I had been looking forward to going to Stockholm when I saw it on my roster as it was another cold destination that I would be able to wrap up all warm, drink lots of hot chocolate and hear the crunch of the snow under my boots!
The flight over was an early start but the flight went really quickly and we were soon landing into Arlanda International Airport in Sweden. I was also really looking forward to this flight as my friend Lily had decided to fly out from the UK to come and join me for my layover. I met Lily at the airport, went to check in at the hotel and quickly got changed to head into the city. We landed around 12:15 and I’d been told that the sun sets in Sweden around 3:30 so we wanted to make the most of the day light and rushed out.
I don’t think anything could have prepared me for how cold Stockholm is. The -15 degree (or 5 in Fahrenheit) temperatures made me feel cold right through to the core. And I didn’t have any gloves with me so my hands felt like blocks of ice. We made our way through the old town and headed towards the Djurgården (the local ferry) which would take us to one of the other islands to go and visit Abba: The Museum! The annoying thing about Stockholm is that they’re trying to make it into a cashless place where everyone pays by card, except we had Swedish Kronas to spend which proved to be quite annoying. Anyway, we hopped onto the ferry which was so nice to get out of the cold for 5-10 minutes and took in the views of the surrounding islands whilst busily chatting away.
The ferry pulled into our station where we stopped for a quick picture with the lake and the frozen ice before heading over towards the museum. Again the museum didn’t take cash – annoying – but we headed on in and out of the cold once more.
We wandered around the museum listening to the classic Abba songs. Singing and dancing away. There were different interaction points where you could mix the abba songs to see if you would do it how they did it, be in the recording studio singing the Abba songs or film yourself an Abba music video. I did enjoy the museum however I was a bit underwhelmed as it was a lot smaller than imagined and didn’t take very long to get around. So for 250kr each, it didn’t seem that good value for money.
Afterwards we got back on the ferry and went to the Old Town for a much needed hot chocolate stop and to also get out of the cold again – with the sun going down the temperatures were seriously dropping!
After a hot chocolate or too, we then wandered into the city centre to look for something to eat. There didn’t seem to be much choice in the centre which surprised me, it was just lots of shops. In particular lots of H&Ms, all within a close vicinity of each other. We stumbled upon a tapas restaurant called Bar Celona (I enjoyed the name as I love puns) and it seemed very busy in there. Lily had never eaten tapas before as well so it was a definite must.
We had a lovely meal trying a few different dishes and then we headed back to the hotel to have a cocktail or two. Back in the hotel is when we finally started to feel warm again sat in front of the fire and after a while we headed upstairs for bed exhausted from our day of wandering around the city.
The next morning we woke around 9am to head down for the hotel breakfast before my wake up call to start getting ready for work. I had such a lovely layover (minus the cold temperatures) made even more special by my friend flying out to spend the time with me. Thanks so much for coming Lily, see you on another European layover very soon!