The royal and parliament buildings were very grand and imposing.
We went inside the royal palace which had very ornate 18th Century style rooms on one level, but contained a medieval dungeon/basement on another. I’m guessing Buckingham Palace wouldn’t have one of these since it’s relatively new, built in the 19th Century.
We learned a bit about the Swedish royal family and its long history. Being from a country where the gossip magazines are saturated with the going-ons of the British royal family, it comes as a bit of shock to learn that other countries have monarchs that are well-loved too.
A couple of hours on the train (including a ride over the 8km long bridge between Denmark and Sweden), and we were in Stockholm. Stockholm was also a city built around the water, but it felt much more grand and expansive. It was however still quite flat, so bicycles were once again out in force.
Again, there were parts of the city centre that were quite Parisian in feel.
But we liked its old town, Gamla Stan, on an island, resplendid with cute cobblestoned streets and shops.
The weather, as you can see from the photos, wasn’t quite cooperating. Nonetheless, one can still sit comfortably outdoors in a cafe/bar, as blankets were provided.
From an Australian point of view, there’s something a bit wrong about sitting at a bar under a doona, but for Swedes, who experience many a long, dark night in the winter, one needs to take advantage of every opportunity to be out of doors.