As I stated on my previous blogpost, even though Stockholm is not a cheap city to live in, it’s all a matter of perspectives. Some basic expenses like rent, food, transport, dining or clothing can be a bit pricier for you depending on where you come from. Nonetheless, the Swedes are known to give high importance to recreation and outdoor activities, which will be reflected in this article.
Here I present to you five activities to do in this city as a KI student that I found to be oddly free and that would really fix any bad day for anyone.
Museums with free entrance :
There are more than 10 museums in Stockholm with free entrance. Yes, free. This is a reflection of how important culture enrichment is for Swedes. Even though some of the most visited museums like the Vaasa or Nordiska are not on the list, all of them have really good quality exhibitions that would definitely satisfy any craving for a cultural escape. The best thing is that they are very varied regarding their exhibitions and topics, so there is always an option for something new or different. Here is a list of some of them:
- Swedish History Museum (Historiska Museet) which has one of the largest viking collections in the world
- Modern Museum (Moderna Museet), which focuses on modern and contemporary art. They also have a nice restaurant and wine bar
- Swedish Center for Architecture and Design (ArkDes)
- The Army Museum (Armémuseum)
- The Royal Armoury is the oldest museum in Sweden and it focuses on the history of the Swedish royalty
- The National Museum has the largest art collection in the country. It has been renovated and opened back to the public in 2018
- Swedish Museum of Natural History (Naturhistoriska Riksmuseet), which is the largest museum in Sweden
- The Museum of Ethnography, which focuses on culture and food
- The City Museum of Stockholm focuses on the city’s story of development
- The Museum of Medieval Stockholm
Learning Swedish is free for EU citizens and legal immigrants in Sweden. The government offers courses through their programme SFI “Swedish for Inmigrants” which is usually 6 hours a week. Please take note that you have to be a resident in Stockholm, meaning that you need to be registered and have a personnumber. Materials are also provided for free and teacher quality is excellent. For more information please visit this webpage: https://vuxenutbildning.stockholm/sfi/
Stockholm’s public transport service also includes some routes covered by boats/ferries, which are known locally as “Pendelbåtar”. These trips are included in your SL card and are treated no different from a metro or train ride.
Taking the pendelbåtar is one of the most requested activities by my friends when visiting and also one of my favorite ways to spend free time in Stockholm. The boats are really clean and well functioning, always right on schedule (as everything else in Sweden) and they all have both indoor and outdoor areas where you can take pictures or videos of the city. My favorite ride is on line 80 because you get to see the iconic street of Strandvägen in Östermalm, the facades of the Vasa and Nordiska museums, Skeppholmen, Slussen and Gröna Lund.
Moreover, there is a company called “Waxholmsbolaget” which offers most of the boat trips available within the Stockholm archipelago. Some of these trips are integrated into your SL card during the low season, which is between september and first days of may. Outside of these months, additional fees are charged depending on the trip. If you want to know more about this option just check their website: https://waxholmsbolaget.se/
Lastly, there is also a free option for a short trip in one of the coolest places in Stockholm: Hammarby Sjöstad. The company “Ressel Rederi” was commissioned by Stockholm city council to transport passengers free of charge between the 3 islands surrounding the lake. You can check their port locations by clicking here: https://ressel.se/language/en/sjostadstrafiken-en/?lang=en
Stockholm is known for its combination of a big, cosmopolitan city with a lot of nature and outdoor spaces to enjoy. One of the favorite activities for Swedes during days with good weather is to gather around to have some drinks, enjoy the sun and BBQ! There are several parks, swimming spots and even random forests around the city that have grills available for everyone. Even though the grills are built-on, it is recommended to bring your own rack or any material/mechanism you can get for cooking your food.
Here are at least three of the most popular places with grills:
Exercising is really easy in this city. As a KI student, you have free access to both KI gyms located in campus Solna and Flemingsberg. These gyms have literally all you need: from cardio equipment to weight lifting, including also special classes and sport activities on a weekly basis. You can check their webpage if you are curious by clicking in https://education.ki.se/fitness-and-wellbeing
Also, there are more than 60 “outdoor gyms” spread across the city, which are free of charge and open 24/7. This is a very convenient option when you want to work out but enjoy the weather at the same time. Check this official website to find the one that is closest to your location: https://motionera.stockholm/hitta-utegym/
Hope you enjoy these activities as much as possible! Don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any questions