It is because Swedish winters are so dark that Swedish summers are so bright. Following a winter’s worth of all-day darkness, spring seems especially sweet. The almost 24 hour sunlight that summer brings with it is an unimaginable dream in December. That is why the Swedes truly embrace the summer, and why Stockholm is one of the most incredible places to visit for your summer holiday. In this spirit, we have created a guide to the perfect summer’s day in Stockholm. Here’s how to do Stockholm, like a local.
7.00 am: Wake up in Södermalm.
Don’t miss your chance to stay here in this district of Stockholm. For a true local experience, try staying at an Airbnb or Love Home Swap. Just be sure to rent a place with some quality blinds - by midsummer the sun rises at 3.30 am.
9.00 am: Brunch at Kalf & Hansen
On Hornsgartan, the main street of Södermalm, you will find Kalf & Hansen, a tiny cafe that will serve you up the perfect start to your summer’s day. They bill their menu as "Nordic, Organic, Fast Food." Expect distinctively Scandinavian flavors, each item on the menu is named after a nordic city. If the beautiful yet tiny cafe space is full, feel free to go bask in the sun over the road in Mariatorget park.
10 am: Discover Swedish Design
Sweden is famous for it’s beautiful design and clean aesthetic - think Scandinavian minimalism. Many of the boutiques stock museum worthy design. Around the streets of Södermalm you will find internationally acclaimed brands like Acne or Cheap Monday. For a more unique experience, head to Herr Judits for vintage designer wear, or Brandstationen for incredible vintage furniture.
12.pm: Browse the Food Hall in Östermalm.
Östermalm is Stockholm’s most glamorous neighborhood. It’s a great spot for people watching, you’ll come across Stockholm’s most well-heeled residents, as well as some of the cities most beautiful architecture. Make your way to the food hall to look at all the gorgeous Swedish delicacies.
1pm: Picnic at the Palace
Pick up some picnic food from the food hall and go eat in the gardens outside of the Palace. The Palace is right at the center of Stockholm on an island called Gamla Stan, meaning Old Town. Though this cobbled stoned medieval neighborhood is beautiful and well worth wandering through, it is definitely more on the touristy side. So expect it to be pretty packed.
3pm: Take a Ferry Ride
Stockholm is a water city, made up of many islands over an Archipelago. Thus, the best way to see the city is from the water. This is particularly true in summer, when the Swedes perch at pop-up bars along the water's edge or sail through the city.
4 pm: Abba Museum
While the ABBA museum sounds like the ultimate tourist trap, it epitomizes what Swedish summer is all about - having fun. Though the ABBA museum is very cringe worthy, it knows and even embraces this fact. Museum goers are laughing at themselves and inviting you to join them. When you can dance with holograms and record your own music videos, you are pretty much guaranteed at least a giggle. Trust us on this one!
6 pm: Drinks at Mousebacke
Mousebacke is the perfect place to spend an evening in the sunshine looking over beautiful Stockholm - all to the soundtrack of some great live music.
8 pm. Dinner at Herman’s
At Herman's you will make the most of the late night sunlight - this laid-back restaurant has the best view in the whole city. Expect relaxed vibes, great food and a stunning garden view.
10 pm. Night cap at the Fotografiska
The Fotografiska is one of the best photography galleries in the world. It is open late in summer so that you can check out an exhibition or take in an outdoor concert. You could even just grab a night cap and desert at the bar - it’s one of Stockholm’s best and offers beautiful views of the city.
At midsummer, the sun sets on Stockholm at 10pm. Though the twilight lasts far longer than this - it will barley even get dark. So feel free to stay up for the sunrise - you won’t have long to wait. The locals will no doubt be joining you.