Monday, November 19, 2018

Sunday, July 29, 2018 – Stockholm, Sweden – Mostly Sunny – 81F

We had a tour today but cancelled it – we wanted to take it easy for our upcoming big tours in Finland and Russia.

We are docked along with the Viking Sun and a number of ferry boat ships across the water from the water and amusement park.

We were told by Guest Relations that the city was walking distance from the pier. There was no shuttle service so walking or taking a cab or bus were the only options. We also had to carry our passports (not just a picture ID) here as we had to in Warnemunde.

After a room service breakfast, we checked with a local information girl at the tiny gift shop / information building just outside the first security gate. She told us that the old town, Gamla Stan, was about 2000 meters away. That seemed doable. She told us to follow the blue line on the sidewalk all the way there.

The blue line was helpful but it disappeared early on in our walk. We passed the Viking Line Ferries and then the huge Viking Sun (a slick ship). There was little shade along the route and lots of construction going on (a sign said that the pier was being renovated to improve traffic flow). We could see Gamla Stan all the way there.

IMG_20180729_Gamla Stan on our walk

Gamla Stan

IMG_20180729_Eclipse docked Stockholm

Eclipse Docked in Stockholm

We finally passed under a highway and entered the old town, situated on one of the 20 islands making up the city of Stockholm.

We checked out a number of souvenir shops before getting directions to the Stortorget Square- Royal Palace Square – Gamla Stan is not that big and it was just a few blocks to the major sights. Our first stop was in front of the Nobel Museum – in this square is the massive fountain – Stortorgsbrunnen (designed in 1778).  The well was intended to mark the center of the city and distances to Stockholm were determined using its location.

IMG_20180729_Fountain SquareS

People were filling up their water bottles with the water coming from the fountain. I didn’t think it was a risk we needed to take.

Adjacent to the Nobel Museum

IMG_20180729_Nobel Museum

was the Royal Palace (also undergoing some kind of repair),

IMG_20180729_ET Royal PalaceIMG_20180729_Stockholm Royal Palace

and the Church with the statue of Petri in front.

IMG_20180729_church in palace square

The Stockholm Obelisk, which is normally an imposing structure, had been removed (maybe for repair) and replace by a wooden miniature only about three feet high. The statue of King Gustav III still stood at the bottom of the hill.

IMG_20180729_Palace Square Gustav III

It was warmer than the posted temperature and we looked at our options to get back to the pier. A cab ride was 29 Euros and the buses were less expensive (don’t know how much) but you still had to walk a third of the way (to get to the bus and then from the bus drop to the pier). We decided to rest a while, get something to drink, and then walk back.


Gamla Stan Architecture

We found a nice little bar/café with outside seating in the shade and no nearby smokers. My huge Mariestad beer

IMG_20180729_my beer

IMG_20180729_Stockholm Brew

Yes, the sidewalk is downhill

was 79 Krona and a Coke Zero came to 39 Krona. A Krona exchanged at 0.097 Euro and the Euro is equal to 1.17 USD. So the beer was about $9 – a bit pricey but this is Scandinavia and everything is pricey. I charged the drinks so we got the best rates. We downed our drinks and headed back. We did make it all the way to the tune of nearly 11,000 steps. My legs and feet verified the accuracy of that distance.

Lunch was in the Oceanview Café – Fish and Chips (very good) and salad.

Dinner was also in the Oceanview Café – Tried the made to order Fettuccine Alfredo (not what I expected). The Cream of Broccoli soup was very good.

Phil Butler, comedy magic, was the entertainer tonight. We have seen almost his entire act done by another performer. It was really strange.

A very nice day in Stockholm.

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