We went on a boat tour called The Royal Canal Tour by a company called Stockholm Sightseeing. Their boat tours depart at Strömskajen across the street from the Grand Hotel and this is where you can also buy the tickets.
The Royal Canal Tour last for about 50 minutes and this is what you will see (taken from the official website of Scandinavian Sightseeing):
"We start with a trip along the shady canal of Djurgården. As the canal opens out into the sea, we return towards the city and pass Fjäderholmarna, Prince Eugen’s Waldemarsudde, the Vasa Museum, Södermalm and Slussen."
They provided headphones and you could choose your favourite language - very nicely done!
The tour cost 120 Swedish crowns.
There are also other tours, so do check their website!
If you plan to spend a day in the Stockholm archipelago, I would suggest a trip to Utö. I went there last summer (2010) and had a great experience. You can hike, rent bikes, swim by sandy beaches or really nice cliffs. The views are great and the water slightly salty and really refreshing.
Me and my friends went by local community train from Stockholm's Central towards Nynäshamn and left it on Västerhaninge station. From Västerhaninge we took the bus 846, (the bus stop is situated right outside the train station). We took the bus to Årsta brygga and from there we took the regular boat to Utö. We spent 45 min on the boat to Utö and 45 min back. This journey is quite a bit shorter than to take the boat from Stockholm, which takes 3,5 hours, single fare (totally 7 hours on boat). The boat from Årsta havsbad is 80 skr single fare.
Contacts to Waxholmsbolaget (the company that ships to Utö) below. Here is their site (with timetables) for utö: http://www.waxholmsbolaget.se/populara-resor/populara-resmal/uto/
Here is the homepage for Utö, with information about service, maps, mages etc.: http://uto.fi/2.0/main.php?lang=en
Waxholmsbolaget ships a lot of other destinations in the Stockholm archipelago as well. Check it out!
There are three stops at Utö. We went off at Gruvbryggan, close to all accomodations, bike rentals, restaurants, cafés etc. At Utö, do not forget to buy the "Utö Limpa" a very famous rye bread.
We walked, and had a great day hiking, picnicking and swimming, but to see more of the island and reach the most secluded beaches, rent a bike!
There is food to buy both on the boat (coffee, icecream, sandwiches) and at Utö (all kinds of things), but we brought our own picnics, Swedish budget style. We sat down on some nice cliffs and ate, with the sea and part of the horizon in front of us. Nice!!!
I have only once been to Stockholm so far and we used the ferry from Helsinki.
As it was in April, there was still a lot of ice on the Baltic Sea. Nevertheless, the crossing was very smoth and coming in to Stockholm in the early morning light was just breathtaking.
You can go on guided tous around the harbour, and even further into the archipelago. However, you can whizz backwards and forwards across the harbour, including the Vasa Museum and Grona Lund using the local "ferries". With an unlimited day ticket these are tremendous value.
Let me set you all straight about the Silja and Viking cruise ships. Silja is no longer Finnish owned. It was purchased by an Estonian company and while it is still a nice cruise, some folks grumble how it ain't what it used to be (mostly the sour-grapes former Finnish cruise ship staff). That said, it's a common misperception the Silja ships are more expensive and classier. What you will find if you travel both cruise lines is that the prices, cabin size, duty-free shops, buffet restaurant and entertainment options are similar. The big difference for me is what is left to eat if you happen to miss the buffet. On Silja, you will starve. There is a deli with limited hours where you can munch on rather pricey cold sandwiches (pre-packaged) and whatever else you can find - similar to a gas station which has a snack shop and no grill. What you won't find is a hot meal. However, Viking has a wonderful cafe/restaurant which offers real food at affordable prices if you miss the buffet.
Both Silja and Viking cruise ships are finely appointed. Each line builds a new ship now and then, so to say the Silja line is better because some ships were built in the 90s while Viking ships were built in the 80s is - with all due respect - misleading. It takes the Turku shipyard at least a year or more to build a cruise ship and these big babies are meant to last for decades. They don't go out of style in 10 years any more than an expensive hotel.
Here in Finland, everyone seems to have a preference - Silja or Viking. I have travelled both lines, stayed in the deluxe cabins as well as the budget ones (just above the car deck) and really, a cabin is a cabin. Don't waste your money on an A-cabin or a larger B-cabin in the winter if you travel at night because you won't see anything. Get the standard B-cabin and save those cramped C-cabins for the Nordic natives. Big cabins with panoramic views are best left for summer when it's light nearly all night long or travel during the day. The reason it's more expensive to travel at night is because many Finns hop on board in the evening, party all night, spend the next day shopping and sight-seeing in Stockholm, then take the night ship back. This saves the cost of a hotel and the cruise line will give you a pretty good deal on that type of 1-day "cruise" (Most Finns are poor and can't afford week-long Norwegian style cruises plus we have no Fjords anyways *sigh*).
However, unless saving 20 euros is REALLY important, then forget the "cruise special" and give yourself a few days in Stockholm. You can buy a one-way ticket to Stockholm with¨
another one-way ticket back for a few euros more than the "cruise special." There are plenty of decent hotels in Stockholm between 70-90 euros a night, and for the brave of heart, there's hostels which are dirt cheap (we're talking under 30 euros, folks!) Then, there's the Ibis hotels which give you a real room and a Scandanavian smorgasbord breakfast all for the whoppingly ridiculous price of 44 euros. The staff is friendly too.
Check out the website "www.hotelmania.com" for the best price comparisons for all the Stockholm hotels. Be sure to enjoy Stockholm because there is a lot to see there and some great shops. The King's Palace with its Treasure Room is truly a sight to behold if you admire huge diamonds and saphires, plus it takes at least 4 hours to walk through the entire Palace. Don't bother getting a tour guide - just grab the pamphlet and see it on your own. The nautical museum is great and if you have time, visit one of the older castles too. If you want to see Stockholm in a nutshell and don't feel like walking, take the "hop on, hop off" tour bus. It's fun and will give you an idea of where the main attractions are, plus a little bit of interesting history. And yes... you can hop on, then hop off to do some sightseeing, then hop back on - all for one low price! It's really great and we need that thing over here on our side of the pond. But hey! If museums or palaces or tour buses aren't your style, then you can enjoy walking around the old town of Stockholm, which is plenty amusing and presents many opportunities to take photographs as well as pamper yourself at an outdoor cafe (Swedes make great American-style muffins and the coffee aint as strong as what we drink here in Suomi, but it's palatable...)
In summary, I think it's a big mistake for a foreigner (or anyone with a sense of adventure beyond 12 hours of heavy drinking) to only spend 1 day in Stockholm just because it's the "cruise special". Stockholm is definitely more historic than Helsinki and the King's Palace stomps our beloved castle in Turku - or as President Obama would day, gives it a "shellacking". My first trip to Stockholm I did on a "cruise special" and since that time, my subsequent trips have been booked as one-way tickets so I can spend a night or two in the great city of Stockholm. You won't find anything like it here in Finland because Viipuri was lost in the War. Helsinki has its charms, Turku is old and dates back to Viking times, but Stockholm is one of Europe's greatest cultural centers - competing comfortably with Paris, Rome, Vienna, and London. So, enjoy your cruise, but don't cut your time short in Stockholm just because the cruise reservation desk or your travel agent tries to sell you a "cruise special". If you spend 12 hours getting to Stockholm from Finland and 12 hours back again, then you owe it to yourself to spend AT LEAST 24 hours in Stockholm. Even if it's winter... (I leave again on January 7th .... with the Viking Line of course ... YAY!!!)
Strömma Kanalbolaget (May - September)
Guided trips to Stockholm's archipelago on classic boats. Crusises from half an hour to full day. Departures daily from Nybroplan and Stadshusbron. Details: Stockholm Sightseeing Skeppsbron 22 111 30 Stockholm, Tel: 08-587 140 00 Fax: 08-587 140 44 E-post: email@example.com
CINDERELLA BÅTARNA (May - September)
Fast, modern, comfortable boats take you quickly far out into the archipelago. Daily departures from Strandvägen, near Nybroplan. Cinderellabåtarna, Skeppsbron 22, 111 30 Stockholm Tel: 08-587 140 50 Fax: 08-587 140 44, E-post: firstname.lastname@example.org
This is the boat or ferry whatever they called that I saw tourists hopping on in Stockholm city, they look like very interesting transportation to me but unfortunately I didin't try it cost too much for me.
If you want to visit Djurgarden take the Stromma ferry. Its the fastest and most picturesque way to reach Djurgarden and the sightseeing from it is wonderful. It departs every 20 min and the journey lasts approx 8-10 minutes.
See the archipelago from a cruise ferry to Finland. The ferry to Turku is extremely amazing as you are on the ship all day and there's hardly an hour where you see no island anywhere!
Click on the picture to see the large version of the map with the route!!!
I will encourage you to travel in the Archipelago of Stockholm! It is very beautiful and relaxing....
Some years ago I and my husband travelled in the Archipelago for one week. It was wonderful. If you want to do the same there are two different Archipelago Cards you can buy:
1. You can buy a 16-days card (called "The Island Hopper Pass") 2005 it costs 490 kr (please check the price yourself if it changes).
2. If you maybe already have bought a 30-days card on SL (=public transportations in Stockholm, that is bus, trams, metro etc) - you can just buy an extra boat-card for the same time for 490 kr (2004) - lower price for retired people and for childern 7 - 12 years.
When you go you just show them your both cards!
If you only want to travel once of course you don't need to buy a certain card, just buy a ticket for that day. But if you want to travel by boat more than 3-4 days perhaps, you had better count if it is cheaper to buy a card or not....
You can buy the card at
Waxholmsbolaget, Strömkajen, tel. +46-8-614 64 50, fax +46-8-611 84 07, www.waxholmsbolaget.se
You can either sleep at for example youth hostels /cottages on different islands or sleep at your hotel/hostel in Stockholm and go every (or almost every) day on a trip with a boat...
Good luch in the archipelago!!!
Discover the environs of Stockholm. Purchase a package and get around by yourself. The Excursion Store in Sverigehuset will help you find cultural pearls in the region. You can choose between almost forty complete packages both in the Archi-pelago, Roslagen and the Mälar Region. Pick and choose bet-ween attractive weekends in the Archipelago, wonderful lunch tours by boat, adventurous activities like warm air ballooning above Stockholm or weekends at palaces with good food. We also offer a special program for groups (of at least 10 persons).
To get from the Frihamnen (used by Tallink and the Riga Sea Line) to the city center you need to take the blue bus line 1. The bus stop is just around the corner, if you come out of the terminal building take the road to the left. The bus stop is opposite the 'Banankompaniet'.
The Hop-On Hop-Off boat round the harbour in Stockholm is a very pleasant and economical way of getting round the city and its islands. Leaving Gamla Stan and walking down to the waterfront we picked it up at that stop and before deciding what to do next, enjoyed a trip round the bay in the sunshine. This is the easiest and quickest way to get to Djurgarden for visits to Skansen or the Vasa Museum and from one end of the waterfron to the other. From Gamla Stan to Strandvagen is a really long walk but with this ferry you can there in a few minutes. I was thrilled to find that one of the stops was the Photographic Museum and even more thrilled to find that our boat ticket gave us a 50% discount on the entrance price.
In September 2010 The HO HO ferry cost SEK 100 ( around EUR10) and the ticket is good for 24 hours. Because of the islands and widely dispersed attractions, Stockholm can be a little confusing for first-time visitors. A ride on this ferry is an excellent way to orientate yourself as well as enjoying some fresh air and great views. Excellent also for taking a rest in between sightseeing. Feeling tired ? Just hop on the boat and rest those weary feet.
We bought our tickets at the stop by the Royal Castle. Schedules vary according to the time of year but the baoats generally run from around 10 in the morning until 6.30 in the vening. Check the websites for current information.
IMO, the most enjoyable and economical transport option for getting around Stockholm.
. ~ BY BOAT ~
Because it is a capital built on many Islands...the best way to see everything is traveling by boat!!