This trip was taken between May 22, 2014 and June 10, 2014.
Jodi and I are off for another wonderful European adventure, this time to Stockholm, Sweden; Oslo Norway; an 8-day cruise in the fjords; ending the trip in Copenhagen Denmark. This adventure will be a planes, trains and boat vacation, with a few cars involved, thank goodness. We have done a few multi week vacations without the use of a personal car and we love it. This trip we only used taxis several times as it was easier to get to our destination instead of hauling our luggage on public transport.
First off to LAX airport to catch our non-stop flight to Stockholm. After the overnight flight we arrived in Stockholm airport and got on the Arlanda Express train to Stockholm Central Station where we needed to get our Stockholm Card that included our transit passes and find the correct train that would take us to our room.
After walking what seemed to be miles, not really, we got our passes and arrived at the boarding platform to catch the correct train. It soon came and we were off for our next transfer a T-Bana (street car) at Gullmarsplan, then to the final stop at Sickla Kaj in front of 2 nice markets and about 200 yards from our room.
We had a small studio apartment (a lock off from the owners apartment) that suited us fine. We got settled in and headed over to the market to buy some food and drinks for the next day. The next day the fun begins as we have planned to go over to the Island of Djurgaden to visit the Skansen Open Air Museum and the Vasa Museet (museum).
Stockholm is the most populous city in the Nordic region and is spread over 14 islands. We board our T-Bana to head to Gullmarsplan to catch the train to Stockholm Central Station and then walk over a few blocks to jump on another T-Bana to the Island of Djurgaden. As we wait for the T-Bana a group of school children arrive with their teacher to get on the same T-Bana we are on. We wonder where they are going on a school day and soon discover that today is a day the schools are having a field trip to Skansen. WOW, I wish we had field trips like this when I was in school, the best one we had was visiting a Wonder Bread Bakery to see bread being made and packaged. What a history experience these kids get over in Europe really amazing.We get off the T-bana right across the street from Skansen and we head over to the line forming at the turnstyles, we have arrived a little before opening and wait for the gates to open. The gates open and in we go with Stockholm Card (City Tourist Pass) which includes free entry to both of our museums today. Always check for the City Passes they will save you money and we have used them to fill in time going into places we normally would not have gone. Once inside we start to visit all the sites. Skansen is the oldest open-air museum, founded in 1891, featuring 150 farms and dwellings from all regions of Sweden. The buildings span 5 centuries from the 16th to the early 20th century. Also the museum has many local artisans in period clothes demonstrating the culture, art and workings of the 5 centuries of history and a small zoo of native Swedish wild animals. (text continues below gallery)
After walking around for over half the day we grab a lunch of sandwiches and drinks from a restaurant in Skansen and enjoy the Tea Room atmosphere. A brief rest and off we go to finish our tour of the 75 acre museum then grab the T-Bana back to the Vasa Museet. Going 2 stops we get off the T-Bana cross the street and walk the short distance to the museum. Inside we are greeted by a massive wooden ship that was built between 1626 to 1628 and sank only 1,400 yards into her maiden voyage. It sat on the bottom of the bay until it was raised in 1961 and placed in the museum.
A colossal ship that was to hold 450 men of whom 300 were soldiers, 48 – 24 # cannon, 8 – 5# cannon and 2 – 1# cannon on 2 decks. It sank as the tall, top heavy ship caught a crosswind in its sails and capsized very quickly as the gun ports were open to show how mighty the ship was to the citizens of Stockholm. 100 crew including wives and children were lost in the sinking as the citizens of Stockholm watch in horror. (text continues below gallery)
After walking all 4 floors of the Vasa Museet we decided to walk over and visit Grona Lund, an amusement park with roller coasters, thrill rides, games, concerts and restaurants, that is also located on the Island. Being part of the Stockholm Card with free admission was a plus for us so we were able to walk through and see what the park has to offer. We walked most of the park and it looks like a fun place to spend some time at as it is along the same lines as the old pier amusement parks in America in the 50’s and 60’s, Blackpool in England and Prater Park in Vienna, Austria. We had a great time seeing the park but we are tired from our day’s walking and the 9 hour time change is starting to take it’s toll so we head back to our room for a stop at the market for more goodies and drinks, stop by a restaurant for something to eat and to rest for the next days adventure.