Stockholm, the capital of Sweden, is often called Venice of the North. The archipelago city is spread out across 14 distinct islands and connected by 57 bridges. The Stockholm archipelago of 30,000 islands, skerries and rocks fans out 80 km east into the Baltic Sea from the city. But Stockholm has much more to offer than spectacular waterways – an sumptuous royal palace, the world’s biggest underground museum, a candy-colour old town, a pop music mecca and, last but not least, the world’s best cinnamon buns.

Our editor-in-chief has visited Stockholm twice and reveals her favourite spots.

The Royal Palace and (on the left) Gamla Stan (photo: Jeppe Wikström).


Located in the hipster district of Södermalm, Fotografiska Stockholm is one of the world’s best photography museums that offers world-class photography, eclectic programmes and elevated dining. It’s open daily from 10 am to 11 pm.

Founded in Stockholm in 2010 by brothers Jan and Per Broman, Fotografiska has expanded to New York and Tallinn. New centres for contemporary photography will soon be opened in Berlin, Miami and Shanghai.

Okna, the major spring exhibition 2022, focused on Elizaveta Porodina’s experimental, dreamlike and occasionally surreal photography (photo: VERTIGO Mag). 

Fotografiska creates powerful rotating exhibitions, spanning various photographic genres, in immersive environments. To date, they have worked with over 200 artists around the globe.

Don’t miss the Fotografiska shop that sells books, postcards, accessories, scented candles and amazing prints of some of the world’s most talented artists.

The Pet Show Exhibition (winter 2021/22) showcased amazing portraits of children, teenagers and dogs by Hellen van Meene (photo: VERTIGO Mag).


The best way to experience Stockholm is from the water. Book a historical canal tour, an ocean bus tour, a hop-on, hop-off boat tour or a boat trip to Drottningholm Palace, the permanent residence of the present royal family since 1981.

You can also discover the city on a hop-on, hop-off bus.

View over Stockholm city (photo: Ola Ericson).


Gamla Stan, the old town, is one of the best preserved medieval city centers in the world. Most of the buildings in this area date from the 16th and 17th centuries, the most famous ones are the coloured houses on Stortorget square. 

In Gamla Stan, you can also visit the Nobel Prize Museum and the Royal Palace.

Don’t miss Köpmangatan Street with its lovely small shops.

Today, approximately 3000 people live in Gamla Stan, Stockholm’s idyllic old town (photos: Visit Stockholm & Tove Freij).


Fika is a Swedish custom where people gather to talk, eat cake and drink coffee. It’s an essential part of Swedish culture.

The most famous Swedish treat is called kanelbulle. The delicious cinnamon bun has a pretty braided shape, and its delicious blend of spices is a delight. If you visit Södermalm, try the kanelbullar of Bageri Petrus. If you happen to be in Östermalm, I highly recommend Mr. Cake, one of my favourite pastry shops in Stockholm. The kanelbullar and the daily soups are excellent, but the red croissant with cheesecake filling, which looks amazing on Instagram, is too sweet.

Do it like the Swedes: outdoor fika in Södermalm (right side) (photo: Tove Freij).
View of Riddarholmen (left side) (photo: Alexander Dokukin).


Walk in. Dance out. Meet Björn, Benny, Frida and Agnetha at the ABBA Museum and discover how they became one of the world’s most successful bands.

The museum showcases the band’s stage clothes, artefacts, concert footage, interviews etc. in a contemporary, interactive setting. You can become the fifth ABBA member by singing and dancing with holograms, and buy Anni-Frid’s and Agnetha’s famous tiger and cat tunic at the ABBA Shop.

49 years after ABBA were founded, they broke records in 2021 with Voyage, the world’s biggest album debut of the year (photo: VERTIGO Mag).


Stockholm City Hall (Stadhus) is one of the most famous silhouettes in Stockholm. The 106-meter tall tower has three crowns, which is the Swedish national coat of arms, at its apex. The City Hall is famous for its grand ceremonial halls, especially the spectacular Golden Hall, where 19 million gold mosaic tiles decorate the walls. Moreover, the Blue Hall is the venue of the Nobel Prize banquet held on 10 December every year.

The City Hall is open to the public through guided tours only.

Civil wedding ceremonies are conducted in Stockholm City Hall every week (photo: Eric G. Svensson).


Adventurous tourists can book a climbing course to learn the basics of climbing technique, rope management, belaying, building anchors and how to use rock protection,

Outdoor rock climbing and indoor bouldering are popular in Stockholm (photo: Fond&Fond)


Skansen is the world’s oldest open-air museum, showcasing the whole of Sweden with houses and farmsteads from every part of the country. Here you can also see Nordic wildlife, rare breeds, pets and exotic creatures.

Walk from 1720 all the way into modern times. Meet the people from the past, and visit the houses, workshops and shops. In every building there are interpreters in authentic dresses who will tell you what life was like in Sweden in the old days.

Midsummer celebration at Skansen on the island of Djurgården (photo: Yanan Li).

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© Cover photo: Elisabeth Toll, Kungl. Hovstaterna





Did you know that the first king of Sweden was French? And that Crown Princess Victoria as well as her sister Madeleine and her brother Philipp speak German fluently because they had German nannies? Find out more about the Swedish royal family.

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