8 Ways to Experience Stockholm For Free

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Stockholm, Sweden has never been known to be an affordable vacation spot. While it may not be the most expensive Scandinavian city, there are few European countries that can compete with Sweden’s prices. Luckily, from tours to galleries, Stockholm offers plenty of free things to fill up your itinerary.

Free Tour Stockholm – As with most European cities, Stockholm has free walking tours. These 90 – 120-minute tours, operated by Free tour Stockholm, run daily with three route options:

10:00 a.m. The City Tour  takes you around Stockholm’s main city area.

1:00 p.m. The Söder Tour takes you to the hipster, bohemian area of Södermalm.

4:00 p.m. Old Town Tour  takes you through the historic, original island of Stockholm.

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Old Town – If you want to skip the tour, embark on your own adventure through Stockholm’s Old Town. This enchanting neighborhood with cobblestone streets, narrow walkways and colorful cottages will make you think you stepped out right out of modern day and into the pages of your favorite fairy tale. Take your time perusing the shops, grabbing gelato and snapping lots of photos.

Södermalm – Even after your free walking tour ends, you’ll want to spend more time exploring Stockholm’s hip, bohemian neighborhood. This island is packed with antique shops, boutiques, art galleries, hip coffee shops and classic music stores. You could spend a day walking around this area alone!

Subway Art – Can’t afford an art gallery? Not to worry. Stockholm’s subway stations are home to extensive works of art by local artists. Spend a few hours going around the stations, or take a few minutes to appreciate the art each time you get on and off.

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Changing of the Guard – From May to September, catch the Changing of the Royal Guard at 12:15 p.m. every day (1:15 p.m. on Sundays and holidays) in front of the Royal Palace. The ceremony is 40 minutes long, completely free and features performances by the Military band — it’s a must see for any visitor in Stockholm.

National Museum – the National Museum of Stockholm is closed for renovation until 2018, but you can see the temporary exhibitions at Konstakademien (The Academy of Fine Arts) and Nationalmuseum Design at Kulturhuset Stadsteatern on Sergels Torg. Discounted tickets are available for students, but admission is FREE for visitors under 26. So have your ID ready.

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Stockholm Public Library – Listed as one of the most beautiful libraries in the world, Stockholm’s library, Stadsbiblioteket, features a high, dome-like ceiling and cylindrical bookcases that give the building a massive, elegant look. Take some time walking around or cozy up with a good book; it’s all for free.

Monteliusvagen – Nestled along the edge of Södermalm, this short walking path offers some of the best views of Stockholm’s Old Town, city center and connecting waterways. Take a rest on one of the benches along the path and watch the boats go by as the Scandinavian sun sets over the beautiful city.

Don’t miss out on the trip of a lifetime in Stockholm just because you’re on a limited budget. Use StudentUniverse to find a cheap flight to get there, a hostel or hotel room to stay in and visit these free attractions to experience the city’s art, tradition, shops and vistas without breaking the bank.

 

This post first appeared on StudentUniverse.com where I am a guest blogger. See the original post here: 

https://www.studentuniverse.com/blog/destinations/europe/8-free-things-to-do-in-stockholm-sweden 

How To See Oslo, Norway on a Budget

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Oslo, the beautiful, historic capital of Norway, is known to be one of the most expensive cities in Europe. And not take-the-bus-instead-of-a-cab expensive, rather walk-everywhere-because-you-can’t-afford-transportation expensive.

But not to worry — this doesn’t mean anyone on a budget can’t explore this Scandinavian tourist hub. There are plenty of ways to beat the high prices, if you do a little homework.

Eating

Sorry folks, but eating out is pretty much out of the question if you’re on a budget. A typical meal in Oslo costs between 200 – 400 NOK ($25-$50 USD or €22 -€44 EUR). Multiply that by three meals a day and, well, you get the idea.

The best solution is to visit a supermarket, such as Rimi or Kiwi, and stock up on local goodies you can prepare in your hostel’s kitchen. I managed to scrape by with the basics — eggs, bread, veggies, chicken, yogurt and fruit — and saved tons of money.

With few extra bills in your wallet, you can splurge on one or two meals out without breaking the bank. (If you’re like me and love visiting restaurants in other countries, try simply ordering a coffee or a crescent, then eat a full meal when you get back to the hostel).

Free things to Do


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Frogner Park and Vigeland Sculpture ParkProbably my favorite spot in the city, this 79-acre (32-ha) stretch of land is the largest sculpture park in the world made by a single artist. The 212 life-size sculptures in bronze, granite and cast iron depict the human experience and are positioned in parallel lines that guide you through the park. It’s a must-see for anyone visiting the Norwegian capital and entrance is completely free.

Changing of the Guard – Enjoy watching soldiers march, toss their rifles and salute each other? Every day at 1:30 p.m. catch the Changing of the Guard ceremony at the Royal Palace of Oslo for free. Look out for a few ponytails sticking out from under the helmets; many of the guards are women.

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Oslo Opera House – Attending a show may be be a distant dream, but you don’t have to spend a dime to visit the outside of the Oslo Opera House and walk around its artsy exterior. The majestic structure sits on the the Bjorvika waterfront and looks like an iceberg emerging from the fjord. Climb to the top for an amazing 360 view of the Oslo waterfront.

Oslo City Hall – See art for free. The entrance of Oslo City Hall is an art gallery, showcasing modern paintings, sculptures and photographs from Norwegian artists. It’s no Prado Museum, but the small gallery is a free way to get a glimpse of the contemporary Norwegian art scene.

Cheap things to Do

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Akershus Fortress – This medieval castle-turned-fortress is one of the coolest attractions in Oslo. Entrance is 50 NOK ($6 USD or €5.5 EUR) for a student ticket; but you can forgo going inside and walk around outside for free. Walk along the hill outside the fortress and it will take you to an overlook where you can see all of Oslo’s harbor and cityscape.

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Viking Ship Museum – As usual, have your student ID ready. Admission to this museum that features some of the oldest Viking ships and artifacts in the world is 50 NOK ($6 USD or €5.5 EUR) for students. Bonus! Your ticket will also get you admission to the Historical Museum, so save the stub! Learn from my mistake, though: the Historical Museum is closed on Mondays so don’t plan to go then.

Transportation

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Walking or biking will always be the cheapest (and healthiest) option, but for some attractions, like the Viking Ship Museum, you’ll want a lift.

Ruter, Oslo’s tranport system, is *reasonably* priced at 30 NOK ($3.70 USD  or €3.30 EUR) for single use,  90 NOK ($11 USD  or €10 EUR) for a 24-hour pass, and  240 NOK ($30 USD  or €27 EUR) for a 7-day pass. Note: if you’re in Oslo for three days or more, the 7-day pass is the cheapest option.

A transport ticket will give you access to buses, trams, subways (t-bane), local trains and ferries. Yes, I said ferries. Hop on a boat to a neighboring fjord and get a relaxing ride with a great view of the Norwegian waterways and islands.

Olso may be one of the most expensive cities you’ll ever visit, but that doesn’t mean you need a small fortune to be able to see some of the best sights the city has to offer. Follow these tips and you’ll have a few bucks to spare for a few troll doll souvenirs.