To read the adventure in the order of the Day by Day Trip Report click HERE.
To see all the photos of STOCKHOLM click HERE.
Alta to Stockholm
Three flights, three airports, an hour's delay for luggage to appear on "the belt," an hour on the airport bus and finally a room at the Radisson Blu Strand. Right where we need to be to explore using our Stockholm card -- the plastic pre-paid that gets us on to canal boats and into museums.
Radisson Blu on the Strand -- nice hotel, two great helpful service guys who helped us set up wifi and later gave us our own router when they found out we have 2 macs, 2 iPhones, and an ipad. We didn't mention the two Kindle Paperwhites.
Since our hotel is very close to the old city, we took an evening walk after a bit of unpacking. You know, the "turn left, turn left, cross the bridge" thing. Walked past the palace where no royalty still reside -- they have homes out of Stockholm. (Factoid: Crown Princess married her trainer Daniel and he became an instant Prince.)
Found a dinner spot down one of the side alleys -- a Texas Steak House. Where does the wonderful steak come from? Holland. The lamb? New Zealand. Any way you bite into it, twas wonderful. Ribeye steak for Becky; ribs for Beth. Beers for both.
Royal Canal Boat
Becky doing verification that the left, right left was the way to go.
Stockholm card (for which we had already paid) gave us tickets for a 1 hour narrated boat ride around the big garden island. We saw the tv towers, the homes of the rich and famous, the no-longer-in-use toll booth where in earlier days the farmers and merchants brought their goods into the city, the re-fit of manufacturing into upscale city living, the site of the sunken Vasa ship (more later.)
Walking the famous Strand, with buildings from an earlier and more decorative era, built to mimic the French and other European capital richness. This is the walking area along the waterfront and we loved it: houseboats, 2-masted sailing boats, even a small cruise boat.
By now we're hungry and waterfronts always offer food, if not of the gourmet variety at least of the 'feed me now' style. A hot dog in a bun that was actually a sealed tube, with mustard squeezed into the tube before the hot dog was inserted. Important detail: no dripping mustard!
Then a stroll to the Swedish National Museum( Nordiska Museet), originally designed to represent all of the Nordic regions, but later re-fitted to show Swedish daily life thru the centuries. Quite fun: clothing, textiles, furniture, dishes, snuff boxes, pen nibs, doll clothees, toys, etc. You get the idea.
Rest pleaseCoffee. Very special for the following reasons:
As many refills as we wanted;
Stay as long as we like.
Outdoors, with a breeze, in the shade.
Vasa -- sunken ship
"Between four and five o'clock, the great new warship VASA keeled over and sank." (in the Stockholm Harbor August 10, 1628) The king built it to show Europe he was capable, strong, and stylish. It sank on the day of its launching while the entire town watched. It stayed in the harbor for 300 years until it was resurrected. It is now the Vasa Museum fully restored. It truly is a fascinating story.