A few weeks ago, I suggested to R that we go away for a few days before the schools broke up for the summer. We decided on a weekend trip to Stockholm, never dreaming that England would get through to the World Cup quarter finals, let alone that they would be playing Sweden on the day of our arrival! Yellow shirts abounded, and though we didn't watch the match, we were having a late lunch at the time and could hear excited shouts and cheering from the pubs and restaurants nearby that were screening the game. When we'd finished eating, I had to ask a chap wearing a yellow shirt if the match was over and, if so, who had won. He was very nice about their 2-0 defeat and I managed not to do a fist pump until we were some distance away!
Stockholm was lovely, and you could spend far longer than our 3 days and still not cover everything. The people were very friendly, spoke excellent English which made it very easy for us, and the weather was sunny but cooler than the heat wave that we had left behind in the UK. We walked almost non-stop for the 3 days, managed to find vegan food to sustain us, and generally had a wonderful time.
Here then, are a few of the many photos of our trip:
Walking from our hotel to the city centre:
Stadshuset, the city hall. The Nobel Banquet is held in the Blue Hall every December and you can also get married here. We took a tour of the building and, if we'd had longer, would have climbed the tower for the view.
Storkyrkan - Stockholm's cathedral. The Statue of St. George and the Dragon dates from 1489 and is carved from oak and elk horn:
There may have been a few of these!
Loving the old telephone boxes:
The Dala shop in Gamla Stan, the medieval city centre. The Dala horses are very popular with tourists but, like Stockholm generally, were very expensive.
These houses reminded me of Amsterdam:
A guard outside the Royal Palace:
This little chap kept popping up in various places:
The spire of Riddarholmskyrkan. This is one of Stockholm's oldest buildings and is the burial place for the Swedish royal family:
We hid the Islastone here:
The Vasamuseet was, for us, the highlight of our trip. The warship Vasa was built between 1626 and 1628. Unfortunately, she was top heavy with insufficient ballast and capsized and sank before even making it out of the harbour on her maiden voyage. In 1961, she was raised to the surface and is now housed in the museum. She is remarkably intact, far more so than the Mary Rose, and you could spend an entire day here learning about her restoration and crew.
Lunch at a music 'lounge'. We found this little gem down a small side street and ate sandwiches (made by an old lady who seemed rather bemused that we only wanted salad on them) to the sound of classical music. It was all rather surreal.
Stockholm has a huge open air museum called Skansen. Founded in 1891, it shows Swedish history through the ages. It contains over 150 traditional buildings which were dismantled and then rebuilt on the site. Staff in traditional period costumes bake and craft whilst giving talks and answering questions.There is also a children's petting zoo and a selection of Nordic animals.
The funicular railway:
Is it a moose or an elk?!
Amusing bird on statue - initially it just landed on the statue's arm. I commented that it would make a good photo if the bird was on his finger - it immediately obliged by shuffling along!
We couldn't go to Stockholm without going on a boat!
Yummy Lebanese food before heading to the airport - I ate far too much!
Toodle pip for now. x