When we got to the Nordic Sea Hotel, I still could not get the little computer to recognize the wireless, and this time, no plug. So, we waited to blog when we got home. We just wanted to play for a few days anyway, so please forgive us. Our lovely suite had more to offer in the way of Swedish style:
We toured the Royal Palace:
… and saw the changing of the guard:
… and before we realized we were not to be taking pictures in the Royal Palace, we got a few photos. I’ll just share this statue with you:
Now, that’s a kiss folks!
We saw the Nobel Museet where they display the Nobel prizewinners throughout the ages. The funniest part we thought was the biographies were on cards that were hanging on these tracks (like clothes at the dry cleaners) and they would move along the tracks and display so everyone could read them. You can see the little cards and the track at the top of this photo:
I found it heartwarming to know that so many of these awards have been given out that they had to think of this ingenious method of displaying them all.
We visited Gamla Stan, or Old Town:
… and this was one of the medieval squares called Stortorget. In 1520, this was the site of a blood bath when Danish King Kristian III decided he wasn’t going to keep his promise of amnesty and took all the men from a party out to be shot. Eighty people lost their lives in this square that day long ago.
Today, it’s a lovely place with shops and restaurants. We had a lovely lunch in one of them on the outdoor tables that looked out over the soft falling rain.
They were smart about the cold too and had overhead heating devices (common in Colorado), but they had one thing that Colorado restaurants could start using: fleece blankets!
No kidding! The chairs each had a blanket folded over the back and if you wanted to eat outside, which we certainly did, you could eat out there all wrapped up in a blanket! This thrilled me more than I can tell you. What could be better than people watching with an icy martini in your hand as you sit warm on a porch looking over a medieval cobblestone square?
The next day, we visited Djurgarden, which was the former royal hunting ground and a lovely forested island. This is the gateway to the king’s hunting area:
… and there were lovely parks covered with trees and flowers:
… and lovely walkways that are lit at night:
This was definitely our favorite island.
This island also houses the Vasa Museet with the huge ship they recovered. Stephen spent a day touring here and eating in the museum with his work folks, so he was finished with this museum. I can only take one museum a day, so we went together to the Nordiska Museet where I found the social customs hall and the descriptions of feasting to be the most interesting:
… and that lead us to lunch at Bla Porten, also called the Blue Door. A great little cafe with a huge table just with cakes! I had the best chocolate mousse I’ve ever had at the Blue Door.
When we got back to the Nordic Sea Hotel, we had to go in the Absolut Ice Bar. This is the wall in the hotel lobby that looks into the ice bar:
… and here we are in the ice bar – all bundled up:
… and me clowning around. Seriously, it was so cold in there! We could only stay for a little bit.
Next day, we took a boat tour around all of Stockholm. This was really cold as we were sitting in the open air section in the very back of the boat, but we got the best views.
We went through two locks:
… and toured in both the Baltic Sea and a lake (can’t remember the name of it and I probably couldn’t say it anyway):
… and saw the leaves changing colors:
In short, we had a blast!
… and we didn’t even worry about phoning home:
To our great relief and joy, the kids had the house cleaned up and straight and everything was lovely and cold when we got home. After almost 20 hours of traveling, we were truly knackered, but it was good, good, good to be home. I love a trip that is long enough that you look forward to returning.