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Suggestions needed pre-tour Stockholm on Midsummer weekend 2015

My husband & I arrive from California at the Stockholm airport at 8am on Friday 6-19 for a RS Best of Scandinavian Tour leaving Sun 6-21 @ 4pm. We will be staying in the same hotel where our tour begins....the Hotel Wellington at 6 Storgaten in the Osterman section of town. The RS tour itinerary mentions several walking tours and includes the Vasa Museum and the City Hall.

What do you suggest we see on which days considering that I think that Saturday 6-20 is the Midsummer holiday?
I know we will be jet lagged on Friday. We usually combat that by staying up until that night on the day we arrive in Europe.
We will both be turning 60 this year but we are fairly experienced travelers in good shape and we like to walk & see the sights.
We like museums but my husband is not crazy about crowds although it sounds like he may just have to deal with them a bit. :)

I know some things will be closed on Saturday - but will there still be Archipelago tours?
What other major tourist sights will be closed during the time we are there?
I am considering going to Skansen on Saturday - is this a good idea?
(When we made these tour reservations I had no idea about Midsummer holiday.)

Also - do you have any restaurant suggestions near our hotel?

Any helpful advice will be much appreciated.

Posted by
91 posts

There are a couple of outdoor restaurants on the Ostermalmstorg square. Sorry I can't remember the name of the one where we ate, but the food was tasty. The square is 2 blocks from the hotel and is where you come up from the subway.

Can't comment on what may or may not be open on that Saturday since it apparantly is a holiday for them. We used that day to visit Stockholm's beautiful Botanical Garden, the Royal Palace museums and Armory and the Photography museum on Sodermalm island. We went to Drottningholm Palace on Sunday morning before joining the RS tour that afternoon. We went to Skansen on the afternoon of the Vasa Museum visit since there is free time that day and it is just down the road from the Vasa. Also, Skansen is open later in the evening. We did the tour last August so daylight was longer than you will have in June.

Hope you enjoy the tour as much as we did. Our guide was Ylva da Silva and she was great!

Posted by
4438 posts

Most businesses will be closed on Friday ("Midsommarafton") and Saturday ("Midsommardagen"). For museums you will need to check websites. For example, the Nordiska Museum is closed Midsommarafton.

Going to Skansen is an excellent idea and it is one of the few places that will be open over the holiday. It will be crowded, but you will get to see many special things (traditional songs, dancing around the maypole, etc.). There program is here and I'd see which events appeal to you.

Posted by
4438 posts

I just reread your post and wanted to clarify one thing. The holiday begins on the Friday (Midsommar's Eve). The games and dancing and singing primarily take place on Friday afternoon. Friday evening, Swedes enjoy a traditional meal which includes herring, new potatoes, and strawberries and cream. Then there is lots of snaps. Saturday is often more about recovering from the snaps. Stockholm might seem a bit like a ghost town the day you arrive. I'd suggest that Friday might be the better day for Skansen. It may be a bit of a challenge finding open restaurants on Friday, but Skansen has food. This is really the biggest Swedish holiday of the year.

If you want a nicer meal, Villa Godthem on Djurgården (the same island as Skansen) is a lovely setting and you could probably book online.

Trevlig Resa och Glad Midsommar!