Skansen was open as long ago as 1981 and is said to be the first world's open-air museum. You can see there old traditional Swedish buildings and farmhouses coming mostly from 18th and 19th centuries. What's important, most of the houses are open (at least in summer), so you can come inside and look at the interiors, talk to the owners dressed in traditional clothes, buy buns at the bakery, watch the folk dance shows on the Tingsvallen stage or see a blacksmith at work. If you are tired of walking ( the area of Skansen is about 300 000 square metres) there are some peaceful nooks, including a rose and herb gardens.
I entered Skansen through the Hazelius gate. It's from this gateway, the funicular railway runs.
As I already knew I had a lot of walking to do, I went up the hill by Funicular and I walked back down at the end of my day.
This Funicular was built at the Stockholm exhibition in 1897. The funicular re-opened in 1973 with safety enhanced and with a longer route.
The funicular starts at the Hazelius Entrance and stops at Tingswallen near Bollnas square and the Delsbo farm. It probably is the best way for people with a stroller or wheelchair.
It is driverless and takes off at a certain time.
Please check the website for operating times, as it begins operation at 10am each day, but finishes at different time's throughout the year.
"Skansen is like a miniature Sweden. The old farmsteads and houses have been brought here from all over the country. They are seen surrounded by gardens and cultivated patches that are typical of the time and place. You can also see wild animals, mainly from Scandinavia, and rare breeds of farm animals. There are trees and plats here from all parts of Sweden".
So, you take bus 47. A convenient bus stop is just outside Sweeden's House, the Tourist Information Center, so you go there, they give you the info ("take bus 47") and you go out and make use of it. The bus passes very frequently, like every 5 mins.
When it reaches the island you might start asking yourself where to hop off. Well, don't, wait until it reaches the end. You get out and the park entrance is just there. You go to the counter. You buy your ticket, they give you a map and you start wondering around.
The place is marvelous. If you go to the right you will see the animals first - wolves, bears,wolves, elks... Three newborn bears were there when we arrived, and they were sooo cute as they were jumping here and there.
And then going round, you reach the glassworks, pottery, the bakehouse and all. All shops are also selling products. Outside the bakehouse there was a line of people who, as we did, were leaded there by the smell. We saw how they make them, and then we ate them. Mmm.
All over the park there are places where you can have a rest, drink a coffee, have something to eat - the map provided at the entrance is very helpful.
Some things to consider:
*Take some water with you before entering if you come early - the park opens at 10.00am but the coffee shops open at 11.00am and the restaurants at 12.00am.
I asked at the "Solliden" restaurant, 10.55pm, where can I find some water and she said I should wait for the coffee shop to open. Well... she could have given me a glass from the tap, non? But she didn't, so, bring your own;
*At the zoo area there is this little kiosk selling souvenirs and animal toys. The collection is not the one expected, not the animals that you see in this zoo.
I wanted to buy something for the kids, relevant to the park. I chose a bear - there was not a brown bear, the only available was a polar one, but, ok my daughter could live with that. I bought a moose for my son. Hopefully it was supposed to be a Sweden moose, no? After all The elk/moose is the largest mammal in Sweden. And then I check the tags: "Moose live in the northern-most regions of North America". Huh? Well, the products are of a US company, fabriqued in China. If this is not globalization, then what is :D.
*There is NO ticket discount for SL Tourist Card holders.
During our visit in the city I had a Time Out - Stockholm guide with me. Very useful. And there I read: "SL Tourist Card also provides free travel,...., plus 50 per cent off Skansen". We go to the Tourist Information Center, Sweden's house, first thing before we start seeing things around, I ask the lady if this is the case, she says yes. But when I reach Skansen and ask for the discount, the lady tells me "no, sorry, this used to be but not anymore". Really disappointing, I was counting this discount when considering buying this card, so it seemed good - but for two days that we had to spend in Stockholm, given this fact, the value for money relation of the card was not that good anyway. Oh well...
At Skansen on Djurgården you will find buildings and houses form past times. Both buildings like this old bank house to whole farms with animals and people working, just like it used to look like in the old Sweden.
When Skansen was founded in 1891, there already were trees, shrubs and flowers.
The original idea, was for farms to be made look the same as where they had been moved from. Mountain birch trees were planted around the Sami camp and fir at Alvros farm from Harjedalen, just to give you an idea.
They even have a Butterfly garden, where special plants attract Butterflies.
I really liked the Parterre Rose garden, spread out over 16 blocks on the terrace between Sagaliden and Sweden's gazebo.
The location of the Rose Garden was laid out by shipowner John Burgman in the early 1800's.
He cultivated not only roses, but also pineapple, peach and grape vines.
From the Terrace, there are good views over Stockholm.
At Stockholms Glasbruk built in 1936 you can see glass blowers in action, making beautiful glasswork creations.
In the shop you can also buy the creations, but be aware that they can be quite expensive. You can though find glass with some smaller defects to really cheap prices. And I think that it's often even better with such creations, the defects just make the glass unique.
Please join me on a walk around the Village
As I walked around the Village, I found that each house or farm belonged to a different area, which had different culture and tradition's.
The Delsbo Farmstead was the first I came across. These building's came from north-central Sweden and it's made up of four building's surrounding a courtyard. The setting represents a large, prosperous farm in the mid-19th century.
I was invited inside by the Lord & Lady of the House, both dressed in traditional clothes.
They spoke English so I was able to find out a little about the home, and the richly decorated wall paintings.
Next, I walked onto the Sami Camp which is an autumn and spring camp for the mountain Sami. It shows how the mountain Sami lived at the beginning of the 20th century when they still followed a nomadic existence, moving about with their reindeer.
The northern parts of Sweden, Norway, Finland and Russia are home to a Sami population of more than 70.000 people.
The Sami national day is celebrated on the 6 of February with music, speeches and souvas - a savoury dish of reindeer meat and other things....At sami camp, Skansen.
If you don't get the chance to see some of the real Swedish wildlife, make sure that you at least visit Skansen at Djurgarden.
Skansen is a kind of open air museum combined with a zoological park. Here you can see all kinds of typical building and activities from the past Sweden. You also find all the typical Nordic animals, like reindeers, wolverines, lynx and elks.
The Bredablick, is a 30 metre high tower, built of brick, in the north-eastern area of Skansen. It is described as a gothic tower, has five floors and a viewing platform 77 meters above sea level. .
The Tower was renovated in the 1980's and now has a cafe and a viewing floor at the top of the tower.
The Tower wasn't moved to this site, but was built here in 1874-76.
The Oktorp Farmstead comes from Halland and was moved to Skansen in 1896. it's quite a large farm with many thatched roofed farm building's. What looked to be Stable's surround quite a big open, cobblestoned yard.
The Oktorp Farmstead was the first farm to be erected in the Village in its entirety. It shows what a farmstead in the flat countryside in Halland looked like in the 1870s, when the Lundqvist family, Ake and Christina and their daughter Hanna, aunt Beata, grandmother Ingeborg and their two farm-hands lived there.
This cottage comes from the village of that name in Vastergorland.
The cottage was different to others in the Village, in that the wall's were built with giant boulders.
There was an L- shaped, thatched roof home, a cow-shed and a Barn.
An Open Air Village always has to have some old time shops!
In this village, there are the ones that sell ice-creams and souvenirs, set in old buildings, but modern inside.
Then there is the other type, the old building, with the old interior, and what is for sale in the shop is as it was a long time ago. You don't buy, you just look and reminisce how it was in the
"good old days!"
Skansen Open village has a lot more to see and offer than I have written about.
I spent quite a bit of time here, but really you need at least a half to a full day to see everything.
I visited on a weekday and was surprised to see the people at the Village in traditional costumes. On weekends, I imagine that would be when the Village is alive with all the tin smiths, leather worker's etc., going about their trades.
All the shops would be open, not just some like when I was there.
I saw the Animals and other buildings, but there still were a lot more to see. I saw different windmills and how they fenced years ago.
It really was a very interesting, well done Village.
This concludes my tour, I hope you enjoyed it and will go and see for yourself.
Skansen houses also a ZOO with nordic animals: elks, seals, wolves and bears, including three orphaned little brown bears whose mother was killed by a train in Finland. The information like that helps me believe that perhaps keeping animals in captivity isn't always so pointless...