Five fantastic ‘walk and talk’ routes in Stockholm
Publish date: 7 April 2021
Like many in Stockholm, I’m working from home at the moment. I also just started my own company, so I’m currently my only colleague. So it’s nice to get out and meet people in a safe way as much as possible, and get some exercise and fresh air at the same time. Since the pandemic hit, I try to get out for a daily walk and if I can combine that with work, it’s even better. I think it feels quite natural to Swedes too, since they are more inclined to spend time outdoors.
When choosing a great walk and talk spot, I try to find a place that combines nature, a good spot to stop for a coffee, and somewhere that isn’t too crowded. The following five tick all those boxes for me.
This is a really nice coastal walk not too far from the heart of the city. Vinterviken is in the south of Stockholm and easily reached by public transport, or if you have a car there’s free parking. There’s a gorgeous big cafe called Winterviken with lots of outdoor seating. I like to use the cafe as a starting point for the walk. From there you can take the coastal path, which has a number of little harbours dotted around. Generally what I do is follow the coastline south until you come to this little cafe called Uddvillan. What’s great about it is that you can grab a coffee, sit outside and look out over this fantastic view of the water. It’s one of these great oases when you feel like you’re a million miles from the city.
Artipelag is a contemporary art museum a bit further out of the city towards the south east. It’s a really beautiful building on this scenic island just outside Gustavsberg. What I like about this walk is that it has lots of small pathways that you can meander around and explore, but without actually going too far from the museum itself. Because it’s an art museum, these walks are dotted with contemporary sculptures as well. You’re out in nature but it feels like it’s morphing into an art exhibition as you walk around.
When you’re ready, you can grab a coffee and enjoy it in the great outdoor seating area. But my recommendation is to go up to the roof instead, there’s a wonderful view and a lot of space to continue the conversation up there. The museum is actually built by the man behind the BabyBjörn brand and so everywhere is really accessible because they designed it to be pushchair-friendly. This also means it’s accessible for wheelchairs.
This one’s actually up in Solna but it’s really easy to get to from the city centre. It’s just three stops north of Stockholm Central Station on the pendeltåg (commuter train). Normally I start this walk at the garden centre, where there’s also a good cafe so you can grab a takeaway coffee for your walk and talk. From there, I make my way west through the wooded area of the park.
What I like is that there are a lot of hidden architectural gems, and lots of very old buildings. A Swedish family member told me about this house in the woodland of the park which is a copy of a very famous house in Dalarna where Gustav Vasa stayed when he made his famous escape from Denmark. It was made to be displayed at the Paris World Fair in 1867, and later moved back to Sweden.
I live in Sollentuna, north of the city, so this is my most local walk and talk. Not all my walk and talks are in person, so if I’m taking a phone meeting, this is my preferred spot. It’s a massive nature reserve and there are plenty of ways to enter, but I like to go to a parking area near a farm called Bögs Gård. From there, you can park up and grab a coffee from Helenas cafe.
What I really like about this walk is that it boasts a mixture of lakes and forest and open fields. You can go for a short walk and see a lot more variety than you would in most places. It’s huge so this is one of those places you should walk until you feel it is a good halfway point and then turn back. Because if you do the full loop you might be gone for hours!
Djurgården is great if you don’t have quite as much time to escape the inner city. It’s one of those examples of how Stockholm has a lot of big, green open spaces. I normally like to start my walk at the bridge where you enter the island next to Nordiska museet. From there, you can make your way deeper into the island.
Because it’s still in the city, there is an abundance of places you can stop to grab a coffee to go, and there are plenty of different walking routes. My suggestion, if you have time, is that you try to follow the southern coastline all the way to the easternmost point where you’ll come to a cafe called Blockhusporten. It’s got a great outdoor seating area where you can see all the big cruise liners coming into Stockholm. It feels like you’ve gone from the inner city to an open landscape in just a short space of time.
Bonus: Can Tomas explain Sweden's right to roam in 60 seconds or less?