Today's a new travel blog as usual. This is actually extra special because I am not blogging myself but instead, my husband shares his experiences during his first international trip to Sweden! I had been very jealous about him traveling to another country and leaving me behind. But this was all work related so I had no issues anymore about it.
Read related blog: James' First International Trip: Company All Expense Paid to Sweden
The trip is not for a vacation though but a visit to their counterparts in Sweden. They worked the entire week too so they only have the weekends to enjoy the country but since they are not really familiar, they could only wait for them to offer the tours. Good thing that their colleagues there had also set plans and schedules for them and part of which was their Stockholm Tour.
In their first week, they stayed at Orebro which is a small town away from Stockholm. Four days before leaving Sweden, they moved over to Stockholm and worked at their main office which is the Postnord, a huge shipping or courier company in Sweden.
Let's check on the tour that they had taken during their last day in Stockholm. Read on.
Erik, our companion, got every one of us a Stockholm Pass by Destination. It is a specific card which provides us access to Stockholm's City Sightseeing which we can use during the day tour.
It is valid for one admission per museum or attraction or sightseeing tour as described in the guidebook, yes it came with a guidebook too. But aside from that, it also offers unlimited travel with Hop on - Hop off buses and boats. But there were around 56 places and spots to check on which have been categorized by the tour such as spots for just sightseeing, there's for culture and history, some other places are good for art and architecture while there are also for royals. Entertainment and family friendly places are also there.
We rode the hop on hop off bus and headed to our destinations. During winter, Sweden can only see the sun in a short time. So far base on my own observation, the sun rises at around nine in the morning and sets right away at around three or four in the afternoon. That means, we only have six to eight hours of light. But the best thing about it is that you have a lot of golden hours, a photographer's favorite time of the day.
Going back to the tour, we first went to Vasa Museum where the only shrunk ship being recovered and restored can be found. We watch the history of this ship from how it was being built, deployed, shrunk, recovered and restored through a film showing inside the museum.
After that, we went on a boat ride and went to the Grand Palace. We witnessed a ceremony of changing of the guards and also the royal artifacts. Changing of guards reminded me of the similar activity performed by the guards in our own Luneta except that it was a longer ceremony compared to that in Luneta.
Then we had a glance of the furniture, the things used by the royals inside the palace. We see the crowns, swords, and royal coat and more which I can't anymore remember. I did take photos and videos but the time is just too short to remember everything. What I only recall is that I was in awe all the time. Especially with their chandeliers, they have different kinds and sizes and they all looked stunning!
We ate lunch afterward which was not included in the tour but Erik still had treated us. In fact, our allowances were not really spent during this trip, we were able to save a lot out because they were all treating us always.
Inside Grand Hotel, we waited for the boat tour since we finished lunch a bit early. It was actually an amazing part of us that anyone can just go inside a hotel in Stockholm and stay in the lobby without being asked or questioned if they have reservations in the hotel. We, on the other hand, stayed inside until it was time to go and just used their free wifi!
Finally, we boarded the motorboat at 3:20 pm, it was already golden hour at this time of the day. We went on the upper deck which was an open space so tourists can see the beautiful sights in Stockholm by the sea.
The name of the boat is A/S which is more than hundred years old already. The boat tour lasted for more than an hour where you can see the old heritage of Stockholm. You can also see the famous Vasa Museum where we went earlier and the amusement park beside it.
We can also see some bridges which are picturesque because of the golden light from the setting sun. It was a very wonderful experience for us to witness and experience Stockholm for a single day. One of my favorite shot was when we were passing by the beautiful bridge with the setting sun's golden light at the background.
I hoped we had more time to do the rest of the tours. The pass was actually good for 24 hours from the time it was purchased. Unfortunately, we were traveling to Amsterdam the next day for our trip back home to Cebu.
I am really thankful for our company and our client for sponsoring us and giving us a once in a lifetime experience to Sweden! I enjoyed it a lot plus I had taken a lot of photos and videos for my wife so she could also see what I have seen in Sweden. How I wish we could travel together in Sweden in the near future.