God Morgon! I’ve just flown in from Sweden where I spent a very enjoyable 3 days stuffing my face with pastries, hanging out on a boat with dear friends, and taking in some of the most spectacular architecture I’ve seen in a long time. Wanna hear more? Of course you do!
(I’m writing this post on about 4 hours sleep, so please don’t expect much…)
I flew from London Luton airport at around 3pm on Friday 18th August, after a classic Rosi morning of dilly-dallying, watching cat compilation videos on Youtube, taking Buzzfeed quizzes to find out what kind of baked potato I am, and suddenly remembering I needed to go in 20 minutes and shoving everything into the world’s smallest bag and running out of the door.
(I’d never flown from Luton before so was quite excited to see what it was like. Two words: don’t bother. It was terrible. There you go, saved you a visit.)
I got into Stockholm Arlanda at around 6.30pm local time, and found a coach to take me to the city centre. Stockholm has 4 airports – Arlanda, Bromma, Vasteras, and Skavsta – and Arlanda is the largest and closest of these to the city, taking around 20 minutes if you take the Arlanda Express train, or 45 if you take the coach. I’m an eternal cheapskate so decided to take the Flygbussarna coach for 216SEK (around £22) return. As with most things these days, if you buy online or through the app ahead of your trip, you get about £4 off, but you can buy tickets right there at Arlanda at an information desk or electronic kiosk for the price above.
The hotel I stayed at was the Best Western and hotel (confusing name, good hotel), which was about a ten minute walk from the train station. It’s an embarrassingly simple route to follow but somehow I still got lost (damn Google Maps!) – if you’re a normal human being, you won’t have any problems getting there. The hotel itself was surprisingly good – TINY room, but excellent staff and breakfast, and an easy-breezy tech-savvy check-in service which made me positively giddy. Plus a super comfortable bed, despite it being rammed in between the walls.
I started off Saturday meeting a friend of mine for brunch at Café Pom & Flora on Odengatan. This cafe was divine – they did a range of very Instagrammable meals, cue the barrage of students buying acai breakfast bowls and hovering their phones above them before devouring the lot. I chose a ‘superfood’ bowl, which contained nuts, chia pudding, natural yoghurt, berry compote and tahini), with a pink lemonade with rhubarb and ginger on the side. This is basically how I looked after this meal:
We then went on a little walk around the city – Eti was a brilliant guide and showed me all of the best shops in Stockholm (she knew her audience), including NK Stockholm, and Svenskt Tenn, neither of which I can afford but which are lovely regardless 😉
We also took the opportunity to go on a mini cruise around the archipelago of Stockholm in order for me to see more of the surrounding islands. This was a truly lovely way to spend the afternoon and was quite reminiscent of my time in Oslo (those Scandinavians love a good boat trip) – a few highlights are below:
I was absolutely knackered after all of this sight-seeing, so decided to spend Sunday doing some much needed retail therapy at one of Stockholm’s Sunday markets before my evening flight back…
This was at Hötorget, a lovely little square which holds fruit and vegetable markets during the week, as well as many little flea markets on a Sunday. You will also be able to see the Royal Concert Hall in this picture – the steps of which I hung out on eating a bagel from the Espresso House on the corner, before indulging my inner hipster and buying some vinyls for 5SEK each. I don’t even own a record player, but I couldn’t help picking up some 70s Scandi discs which are now hanging on my bedroom wall. God, I hate myself sometimes.
After all this fun, and so much walking I felt my legs were going to fall off, it was time to depart and leave for the airport, ready for my 9.30pm Sleazyjet flight back to Luton. Boo.
Stockholm is a beautiful city – I’ve always been fond of Sweden and the Scandinavian culture, but had never been to Stockholm, so was very much looking forward to a chilled few days wandering around the city, eating fika and kanelbullar and drinking my beloved Espresso House chai lattes (viva Scandinavia!), and taking in a bit of Scandi chic – and it did not disappoint. So long Sweden, and thanks for all the prinsesstårta!