Although we have spent so many times in Sweden, we never really had some proper time to see Stockholm with kids. Stockholm was more of a ‘passing by’ point for us, but not this time. We have discovered some truly great places and fun things to do in Stockholm.
Is Stockholm child-friendly?
Stockholm is a very child-friendly city. It has everything to offer for a family getaway. Besides, there is an abundance of children’s attractions and sights filled with museums. Not to mention, tons of cultural-based activities to do in Stockholm. It was great to know that Sweden preserves its heritage and as a traveler, you are able to learn more about Sweden as a whole.
How to get around Stockholm?
You can get a single bus or metro ticket inside the metro station, or at a kiosk. It will cost you around 38-45Kr and will be valid for 90 minutes.
Probably the easiest way would be to download an app SL – Journey planner and tickets. It takes you a minute to install, connect to your card, and pay for as many tickets as you need on the go.
There are also other alternatives, such as day or week passes that you can get directly from the metro stations’ machines.
Taxi is an extremely expensive option.
Accommodations in Stockholm
Any type of accommodation is quite as expensive in Sweden as anywhere in Scandinavia. But there are always Airbnb options or budget hotels at your availability.
We stayed at Wasa Park Hotel. As it was for a few nights only, it was a good available option at the time. It is located in an old-style building, and it looks quite basic, but it is super clean, friendly, and has everything you need. There are lots of spacious bathrooms with showers. Breakfasts are nice and filly. Hosts are extremely helpful. The hotel is located right in the city center, you can walk to Gamla Stan or take a metro which is just opposite the street.
Fun things to do in Stockholm with kids
Usually, people stay for a day in Stockholm before they head to another city or country. The reality is that there are lots of unique and fun things to do in Stockholm with kids. This is why we recommend considering a two-day trip instead of one. Although it may seem you can cover it all in one day, you probably don’t want to rush when on your holiday break with kids but enjoy the coolest things to do in Stockholm. Besides, many places work until 5 pm, which doesn’t give you a lot of time to wander around.
If you have limited time in Stockholm with kids, we recommend considering two islands:
- Gamla Stan, the city’s old town;
- The museum island – is located east of Gamla Stan.
Stockholm City Hall
Although Stockholm City Hall is located in Kungsholmen, it is a great idea to start your itinerary from there. It is only a 5-minute walk to Gamla Stan crossing the bridge and taking numerous photos of some breathtaking views. Besides, if you use the metro, the nearest stop is Radhuset which is considered to be one of the most beautiful stations of Stockholm Metro Art.
Stockholm City Hall is regarded as a masterpiece of Swedish National Romanticism, with tinctures of Italian and Nordic Gothic architecture. It is made out of dark red bricks which took them 12 years to complete.
It is situated on a riverside which gives you some spectacular views but be careful going down the stairs as they are slippery. You are welcome to visit the inside of the City Hall. There are the Viking-themed Council Chamber, the Blue Hall, and the Golden Hall. The Blue Hall is best known as the venue of the Nobel Prize banquet that takes place here every year in December.
It is actually a better idea to take photos of the City Hall from the opposite side of the river, so when you cross the bridge towards Riddarholm Church.
Gamla Stan – Stockholm’s Old Town
Walking along the river, you will get to Riddarholm Church. It is one of Stockholm’s oldest churches and was built on the site of the late 13th-century Greyfriars abbey.
Riddarholm Church is best known for functioning as the burial ground for Swedish monarchs for over six centuries. The interior of the church features a number of ornate pewter and gold sarcophagi.
We recommend visiting the church from the inside only if you have got plenty of free time. Unless otherwise, it is better to save some time for the Old Town and museums.
House of Nobility (Riddarhuset)
The House of Nobility, or Riddarhuset, is located almost across the street from the church. You just need to cross the tiny bridge.
Riddarhuset served as the headquarters of the Swedish nobility to convene and host events and currently functions as the meeting place for the triennial Assembly of Nobles. The interior of the building is just as pretty as its exterior and its walls are adorned with approximately 2,320 copper coats-of-arms of the nobles.
Read More: How To Visit Santa in Lapland On A Budget
The Royal Palace
The Royal Palace looks gorgeous from the outside and inside. If you have got some free time and kids’ patience, you are very welcome to visit 600 rooms that are open to the public filled with priceless works of art and craftsmanship.
The Royal Palace is the symbol of Sweden’s era as a great power in the 17th and early 18th centuries and its sublime staterooms, apartments, and artifacts are well matched to the Roman Baroque-style exterior.
Today, it is an official residence of the King of Sweden, even though they use another residence as their main. On most occasions, in the Royal Palace, there are held numerous audiences and ceremonies.
What would be fun and interesting for your kids to see is the changing of the guard that takes place in the Outer Courtyard daily at 12:15 (Sundays and holidays an hour later).
Check the changing of the guard in London.
The Royal Armoury
In the eastern wing of the Royal Palace, you will find the small museum of the Royal Armoury.
The entrance is free, and it is fairly small, so you may be on time covering other activities.
The Royal Armoury is the oldest museum in Sweden and contains a cornucopia of Swedish artifacts pertaining to the military history of Sweden, items of interest (including ceremonial costumes and coronation robes) from Sweden’s royalty, lavish carriages, and even a sled from the royal stables.
It is open from Tuesday to Sunday. The opening hours can be checked here.
Stockholm Cathedral (Storkyrkan)
The Stockholm Cathedral is located right in front of the Royal Palace and it is highly recommended to take a sneak peek from the inside. It is the oldest church in the Old Town having been constructed in 1279.
Storkyrkan is of significant religious importance in Sweden since Swedish reformer, Olaus Petri, spread his Lutheran message around the kingdom from here. The cathedral has seen numerous religious services, royal coronations as well as weddings, and funerals over the years.
Other incredible things to see in Gamla Stan, Stockholm with kids
You can spend the entire day in Gamla Stan wandering the myriad of cobblestone streets and narrow alleyways. In fact, Gamla Stan is the birthplace of Stockholm. We have stopped at Stortorget for lunch, which is a vibrant main square of Gamla Stan. There are quite a few kiosks and souvenir shops that you may like too.
Strolling around Gamla Stan, the city’s old town is so relaxing. While there are numerous charming streets in, there are four which you should particularly look into.
- Prästgatan is a quiet street with picturesque old pastel-colored houses.
- Österlånggatan, one of the two main streets and home to lots of antique shops, bookstores, and art boutiques.
- Mårten Trotzigs Gränd street, which at a width of 90 cm (35 in) at its slimmest, is the narrowest street in Stockholm.
- Västerlånggatan street is the most popular shopping street, in case you would like to buy some souvenirs.
On the way to the “Museum Island” (I called it this way because you will find there all the museums you should definitely visit while traveling to Stockholm with kids), you can either take the bus from Gamla Stan or walk along the Strandvagen promenade. If you download the app you will get all information on bus stop locations and a timetable that is pretty accurate.
Strandvagen is an incredibly beautiful esplanade situated on a waterfront. You will find it quite relaxing with kids in Stockholm strolling on a sunny day and admiring architecture and loads of boats, some of which are restaurants.
Skansen Air-open Museum
Our favorite and one of the best fun things to do in Stockholm was Skansen Air-open Museum. It is the furthest from any of the other attractions, but it is undoubtedly worth visiting. It will take you about 15 minutes to walk from the Strandvagen promenade, or you can take a bus or tram.
This is where you can learn about Swedish culture, history, and lifestyle, including their customs, culture, language, and communities. The territory contains approximately 150 historic buildings, including churches, schools, stores, and workshops. All of them showcase what life used to be like before the industrial era in Sweden.
It is a great option when traveling to Stockholm with kids because they will love this interactive museum filled with classic Scandinavian buildings, people in costumes telling you a bit more about various crafts. You will immediately get a sense of Swedish’s rural landscape.
In addition, there are Nordic animals all around you, a terrarium, and free access to an aquarium.
Check another fantastic Ethnographic Air-open Museum in the Baltic States.
Junibacken is our favorite Stockholm children’s museum and a highlight of the whole trip. It is quite rare when we would be so much impressed by the museum. If you are in Stockholm with kids, you cannot miss Junibacken.
Take a glance at the Junibacken museum from the inside. They do change the setting every half term though.
Junibacken museum contains all the literature and stories written by the greatest Swedish author, Astrid Lindgren. She is best known for several children’s book series, featuring Pippi Longstocking, Emil of Lönneberga, Karlsson-on-the-Roof, and the Six Bullerby Children. Astrid Lindgren is also known for her realism when writing the story, this is why you will find that some children’s stories are quite dramatic. Since I am from Latvia, I grew up on these books, and so I was dying to share this culture and traditions with Teo.
The best part of this museum is the train ride. Once you get in a cabin you can choose the language you want to listen to the story in. We have done two rides in Russian and Spanish. The train is taking you through all the stories featuring giant rats, a forest of horror, a tiny room of Karlson on the roof. You will be flying up overlooking the entire Stockholm, which makes this experience unforgettable.
The museum features lots of rooms with slides and numerous clever activities for kids of all ages (and even adults). My son’s favorite was to get inside the vacuum cleaner and enjoy lots of dust inside.
Vasa Museum is located 100 m away from Junibacken. This is more of a historical activity for parents rather than for kids. The museum is not big but it features one of the biggest treasures of Swedish history – a warship. It was built in the 17th century and was supposed to be the pride of the Navy.
The reality showed that due to its fatal design being way too heavy, this warship sank pretty quickly. Only after 300 years, the ship was pulled out from the Baltic Sea. Due to the sea salt content, it was well-preserved and successfully restored. In the museum, you will get to see the warship and 12,000 objects that were found under the sea.
ABBA the Museum
Who doesn’t know ABBA?
ABBA’s fans definitely cannot miss this museum. ABBA was a Swedish Europop group whose songs dominated European charts in the 1970s. This museum preserves objects of all kinds available, related to the music group ABBA and to Swedish music life.
It is not just a museum where you will walk and admire numerous objects and their records. It is a very interactive and interesting museum for kids too. You can virtually dress up in the costumes, feel yourself on the stage with ABBA, get to know each of ABBA’s members from their childhood. You can also experience the Stockholm archipelago with breathtaking views and the vibration of the helicopter beneath you. This is definitely one of the fun things to do in Stockholm.
Gröna Lund Amusement Park
If you have got some free time while traveling in Stockholm with kids, visit Stockholm’s amusement park, Grona Lund. It offers great views when on rollercoasters because it is located along the water. The only problem is that it is seasonal, so you should check the opening hours at the time of visit. They also happen to organize some festivals.
Stockholm’s Metro Art
Don’t forget that Stockholm is extremely famous for its metro architecture.
They say that Stockholm’s Metro Art is the “World’s Longest Art Gallery”. There are more than 100 stations on the Stockholm Metro and about 90 of these have intricate art displays.
There are three main stations that you may pass while traveling in Stockholm with kids, so save them on your maps and do not miss them. Remember, you have got 90 minutes to travel on public transport if you get a single ticket.
- T-Centralen (all lines).
- Rådhuset (Blue line T10 & T11) – this is if you start your itinerary from the Stockholm City Hall.
- Kungsträdgården (Blue line T10 & T11).
Other fantastic options are:
- Stadion Station – filled with rainbows
- Solna Centrum Station – looks a bit similar to Rådhuset
- Tekniska Högskolan Station – features scientific advances
- Tensta Station – showcases acceptance, equality, and love
- Akalla Station – similar to Rådhuset but a different variety of colors
Did you know…?
Stockholm is a city built on 14 islands, connected by 57 bridges over Lake Malaren and the Baltic Sea.
Stockholm Archipelago consists of 30.000 tiny islands, rocks, and skerries. It is located 80 km east of the Baltic Sea from the city.
The best thing about it is that you can be independent in exploring this fantastic phenomenon. You can arrange a ferry service departing from central Stockholm multiple times a day.
Stockholm Archipelago became quite popular in recent years. Locals and travelers come here to relax for a few days and do some activities, such as boating, fishing, hiking, kayaking, and swimming. You can find quite a few luxurious types of holiday homes too. The most well-known restaurants are Grinda and Värmdö.
Enjoy your stay in Stockholm with kids!
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