Today I did a bit of sightseeing with a little walking around the city. Actually quite a bit, my fitbit is nearly on 28000 steps for today!
Had breakfast in the hotel and then walked up Odengatan a little way. There were a couple of things I wanted to check out here. First up was a nice park on a hill, Observatorielunden. The hill the park sits on is one of the few remaining outcrops of rock in the city, and is so named because the old observatory sits on top. There was a little cafe, but alas it didn’t open until 11 so I had to remain coffee-less a little longer, but I took a photo of the main observatory building through some trees:
Also visible from the hill is the Stockholm library (stadsbibliotek). From the outside it’s quite an interesting building, in bright orange with a large round tower on top:
But more impressive is viewing it from inside. The round section you saw outside is completely open with books around the whole circumference on a couple of different levels:
From here, I took the metro down to Karlaplan. On exiting the station, you get to a nice circular intersection with a pretty little fountain in the middle:
I walked from here down towards the water along the wide Narvägen boulevard, and crossed over to the island of Djurgården. This island contains several museums and attractions, the main one probably being Skansen (which I’ll save for another day) – and I was first visiting Vasamuseet. The Vasa was a large warship that set sail in 1628, but unfortunately made it barely over a kilometer before sinking. A design flaw meant it had insufficient ballast for it’s size, and it lay in Stockholm harbour waters until the 1950s when it was rediscovered. This led to a recovery effort, with the ship being in surprisingly good condition. The photos don’t really do it justice- it’s huge!
From here, I got on the boat across to Slussen. The boat is included on the travelcard so saved looping round on the metro. You get a nice view across to Gamla Stan too.
From the boat, I walked along the shore to the Photography Museum (Fotografiska) – some interesting galleries to look at, one highlight being the normal-but-unsettling pictures by Nygårds Karin Bengtsson. I grabbed some lunch here in the top-floor cafe too. Next up, I got back on the boat back to Djurgården and visited the little aquarium. There’s not a huge amount here, but the rainforest section was particularly well done. There was also a jellyfish tank which is a favourite
They also have a big trout exhibit, if that’s your thing, and they’ve built a trout ladder up out of the harbour for the fish to come back to each year. A cup of coffee in the cafe, and then I hopped on the tram back to the centre. I had another couple of metro stations I wanted to visit, again on the blue line. First was Rådhuset, with the rock painted a deep orange by Sigvard Olsson in 1975 – there’s also some large pillars indicating the link to the large building above ground.
If the orange was a bit overbearing, then the dramatic red colours of Solna Centrum ( Anders Åberg and Karl-Olov Björk, 1975) would be even worse, were it not for the lower section being covered in a spruce forest (the total length of which is around 1000m). Scenes depict the worries of the time, such as destruction of the forest environment and rural depopulation.
From here I headed back to the hotel before finding something to eat. I ended up back in Gamla Stan at “Barrels” who claimed to serve burgers and beer. I can confirm that they do indeed serve burgers and beer.
Tomorrow I’m back to the airport to head north.