Sweden's capital has been called the most beautiful city in the world. This "city that floats on water" sprawls over 14 islands that are linked by over 50 bridges, which cross winding waterways in all directions. To the east is an archipelago of thousands of islands in different shapes, sizes and contours. Venice, for all its gondolas, does not approach the water traffic of Stockholm. The hundreds of small boats that line the inlets and canals testify to the passion of every family to own and sail a boat. Explore Condé Nast Insider Tips for Stockholm
The Cultural Festival of Stockholm
Off the Beaten Track
Skokloster Motor Museum & Castle - Auto enthusiasts will delight in the extensive collection of unique cars, motorcycles, engines and even a vintage airplane. Nearby Baroque Skokloster Castle, built between 1654 and 1676 testifies to the Swedish Age of Greatness, a period during which time Sweden was one of Europe's most powerful countries. Many rooms are unchanged since construction and in fact, the death of the builder Carl Gustaf Wrangel meant that the castle was never completed. The banquet hall remains in the same condition, tools and all, as it was left in 1676.
Rich Viking heritage is on display in museums and discoveries are still being made at popular archeological sites such as Birka, the Viking Town. Although it was an era of plundering, the Vikings' prowess at shipbuilding was integral to the advancement of the shipbuilding industry. The arrival of Christianity and the dwindling profitability of raids brought the Viking era to an end and the Vikings returned to their traditional occupations as farmers and businessmen. Today, few customs have survived with the surviving few having been changed over time by religious influences. The Easter witch, originally a fearful creature with a copper kettle, broomstick and black cat has been transformed into a friendly witch dressed in a long skirt, shawl and apron. Instead of flying off to Blaakulla to celebrate Easter with other witches, she now takes care of the Easter preparations at home.