Stockholm is a must see destination for those of you who dream of yesteryear and take pleasure in being transported back in time where the elegance of rituals and beauty are valued, bound by the glue of freedom’s spirit of expression.
This marvelous city gave the world the Mona Lisa of the World Stage, Greta Garbo as well as the most endearing childhood character, Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren. Complete opposites in character, but both endearing to audiences all over the world.
Children adore Pippi whose freedom of expression and rollicking in doing just the opposite of what was expected! “I want to be a pirate when I grow up!” The opposite of the spectrum is Greta Garbo, the iconic beauty who ironically shied away from any publicity and became one of the most publicized women in the world.
This childlike quality combined with the dignity and gracefulness of Garbo join hands in welcoming you to this magical city.
Stroll down Gamla Stan – “Old Town.” It is a remarkably preserved medieval city, founded in 1252! You will be greeted by Pippi as you navigate yourself through the narrow winding cobblestone streets, with buildings radiating hues of gold. Take a peek behind the facades for you might encounter frescoes from the Middle Ages! Wonderful handicrafts and souvenirs wait your bidding … welcome and enjoy this adventure!
There are several beautiful churches and museums in Gamla Stan, including Sweden’s national cathedral, Stockholm Cathedral. The largest of the attractions in the district is the Royal Palace. Don't miss the parade of soldiers and the daily changing of the guard.
After hours strolling through old town, why not indulge in an Afternoon Tea at the famous Cadier Bar in the world famous Grand Hotel! It is nestled on the city’s waterfront, opposite the Royal Palace and Old Town. This classic beauty is one of Scandinavia’s leading luxury five star hotels. Since 1901 the Nobel Peace Prize Laureates, royalty, heads of state and artists and their families have all been guests at the hotel, not to mention Sweden’s beloved Greta Garbo who frequented this hotel often and local rumor whispers that she actually lived here. “The Grand is where it happens!”
To capture the essence of this city I invite you to watch on YouTube that infamous 5 second performance of Greta Garbo in the 1935 movie Queen Christina. Watch the close up of her face as she stood on the prow of a ship. She was a Swedish queen who gave up her crown for her lover, who is now dead. She is escorting his remains back to Spain and her destiny is now a voyage to nowhere. Her mystical and breathtaking expression is what gave her the title of Mona Lisa. One of the greatest actresses of all time, though she received accolades, she never received an Academy Award … nor did she ever wish to attend the ceremonies! Famous for her line, “I just want to be left alone.” She valued her privacy and remains a mystery even to this day.
Perhaps one of the most rewarding things a traveler or adventurer can discover is unlocking the treasures of a city and discovering what is beneath the façade. Through your adventure and travels to Sweden, Pippi and Garbo hold the keys to open the treasure chest of discovery. Take their hand as they guide you through this magical journey!
May 22, 2013