Doug Estey

Stockholm

Introduction
Stockholm

When we first started planning this trip, we brainstormed a massive list of cities we'd always wanted to see. We drafted an itinerary and started booking places to stay - until we rewrote it at the last minute to include Scandinavia.

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Turns out missing it really would have been a huge mistake.

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Stockholm is a bustling city. It moves faster than Copenhagen and appears to offer inferior cycling infrastructure, but we didn't mind - the city's layout, which spans a handful of small islands, manages to still feel like the type of place you could live and work (as opposed Venice, which feels like more of a time capsule.)

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We based out of Gamla Stan which, although touristy, is small and smack in the centre of everything - making for walkable access to Normmalm/Östermalm (the north) and Södermalm (the south.) The former is more of a wealthy area with many museums and historical sights; we spent a few hours at the Vasamuseet, which houses one of the largest preserved archaeological artefacts in the world.

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Södermalm is more our speed. Cafes, craft beer, unbelievable food and swarms of cyclists make up a thrilling neighbourhood that would take much longer than a few days to properly explore.

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Yesterday we boarded a boat to Vaxholm, where the spent the day for a change of pace. With most of our time spent in the heart of Europe's major cities, it was nice to unwind somewhere a bit more laid-back. It's also pretty fascinating to discover that some people live out on rural islands in the Stockholm archipelago; commuting in to the city in under an hour by water.

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It seems pretty natural to compare Copenhagen and Stockholm: both capitals of Scandinavian countries, both united under a common flag at one point, their languages observably similar. But where the former seems to be more idyllic and (very well) designed, Stockholm feels more rough around the edges - and I love that.

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Now we're off to Berlin.

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Doug Estey

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