Two summers ago, our family went on a 9-day cruise on the Baltic Sea, stopping in 6 different cities. As cruises tend to go, we were only able to spend a day in most of the cities, so this series of posts is all about how we tried to make the most of the short time we had in each one!
For our fifth stop on our Baltic cruise we made port in Stockholm, the capital of Sweden. As with many stops on our trip, we started the day on a hop on hop off tour bus.
Our first stop of the day was the Vasa Museum, the home to the wreckage of the almost fully intact 17th century Swedish warship, named Vasa. The Vasa sank on her maiden voyage after barely making it 1300 meters. Luckily most of the crew was still on the deck after waving goodbye at the port or else many more lives would probably have been lost. At the museum they give guided tours (included in the price of admission) throughout the day so be sure to check the schedule here!
Our next stop was at ABBA: The Museum. While we didn’t go through the actual museum, it was fun to browse the gift shop and take photos posing as the ABBA members! The museum opened in May 2013 and includes an interactive exhibition all about ABBA.
Throughout our day in Stockholm we could see the Royal Palace from many different viewpoints. This is the official residence of the Swedish monarchs while their actual primary residence has been Drottningholm Palace since 1981. While we didn’t have the time to go inside, there are general admission tickets to explore on your own and they also offer guided tours to get to see the royal apartments and treasury.
Our last stop before heading back to the boat was at the Nobel Museum. While you have to pay for admission the guided tours come at no extra cost. Be sure to check tour times online, we got very lucky and arrived as a tour (in English) was just starting! There are various exhibits throughout the museum and the tour covered the life of Alfred Nobel and how the Nobel Prizes came about. A cool feature of the museum was the portraits and prize descriptions of over 800 Laureates who have received the Noble prize. They are in random order and hanging from the ceiling on cables winding throughout the museum. If you’re lucky you’ll see someone you recognize!
Walking around Stockholm led to some beautiful waterfront views with so many places left to be explored. If we have the chance to go back we would love to see the interior of the Royal Palace and visit the current royal residence at Drottningholm Palace. Two other places we wish we had time to visit were the Skansen Open-Air Museum (Swedish history museum as well as a zoo which is home to many Nordic animals!) and Gamla Stan (Stockholm’s Old Town filled with shops, churches, etc).
Costs: Vasa museum entrance = 130 SEK (~$15.25) for adults and 100 SEK (~$11.75) for students so don’t forget your ID! If you aren’t a student and still want a bargain every Wednesday in Sept-May admission is 100 SEK for everyone!
Nobel Museum entrance = 100 SEK for adults and 70 SEK for students. It you plan your trip well there is free admission on Tuesdays from 5pm to 8pm!