lunedì 18 febbraio 2013

A Tribute To Stockholm

Before moving to Copenhagen last summer, I spent almost a year in one of the most beautiful cities I have ever seen: Stockholm. Stockholm is the pearl of the North Sea, the capital of Scandinavia and its regal beauty is unforgettable. Classical majestic buildings perfectly merge with new architecture and nature giving birth to a unique scenario. Sunny and green during summer, when the sun is up for almost 18 hours each day, on the other hand mysterious and regal in the cold snowy winter, when Christmas lights are able to melt even the coldest heart.

Stockolm is comprised of 14 islands and its very center is Gamla Stan, the old city. This tiny island has a heart shape, and it is actually the heart of the city.  Here you can find small old streets and medieval houses together with old fashioned shops. During the night it is lightened only by the yellow light of old lanterns, earing the echo to footfalls in the meandering streets can be quite scary J.  Best place: Stockholm is famous for the so called “kanelbullar” but try to look for a small restaurant in Stotorget called Chokladkoppen located in the center of Gamla Stan. Ask for the chocolate cake, and believe me, this will be the best one you have ever tried.

 Stotorget and Christmas Markets
 Foreshortening of Gamla Stan

Just above the heart of the city, here we find Norrmalm, the commercial center of Stockholm. The area is full of shopping centers and design boutiques, nightclubs and restaurant. If what you need is a unique Swedish shopping experience, what you need is an afternoon to NK, the best place to go shopping in Stockholm. Then you just need to cross the street for a romantic ice-skating evening in Kungstradgarden. Do not miss the opportunity to see a ballet at the amazing Opera, there are a lot of student discount and you can see a stunning performance for less than 10 euro.

 Summer in Kungstradgarden

 Sergels Torg and Christmas Decorations

Another unforgettable area of Stockholm  is the green island of Djurgården & Skeppsholmen. This island is just a short walk from the city center, connected by a tramline. Here there are the best museum and attractions, an amusement park and amenus surroundings where the city melts in the Nordic waters. Skansen museum is one of the best attractions.  You will find old Scandinavian villages recreations and animals from all over the Nordic countries in the biggest open-air museum. If you’re up for a delicious cup of coffee, I suggest the romantic Helin Voltaire.

Helin Voltaire cafè

 Roses Garden in Skansen

 Reindeer sunbathing in Skanes Museum

Östermalm is the posh part of the city, where rich people and celebrities live. The beautiful palaces  are reflected on the waters of the west shore. It is also a shopper paradise but the heart of the area is without any doubt Stureplan. Around this square there are the best club and bar of Scandinavia and Spy bar, Pure and Sturekompagniet are on top of the list. 


Last but not the least, the southern island of Södermalm, the urban soul of the city. Here the underground culture has taken  precedence over the Swedish elegance, giving the city a new spirit. Trendy and fashionable bar and clubs come to life in this colorful environment. To visit the Fotografiska museum is a must, and save some time to enjoy a cup of coffee in its café on the top floor, to experience a different view of the city.

Quick tips:

A restaurant:  Vurma , out of time and place, amazing food and atmosphere.
A cafè: Flickorna Heline Voltaire, the most romantic place on the planet.
A place: Skansen Museum

The best thing to do in Stockholm is to get lost between the tiny medieval street of Gamla stan, the romantic paths near the water, walking the thousand of bridges while the sun is slowly going down in the Sea. You know what they say: “getting lost is the only way to find something impossible to find”.

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