Exploring Stockholm with the Arlanda Express and Stockholm Old Town – Travel Plus! (Part of Summer adventures to Singapore and Kuala Lumpur)
Contents (It’s LONG and probably will change).
- Seriously – Take a holiday!
- Morning Manoeuvres in the dark, Terminal 5 and Galleries South
- BA776 London Heathrow to Stockholm Arlanda (Club Europe)
- Exploring Stockholm on the cheap (Travel Plus!)
- Back to Arlanda, Stockholm Arlanda Lounge
- QR168 Stockholm Arlanda to Doha (Hamad International Airport) – (Business Class)
- Six Hours in at Doha’s Lounge
- QR944 Doha – Singapore Changi International (Business Class)
- Intercontinental Singapore
- Exploring Singapore
- From the Top of the Marina Sands.
- Back to Changi, SATS Lounge
- MH624 Singapore to Kuala Lumpur International Airport
- Adventures in KL
- Holiday Inn Express, Kuala Lumpur
- KL Tower (or yes, Kevin is in yet another tall building).
- Back to KLIA
- MH611 Kuala Lumpur International Airport to Singapore Changi
- Exploring Singapore again
- Back to Premium, dnata lounge, Singapore T3
- QR947 Singapore Changi to Doha (Business Class)
- A Dash through Doha…
- QR169 Doha – Stockholm Arlanda (Business Class)
- From premium to economy
- BA777 Stockholm Arlanda to London Heathrow
- Long way home
- I need another break…
After getting off the plane, I followed the signs to the exit and into Sweden.
Immigration was handed in under a minute, and the luggage was on the belt around 10 minutes after I landed. Not bad at all.
The next challenge would be where to dump my luggage. Considering I arrived at Terminal 2, and needed to depart later from Terminal 5, it was a case of hiking through Arlanda Airport to find the left luggage area.
And I can think of worse places in the world to hike through – especially when there are public areas like this:
I’ll remind you at this point that this is a publicly accessible area – not within the secured zone, but in the public area. See – you can build decent airport faculties that are passenger friendly, and nerd friendly. Also – a lot of light too.
Eventually after following signs and a mixture of blind luck lead me to the left luggage zone. Here, you have a choice to rent a locker for 50 Swedish Kroner, or have someone take it from you for 60 Kroner.
I went for the looked after option – mainly as 1) I like to keep people occupied and 2) I only had notes – no change. For the equivalent of £6 for a day – I wasn’t arguing at the cost. It allowed me to switch down to lighter baggage options for the day (I took the little Lufthansa day bag).
With that done, I pondered how I was going to get into central Stockholm. I weighed up the options (SL Local Transport vs Bus vs Arlanda Express).
In the end, I chose the Arlanda Express – mainly as it was a new train to try, but also, I found a ticket for a 6 hour return.
Still expensive at 340 Kroner return fare – or near enough £33. And cards only please.
340 Kroner. Don’t get me started. In fact, see here to see what I really think
So, let’s look at the Arlanda Express. It’s based on a 15-minute timetable between Arlanda and Stockholm Central (Arlanda Express station). The trains might look space aged – but they were built not a million miles away from my office in Birmingham in 1998 to 1999 by Alstom. The X3 Series – or Alstom Corada’s are four car units
Well, there’s comfortable seating, with the trains in a four-car formation that zip between Arlanda Airport and Stockholm Central in a single-class setting.
For those thinking of not buying tickets or fare jumping – attendants will happily sell you tickets on the train (there are two of them). Also – it’s an extra 100 Krona if you buy on the train.
So buy on the platform or before you board please – otherwise it becomes extremely expensive.
The train itself zips along at 100-120mph or so to complete the journey between Arlanda and the city centre in 20 minutes or so.
After getting off the train, I aimlessly wandered around. I somehow ended up at the main central railway station.
So, I had two options on the table – either wander off to the Old Town, or try to get to the ABBA museum. And the ABBA museum was tempting (apart from an exuberant entrance fee). However, decoding the local public transport system and how to get transit cards was beyond me.
In addition, I was looking to save a few pennies along the way.
I therefore chose the old town and exploring on foot – mainly because I’m cheap.
Relying on Google Maps… off I went.
As usual, I spent little time paying attention to what Google maps was telling me, and I was happily making my own adventure.
Eventually, I found the Swedish Parliament and walked through the public area.
From there, it was across the road, and into the old town.
The old town has a mixture of tourist shops, and lots of little nooks and crannies. It also has a lot of cobbled streets, and hidden corners…
I found a nice square to sit and relax for a while. Below is one of them. Good to recharge the batteries for a few minutes – especially as my step count was high.
A word on normal taxis – be warned that taxis can set their own fares in terms of flag down and distance/time. Some can be quite pricey (like most who tout for business in the old town. Check WikiVoyage for examples)
I continued to make my way round, heading towards to the Royal Palace.
As I passed by, two soldiers were heading back in to the inner palace.
They may march in unison, but they still have to open the doors and clear security!
Occasionally, you’ll find the odd person playing the piano too.
Time as usual was not on my side. I therefore started to track back to Arlanda Airport
I made it back to Stockholm Central – and the section divided for the Arlanda Express services. As I had a ticket – it was a matter of waiting for the next train.
Soon, a train arrived that would be in service, and it was time to board.
With a 20-minute run, the train pulled out of the station slowly, passing X2 Express trains
With the train accelerating, the advertising was in full swing.
Soon enough, the 20 minutes passed, and I was back at Arlanda Terminal 5.
This marked the end of the day-trip and positioning part of the holiday.
Now, the real fun would begin in earnest.
Overall: Whilst the train may be expensive, exploring on foot isn’t. Just make sure you have enough power, a decent phone signal (or a SykRoam Solis), WikiVoyage and an eye on the time if you have to be somewhere else.
Next: Arlanda Airport, Lounge
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