Sweden is the largest of the Scandinavian countries, with an area twice that of Britain (and roughly that of California), but a population of barely nine million. Sweden’s capital city, Stockholm, also known as the ‘Venice of the North,’ is the stunning capital of Sweden spreads out over 14 islands in Lake Mälaren and looks out proudly to the Baltic Sea to the east. The grand public buildings, palaces, rich cultural history and museums tell 700 year-old history.
There are a lot of unique things to see when visiting the old town in Stockholm. The old town is the original Stockholm. The town was set up during the 1300 century. There are about 3000 people living in the old city today. Most buildings are from the 1700 and 1800 century. If you can spare a few hours take the time to walk about the old town. The dominant building in the old city is the king’s castle. The old town is the place to be if you want to experience the town’s pulse. The area has Stockholm’s biggest ranges of restaurants, tourist shops, studios and museums.
The Swedish capital has no less then three distinct UNESCO World Heritage sites: Birka, Drottningholm, and the Woodland Cemetery. Located by the water’s edge on the periphery of Gamla Stan, this is the official residence of the King of Sweden. Interestingly, the Queen’s residence lies elsewhere, on the beautiful island and UNESCO World Heritage Site Drottningholm (Queen’s island). A rich taste of the once mighty Swedish Empire, the palace is one of the largest in Europe boasting in excess of 600 rooms and no less than five museums.
The oldest open-air museum in the world, Skansen, on the island of Djurgården, is a wonderful attraction for families, particularly those with young children. A tranquil oasis in the heart of the city, Djurgården draws tourists and locals alike, particularly during the summer months of long lazy days and short nights. It’s a perfect place for a stroll and picnic as well as being home to several of Stockholm’s top museums and attractions.
Stockholm’s diverse history and stunning vistas attract visitors from all over the globe. Stockholm’s climate is considered both humid continental and oceanic depending on location. Despite its high latitude however, the city’s overall climate is relatively mild with warm summers and cold, snowy winters. The latitude of Stockholm is 59˚21’N which means that it is not far from the Arctic Circle. Because of this, the city gets only about six hours of daylight in the winters and more than 18 hours of sunlight during the summer. Because of its focus on the environment, the European Commission of the European Union named Stockholm as the first European Green Capital in 2009.