Emily, Richelle, and I just got back from a weekend in Stockholm. It was tons of fun and very relaxing. We left Friday evening and took a train to the Capital. After getting lost several times in the train station we got lost again trying to find our hostel. How typical of the three of us. When we finally found the City Lodge we discovered that it was the nicest hostel ever and spent the rest of our night planning the next day and sleeping. On Saturday we slept in and started our day at around 10:00am. Our first stop... Coffee! We have turned into true Swedes and cannot go a day without it. After coffee we walked back to the train station. This is not your ordinary train station. It is a mall, a tourist attraction, and a bus depot. This time we were going to the tourist information desk. We picked out 4 things we wanted to do the entire trip.
1. Vasa Museet (The Swedish Titanic)
2. Kaknastornet (the highest point in Stockholm)
3. Gamla Stan (Old Stockholm)
4. The Royal Palace and the Changing of the Guard (Where the King and Queen live)
I also really, really, really, wanted to get in the Baltic Sea! Which I did!
It was freezing. For those of you who dont know anything about Sweden's climate it is cold and rains/snows all the time. I personally like the temperature but not always the rain. Therefore the water never really warms up at anytime throughout the year.
Having 4 things on our list allowed us to relax and explore at our own pace. Once we left the train station we took a bus to the Vasa. The Vasa itself is amazing but they story is horrible. To make a long story short the Vasa is a ship that was suppose to be for military use. Unfortunately the Vasa only lasted 30 minutes on the water then sank before it ever left the harbor. 333 years later it was removed from the depths of the harbor and pieced back together and placed in a museum. The Vasa is 98% original which is really good for a ship from the 1600's. This was my favorite part of the entire trip, but I am kind of a history buff. After the Vasa museum we went to another museum the Nordic Museum (wasn't my favorite). This museum was recently built and revolved around Sweden throughout the decades. It showed furniture, clothing, toys, etc. After the museum we were starved and on our way to find food we ran into the Abba Museum. Which was super expensive so we just went in the gift shop. Luckily there was a Boston style pub near the shop. For the first time in a month I had a quesadilla and loved every minute of it. For those of you who know my obsession with mexican food you can imagine that I almost cried. After lunch we decided to find stop number 2 on our list Kaknastornet. It is a satellite tower in the middle of no where. We took a bus and got off at the recommended stop. Then we had to hike up hill through the woods to the sketchiest looking tower ever. The entire time Richelle and Emily were complaining that I got them lost. Once we arrived at the top of the tower I was their best friend again. We were all so grateful that we ventured through the woods to the unknown structure. The view was epic. We were literally in a cloud. After spending sometime in the tower cafe we made our way back to central Stockholm to another American restaurant... Pizza Hut. This was the classiest pizza hut I have ever seen. No delivery or take out. This was a sit down restaurant complete with a bar and no bread sticks on the menu. We all got garlic bread instead. With full bellies we ended our first day.
For our second day in Stockholm we started even later 11:00 am. What was the first thing we did? Coffee, but this time we found the only Starbucks in the entire country. Richelle was so happy I thought I was going to have to drag her away from it. After Starbucks we walked to Gamla Stan on the way there is when I got to touch the Sea. Which I don't think was actually allowed. Once we got there we were of course lost again. So naturally we wondered until we unknowingly wondered right into the back of The Royal Palace. While visiting the palace we saw the treasury, the royal apartments, the changing of the guard, and the three kronos museum. For some reason Swedish people are not infatuated with their royal family instead they are all fascinated with America. I mean this slightly joking and slightly serious. 90% of the people I have seen in Sweden are wearing the American flag or some other American logo on their body. I have seen everything from hats to shoes. It is crazy! After leaving the palace we went to lunch at another pub called Pickwick's and I ate a pulled pork sandwich. It was good but nothing like where I am from (the BBQ capital of the world). After lunch we went shopping and wondered our way back to central station where I found the perfect graduation dress! After shopping we boarded the train to start our last week in Linkoping. HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY MOM! I LOVE YOU!