Last Updated on October 26, 2023
When Ryanair had £40 flights from London Stansted to Stockholm, I couldn’t refuse, so decided to take a weekend trip to Stockholm! I visited in May and completely lucked out with the weather as it was 25c and sunny. I did also plan my trip to coincide with the Grona Lund theme park opening days, so this was one of the main purposes of my visit.
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Weekend Trip To Stockholm
- Weekend Trip To Stockholm
🛏Duration: Saturday to Monday (1 full day, 2 nights)
📅Month of travel: May
🏨Where to stay: Jumbo Stay Arlanda Airport
🎡Highlights include: Grona Lund theme park & Gamla Stan Old Town
Where To Stay
Another reason for visiting Stockholm is that I wanted to stay at Jumbo Stay, a hotel that’s in a converted Boeing 747 airplane located at Arlanda Airport. It’s one of the most unique places I have ever stayed.
The plane was first manufactured in 1976 and has been part of the Singapore Airlines and Pan Am fleet, along with several other airlines. It has been grounded since the mid 2000’s and opened as a hotel in 2009.
They have several different types of room including rooms in the cockpit, engine and wheel house. I stayed in a triple room in the main body in the plane.
It is technically considered a hostel as some of the rooms don’t have a bathroom, instead there are shared ones at the back of the plane.
Some cool features of Jumbo Stay is the outside seating area on the wing of the plane and a landing gear tyre swing underneath! Breakfast is also included in the room rate and is open from 3am until 10am, great for early flights. You can read my full Jumbo Stay review here.
It worked perfectly for me staying here, because my flight landed late Saturday night and departed early Monday morning. Considering Arlanda Airport is quite far from the city, it was convenient to stay closer to the airport.
Jumbo Stay can be reached using the free shuttle bus which runs between the airport car park, rental car companies and the terminal every 10 to 15 minutes.
Getting To Stockholm from Arlanda Airport
There are a couple of ways to get from Arlanda Airport to Stockholm, such as the train and a taxi which are the fastest. However I opted for the VY Flybussarna coach. It was the cheapest option, especially as I pre-booked my return ticket online in advance and then just scanned a QR code when boarding the bus.
The buses depart approximately every 20 minutes and take around 45 minutes to get to Stockholm Central Station. Each bus has free WiFi and USB charging ports.
Things To Do On A Weekend Trip To Stockholm
Gamla Stan Old Town
One of my favourite things to do is to explore European cities early on a Sunday morning! They are so peaceful and great for taking photos without lots of people in them! So on my weekend trip to Stockholm I made sure to head to Gamla Stan, the Old Town district as early as possible!
I got to Stockholm Central Station around 9am and then it was a 20 minute walk to Gamla Stan.
Stockholm was first founded in the area back in 1252. There are lots of cobblestoned alleyways (including Mårten Trotzigs gränd – Stockholm’s narrowest street) and colourful buildings. One of the most popular areas is Stortoget, this square is also home to the Nobel Prize Museum.
Not far from Stortoget is a sculpture of a ‘Boy Watching The Moon‘. It is a very cute sculpture, located in a courtyard, but it is surprisingly small!
Kungliga Slottet is one of Europe’s largest royal palaces and is the official residence of The King of Sweden. The palace has over 600 rooms, a museum, a chapel and more, and is open for guided tours.
The only problem with visiting European cities early on a Sunday morning, is that many businesses are closed during this time. They are either shut all day, or open closer to lunch time.
I stopped at a little coffee cart called Fogarolli on the water’s edge, opposite the Royal Palace. They have one of the best iced chai lattes I’ve ever tasted! Highly recommend.
From Gamla Stan, I followed Strandvägskajen promenade towards Gröna Lund, which took around 35 minutes. It’s a really nice pedestrian area along the water, with several places to eat and drink. A lot of boat trips and ferries depart from here too.
There are several interesting sculptures, such as ‘Arch‘ by Ai Weiwei and ‘Obelisk Air Water‘. The Obelisk sculpture constantly changes and is said to display the current air and water “environmental standards that are being achieved by the city of Stockholm”.
The architecture of the buildings along the promenade is lovely too.
Djurgården district is the island where Gröna Lund is located. It also has many other museums such as: Nordiska Museet, Vasa Museet, The Viking Museum, the ABBA Museum and Skansen open-air museum.
If you aren’t a fan of theme parks, you could easier switch out Grona Lund and check out some of the museums that are in this area instead.
Along with staying at Jumbo Stay, one of the main reasons I wanted to visit Stockholm was to go to Gröna Lund theme park. Gröna Lund first opened in 1883, making it Sweden’s oldest amusement park!
It isn’t open year round and outside of the main summer season, it is only open on select days, mostly around the weekends, perfect for those looking to spend a weekend in Stockholm!
Visiting as an adult, I was impressed by the amount of extreme rides they have at Gröna Lund, 11 including 6 rollercoasters. The park itself has almost 30 attractions, with a selection aimed at younger visitors.
my favourite Grona Lund rides:
- Jetline – rollercoaster with steep high speed drops (top speed: 90kmh, g-force: 4.5)
- Monster – inverted rollercoaster (top speed: 90kmh, g-force: 4.5)
- Fritt Fall/Tilt – free fall tower with a tilt seat (speed: 0-100kmh in 2.8 seconds, height: 80m, g-force: 3.5)
- Katapulten – free fall tower that shoots up as well as drops (speed: 60kmh, height: 55m)
- Insane – a vertical rollercoaster unlike anything I have been on before! (speed: 60kmh, g-force: 4.5)
*Note* Since my visit to Grona Lund, and after I wrote this post, unfortunately there was an accident on the Jetline rollercoaster and someone lost their life. This is an extremely sad situation. I’m not sure what the future of the Jetline rollercoaster is at this point, but it was a ride that I did really enjoy (I went on it 3 times!), which is why I have left it in for now.
Unfortunately Ikaros, a drop tower with a 90 degree tilting chair, was closed during my visit, which I was absolutely gutted about! I managed to go on 19 rides in 6 hours (I did most of the main attractions 3 times each).
In theory the park was open for an additional 2 hours, so if I had of stayed longer, that total would have been higher!
Before I went to Sweden, lots of people told me how expensive Stockholm was. However, while at Gröna Lund I decided to go to one of the food outlets for dinner. I had fish and chips with a drink included, for the equivalent of £8.15, which I didn’t think was badly priced at all, especially for a theme park! The portion was reasonably sized too.
During the summer months, Gröna Lund also hosts a series of open-air music concerts. 2023 artists include: Westlife, Alter Bridge, Disturbed and Years & Years. Previous years have seen: Dua Lipa, My Chemical Romance, Nile Rodgers & Chic, Gwen Stefani and Bastille, to name a few.
Stockholm Central Station
As it was a beautiful day, once I finished at Gröna Lund, I decided to walk back to Stockholm Central Station via the Promenade again, rather than taking the bus or tram.
I grabbed an ice cream from a kiosk and passed through Berzelii Park and Kungsträdgården back to the station.
Stockholm Central Station is absolutely massive. It’s split into the train station area and then the bus station. I went into the Co-op to grab a drink and some snacks. They have a build-your-own to-go salad bar as well, which was REALLY popular. (I highly recommend the lime & cactus juice drink!)
Because I had a large breakfast included at Jumbo Stay and then I had the fish and chips at Grona Lund, plus the ice cream and drinks, I didn’t feel hungry enough to buy another proper meal. So I didn’t eat in any ‘proper’ restaurants while in Stockholm. I have heard that they can be quite expensive though.
If you are looking for public toilets, there are some in the bus station area. It cost the equivalent of £0.78 and I paid with my contactless bank card.
The majority of Stockholm is cashless, I paid for everything with a card.
I then had a second night at Jumbo Stay before an early flight out on Monday morning. This worked out well as I didn’t need to take my backpack into the city with me. I just used a smaller bag for my full day exploring the city.
Weekend Trip To Stockholm FAQs
Yes, Stockholm is good for a weekend away! There were 2 unique things to do in Stockholm, which were the main reason for my visit, and both lived up to my expectations! Keep in mind that Arlanda airport is quite a distance from the city centre.
Considering I spend 6 hours at a theme park located in Stockholm city centre, I was still happy with everything that I saw in Stockholm in 1 day. Especially with walking everywhere I felt like I covered a lot of ground! Just start the day early and finish late!
Yes, I would say you could see Stockholm in 2 days. I only had one full day in the city but saw everything I wanted to see. With an extra day there was a illusion museum I probably would have visited and then gone to see the artwork at some of the train stations.
About the Author – Kylie
My travels have taken me to over 40 countries worldwide (& I lived in USA for 4yrs). I hold a BTEC National Diploma in Travel & Tourism (triple distinction) and have been writing on Between England & Everywhere since 2015.
Expert in: Adventure travel🎢, beach destinations🏖️, and packing light (mid-budget backpacker)🎒
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