Europe, Travel

Stockholm, Sweden: A Fond Look Back

February 11, 2014

Stockholm, Sweden: A Fond Look Back - Sweet and Savoring

How in the world have I not told you guys about Stockholm yet? I’ve talked about my favorite North American cities, but Stockholm ranks among my favorite cities in Europe. It features colorful, historic buildings, quirky public art in the form of statues and fountains, and an unforgettable red boat hostel.

Stockhom Sweden: A Fond Look Back - Sweet and Savoring

Standing in the boat hostel, looking out at pretty Stockholm

Almost ten years ago, I had the pleasure of visiting my cousins in Stockholm. Here, I stayed in a hostel for only the second time (in a room with twelve bunks, no less!). I also attended a fantastic gay pride parade and saw reindeer for the first time. Gay pride and reindeer! I bet you never thought you’d see those two things in the same sentence πŸ˜‰

Here are some things that stood out for me in Stockholm:

  1. Cleanliness. As I walked around, I got the general sense ofΒ This city is well cared for. I suppose when a city is 750+ years old, its people have a pretty good idea how to maintain their home and keep it beautiful.
  2. Pedestrian friendly. Did you know that Stockholm is composed of several clustered islands, each accessible by convenient ferries and bridges? I get to know cities by walking around them, and here, I was never far from a bus or T-bana (subway) station.
  3. History. See: reference to city being over 75o years old in item #1. Oh my lord! Those buildings can’t help but be stately and dignified!
  4. Quirkiness. The statues everywhere I turned were an endless source of amusement.
Stockhom Sweden: A Fond Look Back - Sweet and Savoring

Whimsy, how I adore thee!

One undesirable yet unavoidable fact about Stockholm is how expensive it is- Β I quickly realized that I just had to stop calculating the conversion rate for every transaction. I just accepted that prices were high, and got over it. That red boat hostel may not have been cheap as far as hostels go, but it was another great thing to add to my list of Unique Experiences.

Stockhom Sweden: A Fond Look Back - Sweet and Savoring

We need more colorful buildings here in NY.

But oh, I hope that one thing won’t deter you from traveling to Stockholm. It’s beautiful. It’s charming. It hasΒ character. Of course, I’m slightly biased: this was right at the start of my life-changing, two-month solo Europe trip. I was twenty-three years old and full of hope and wonder and awe at all the beauty and art Β that surrounded me.

Stockhom Sweden: A Fond Look Back - Sweet and Savoring

Is that guy on the left doing crunches? What’s happening here?

One night, as I explored the Old Town, Gamla Stan, I had one of thoseΒ moments,Β where I was listening to some street musicians play this gorgeous piece as we all stood in the shadows of these ancient buildings.Β This is magic. I am here, right now, and it’s WONDERFUL.Β My travels seem to be filled with lots of moments like that πŸ™‚

Stockhom Sweden: A Fond Look Back - Sweet and Savoring

Even the trash receptacles are dignified.

Then there were the comical moments. I love how this fountain is a lovely juxtaposition toΒ these formal office buildings:

Stockhom Sweden: A Fond Look Back - Sweet and Savoring

Just…amazing.

I’m so glad I had an ‘excuse’ to visit Stockholm (and the nearby city of Uppsala) in the form of hospitable family. Have you ever been there? What stood out for you the most?

Stockhom Sweden: A Fond Look Back - Sweet and Savoring

Holy bikes, Batman! This was before all the major U.S. cities became more bike-friendly, so my eyes kind of popped out of their sockets at this sight.

Stockhom Sweden: A Fond Look Back - Sweet and Savoring

Again, I’d love to know the background.

Stockhom Sweden: A Fond Look Back - Sweet and Savoring

I believe this was the start of my reflection obsession.

Stockholm, Sweden: A Fond Look Back - Sweet and Savoring

Just look at that view!

 

 

{I can’t post these pictures without saying that I took them with my first digital camera- poor quality, poor resolution, etc. I’d like to think my photos from the last couple of years are much better, but a few of these are favorites nonetheless.}

 

*

Travel is like love, mostly because it’s a heightened state of awareness, in which we are mindful, receptive, undimmed by familiarity and ready to be transformed. That is why the best trips, like the best love affairs, never really end. Β  –Pico Iyer

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  • Monica February 11, 2014 at 6:54 am

    Oh I do love Sweden! And this is weird but you know that bright fountain/statue thing, I saw one exactly the same in Gambia. I wonder if it’s the same artist…?

    • Christy February 11, 2014 at 9:15 am

      Oh, wow, how cool that this artist has the same pieces so far apart! And whoa, jealous that you’ve been to Gambia.

  • Cher @ Designs by Studio C February 11, 2014 at 8:11 am

    Beautiful photos of a beautiful place! I love the old buildings and like you said, how “clean” the city is! Thank you for sharing!

    • Christy February 11, 2014 at 9:15 am

      You’re welcome, Cher! Glad you liked the pics πŸ™‚

  • Crystal February 11, 2014 at 8:35 am

    Looks like an amazing place to visit! Stopping by from SITS comment challenge! πŸ™‚

    • Christy February 11, 2014 at 9:16 am

      Thanks for coming by, Crystal!

  • Corrie Blackmon February 11, 2014 at 9:18 am

    Wow, that looks like it was an amazing place to go! And the art…very comical pieces you showed πŸ™‚ Love from SITS

    • Christy February 11, 2014 at 8:11 pm

      It was amazing, Corrie. Appreciate your comment πŸ™‚

  • Christie February 11, 2014 at 10:05 am

    WOW! Beautiful photos of a beautiful city! I look for cleanliness when I visit too! I’m putting Stockholm on my bucket list πŸ™‚ #SITS
    Christie recently posted…Spicy Sausage Soup RecipeMy Profile

    • Christy February 11, 2014 at 8:14 pm

      Thanks so much! I feel like Stockholm/Sweden often gets overlooked because it’s further north than the rest of Europe- definitely put it on your bucket list!

  • Dee February 11, 2014 at 11:16 am

    What a fascinating city! I’ve never been there, so it’s nice to read your comments along with the photos. Visiting from SITS, πŸ™‚

    • Christy February 11, 2014 at 8:17 pm

      I’m glad you liked this, Dee!

  • Courtney @ Eat Pray Run DC February 11, 2014 at 11:29 am

    Fantastic pictures! Visiting from #SITSBlogging and I loved this post πŸ™‚
    Courtney @ Eat Pray Run DC recently posted…Favorite Easy Meal DayMy Profile

    • Christy February 11, 2014 at 8:18 pm

      Aw, thanks so much for coming over and for the compliments, Courtney. I really appreciate it.

  • Cher February 11, 2014 at 11:33 am

    Beautiful! I love the history of old building and artwork as well! My grandma is from Norway and I always wished I went there with her, I’ve never really been outside the US. #SITSBlogging
    Cher recently posted…Check Out the $5 HOT-N-READY Lunch Combo From Little Caesars (& Giveaway Ends 2/24)My Profile

    • Christy February 14, 2014 at 12:11 am

      I hope to visit Norway someday, too!

  • Tamara February 11, 2014 at 11:47 am

    Gay pride and reindeer! Two honest favorites of mine. We have a GREAT Pride Parade & Rally here in Northampton, MA (come see!) but no reindeer ever. It’s in May, so that’s probably good.
    The statues are amazing and the one with the mother and the baby carriage, looks like the men on the park bench behind are sitting in the carriage! Did you plan that? Great photography, either way.
    And I love those magical, traveling, present moments.
    Tamara recently posted…Have a Good Cry, Enter a Good Giveaway.My Profile

    • Christy February 14, 2014 at 12:13 am

      Ha, I don’t believe I did mean to include the men in the carriage! Happy accident πŸ™‚ Maybe this year I will check out Northampton Pride…

  • Cynthia L February 11, 2014 at 5:19 pm

    What a great trip you had. I love to travel in Europe, but have never been to Stockholm. I need to put it on my list of things to do! I am stopping by from #SITSblogging!

    • Christy February 14, 2014 at 12:13 am

      Thanks for stopping by, Cynthia!

  • Diana Griffith February 11, 2014 at 6:18 pm

    Ok, you really made me want to visit Stockholm now. It looks so beautiful there. I think your pictures are great from this trip even if you think you can do better ones now, these are still very lovely.

    • Christy February 14, 2014 at 12:14 am

      Thank you so much! And glad I could pass on the wanderlust!

  • Dee Williamson February 11, 2014 at 7:22 pm

    Wow, Stockholm looks like a beautiful place to visit! I envy you and your ability to travel and see the world. Stopped by from the SITS Girls “Spread The Comment Love” challenge. #SITSBlogging

    • Christy February 14, 2014 at 12:15 am

      It really is such a striking city. One of the things I love about traveling is seeing how cities distinguish themselves from the others, and what type of architecture they have. Each one has their own personality πŸ™‚

  • Dani @ OKDani.com February 11, 2014 at 7:32 pm

    I really loved your photos. Stockholm was so beautiful and fun and easily walkable which I loved, being a NYCer I appreciated it. It was my first time in Europe so I was extra excited to be there.

    • Christy February 14, 2014 at 12:22 am

      Thanks, Dani- I think growing up near NYC trained me to love walking in cities πŸ™‚

  • Coco (@Got2Run4Me) February 11, 2014 at 9:15 pm

    Oh, wow! I have a business trip next week with one day in Stockholm. Looks like I will wish I had more time there, but now I will definitely try to get out of the office and look around! #SITSblog

    • Christy February 15, 2014 at 10:41 pm

      Slightly jealous over here, Coco! Enjoy your time in this beautiful city!

  • Delia @ Blog Formatting February 11, 2014 at 9:32 pm

    These pics are so awesome! Sweden looks like a superb country to visit. Thanks for sharing this wonderful post, Christy!
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    • Christy February 15, 2014 at 10:42 pm

      You’re so welcome and thanks for your sweet words!

  • Clarissa Hooper February 11, 2014 at 11:10 pm

    How amazing to have had the opportunity to be in Europe alone for 2 months! This looks like it was such an amazing opportunity for you!

    • Christy February 15, 2014 at 10:48 pm

      Yes, that trip to Europe cemented my love of the road and made me determined to travel at least once a year for the next several years!

  • Cynthia @ You Signed Up For What?! February 12, 2014 at 12:52 am

    Gorgeous city – I’ve always wanted to go there! #SITSBlogging

    • Christy February 15, 2014 at 10:50 pm

      I wasn’t prepared for how beautiful it was! Sometimes it’s nice to travel somewhere and not know that much about it beforehand.

  • Courtney @ What's Up with the Wilhelms February 12, 2014 at 8:02 am

    I am visiting from the SITS Comment Challenge! And now I have the itch to travel. What a gorgeous place to visit. Thank you for sharing! Happy to connect.

    • Christy February 15, 2014 at 10:52 pm

      I feel that whenever I’ve given someone the itch to travel, I’ve done a good job talking about my own travels πŸ™‚

  • Christin Theiss February 12, 2014 at 10:54 am

    These are beautiful pictures & your right that it a very clean place! I was born in Germany, I would love to visit Sweden! Thanks for sharing

    • Christy February 15, 2014 at 10:54 pm

      Thank you, Christin!

  • Shana Norris February 12, 2014 at 11:44 am

    I’ve been OBSESSED with Stockholm since reading the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo series a few years ago. So I absolutely loved this post – the photos and your commentary/story. Just beautiful!

    • Christy February 15, 2014 at 11:04 pm

      I need to read that book already! It didn’t pull me in when I attempted to read it awhile back, and I haven’t tried again since.
      Thanks for being so sweet πŸ™‚

  • Amy | Club Narwhal February 12, 2014 at 1:53 pm

    I have always heard such good things about Stockholm and your post seals the deal–what a cool place to visit!
    Amy | Club Narwhal recently posted…BEET BAGELS WITH WHIPPED BLUE CHEESEMy Profile

    • Christy February 15, 2014 at 11:08 pm

      It is, it is! And i’m sure I don’t even know half of what makes Stockholm cool, but I have no doubt that it still is, all these years later.

  • Dawn February 12, 2014 at 6:06 pm

    This is such an eye opening post! WOW! THe statues, the building, bridges and uniqueness is just awesome! Thank you for sharing your experience. I think my favorite was the garbage can! THey have a lot of pride it seems…and a sense of humor!
    I have never been there, nor would I ever just google Stockholm, so to be given this inside scoop is really neat! I also looked at your Brooklyn NY post and loved the art on the buildings. I was shocked to learn that was legal. I wonder if there is a difference between certain artists painting there vs. some random person doing graffiti. I have a very good friend who lives in Brooklyn, so I emailed her and asked her if she was in that neighborhood and and said she’s in the neighborhood next to it! How cool! My fave was the Lifesaver
    #SITSBloggin love! Keep taking pix…they are all great!
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  • Cynthia Banessa February 13, 2014 at 11:04 am

    Love looking at sights from around the world…thanks for posting! Showing love #SITS

    • Christy February 13, 2014 at 11:33 am

      And I love that you loved them!

  • Liz @ I Heart Vegetables February 13, 2014 at 1:09 pm

    That looks like a lovely place to visit! So many places to put on my bucketlist πŸ™‚

  • Debbie @ Heartbeats Soul Stains February 13, 2014 at 1:51 pm

    What a beautiful trip and amazing pictures you were able to capture. I have never been to Europe. A couple of my kids have and my 13 year old son is going again this summer to Germany and Denmark for Soccer. One day I’ll make it πŸ™‚
    #SITSBlogging love

  • Dana February 13, 2014 at 3:25 pm

    I didn’t realize that Stockholm was composed of a series of clustered islands. The statues are awesome!
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  • Katherine February 13, 2014 at 8:55 pm

    I just spent about an hour surfing through your blog, and I’m so jealous of all your travels! Your pictures are absolutely gorgeous, and they make me want to dive into the places you’ve photographed and stay a while. Sweden is gorgeous! Oh my goodness, my wanderlust is at an all time high!

    • Christy February 15, 2014 at 11:11 pm

      Aw, thank you as usual for such a flattering comment, Katherine. I love encouraging people to travel! If you have wanderlust, you can totally make that dream a reality if you work for it- even if it’s going somewhere for a week as opposed to two or three months πŸ™‚

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