Last year, I had the opportunity to visit the idyllic city of Stockholm. Located along Sweden’s southeast coast, Stockholm is spread out across more than a dozen islands which are easily accessible by bridges and ferries. Each island has its own character; the medieval old town (Gamla Stan), the lush hunting island of past kings (Djurgården), a hipster heaven (Södermalm) and many more. Stockholm’s proximity to water makes it an especially interesting place to explore, with lots of people along the shorelines drinking rosé (everyone is drinking rosé now) and enjoying the expansive views of their garden city.
One thing that struck me was Stockholm’s vibrant outdoor social life. Each evening, the many parks were filled with families who met for picnicking and socializing. Large groups of adults gathered around impressive looking dinners while their kids ran around and played. Most people travel by bicycle (usually with a kid strapped to the back) along the cities enviable cycling friendly roads and pathways.
You can find examples of a huge range of architectural styles in the city, from the medieval square in Gamla Stan to the minimalist brass facade at Sven Harry’s. I was especially excited to see the Stockholm Public Library by Gunnar Asplund. After studying libraries in the United States, Asplund designed Sweden’s first public library with open shelving, allowing visitors to browse on their own and choose a book without assistance from library staff. Thousands of books line the circular rotunda and the space has an open and airy feel. There is still much to explore in this beautiful city, and I hope to visit it again someday <3