Stockholm; Thursday, 02 June, 2005

The morning started off very bright and clear, but by the time I left the hotel there were already clouds gathering I’m the sky. I caught the metro out to Kungsträdgården where all the sightseeing tour boats leave from.

I booked onto two tours. The first, lasting almost 2 hours, goes round several of the islands that make up Stockholm, under many of the bridges that join it all together and through the two locks that separate Lake Mälaren and the Baltic sea. After completing that tour I then went on another that goes along some of the back canals around the Royal palaces. It was quite thankful that I booked onto these tours. Not only were they well presented with lots of useful information about Stockholm, but they also kept my dry during several heavy down-pours.

After sending the whole of the morning at Sea level I took a bus up to one of the high points, Fjällgatan, above the city to look out across it. From here you can see several of the islands that make up Stockholm, as well as many of the main buildings in the city.

After that I walked back to the centre of town to pick up the Tram. Unlike Oslo, Stockholm only has one tram line, and here it is a tourist attraction. It runs for a couple of miles along the edge of the lake, over a bridge and onto the island that houses most of the major museums. I got off at the end stop and walked through the parkland to the Canal I had been on earlier.

After crossing the canal I continued through the parkland to Kaknästornet, the TV tower. The top two floors are open to the public as viewing platforms, with the top most one being on the roof. By now all of the clouds had disappeared and the views from the top were stunning, not only of the City and water, but also into the distance. The other amazing site was the sun. At almost 5pm it still looked like the very early afternoon, with the sun high in the sky and very short shadows.

From the top of the tower I spotted a solid row of trees running away into the distance at the other end of the parkland that the TV is built in. After checking the guidebook this turned out to be a tree-lined avenue that stretches in an almost straight line for 2Km heading away from the city. The map also showed that at the end of it was a conveniently located Metro station, so I decided to walk it. After a pleasant 60 minute walk (it was further than it looked from the base of the tower to the start of the avenue) I arrived at the metro station and caught the train back into town and onto Gamla Stan.

This is the original island that the town first grew up around, and it still houses the official work-place of the monarchy, as well as being a labyrinth of little streets and alleyways. After spending about 45 minutes wandering around the back lanes taking lots of photos, I decided to stop for dinner, and then headed back to the hotel to get some rest.


Heavy Showers Sunny
Warm (10-20C, 50-68F)