The stalkers are in Stockholm

They’re back!  Honestly we are seeing more of these guys now in Europe than we ever did when they lived upstairs from us in Boston.  Our one bedroom Airbnb’s are within a mile of each other here in Södermalm making it easy to meet up.  Of course we are talking about Andrew and Henry, our friends from Berlin.  They arrived late in the day on August 2 and we met them for Tapas at a local restaurant.  The next day we took a boat trip to Drottningholm Palace which is the residence of the current Swedish Royals who moved there in 1981.  IMG_1729 (2)

The front of the palace facing the water.

It is a UNESCO world heritage site that was built in the 17th century and it is the best preserved Swedish castle.

View out the front windows.

The young female tour guide was as fascinating as the tour itself.  She seemed to be new at the job and quite insecure with her historic information.  Her deliverance was slow and deliberate often ending it by saying “and that’s just the way it was back then”.  IMG_1735It was amusing for us listening to her.

Cradle used for Royal Christenings.

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View out the back to the gardens.
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Rear of Palace leading out to Gardens.

After the palace tour we opted to forego the self guided garden tour due to the extreme heat and humidity.  The boat trip was an hour each way on a charming old river boat.  The best place to sit was in the dining room which was comfortable and gave great views out both sides of the boat.

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You have to love the log bumpers.

IMG_1998Unfortunately you could not sit in the dining room without dining so we had a meal and a glass of wine going both ways.  Food was expensive and not very good, but it was worth it for the ambiance.  We ended the day with a ride in the Ericsson Globe Skyview glass gondola which takes you up and across the roof of the worlds largest spherical building for beautiful views of Stockholm.  It was rather warm in the glass enclosure and the ride was slow.  Probably not worth the time unless you are in the area and have a free pass which we did. IMG_1758 (1)IMG_1762 (1) The next day we went to a vintage leather  store that Andrew was hot on seeing but the only purchase made was a beautiful suede jacket for Sandy.  We had an outdoor lunch at a nearby Vietnamese Restaurant then went to watch the Stockholm Gay Pride Parade. IMG_1794 (1)IMG_1785 (2)IMG_1777 (1)IMG_1783IMG_1788 (1) On August 5 we visited the Vasa Museum.  The museum houses the Swedish warship Vasa which was built in 1626-28.  It sank in the middle of Stockholm harbor August 10 1628 on its maiden voyage after sailing a mere 1400 yards.  The ships demise was due to its poor design, one meter too short in width and 64 cannons on board which made it top-heavy and very unstable.  It sat at the bottom of the sea for 333 years until it was located in the 1950’s.  In 1961 it was salvaged and restored to a state approaching its original glory.  Thousands of artifacts and the remains of 15 people were found and are on display in the museum.  98% of the ship was found intact due to the cold brackish waters of the Baltic Sea.  This is a must see museum for anyone traveling to Stockholm.IMG_1805 (1)IMG_1802

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The preservationists did plaster casts of the skulls of the bodies that were found and recreated their appearance also assigning names and titles based on what was found near them and where they were located on board.
The dark wood is original. The light wood is reproduction. This ship was 98% intact when found after 333 years.

Our number one recommendation in Stockholm from all four of us is to tour Stockholm’s City Hall which sits along the water.  The construction of this impressive medieval looking building took 12 years to complete in 1923.  Nearly 8 million bricks were provided by a local brick factory and were individually scuffed up to make them look old.  It is built around two open spaces, a piazza called Borgargarden on the eastern side and the blue hall on the west which is known as the dining hall used for the banquet held after the Nobel Prize Awards.  The City Hall of Stockholm can only be visited by guided tours which are offered in several languages every hour.

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Stockholm City Hall viewed from East.
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Piazza inner courtyard of city hall.
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The Tour begins in the great Banquet Hall which is the venue for the Nobel Prize dinner.
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This star on the wall is for the Nobel Prize Winners to set their gaze on as they descend the stairs to the banquet hall.
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City Council Chamber.
Tapestry in the Tower Room (no flash).
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View from the window of the Portrait Room.
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The Gold Room of City Hall
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Golden couple in Gold Room.

After this tour we took a walk along the bay admiring the boats and architecture of the city.  We had lunch at a lovely waterfront restaurant before saying goodby to our favorite stalkers.IMG_2004 (1)IMG_1855 (1)

There are many houseboats along the waterway.

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Till we meet again next month in Venice.

3 responses to “The stalkers are in Stockholm”

  1. […] started this beautiful travel saga they have visited us in Paris, Tel Aviv, London,(twice) Prague, Stockholm, Venice, Rome and now México City.  They arrived late Wednesday evening after a 12 hour non-stop […]

  2. Your wonderful adventure continues !!!
    Can’t wait till hear about Venice , lauren is doing her semester abroad in Florence starting in January.
    Keep having fun !

    1. Florence is great, will you be visiting her there?

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