Last month I was lucky enough to spend a long weekend in the beautiful city of Stockholm, Sweden. I have always wanted to visit Sweden so when we found some really cheap flights we thought, why not!?
We set ourselves a budget for spending money when we got there, as Stockholm can be pricey if your not careful, but surprisingly we managed to do ALOT in three days without blowing our budget! So here are my top five things to do in Stockholm & tips for saving money ...
1 - Tea & cake in the Old town
Gamla Stan is known as the Old Town and still features the old cobbled streets and narrow alleyways from Stockholm's past. This is the perfect place to soak up a little Swedish culture whilst enjoying the quirky stylish cafes the city have to offer. We had heard that this was an expensive area due to it being popular with tourists, but found that a little wandering around and comparing of prices really helped. We stopped at the Lazy House Cafe on our first day here and fell in love. The cakes where about three tiers high and they had literally every flavour of tea you could dream of! I was in heaven.
2 - Jump on a bike, its the best way to get around this beautiful open city.
A bit like London there are public bike stations situated at various points all around the city. It cost us 165 SEK each which is about £12 for three days which I thought was so reasonable. You could drop the bikes at any station around the city as long as you returned them every three hours, which was great because we just dropped them, grabbed some lunch and hopped back on them again for a few hours. Stockholm is very cycle friendly, with easy to negotiate road lanes and paths, so I felt really safe riding around the center.
We cycled across the bridge to the the Djurgården, a beautiful wide open park area which houses the open air museum Skansen, which is definitely worth a visit.
Top Tip - Save money on lunches by packing a picnic and eating in the Djurgården! We bought some bread, meat and cheese from the local supermarket and it cost us a fraction of a lunch in the center. The supermarkets are amazing aswell, so much better stocked than ours with fresh fruits, meats, cheeses and look out for the salad bars which are incredible.
3 - Get a birds eye view of the city in the SkyView Globe
One rainy day we decided to take a trip further through the city past the old town to the SkyView Ericsson Globe. SkyView allows you a bird eye view of Stockholm from a small pod on the side of the globe. The view was a little obstructed by the showery rain but the weather meant no crowds and a pod all to ourselves. This was a great way to see the city and great value at only 150 SEK which is around £11.
It is a little walk from the center so I recommend getting the underground like we did. Swedish underground is really efficient and easy to navigate, we bought a return ticket to get us there and back but this had a time limit. This was the cheapest option and could easily be done as the SkyView was only about a 30 minute experience. If you want to take several trips in a day on the underground it is worth investing in a day pass as you can top it up and use it for several trips. However we found we could walk or bike most places apart from the globe, so the single ticket was the best option for us.
4 - Explore the Old Town by night & sample some Swedish dishes
It's a good idea to look for restaurants during the day then go back at night. We spotted a really quaint & cosy looking restaurant down one of the cobbled streets which seemed to be busy during the day, so took this as a good sign and returned at night. Stockholms Gasabud is a cosy romantic restaurant tucked away from everything, perfect for a relaxed date. The prices were reasonable with a main dish around 170SEK which is £13-14 pounds. We tried traditional home cooked Swedish meatballs and sausage, which were amazing and I would strongly recommend for a taste of traditional Scandinavia.
Top Tip - Food is generally reasonably priced in Stockholm, however the alcohol is what will push your bill up on a night out. We tried to avoid drinking with our meal, ordering water instead. We bought bottles of beer and wine to enjoy whilst getting ready in our hotel room to save money. There are alcohol specific supermarkets in the center that sell cheap (compared to restaurants) alcohol but you will need to remember your ID to buy it.
5 - See Stockholm from the water
Wherever you are in Stockholm you are never far from water so catching a boat is a great way to see the city. On our last day we caught the 'Under The Bridges Tour' which was a little pricey but well worth it and was the best value trip at around £20 for two hours. The guide on board was so interesting, with lots of facts about the history and culture of the city. There was also a bar and free wifi on the boat which is always a bonus.
The weekend went so fast and I was sad to leave this amazing city but I felt like we packed a lot in to a few days.
I hope you have picked up some handy tips if you are thinking for travelling to Stockholm, I would also love to hear any tips if you have already been too.
Thanks for reading!
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