Stay – Luckily you really don’t need to stay more than four days in Stockholm to see everything. Because most accommodation is quite expensive. Except for a hostel. If you book in advance quite a bit, you can find hostels for only €15 ($16,5) a night. Most of the time, you’ll be a little out of the city center for these prices, but you can walk around Stockholm quite easy and if necessary the public transportation is also excellent.
For better hotels, with a better location, expect to pay around 60 euro a night ($66). Actually, this is still pretty cheap for Scandinavian countries. I found out after my trip to Scandinavia that Sweden is probably the least expensive country in Scandinavia anyway.
A full list of hostels, hotels and other accommodation in Stockholm can be seen on this page.
Eat – All Scandinavian countries are expensive in comparison to non Scandinavian countries. The cheapest option for food is to cook yourself. But that’s not always possible.
Another cheap option is to eat fastfood. For a menu at Burger King you’ll pay anything between 80 and 120 SEK (€8 to €14 or $9 to $15,5). The Scandinavian burger chain Max is just a little cheaper.
Of course you can’t stuff yourself only on fastfood and you need to eat some local dishes too! For the typical kötbullar you’ll be charged around 160 to 180 SEK (€17 to €19 or $18,5 to $21).
Other dishes start at around 200 SEK.
Tap water is offered free in restaurants. Soda’s or alcohol are very expensive when dining. For a cola you’ll pay around 35 to 50 SEK (€4 to €5,5 or $4,5 to $7). Alcohol starts at 150 SEK (€16 or $17,5).
Transport – Transportation in Stockholm is definitely not cheap, but if you do a little research you can save a lot of money.
Paying per ride is very expensive, so immediately buy a multiple-day pass. In time the seven day pass is the cheapest option. It costs you just a little over 30 euro’s ($33) a person and with that you can take any kind of transport throughout Stockholm.
Tap water – Tap water is Stockholm is clean and definitely drinkable. Bring your own bottle and you’ll easily shave off a couple of euro’s or dollar’s every time you drink. In restaurants, tap water is free too when you dine in. Sparkling water does cost money, so ask for the right kind!
Lidl – The German supermarket chain Lidl is well represented throughout Stockholm. Just like in a lot of European countries, this cheap supermarket has a lot of cheap food.
Wednesday evening is museum night! – The Nordic Museum and a lot of other museums in Stockholm are free on Wednesday evenings. From 5 to 8 PM you’re welcome to visit the many museums around Stockholm, to learn a little more about art, nature or culture.
Gamla Stan – The old city center of Stockholm is the most beautiful place in the city. Gamla Stan is located exactly in the middle of Stockholm and is easily accessible from the Centralstation. Try to go to the Sveriges Kungahaus (The royal palace). The building is one giant block of concrete and is patrolled by the Högvakten (the royal guard). Wait there to see the changing of the guards.
Skogskyrkogården – Recognised by UNESCO and one of the most unique cemeteries I’ve ever visited. This giant graveyard is located about thirty minutes away from the Centralstation and shows you a beautiful amalgamation of nature and goodbye’s. The graves are placed jumbled up. Surrounded by tall trees in a broad, open plain.
As well in summer as winter it is nice to visit. Every year, on the first of november, thousands of tealights are places all over the cemetery. Beautiful way to commemorate family and friends who passed away!
Katarina Elevator – The actual elevator isn’t accessible for a few years now, but you still can walk up to the viewing platform. However, you’ll need to walk quite some steps to get there! Once you’ve arrived at the top, you have the best view over the skyline of Stockholm. Very nice to do at daytime, during sunset or at night.
Ice bar – Stockholm is the birthplace of ice bars, where you can enjoy an ice cold drink in an ice cold environment. The (almost) complete interior is made out of ice and that of course explains the cold temperatures. A visit to the Ice Bar of the Ice Hotel is costly, but a nice photo stop. Don’t expect too much though. There are better Ice Bars to see.
Shop – Sweden isn’t that costly in comparison to other Scandinavian countries. Moreover, there are a lot of cheap Swedish chains where you can find bargains. The västerås H&M always has the newest collections by the way!
Skansen – Kind of a cultural theme park that shows life in Stockholm quite some years ago. If you have plenty of time, you can do this. But it definitely is not a must do. Personally, I liked the small zoo with all the Scandinavian animals the most. This way you see animals you’re not very used to seeing.
The entrance is €10 ($11) a person.
Stay too long – Definitely during winters this just is not a good idea. The temperatures are not very pleasing and you won’t stay looking at something as long anyway. I could see Stockholm in a very relaxed pace in about three days. Two days would be the minimum though. Otherwise I think you’ll need to skip on some things.
During summer there is a lot more to do and see in Stockholm. For example, you can go to the surrounding island or take a boat tour on the many canals.
Single tickets for public transport – A single ticket for the public transportation in Stockholm costs you about two euro’s ($2,5) for every ride with the bus. And a lot more if you use the train / metro.
The cheapest is a ticket for seven days. That’s just a little less than €30 ($33) a person. With this card you can use the public transportation as much as you like in Stockholm and the surrounding areas. You can even go to Uppsala with this card.