Saturday, February 7, 2015

Stockholm II

My friend Amanda and I went to Stockholm together today. It's very easy to take the train from Uppsala to Stockholm and it takes between 40 minutes to an hour.

After getting to Stockholm, we walked around Gamla Stan (Old Town) for a while. The last time I went it pretty much snowed or rained the entire day; however, today it was bright and clear skies with the sun shining. We took some pictures of the old, colorful buildings and the cobbled streets and pictures of the harbor. I still haven't quite figured out how to get photos off of my phone camera, but I am working on it.

We stopped and got lunch at a pretty cafe in a cellar. I had coffee with bread and soup and a cheese sandwich. Then we went to the Royal Palace and toured the historical part in the basement called the Tre Kronor museum, the royal apartments, and the treasury. Each part was very cool, but I loved the royal apartments.

It was interesting to learn about the history of the palace. Throughout the centuries different parts of the palace have been rebuilt; the outer walls have been there since the 1200/1300s. In the 1600s, most of the palace except the north wall was destroyed in a fire. It took nearly 60 years to rebuild!

The architecture of the palace was beautiful and walking through the basement made me long for a simpler, older time. I saw old parchments that were letters from kings from various other nations (one from Napoleon!). Seeing the cursive writing in gold ink on faded paper made me nostalgic for a time in which I have never experienced.

I would most certainly recommend going to and touring the Royal Palace (and don't forget to see the changing of the guard!). A large part of the royal apartments is the Bernadotte apartments which are very beautiful in design and contain paintings on the walls and the ceilings along with sculptures and other pieces, such as clocks and furniture. It was my favorite part, although the treasury which shows some of the crowns, swords, and scepters was also nice to see. One of the scepters had the drawing of a world map on it, which my friend and I found particularly creative. There are also the state apartments where the formal dining and conference rooms are currently located, but used to be private chambers for the kings in the past. Similarly are the guest apartments.

Even though I am not the type of person to spend a lot of time looking at one thing for a long period of time, it was worth taking a glance at the rooms that house the different orders, medals, and costumes. At the end, is the hall of state which is a large white room containing the silver throne where Parliament would meet with the king. I don't know much about Swedish history, but I did try to piece together some things, such as the fact that Sweden adopted the English system of knighthood, and on display was a letter from Queen Victoria!

You can check out more about the Royal Palace here:

Thus concludes our day in Stockholm. We went back to Uppsala, took the bus from central station to my place, made pasta and then went to the Uplands pub. Amanda got pear cider, while I ordered an English cider known as the green goblin. So far I think it is the best drink I have had.

Pictures will be coming soon!

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