Dear lovely readers,
how are you today?
I am currently sitting in a charming cafe by the sea in (sunny?) Stockholm. It is only 16:13 going on 22:00, cold, wet, dark and miserable – yet I am the most content I have been in a long time.
I decided to follow my heart (to a dead end) – possibly more on this later) and meet up with someone from the UK and Sweden was the only place where we could meet. It is also a country which I had never visited before. I also love Meatballs 😉
Stockholm is the capital city of the wonderful Sweden – a country famous for flatpack furniture, Abba, Dime chocolate bars and also for being generally really good at Eurovision. (They’ve won a total of 6 times).
Many people would suggest to visit Sweden in Summer when the sun never really sets, I however find Autumn has its wonderful charm too. The spectacular Autumn colours combined with the atmospheric lightning and the hearty meals make for a very cozy and comfortable trip.
The city of Stockholm is also very clean and well accessible by foot or public transportation. It is a flat city with a lot to see.
The old town “Gamla Stan” offers you a glimpse into Medieval Stockholm. Narrow cobbled streets and old hanseatic style houses are filled with charming shops and quaint cafes, where one can experience a relaxing and very important Fika.
(Fika is an important part of Swedish culture. It involves meeting friends or colleagues every day for a tea/coffee and something small to eat. Forgetting about the stressful day and just relaxing for a few moments)
You can find many museums in Stockholm (many are free – many are unfortunately currently closed) however I would recommend that you take a Free Walking Tour in order to get some background info on Stockholm before visiting any historical museums. Puts everything into context.
I did a tour with: https://freetourstockholm.com and our guide Ryan was absolutely fantastic.
I really love how friendly and welcoming everyone here is. I unfortunately don’t speak any Swedish (except for Hej and Tack) but the level of English here is high.
After eating some delicious sushi, we visited a very fun video game bar last night. I had the fantastic experience of crushing my friend at Mario Kart while drinking a “Jigglypuff” cocktail.
I have very much enjoyed my short time in Sweden and I wish to share some quirks that I have discovered here
Unisex and sparse. A large restaurant may have just one public loo for everyone. There doesn’t seem to be “Ladies” and “Gents”.
Pretty much non-existant. You can and should pay everything here by card.
Wine and hard alcohol
Not available in the supermarkets. Instead you can only buy them from a “Systembolaget” and these are only open until 15:00 on a Saturday (unless it is Halloween…then it isn’t open).
This very much threw me off guard. Living in a “wine culture country” I am used to popping into my local supermarket and buying a bottle to enjoy in the evening. Instead I had to make do with a fruity beer…not quite the same.
Amazing! We went to Slingerbultun and had two main meals, two Lingenberry juices, a pot of coffee and two sweet cakes – and it all came to a total of €22!
So I am finishing my evening with a red wine, in an Irish pub in Gamla Stan and then back to Switzerland tomorrow ready to face November.
As always thanks for reading,