this wonderful park-museum begins with the house of Astrid Lindgren and the monument to the writer.
- To get around this huge entertainment complex, use the magic train .
- The Fairy Tale Square is home to the main characters of the fairy tales, where you can not only look around the exhibits, but also try on things, such as Pippi.
Tours are available in twelve languages, including Russian. In general, it is a very positive and interesting place for tourists of all ages.
- Skansen . This is a fascinating museum of culture and folk crafts, where you can watch the work of blacksmiths, glassblowers, bakers, learn about Swedish folklore and national traditions, learn the history of national costume. Children will be interested in the zoo with deer, moose, bears, squirrels and other animals that inhabit the Scandinavian expanses.
- Tom Titus Experiment . A very interesting interactive museum where children and adults can learn about new technological advances in a popular form, take part in scientific experiments and laboratory experiments, as well as engage in active sports.
- Stockholm Museum of Music and Theater . More than 6,000 different musical instruments of different times and peoples are on display here, many of which you can play.
- Grena Lund Tivoli Luna Park . A fascinating amusement park with activities for children of all ages. This is one of the attractions of Stockholm, where you can have fun in both summer and winter.
And finally I would like to recommend two more iconic places for Stockholm.