The capital of Sweden, Stockholm, is often considered as the most beautiful city in Scandinavia! This gorgeous coastal city is composed mostly out of either waterways or greenspaces, giving it a more open and natural atmosphere than most other national capitals. The urban areas are also home to Scandinavian design, a thriving speciality coffee scene and interesting cultural highlights.
As a city that is spread across multiple islands (with 14 in the city centre alone), it can be difficult to navigate your way around Stockholm. Like the rest of Scandinavia, it is also notoriously expensive – so it’s important to consider your options before booking your trip.
That’s where we come in. We’ve consulted travel experts, locals and bloggers to bring you this guide to the four best places to stay in Stockholm. Whether you want nightlife, culture or somewhere to kick back and relax with the family – we have you covered!
So let’s get started!
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At A Glance: Where To Stay In STOCKHOLM
Looking for a specific place to stay? These are our highest recommendations for places to stay in Stockholm.
|WHERE TO STAY IN STOCKHOLM|
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AirBnB Plus are apartments that are selected by the website for their excellent interior design and high customer reviews! Though there are a few of these across Stockholm, this newly refurbished apartment in the heart of the Old Town is the perfect choice for easily getting around the main attractions.
Scandic are a popular budget friendly hotel brand across the Scandinavia region – and their Norrmalm hotel is a perfect example of why they are so loved by their regular guests! Housed within a historic building, their interiors are beautifully designed to contemporary standards. It is also only a short walk from the train station.
This gorgeous five star hotel is housed within a traditional Swedish building – giving you the chance to experience a little bit of local history and culture from the comfort of your hotel! Rooms are beautifully decorated, and arranged to let in plenty of natural light to ensure a relaxing atmosphere.
Whilst Stockholm is home to over 24,000 islands in the wider region, the city centre is split into four areas and for most tourists these will be the places you spend most of your time! The city is packed with great entertainment, dining and nightlife options – and each neighborhood has something different to offer guests.
The Old Town, known as Gamla Stan in Swedish, is the epicentre of most tourist activity and likely where you will spend a lot of your time! Alongside some of the most interesting historic attractions, the Old Town is also home to the most typical nightlife venues in the city – with plenty of great bars and clubs dotted around the area.
Heading north from the Old Town, Norrmalm is home to the main business district in the city, and acts as the financial hub not just for Stockholm but Sweden as a whole! This area is more modern, though contains most of the cultural highlights – as well as some excellent shopping destinations. For first time visitors, Norrmalm is a great way to ease yourself into the city, and is well connected to all of the other areas.
Just east of Norrmalm, Ostermalm is a mostly residential district – though has some quirky attractions waiting to be discovered! For families, Ostermalm provides a calm backdrop where you can enjoy some of the city’s most laid back attractions. This is one of the most upmarket areas in the city, but is well worth it if you can afford to splurge.
Finally, on the opposite side of the Old Town is Sodermalm. This is not only the trendiest neighborhood in Sweden – but is repeatedly named as one of the trendiest neighborhoods in the world! This is where you will find classic Scandinavian design, hip coffee shops and innovative restaurants, as well as a youthful atmosphere.
Whilst there are some great neighborhoods in the outskirts of the city – particularly the Stockholm Archipelago – all four of the inner city neighborhoods provide great links to the best destinations further afield. We recommend staying in the city centre and booking either tours or day trips from there!
Still undecided? Don’t worry – we have a more extensive guide below!
Let’s take a look, in more detail, at the four best neighbourhoods in Stockholm. Each caters to different interests, so be sure to pick the neighbourhood that’s right for you.
Norrmalm is both the economic and cultural heart of the city – and is home to a large collection of museums, art galleries and theatres! It is also one of the best areas for discovering the city’s established culinary tradition, with some excellent restaurants waiting around every corner. For first time visitors, Norrmalm is easy to get around and a great introduction to the city.
Head further north into Norrmalm, you will also find some of the more budget friendly accommodation and dining options! There’s no escaping how expensive Sweden is, but opting to stay here can help make it a bit easier on your bank account.
This stunning AirBnB Plus apartment takes the best of Scandinavian design, and elegantly combines it with the historic setting it is in to create a bright and airy space! Sleeping up to five guests in two bedrooms, this is an excellent choice for families and large groups visiting Stockholm.
This much loved budget hotel brand has one of the best rated three star hotels in the city! Up in the northern reaches of Norrmalm, it is in a peaceful neighborhood that is nevertheless well connected to the city centre. Rooms are spacious, and many of them come with great views across the city. Breakfast is included.
This five star hotel might seem unassuming from the outside – but inside it is one of the most luxurious offerings available in the city! Alongside an elegant wine bar, At Six also has a large terrace where you can soak up the city atmosphere. It is only a short walk away from the Nordiska Kompaniet department store.
Ostermalm, whilst still technically part of the inner city, is one of the most peaceful districts in Stockholm! As a mostly residential neighborhood, it is a great option for families that want to stay close to the city centre whilst avoiding the busy atmosphere. It is also packed with kid friendly attractions to keep the little ones entertained.
As one of the most upmarket neighborhoods in the city, Ostermalm has plenty of independent boutiques and upscale restaurants to check out! If you are on a budget, there are also some hip cafes waiting to be discovered.
This gorgeous apartment right by the waterfront is on the top floor of the building, and therefore benefits from access to a rooftop terrace! This gives you unbeatable views across the city centre and towards the Old Town. It is located right next to the Humlegarden public park.
Right in the heart of Ostermalm, the Pärlan Hotel is surprisingly lavish giving its budget friendly rates! With rooms that can accommodate two adults and a child, this is the perfect choice for smaller families visiting the city. A continental breakfast is included, and local restaurants can be booked from the front desk.
Though the hotel is relatively new, the building itself dates back decades and serves as a little piece of Stockholm history! Not only does this five star hotel have a bar and terrace, it also comes with a large fitness suite and a sauna. There is a small garden in the courtyard outside.
Dating back to the medieval era, Gamla Stan (which is Swedish for Old Town) is the historic centre of Stockholm! This is where you will find cobbled streets, classic architecture and fascinating attractions that detail Sweden’s past. It is also right in the heart of the Inner City, giving you easy access to all the other neighborhoods in this guide.
Nightlife in Stockholm is pretty spread out – with plenty of great options in almost every area in this guide – however, Gamla Stan has the most established nightlife spots! This is where you can drink with both locals and tourists, and enjoy the quaint backdrop of the inner city.
Housed within a four century old building, this newly remodelled studio is the perfect space for solo travellers and couples visiting Stockholm! There is a spacious bathroom in the property, as well as a large kitchen that comes so well equipped even those on longer stays will have everything they need.
Though officially a hotel, Old Town Lodge also offers a mixed dorm for those that want to save some cash whilst staying in Gamla Stan! Their private rooms are also fairly affordable by Gamla Stan standards, whilst still providing a comfortable setting. They also have some excellent customer reviews.
This four star hotel offers a good compromise between price and luxury – and is located right in the heart of Gamla Stan! Rooms are spacious, and come with heated floors in the bathrooms. There is also a sauna and plunge pool, and guests are given a complimentary breakfast buffet.
Just south of the Old Town, Sodermalm is considered one of the trendiest neighborhoods in the world! This area is bursting with Scandinavian style – and is home so some of the best coffee shops, restaurants and bars in the country. Though often considered a hipster district, Sodermalm has so much more to offer.
This recently renovated neighborhood is a testament to gentrification done right – with many of the diverse communities retained despite the rise of independent business in the area! Whether you stay here or not, you absolutely should take some time out to visit Sodermalm and soak up the hip atmosphere.
This spacious studio is perfect for solo travellers and young couples wanting to stay in the trendiest neighborhood in Stockholm! The host has superhost status thanks to excellent reviews and great levels of service. The apartment is close to Medborgarplatsen, a major dining district in the area.
Though Hotell Årstaviken is mostly used as a patient hotel for the nearby hospital, they also accept tourists as guests. This means you get to benefit from their slightly cheaper rates, whilst still staying close to the centre! Rooms are fairly basic, but a complimentary breakfast buffet is included.
As part of the BW Premier Collection, the NOFO Hotel oozes style and elegance from every room! Each room is individually designed to reflect a city from around the world, and many of them come with great views towards the Old City. Götgatan, a major shopping street, is only a short walk away.
Stockholm is a vast and fascinating city with a huge variety of attractions on offer! Deceptively large, the Swedish capital is not only the perfect place to check out Scandinavian design and try some excellent coffee – it also has a modern nightlife scene and fascinating historic attractions. There is truly something for everyone in this ultra-cool hub.
In terms of the best area, we are pretty stuck – but if you pushed us we would have to go with Sodermalm! This area truly epitomises everything that makes Sweden such a great country to visit, and is well connected with the other parts of the inner city.
That being said, Stockholm city centre is somewhat compact and all of these neighborhoods have something unique to offer. Whether you want cool vibes, bustling nightlife or a calm Swedish getaway, we hope this guide has helped you narrow down your options.
Did we miss anything? Let us know in the comments!
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Born in Los Angeles, Aaron Hovanesian is one of the original staff writers for Hotel Jules. Having backpacked the world as a young man, Aaron now prefers to travel the world in luxury, proudly staying in the world's most amazing hotels and properties. When Aaron is not traveling he lives in Western Colorado he can be found brewing his own beer (probably an IPA) or spending time with his two amazing golden retrievers.