Rick Steves

Stockholm in the Summertime: 7 Exciting Things to Do

Picture a cityscape of old colorful buildings, lush green gardens, blue skies and waters, and daylight that seemingly lasts for days. That's exactly what you'll find in Sweden's capital city of Stockholm.

After watching this episode of "Rick Steves' Europe," you'll see why summer is the best time of year to visit Sweden. It's not too late to start planning a trip for this year. Here are some fun activities from the show that will allow you to enjoy the perfect weather and outdoors of the city.

Be sure to watch for more travel tips weeknights at 7:30 p.m.

1. Watch the changing of the guard at the Royal Palace
This is a great way to kick-start your Swedish vacation. Head to the courtyard at the Royal Palace around noon and watch as a military band and perhaps guards on horseback ceremoniously approach the Royal Palace. This daily regal ritual is a sight to see.

2. Cruise Lake Mälaren
The most scenic and worthwhile way to get to popular sights along the lake, like the must-see Drottningholm Palace, is by boat. The relaxing voyage alone is a delight, and you'll view more dimensions of this city of lakes, parks, and islands as you cruise.

3. Explore Stockholm's Old Town
The original city of Stockholm was once contained on one main island. Today, that original town, known as Gamla Stan, is a popular meeting point for locals and visitors alike. The town square, called Stortorget, is now a favorite place to relax, shop, eat, people watch, and enjoy the good life.

4. Visit City Hall
This grand public building has a stunning and ornate interior and is the official site of the annual Nobel Prize banquet. Several guided tours in English are available throughout the day and are certainly worthwhile.

5. Sip vodka at an ice bar
Alcohol in Sweden is highly taxed and therefore super pricey. But if you're going to have a drink, you might as well have it on ice ... literally. Just about everything is made out of ice at the Absolut Icebar. Your cover charge buys you 45 minutes to sip your choice of vodka drinks in an ice glass, at an ice bar, or as you "chill" on a nice ice sofa.

6. Catch a ferry to the archipelago
Here's a great opportunity to do some Scandinavian island hopping -- the prettiest in Northern Europe. The city of Stockholm itself is situated on 14 islands, but there are thousands of islands that stretch 80 miles from the city in it's large archipelago. Ferries serve hundreds of these islands, stopping at many on request.

Some highlighted stops from Steves' trip include Vaxholm and Djurgården, both of which offer a ton of options for enjoying Sweden's natural beauty and the good life -- from bike rides to outdoor cafes to picnic areas.

7. Get a cultural glimpse of Sweden
Stockholm's Skansen, located on the Garden Island, is Europe's original open-air folk museum. It's a huge park that gathers 150 historic buildings from all over Sweden. Visitors take a virtual trip all over the country without leaving the capital, seeing folk crafts in action, as well as traditional music, dances, and costumes.

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A tumultuous 20th century left Berlin filled with powerful sights - from evocative memorials, to surviving bits of its communist and fascist days, to its glass-domed Reichstag. We enjoy its now-trendy east side, its people-friendly riverfront, and its vibrant social scene. Reunited Berlin - perhaps the fastest changing and most happening city in Europe - is entertaining more visitors than ever.

  • 2020-04-20T02:00:00-07:00

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  • 2020-04-22T02:00:00-07:00

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West England

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