Stockholm for First-Timers

Anyone who has visited Stockholm, the capital of Sweden, will tell you it is an absolutely beautiful city. This bustling 700-year-old metropolis facing the Baltic Sea is spread out over an archipelago of 14 islands, and is a fascinating mixture of old and new. The old city center, called the Gamla Stan, is an amalgam of imposing historic buildings set amid a web of cobbled lanes that have a distinct medieval feel to them, while just to the north is the sharply contrasting Norrmalm district, with sleek and modern shopping malls, departments stores and glass and steel office buildings.

Four Must-See Features for First Time Visitors

1. Gamla Stan
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Any tour of Stockholm simply must start with the Gamla Stan, the old city center that grew up around the original settlement. Stroll the ancient cobbles and discover any number small shops, restaurants, art galleries, museums and just plain interesting sights. The Royal Palace crowns the district, and is open every day for guided tours where the interested traveler can learn about the history of the royal family.
2. The Vasa Museum

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The Vasa Museet is one of the most popular attractions in Stockholm. Located within walking distance of the Gamla Stan city center on the green island of Djurgården, the Vasa Museet houses the 17th century warship commissioned by King Gustavus Adolphus. As the story goes, the king wanted the best warship in the world, so he kept adding features to his ship as it was being built over the objections of his shipbuilders. As a result, the ship promptly sank on its maiden voyage in 1628. For 333 years the ship lay at the bottom of the Baltic Sea, where the frigid waters preserved it in near pristine condition.


3. Djurgården

While on DjurgÃ¥rden, be sure to check out some other attractions the green island has to offer, including the Skansen open-air museum, which features living history and cultural displays, shops, and even a zoo and aquarium. Also located on DjurgÃ¥rden is The Royal National City Park, the world’s oldest planned urban park. The park is a 6-mile stretch of green forests dotted with numerous small museums, hotels, sports fields and an amusement park.

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4. Boat Tours

Probably the best way to take in the entirety of Stockholm is to take one or more of the various boat tours offered. Some boat tours concentrate on the historic districts of central Stockholm, while others offer a good overview of the entire archipelago. There is much to see and do in Stockholm, and a guided water tour is one of the best ways to plan out the rest of a first-time Stockholm adventure.

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About the author
Heather Johnson writes for the leading honeymoon planning website–come check out the best honeymoon destinations today!

3 Comment to “Stockholm for First-Timers”

  1. Am so keen on getting to Stockholm and don’t know why I didn’t get up there while I was living in Germany. Perhaps on our next trip back to Europe – fingers crossed. Great tips, thank you!

  2. Amanda, I’m with you on this one, I can;t wait to visit Stockholm!

  3. Leah says:

    Wow the level of detail on the warship is incredible! You would never think it was sat at the bottom of the Baltic sea for 333 years, I wish I could stay that well preserved 🙂

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