Sunday, January 7, 2018

My Solo Journey to Stockholm [Part 5]

It was early in the morning when I woke up and headed out in the snow to the bus station. There was no one around me at 6 in the morning and only the crisp sounds of walking in the snow could be heard. Overnight some of the snow froze so the morning sights were glistening with icy coldness. I made it to Gothenburgs main train station, got a tea and waited for my train that was to depart at 8 for Stockholm. As I would soon find out, train travel in Sweden is not as efficient as in other European countries and my journey to Sweden's capital city was going to be a longer one...

I approached the gate from which the train should depart, but it wasn't there. Notifications of the boards above me were only in Swedish, so I had to use Google translate to figure out what was going on. In the end I approached a woman that was also waiting for the train and asked her to help me. She said we had a 30 minute delay, something that wasn't that unusual for Swedish trains. We talked about life and travel until the next message sounded through the speakers. Again, only in Swedish. I could see from the faces of the other travelers, that the news weren't great. Another delay, and we had to move to another gate as well. I only planed 3 days in Stockholm, and wanted to use them up as much as I could.



After a delay of over an hour my journey started. I booked a slower train to begin with (a mistake which was remedied on my trip back). The slower train takes 4 hours to Stockholm and makes more stops along the way. In the end I reached my hotel room around 2 in the afternoon. I booked with Best Western Hotels in the city center. My room wasn't that big, but it had everything I needed, including a private bathroom. I quickly grabbed a shower, changed and went out to catch some light before the day was completely over. Night stets in Stockholm in winter around 3:30 in the afternoon.


I went outside, right to the city center, without my main photo gear. I decided that I wanted to explore the city a bit and not be bothered with carrying my camera around. I had two more days for that. The center of the city was a bit empty (though I would get more crowded later on). I was there at an unusual time in the day, where most people were at work and not so many tourists in the streets. The shops and decoration in the city provided the most light as I made my way to the old town of Stockholm.



Inside the old town of Stockholm (which I will show you in depth in another post) I immediatley went to the Christmas Market. It wasn't that big, but it was the first one I saw in Sweden during my travel. Hot mulled wine was served in a booth, but again not many people were to be seen. Also, there is not a lot of food in the booths, mostly decor. I was getting a bit hungry and finding a quick bite in the old town is actually hard.





I made my way out of the old town and towards the harbor and Baltic Sea. Dusk was already setting and the buildings were lit by the street lights. I walked (very carefully) towards a docking station for inter-city boats. Just like in Gothenburg, one way to travel through the city is by ferry and I have to say I quite like it. It gives you time to take the city in and take some really great images from unusual viewpoints.




In the picture above you can see the side entrance to the royal palace, which I will, again, show in depth in future posts. From here I walked back to the modern city center and now there were more people in the streets. It was only 5 in the afternoon! Festively lit decorations could be seen in one of the many city squares. An ice rink was also there, which people seem to enjoy a lot.






A long day was behind me. I reached the hotel room around 7 in the evening, changed into my pyjamas and went to bed, only to get up once more to grab dinner. The next two days were filled with things I wanted to see, but the nice weather that greeted me was about to change for the worse. You can't plan ahead in the north...


End of Part Five
To be continued...

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23 comments:

  1. It looks grand. I like Sweden but most people I know are underwhelmed by it.

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    1. I think there is a certain simplicity to Sweden that I really like. Thank you for visiting Adrian.

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  2. it really is a beautiful city, i got a smile from the size of your Best Western room since the ones here are so big, but you are right, it is all you needed. i would never go on a trip by myself like this even if i were a traveler. the photos are so beautiful.

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    1. Not a big fan of solo travel myself but it worked out fine for a few days. The room sizes are really small there compared to the hotel and motel rooms in the US.

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  3. forgot to say, that was a wild train trip... i love the photo of the train

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  4. Looks magical, lit up like that.

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  5. It looks so beautiful. The hotel room is small - but what caught my attention - a private bath, is that not normal? Thanks for blogging your journey - I am enjoying it.

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    1. Usually it is. But when I was looking at afordable accomodations in Stockholm, there were mostly hostels and very small hotel rooms with shared bathrooms. There was a lot of that. So that's why I highlighted it.

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  6. It was fun to share your travel and arrival day with you. I was in Stockholm a year ago in the summer. It was a lot different, but we went to some of the same places, like the palace. I will go back and see the earlier posts in this series. Happy New Year, Mersad.

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    1. Thank you Jack. Wish you a Happy New Year as well.

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  7. wow, wow, wow - gorgeous images of your trip, it looks like a beautiful city!! i am 100% swedish and would love to visit sweden!!

    your room looks quite adequate, we rarely spend much time in our room when we are away!! good to have a private bath!! those deer are amazing!!

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    1. Loved those deers. I usually don't spend that much time in hotel rooms, but I was on my own so I wanted to have something nice :)

      Mersad
      Mersad Donko Photography

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  8. Enjoyable pictures of the trip!

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  9. Once again you have taken me to a place I will probably never see in person. Great shots.

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  10. I really enjoyed your photos- look forward to the next installment. Cheers from Upper Northern California!

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  11. Fine looking travel to Stockholm photos. You should not be worried about the early dusk as you are a master at low light photography. I can not believe you went out for a walk without your camera gear. Surprised you could not find food in the Old Town area as it must draw many tourists. Perhaps they do not believe in "street food".

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  12. I'm sorry the weather turned on you. Gorgeous photos as per usual.

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  13. Schaut so schön aus. Meine Freundin von hier war auch über Weihnachten wieder in ihrer alten Heimat (Stockholm). In diesem Jahr aber wohl weniger Schnee als sonst. Da kenne ich andere Bilder und viel mehr Kälte.

    Schönen Wochenstart und viele Grüsse

    N☼va

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  14. What a beautiful city Stockholm is! I often traveled alone while my husband was at business conferences. I found being alone allows for a more interesting visit most times.

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  15. can´t help but smile. The train disaster is what we have to put up with every time we want to go anywhere. When I go to the airport I go there the evening before to be sure not to miss the plane :( Not fun at all:(

    It weems you had time to see the main parts of Stockholm. Old town and the castle is great.

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  16. Just Awesome. Great to read your post.

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  17. Interesting that they don't have a good train system, and also nothing in English.

    Looks like winter here in Toronto but at least it only gets dark around 5,

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  18. So much beauty and history in Europe. I sure hope I can visit one day!

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