Well, week three has now been completed and it was not too bad. I arrived here in Stockholm on Sunday a week ago, and when arriving at the hotel and seeing my room, I felt ah – I like this place, the room were less sterile in a way. This hotel is an older building and I think it use to be some sort of military house previously. You can sort of tell by the design and how it looks.
Being here in Sweden makes it a bit easier of course, I can speak my native language, navigate well in the city etc. But, after three weeks I am starting to get a bit home-sick, but am trying to make the most of my stay here. Today, Saturday, I got up early and went into the city to walk around in my favorite part of Stockholm city, the Old city or as we say Gamla Stan. It’s an old part of the city [hence the name] beside and around the royal castle.
I love these buildings at Stortoget, it’s an open square covered in cobble stones and there’s a big sort of statue thingy in the middle, you have the nobel museum there and some restaurants. I was out walking at 9.30am this morning and did cover some distance. It’s nice when you get to a place that you are familiar with, you know the places to go to, the coffee places etc. I started at a coffee place called Gråmunken [the Gray Monk] where I had a coffee and a cinnamon bun [of course]. The way they make coffee here is just amazing, you always get your caffee latte served in a glass, and the coffee tastes so much stronger and nice.
This is how a typical Swedish cinnamon bun looks like and they are absolutely gorgeous.
Here is Stadshuset, Stockholm City Hall, and if you look at the top of the tower you’ll see the typical Three Crowns, that is the national sign for Sweden. The Three Crowns. And if you are a fan of ice hockey, you might have heard the name of the Swedish national team, they are called Three Crowns, mainly because they have the symbol on their jersey’s.
I was amazed to see that this old telephone booth still stood there, these were very common in the past along the streets. But as far as I know there is only one left, I did not come across others during my walk today.
This is the narrowest “street” in Gamla stan, Mårten Trotzigs Gränd it’s called, and not sure if it’s correct to call it a street, it’s only a narrow step between two buildings.And as you can imagine, the old city is sort of built on a hilly place, there are steep streets, steps and you can spend hours just walking around between the houses. I love these narrow streets and almost all of them are covered with cobble stones.
There is one street here that is sort of the main street, the side of the street is covered with swedish gift shops, design boutiques, coffee places and restaurants. I try to avoid this street even though I enjoy walking among the people here funnily enough. I try to avoid crowds, but in a city with a lot of tourists it is hard. But, I did find some streets that was very quiet, like the ones on the pictures above. And after six hours of non-stop walking I felt it was time to head back to the hotel to take some rest and prepare myself for my next journey, which will take me to Oslo in Norway. This time I will travel by train and that should be interesting I would think. Oslo, will be my last stop before I finally head back to Ireland and normality again. And as much as I love travelling, being on a business trip is a lot different from doing a leisure trip I tell you that much.
I will be back next week for another update, then from a snowy [I think] Oslo.