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On a day with nice weather you...
On a day with nice weather you MUST go to the city hall 'Stadshuset' and go up the tower (picture)! It's cheap and gives you a nice view of the city. The building itself is truly amazing and well worth a tour.
Another MUST in Stockholm is taking a boat out in the archipelago. There are several sight seeing boats, but if you want to join the natives (on their way to their summer houses) you should go to 'Grand Hotel'. Right outside there is a little stand where you can get information. In summer there are usually several boats waiting to take off. You buy the ticket on the boat (save ticket until you get off the boat!).
Taking the boat out with other citypeople on their way to their summer homes, is more fun than being put on a fast sight seeing boat with other tourists an kick-offs for companies. And it's much cheaper! When you get on the boat, a tip is to find the deck as soon as possible and grab a seat! You can also get a pass and go island hopping for a few days. There are youth hostels on several islands.
Home to Nobel prize ceremonies and more
The Stockholm City Hall has a solid claim to fame -- it is where the Nobel Prize banquet is held every year. That alone makes it an object of curiosity, but the Blue Hall, where the banquet takes place, is actually one of the plainest rooms in the building. The other sections are extremely interesting and are definitely worth the visit. The City Hall was influenced by many architectural styles, which are reflected in unexpected ways both inside and outside. I have yet to see another building like it.
The City Hall can only be visited on a guided tour. The tours take place ever hour from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. most of the year, with increased frequency (every half-hour) during the summer months. The cost is SEK 90 (free with the Stockholm Card). I recommend showing up early in the morning to ask when the next available tour will take place and then taking in the beautiful waterfront views from the City Hall gardens while waiting for the tour to start.
The City Hall tower can also be visited in summer. You must book your visit in advance. While the views from the top of the tower are truly breathtaking, visits are timed closely: if you spend too much time looking at the statues in the tower museum halfway to the top, you won't have much time left for the viewing platform at the top. A visit up the tower costs SEK 40.
Another way to get into the tower is to get married at Stockholm City Hall: the ceremony takes 5 minutes and is offered free of charge to everyone! But this is where the similarities to a Las Vegas-style wedding end: you must book your time at least 6 months in advance, and if you are not a Swedish citizen, make sure to prepare the necessary documents ahead of time (as Canadians, we had to present a proof of absence of impediments to marriage that could only to be delivered by the Canadian embassy).
- Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
The history of the City Hall is the history of an architect who could not make up his mind! It was designed by an architect named Ragnar Östberg in 1911-1923. Apparently this man changed his views and ideas quite often during these years so that a lot of changes occurred during the time of construction. For instance the "Blue Hall" is made of red brick - and red brick only, because Mr. Östberg decided that the red brick was so beautiful that he did not want to cover it with blue plaster! Ha ha - but the name "BlueHall" remained.....
Inspired by the palaces of the Renaissance, the architect had the Stadshuset (City Hall) built around two squares or "piazzas".
It is possible to have a guided tour through the city hall, which we did not do, but if you want to save the 60 SKr entrance fee, why not go on a virtual tour of the Stadshuset?
It is also possible to climb the tower and I am sure you have a fantastic view of Gamla Stan and Riddarholmen from the top!
The city council building is very close to the Central Station.
It faces the water, and it looks in some ways similar to a church from certain angels, with a high tower and all. Speaking of the tower, it is actually 106 metres high, and open daily for visits from may to september... count on some good views!
You can also enter the main building of course. There are several guidance tours, especially in summer but even the rest of the year.
The building is not very old, in fact it was inaugurated only 80 years ago, in 1923. Supposedly 8 million bricks make up the brownish red facade.
Especially beautiful is it when the sun hits the colden adornments on the roof... I passed a fine sunny spring day, and got some really nice pics...!
The Nobel Prize City Hall
Stockholm City Hall (Stadshuset) is an impressive redbrick structure dating from the 1920s. It is situated on Kungsholmen island and the building is famous for hosting the annual Nobel Prize ceremony. The tower is 348 feet (106 metres) high. In the summer, from April to September, the tower itself is open to the public and the view from the top is quite beautiful. At the foot of the tower there is burial monument (cenotaph) dedicted to the founding father of the city of Stockholm - Birger Jarl. The cenotaph features a dazzling gold statue of a reclining Mr B.
- Museum Visits
This city hall of Stockholm is very very special and famous becuase every year overhere the Noble Prize Awarding ceremony is organised. From far distance this Hall looks like an old Church but it is not ;-)
- Adventure Travel
The City Hall of Stockholm, Stadshuset, was designed by the Swedish architect Ragnar Ostberg and was built between 1911 and 1923. The combinations of architectural styles is very typical: the shape of the building is based on Italian Renaissance "Palazzo"style. It has two innersquares inside the building that are surrounded by impressive high and simple walls, and all around the building there are walkways. But the Swedish influence is that all these Mediterranean shapes are built with very red bricks, 8 million of them were used.
It is possible to climb the great tower at the corner of the building.This 106 metres tall construction offers you a magnificent view of the city. You can see all the islands with a close look of Riddarsholmen and Gamla Stan. To get here though, you have to climb the whole tower by foot, because there were no elevators in the beginning of the 20th century.
At the top of the tower the symbol of Sweden is added: Tre Kronor, the Three Crowns. Just like the complete top of the tower, this is covered with gold.
Inside the Stadshuset you can see several wealthy decorated official halls that are used for al kinds of events. Gold, mosaic, a huge organ and several sculptures decorate the building.
- Arts and Culture
The modern city hall
It is a modern city hall looking at other old towns. This red building was constructed in 1923. Maybe the outside view is not so beautiful, but it looks very differently inside with lot of decorations.
Nobel winners are innaugurated at this town hall.
- Historical Travel
- Arts and Culture
The octagonal room
During your tour of the city hall, you will see this very small room called the "Octagonal Room". This is where civil weddings are held on Saturdays. I was told that up to 40 couples get married each Saturday here, and that they can have the long ceremony or the shor ceremony. The long ceremony only lasts for about 90 seconds! So imagine the short ceremony!
It is also interesting to know the architectural story in this room, so take a good look at the picture of the chandelier, and then follow me to the next tip to hear the story.....
- Arts and Culture
- Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
The tapestries in the Octagonal room
These tapestries hang on the walls of the Octagonal room in city hall, and are very precious works that made their way to Sweden from France. Eventually, the city hall got posession of them, but they had no proper room in which to display them. So, in the end, they actually built the Octogonal room specifically to accommodate the tapestries! Every detail in the tapestries has been taken into account when the room was built.
If you look at the chandelier in the previous tip, you notice at the top something that resembles a small umbrella--now look at the photo of the tapestries and you' find that very same umbrella. Also the blue thing hanging down from the top of the chandelier is clear to see on the tapestries. The walls of the room have even been sculpted to match patterns represented in the tapestries.
It's pretty amazing that they paid so much attention to detail when they built this room!
- Family Travel
- Arts and Culture
The most important mosaic in city hall
I've already talked about this "Golden Hall" in my preevious tip about city hall, but wanted to give you a close up photo of this most important mosaic. In the center of the mosaic is a lady that represents Sweden. Certainly she is not a very attractive lady and that is what Stockholmers did not like when it was first done. They felt she was quite ugly and that it appeared she had snakes for hair. Stockholmers have come to accept her as she is, finally.
In her lap, she holds the city of Stockholm, and to her right there is the "Eastern World"--Turkey, India, Asia....and on her left is the western world, with Paris and the Eiffel Tower and even the US Flag and the Statue of Liberty in NY. She sits in the middle of both worlds, symbolizing that she, Sweden, is the link between east and west.
City Hall in Stockholm
A view of Stockholm showing the City Hall 1911–23, where the Nobel prizes are awarded. A vast, unmistakable building that blends modernism and Northern Renaissance styles, it has become Stockholm’s best known landmark.
- Castles and Palaces
- Historical Travel
Nice Resting Spot, and camera opportunity
This place is suburb during the summer months. I even had the rare chance of seeing sunbathers in a seemingly beachless city. But this city, like stockholm, is impeccable; beautiful people, great water side avenues in the summertime, vintage architecture.
I discovered a beach! Picture three; walk along a trail called Norr Malarstrand due west starting at the Town hall tower for 10 minutes, and you will finally reach a great outdoor sunbathing area and frisbee throwing with a vendor for ice cream and such. Enjoy that area, but keeping going shortly on Smedsuddswagen street along the water, and you will reach the beach of wonders! This was just what we were looking for in between the sometimes stressful city touring.
Looks older than it really is
One of the most impressive buildings in Stockholm is the Stadshuset (City Hall). It looks like an old building but it was actually completed in 1923. You can only enter the building as part of a guided tour, costs 60 SEK per person, available at 10am and 12pm (extra tours during the summer months). The tour is well worth the visit - you'll get to see the Blue Hall where the Nobel banquets are held each year, and the extravagant Golden Hall, covered in gold mosaics.
You can also go to the top of the tower for views of the city, costs 20 SEK, open daily from 10.00am to 16.15, May to September.
The City Hall
The City Hall of Stockholm is one of the most beautiful and well known buildings in the world and the most exclusive ballroom in Stockholm, frequently used for e.g. the yearly Nobel Banquet. Behind the brick walls, several different activities take place.
The City Hall is known for its hospitality, its unique art treasures, magnificent banquettes and an intriguing history attracting close to 400,000 visitors a year.
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