Beauty on water

Beauty on water


Sweden has emerged an important Scandinavian country. Stockholm, its capital, lies on the east coast, at the entrance to Lake Malaren.

skyline: An aerial panoramic view of Stockholm.

Geographically an archipelago, Stockholm’s clear water flows through its intersecting canals, giving it a soft, serene glow.

As in most countries, the castles, palaces, churches and museums reflect its past history.

Though the sights are located on different islands, they are very well connected and the transport system is very efficient.

Drottningholm Palace, located on Lovon Island, was the private residence of the Swedish royal family.

Currently, it is a UNESCO World Heritage site. It is noted for its Chinese Pavilion and
Drottningholm Theatre which are open to the public at select times.

One of the oldest structures, Riddarholm Church situated on Riddarholm Island, was a burial place of Swedish kings and queens.

A great attraction on Djugarden Island is the Vasa Museum. In the early 17th century, during the reign of Gustavus Adolphus, a warship named Vasa was built. After sailing a short distance in the sea, it sank.

The maiden voyage, which started off with much fanfare, was a failure. In 1961, the ship was salvaged and found to be almost undamaged. Housed in the Vasa Museum, it is as impressive as it is massive.

In Sodermanland, by Lake Malaren, is the imposing Gripsholm Castle of King Gustav Vasa. It has been converted into a museum. Its National Collection of Portraits ranks among the oldest and most interesting ones. The Royal Stockholm Palace stands on the island of Standsholmen in Gamla Stan (meaning Old Town). It is the official residence of the Swedish monarchs.

Stadshuset, the Stockholm City Hall, lends distinction to Kungsholmen Island. Its Gold Hall, with its walls of gold mosaic, is grandiose. All the Nobel Prizes, except for the Peace Prize which is given in Oslo, Norway, are awarded in the Stockholm Concert Hall. But the exclusive Nobel Prize Banquet is held in the Blue Hall of the Stadshuset.

A walk up the high street of Fjallgatan, on the edge of a cliff, gives spectacular views of Stockholm below. The combination of historic environment and old world charm leaves a lasting memory.

What beckons in central Stockholm is Kungstradgarden, a royal kitchen garden in earlier ages. It has been converted into an extensive park and is an extremely popular meeting place for the young and the old with its outdoor cafes.

Open-air concerts and other cultural events are held here in summer. On the rink provided, there is a lot of ice skating in the winter. In the neighbourhood are the Swedish Synagogue, Stockholm Metro Station, and the Royal Swedish Opera.

For the discerning shopper, especially those who want to indulge in leisurely, relaxed shopping, Sodermalm and Ostermalm offer a host of glamorous, trendy, elegant and stylish products.

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