Flights during summer can set you back over £100 but can drop to around £65 in the autumn/ winter months from Manchester. Return flights from Stansted can be found for as little as £46 in September, rising to around £80/£90 in summer.
Airport to Centre
A return bus ticket from Stockholm Arlanda to the city centre costs around £20 return, while a return ticket for a 20 minute train ride can cost you upto £50 if you’re travelling alone! However, prices are available for groups, with 4 people able to travel for £24 return, each.
For a group of up to 4 people, a taxi might be your best option as most firms offer a fixed price to the centre which is cheaper than the train.
We chose to stay with City Backpackers Hostel which appeared to be the most reasonably priced place in Stockholm. Well located on Upplandsgatan, you have plenty of restaurants/ bars and shops on your doorstep.
As a group we rented one of their ‘apartments’ which contained 3 bunkbeds, a kitchen, bathroom and TV/ eating area. This worked out at around £55 each for 2 nights. Like most Scandinavian hostels you will also be charged on arrival for the rental of bed sheets which is annoying despite it being a small cost.
The room was fit for purpose for a short stay and in an expensive city it was good to have the option to cook without using the communal facilities.
Though nicely decorated I found the communal area of the hostel very sterile and unsociable, although the hostel’s bar/ restaurant, which feels very much a separate entity was excellent.
Things to Do
Free is always good, so the Swedish History Museum is a good start as its easy to kill a couple of hours, who doesn’t like Vikings and swords?
Although we didn’t go ourselves, taking a ferry to one of Stockholm’s archipelago islands is recommended, with Fjäderholmarna high on the list.
Stockholm is just a cool city to have a wander – numerous parks, a picturesque water front and a quaint old town, its easy to clock up the steps on your Fitbit (if that’s your sort of thing).
Places to Eat
As mentioned earlier, the restaurant owned by our hostel, Nomad, was superb, with a local telling us they serve the best meatballs in Stockholm. I’d be inclined to believe him as I went back both days, tasty is an understatement and even better with the hostel discount which meant the meal cost around £9.
Being English I also couldn’t resist a curry, Mother India a short walk from the hostel was our choice and I had no complaints. A Chicken Vindaloo, rice, poppadom and a coke set me back about £20.
Bars/ Pubs/ Clubs
Stockholm is pricey, with bars near the hostel charging around £5+ for a pint, minimum. The Flying Dog was a decent boozer with a nice atmosphere which we paid a couple of visits to.
Although we barely touched the surface of Stockholm’s nightlife, Thursday nights (in the area we visited) weren’t up to much. We managed to carve out a bar crawl and end up in a club till late but it was a hardly a classic, spending the best part of £40 on 3 jagerbombs was a particular lowlight. Although I did find the Swedes to be friendly and had a lengthy conversation about Frankie Boyle & Bill Hicks with a Ragnar Lodbrok look-a-like who looked like he could cave my skull in with ease.
Stockholm is a nice city and would be a brilliant place to live, for a weekend break there’s enough to keep you occupied but I can’t say I found anything particularly memorable about the place. If you’re going for a drinking weekend then expect to spend a lot but it can be done on a reasonable budget if you’re frugal and not an alcoholic. If it was a toss up between the two then I would choose to go back to Oslo, ahead of the Swedish capital but with flights being as cheap as they are, why not do both?