Monday, June 23, 2014

Meet-Me-Halfway Honeymoon: Part 1 - Stockholm, Sweden

Finally finished editing all the photos from our meet-me-halfway honeymoon in Sweden & Norway (still working on the collage and videos) so I should start blogging about the trip while it's still fresh in my mind. I'm gonna split this trip into few posts coz there's sooo much to blog about and it'll probably take me at least 2 months to finish blogging about this 2-weeks' trip. =P

May 13 (Tues): Penang - KL - Frankfurt - Stockholm

Daniel's United flight was from Nashville-New York-Stockholm. Thanks to Donny for waking up in the middle of the night and drove 1.5 hours to drop him off at Nashville airport. =) He arrived Stockholm 5 hours ahead of me and had few extra hours for some sightseeing. 

I booked my flight from KL-Frankfurt-Stockholm on Lufthansa at the beginning of March and the exact same ticket price dropped by RM1000 2 weeks later...what a bummer!! Oh well, tough luck. Anyway, this was my first time traveling on Lufthansa and overall I was quite happy with it. It's under Star Alliance so it was good for my Mileage Plus. I boarded the flight from KL at 12am and had 2 seats for myself coz the flight was quite empty. Made myself comfortable laying down and slept quite a good bit throughout the 12 hours flight to Frankfurt. =)

Arrived Frankfurt airport at 6am and spent the next 4-hours chilling at the Relax Zone while enjoying the view of this busy airport.

Boarded the 10.05am flight to Stockholm. 

After traveling for almost 22 hours, I finally made it to Stockholm Arlanda airport!! Bought the 24-hours SL Access card from the airport for SEK115 (RM56). This is not the easiest way to get to the city but it's the cheapest option and it gives access to all public transportation (bus, metro, rail, tram, & ferry) in Stockholm for 24 hours.

First leg of my Stockholm public transportation adventure...a 20 min bus ride (bus 583) from the airport to Märsta station. The plane in the bottom right pic is actually a hostel converted from a decommissioned 747-200 jetliner. Pretty cool huh!

Second leg...40 min commuter train ride from Märsta station to Stockholm Central Station. Good that I was carrying a backpack, much easier to walk around. =) 

Third leg...5 min metro ride from Central Station to Slussen station. When I arrived at the platform, I didn't know which direction I should get on. While I was exploring the metro map, a guy standing beside me probably saw that I looked lost so he asked where I wanted to go and told me the right direction...thank you random Swedish guy!! =P

I was supposed to take another bus from the metro station to the hostel but couldn't find where to board the bus so I ended up walking to the hostel along the waterfront. =P 

While I was busy traveling on various modes of transportation, Daniel went for sightseeing at the City Hall while waiting for my arrival.

Finally made it to Best Hostel Old Town Skeppsbron and hubby was already waiting for me at the hostel for the past hour. =) Been looking forward to spend these 2 weeks together since our wedding 5 months ago. We booked a cozy private room and was lucky to get one with a view of the waterfront. The hostel is strategically located in Gamla Stan, right next to the Royal Palace and along the waterfront. 

After dropping off my luggage, it was time to get going with a bit of sightseeing before we call it a day. We've both been traveling for more than 24 hours without shower, that explains our 'sleepy' look. =P

Our first meal at Nystekt Strömming. This famous street-food stall is "the best place to get a quick snack of freshly fried herring in Stockholm is this humble cart outside the tunnelbana station at Slussen." I ordered the most popular Skåning (SEK40 ; RM22) and Daniel ordered the Strömmingsrulle wrap (SEK70 ; RM37). The weather was perfect for us to enjoy the yummylicious meal at the outdoor seating. =) 

Continued our sightseeing with a walk to Monteliusvägen Vagen...a great place for a tranquil walk and a spectacular view of Stockholm

Filled with old houses, steep hills and cobble stoned streets, this beautiful district gives a nice and cozy feeling of how Stockholm used to look in the 18th and 19th century.

Bird's-eye view over Stockholm Old Town, City Hall and Riddarfjärden. =)

B-E-A-U-T-I-F-U-L!! Perfect view to wrap up our first day in Stockholm.

May is definitely a good time to travel coz the sun sets really late, making the day feels so much longer. Nice view from our room. =)

May 14 (Wed): Stockholm

After a good night's rest, it was time to continue with our second and last day of sightseeing in Stockholm. As we had plenty of time to kill before catching our overnight bus to Oslo, we decided to start our day later and went to the Royal Palace around 11am.

Wanted to watch the changing of guards at the Royal Palace but I think we got the time wrong and left too early. =P We didn't see changing of the guards but at least we saw some!!

Panoramic view of the Royal Palace.

View of the city from the Royal Palace. The weather pretty shitty and it started drizzling so we kinda lost the mood for to walk further and spent the afternoon just strolling around Gamla Stan.   

Souvenir shopping and goofing around with hubby. =P

It was nice walking around the old town which consists of medieval alleyways, cobbled streets, and archaic architecture. The place in the top middle photo is Mårten Trotzigs Gränd, the narrowest alley in the city (less than 1m wide).

Found this nice little place to take a break and chill.

Pit stop for Swedish meatballs at The Temple Bar...yumsss!

We left our luggage at the hostel after checking out but we had few more hours to kill. The hostel was nice enough to let us chill in the dining area and shower before we headed out to the bus station to catch our overnight bus.

The city looked so pretty at dusk! It was still pretty bright at 8.30pm.

Walked almost 2km from the hostel to the bus terminal. Kinda tiring but the scenery along the way was pretty so the walk wasn't too bad after all. =P  

Took the 10.20pm Swebus from Stockholm to Oslo. We booked the tickets online for SEK259 (RM145) per parson. As I mentioned before, public transportation is expensive but this bus was a pretty good deal coz it helped us save on one night's accommodation. =)

That's all for Stockholm, next up...Oslo!!


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