Guide to Stockholm: Why you should visit the creative Swedish city
With a moniker like 'Beauty on Water', as the locals call Stockholm, you might think that the capital of Sweden is all about nature. We can't blame you: its position of being an archipelago renders postcard-worthy sights at every corner as the seasons change. But there's a creative streak too. Home to some of the world's most innovative and progressive brands like H&M and Spotify, the Swedish city buzzes with a dynamic food scene, trendsetter fashion brands, an envelope-pushing attitude, and a deep love for great design. If spending time in nature helps get your creative juices flowing — Stockholm is living proof.
Welcome to the city where creativity thrives.
A city, but with nature
Constituted on 14 islands, Stockholm is a city where you can experience the best of nature at your doorstep. Best of both worlds, we like to think. The most part of the city is surrounded by water, abundant parkland, forest and lakeshore beaches. A place that's clustered with ever-changing colours: the green of summer, the red of autumn, the white of winter. You'll get a sight (and probably a whiff) of verdant green just around any corner; or when winter rolls around, the picturesque vista of a frozen sea. We're beginning to see how the locals here get inspired now.
Where the stars align
This is what makes this place magical — the illuminating lights. The locals here somehow make it a point to set aside scintillating clusters in public spaces; even when it's not Christmas time. If you're lucky, you can even catch a glimpse of the Northern Lights that sometimes make an appearance during winter.
Crafts of every kind
If you are like us — spending every day thankful for being able to stream music from Spotify, then Stockholm should probably get the most part of the credit. The city imbues innovation — from successful tech start-ups like Spotify to luxury fashion labels with the likes of Acne Studios and fast-fashion brands like H&M. And we haven't even covered the music scene yet. First and foremost, praise be to ABBA — who made the tunes of Swedish pop a worldwide phenomenon; and till this day, their songs immortalised on the radio and in our cognitive memories. Not forgetting house group, Swedish House Mafia and the talented, late Avicii who revolutionised the genre of EDM. That's not all, indie bands and artists (old and new) like The Cardigans and Peter Bjorn and John have made their place of origin effortlessly cool in their own unique way. With music being a crucial part of the Swedes' culture, many festivals are held every year, especially during summer. From rock, dance, to hip-hop, every event in Stockholm is grounded on celebrating the best of local talent.
Architecture plays a crucial role in shaping Stockholm. Instead of stifling carbon-copy skyscrapers, the city never settles for normality. Nothing looks repetitive or adapted from another city; it's conceptualised with the brilliant minds of Swedish architects. Zooming in on monumental buildings like The City Hall, The City Library and the iconic Ericsson Globe, there's a harmonious blend of modern and medieval — never ceasing to amaze the naked eye while looking equally stunning on film.
Interiors go along the lines of crisp and clean, blond wood, while throwing in the occasional pop of colour and character. At the same time, they've also found a way to make it sustainable, with building materials that are energy efficient and eco-friendly. While the architectural shapes catch your eye, the energy-smart and sustainable building techniques will make you feel like you're visiting the future. You'll find man-made working in unison with nature; co-existing in perfect symphony.
What's on a plate
Contrary to popular belief, the food here isn't anything like what's on your lunch tray at Ikea. More than just addictive meatballs and pickled herring, Stockholm holds its own with award-winning chefs and restaurants that serve up traditional classics dabbled with modern twists. You'll also be spoilt for choice with the city's viable options for fika — which means taking a break at a café for coffee and pastries in Swedish.
In special partnership with Singapore Airlines, Visit Stockholm and Changi Airport. Singapore Airlines now flies to Stockholm 5 times weekly. Book your next getaway to explore the creative city now.