48 Hours In Stockholm, Sweden

Above: Panorama of Stockholm, Sweden (Photo: Oleksiy Mark/Shutterstock)

Eschew your preconceptions about Stockholm as the Swedish capital of tight jeans and flaxen-haired Viking-types (OK, maybe there’s still a bit of that). The city has morphed into a multi-ethnic, cosmopolitan centre of design, culture, and cuisine. Here’s how to make the most of two days and nights.

What to see and do

Stockholm means “log island,” and the city itself is spread over 14 bridge-connected isles. Explore the archipelago for a few hours on board a Strömma cruise liner. Djurgarden—a wooded park with jogging paths, intimate cafes, and museums—provides a picturesque respite from the din of the city proper. Wander the cobbled streets of the Old Town on your way to the Nobel Museum to learn more about the Prize and its laureates. The Moderna Museet boasts Scandinavia’s leading modern art collection. Enjoy some campy fun at the ABBA Museum. The roof-level of Fotografiska, the photography museum, provides visitors with stunning views of the Old Town—the perfect backdrop for your own snapshots.

Where to shop

Head to the Östermalm district for Swedish fashion heavyweights Acne, Hope, J. Lindberg, Whyred, and Tiger of Sweden. If you’re counting your kronor, go to Weekday and COS for contemporary designs at reasonable prices. Stockholm’s flagship outpost of Grandpa, a fashion and interiors department store, purveys a well-edited selection of clothing, housewares, and grooming products. Menswear line Uniforms for the Dedicated provides a sleek, sustainable approach to dressing. A pair of cheery socks from Swedish label Happy Socks adds punch to workaday wardrobes. Bags and home textiles in muted, minimalist prints from 10 Swedish Designers make great gifts. Papercut and Konst-ig provide books and magazines for sophisticated, design-conscious clientele.

Where to eat and drink

Start the day with a hearty breakfast at Nybrogatan 38, or at Café Saturnus for its excellent coffee and cinnamon rolls. Östermalms Saluhall—a packed market selling everything from open-faced sandwiches to seafood and reindeer sausages—is a food-lover’s Valhalla. Indulge your “Swede tooth” at Pärlans Konfektyr for some seriously delicious old-fashioned caramels—just make sure you take a box back home. Pelikan has been serving traditional Swedish fare since 1733; try the meatballs with lingonberries and buttery mashed potatoes. Retro diner Flippin’ Burgers offers classic burgers, shakes, and an impressive listing of North American and Scandinavian microbrews. PA & Co. provides relaxed dining and an excellent bar menu. Nordic cuisine can be fish-heavy, so get your veggie fix at Hermans, an all-you-can-eat vegetarian buffet with panoramic views of the harbour. Marie Laveau is not just a song by Bobby Bare; a Cajun-style restaurant by day, it’s a bustling nighttime spot with a friendly crowd. Party with the stylish locals at Spy Bar, where the DJs spin varied sets and the drinks flow long into the night.

Where to stay

The 83-room Story Hotel, centrally located in the Stureplan, mixes bohemian flair with industrial cool—think concrete floors, exposed piping, and eclectic artwork. It also has a top-notch bar. If you’re in the mood for luxury, Nobis Hotel fits the bill with understated accents of marble, leather, and Scandinavian furniture.

Tags: Sweden, Travel Guide

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