Overview

Introduction

Spread over 14 islands and built around one of the best-preserved medieval city centres in the world, Stockholm is widely considered one of the most romantic cities in Europe.

With over 70 museums, an archipelago of over 30,000 islands and a wealth of parkland it is also one of the most varied and interesting cities to visit.

At the heart of the city is Gamla Stan, the site of the earliest settlement in Stockholm. Dating from the 13th century, this area is a delight to explore on foot, with medieval streets, picturesque squares and narrow alleyways visible at every turn. Gamla Stan is also home to a vibrant nightlife, where locals and tourists come to sample Swedish and international cuisine, watch the world go by from one of the numerous pavement cafes and stroll around the endless variety of shops.

Stockholm has expanded from its original borders, and today traditional and contemporary architecture and design happily merge to create a most fascinating landscape. Stockholm is one of the most crowded museum-cities in the world. The most renowned is the National Museum, home to Sweden’s largest collection of art. One of our personal favourites is the Vasa Museum which details the story of the ‘Vasa’ ship which sank in the harbour of Stockholm in 1628 and includes the excavated ship itself – highly recommended! Skansen open-air museum is also worthy of a visit. The musuem displays some 160, 18th century Swedish buildings including farmsteads, mills, shops and a wooden church.

As if this wasn’t enough Stockholm is a natural city and has many green areas and waterways. To the north, south, east and west are lakes, the Baltic Sea and forests. Even the city centre is criss-crossed by vast open water and wonderful parks and walking areas, filled with historical sights and attractions. Venturing out of the city to the south and west, you will find yourself in the heart of the Swedish countryside.

The region of Sörmland, is home to roughly 400 manor houses and castles, open fields, rolling hills, hundreds of islands and waterways and the 1000km Sörmlandsleden walking trail. From the nature reserve at Stendörren, to the 14th century Nyköping Castle and the picturesque town of Mariefred – home to Gripsholm Castle, visitors will be immersed in nature and history. This area provides a winning combination when partnered with the capital.

To the west of the city, and bordering Lake Mälaren to the south, is the region of Västmanland. This is a destination for nature lovers with a spectacular natural beauty, deep forests and affording a wealth of hiking, wild swimming, canoeing and wildlife encounters. Ornithologists would be in their element here with Whooper Swans and the Arctic Tern passing-by during their Spring migration; and the Black Tern, Curlew and Corncrake nesting in the Svartådalen district. Manor houses, a fascinating industrial heritage and the town of Västerås complete the scene.

For further inspiration on a trip to Stockholm, read our blog.

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Stendorren Nature Reserve

Stendörren Nature Reserve


For nature lovers a visit to the Stendörren nature reserve, situated between Trosa and Nyköping, is highly recommended. Via suspension bridges you can explore a number of small bare rock islands on the Sörmland archipelago, enjoy the tranquillity of the islands and the variety of flora and fauna on show or take a picnic and watch the world go by.

Stockholm Museums

The city with its narrow cobbled streets, vast parkland, and scenic waterfront promenades is best explored on foot.

Commence your tour of the Swedish capital in Gamla Stan, the historic centre of the city and allow yourself to get wonderfully lost in the maze of medieval lanes.

Continue your tour by hiring a city bike or by taking a leisurely walk or boat ride to the island of Djurgården, home to some of the city’s most popular attractions and museums. One of our personal favourites is the Vasa Museum which houses a fascinating exhibition and the Vasa warship; the world's only surviving 17th century ship. With 95% of the ship's original parts preserved and ornamented with hundreds of carved sculptures the Vasa is a unique art treasure. This is a wonderful museum and in our opinion a must for any visitor to the city.

Close to the Vasa Museum is Skansen, the world's oldest open-air museum and comprising of some 160 historic buildings including grass-roofed cottages, shops, a school house and a windmill. Skansen is the most popular visitor attraction in Sweden – recommended.

In 2013 the long awaited ABBA museum opened in Stockholm. This highly interactive attraction invites you to sing and dance your way through the exhibitions, which are filled with original costumes and memorabilia from members Björn Ulvaeus, Benny Andersson, Agnetha Fältskog and Anni-Frid Lyngstad.

Before returning to Norrmalm, Stockholm’s ‘city centre’, take a detour to Kaknästornet communications tower from which there is a magnificent view over the city. On a clear day you can see for miles around.

Other sights worthy of a visit include: The City Hall, The Nobel Museum, The National Museum, The Fotografiska Museum and the Modern Art Museum which exhibits works by luminaries like Dali and Picasso.

To get a true feel of life in Stockholm, we would recommend a visit to the residential island of Södermalm with its trendy restaurants, café bars, boutiques, fashion shops and art galleries. Södermalm is also the setting for the Millennium trilogy of books written by Stieg Larsson, now a hollywood film starring Daniel Craig and Rooney Mara - although the Swedish version, in our opinion, is better. A Millennium Tour is available from the tourist office for visitors wishing to follow in the footsteps of Mikael Blomqvist and Lisbeth Salander.

Stockholm Food Markets

Stockholm has a wide choice of eateries from local cafes and food markets to Michelin starred restaurants, and here it is the independent establishments that dominate.

Tucked behind the exclusive Strandvagen and the trendy Stureplan, you will find the Östermalm Saluhall (food hall). This bustling food market sells seasonal produce.

There is an abundance of fresh fish, meat and poultry as well as cheeses and savoury and sweet delights. Popular with tourists and locals alike the Saluhall is a wonderful place for a relaxed lunch, for a spot of souvenir shopping or just for sampling the local delicacies.

Sormlands Manor Houses

Sörmland's Manor Houses

Sörmland is famed for its array of manor houses and castles, many of which are open to visit. Some of our favourites are the 17th century Nynäs, 17th century Skokloster Castle 18th century Tullgarn Palace and the red-brick Royal Castle of Gripsholm, home to the largest portrait collection in Sweden.

Notes: The months of July and August are the height of the tourist season in Sweden. Please note that outside of these months, many attractions are closed or are open for reduced hours. If you have a specific site or museum that you would like to visit, please contact us to check that it will be open during your visit.

Royal Palaces in Stockholm

Rub shoulders with royalty at the Royal Palace, the official residence of the King and Queen of Sweden and his family. Open for visitors throughout the year, a tour of the palace will guide you through the banqueting rooms, guest apartments, the Hall of State, the Royal Chapel and the treasury.

Alternatively board a cruise boat in the heart of Stockholm and sail to Drottningholm Slott, the private residence of the Royal Family (open all year excluding 16-30Dec. Cruise available May-Sept). Located on the island of Lovön in Lake Mälaren, the palace, its 16th century theatre, Chinese pavilion and gardens have been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Notes: The months of July and August are the height of the tourist season in Sweden. Please note that outside of these months, many attractions are closed or are open for reduced hours. If you have a specific site or museum that you would like to visit, please contact us to check that it will be open during your visit.

Stockholm, Sweden

Stockholm the affordable city break

Read more about Stockholm city breaks

Stockholm Pass

Sunvil includes a Stockholm Pass with all stays of 2 nights or longer in the Swedish capital. The Stockholm Pass provides complimentary admission to more than 60 attractions, museums and sightseeing tours as well as unlimited travel with Hop-On Hop-Off buses and boats. 

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Cristiana da Silva
Cristiana da Silva
Best time to go
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Time Difference

GMT + 1 hour

Currency

Swedish Krona

Language

Swedish

Average flight times

2 hours 25 minutes to Stockholm

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    Average rainfall

Note: Map is for guidance purposes only.

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Cristiana da Silva
Cristiana da Silva

With its lush valleys, vine-clad hillsides, historical towns and a National Park, it is easy to understand what Cristiana is so passionate about northern Portugal, her ancestral home. Fluent in Portuguese and conversant in Spanish, she has been able to scratch under the surface of these countries on her travels and loves nothing more than sharing her findings with our guests. Recently Cristiana has returned from Swedish Lapland, a destination which was on her own bucket list and which did not fail to impress.

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We promise that a member of our specialist reservation teams will reply personally to your holiday enquiry before 5.30pm if received before 12.00pm (Monday to Friday). Enquiries received after 12.00pm will be replied to within 24-hours (excluding Sundays).

If your enquiry is of an urgent nature, please telephone our dedicated reservation teams on the numbers listed below.

Our lines are open from 9.00am to 5.30pm Monday-Friday and from 9.30am to 4.30pm Saturday.

  • Greece: 020 8758 4758
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