Stockholm is the capital of Sweden. Sweden is a Nordic country. Nordic countries are known for being cold. What better place to go than the Ice Bar?
When you get there, you get geared up in a blue and faux fur poncho, complete with hoods and mittens. The door into the bar hisses open like an airlock door in Star Wars. The glasses are made of thick ice, making it a bit difficult to drink, but makes for a great temperature for enjoying vodka!
All guests get one free drink from the bar, whether it’s a vodka cocktail or juice, for the 195 SEK (about $26 USD) entrance fee.
Open Tuesday through Saturday in trendy, bohemian Södermalm, the Södra Bar & Kitchen is connected to the Södra Teatern theatre but is open to non-theatre visitors. The view over Stockholm is stunning.
The music is definitely indie and experimental. The drinks are varied and the cocktails are meticulously crafted: try anything with lingonberry.
What is great, and I think is part of why Stockholm won Europe’s Greenest City of 2010, is that the snacks and food offered are all locally sourced. It’s like everything wonderful about Stockholm comes together in just one place.
Mosebacke Torg 1–3
Bad news first: Gondolen is super expensive. Good news: you get what you pay for.
The cocktail list is huge and they’re served nice and strong. Right along the water between Södermalm and Gamla Stan, it’s a French restaurant with a glassed-in bar.
It’s romantic, it’s been around for over 60 years, and it has the best sunset views over Old Town. Watch out though, the Kitchen is a part of the restaurant that is about half the cost but doesn’t have the view.
Sjätte Tunnan brings medieval Gamla Stan to life. It is lit almost entirely by candelight and pumps medieval tunes, complete with live music on the weekends. The staff are dressed in medieval garb and forks are only available upon request, since in the middle ages, forks weren’t used as they looked like the devil’s trident.
It’s a place for raucous and random fun. Really, when is the last time you sang along to a tune from the Middle Ages?
It’s also a place for flat-out delicious food, with even the recipes coming from medieval times. They have succulent reindeer chops, which paired with elderflower wine, is perfection.
Stora Nygatan 43
Known best for its gay nights on Sundays (but also happy to welcome straight patrons), the Patricia is a party boat docked between Södermalm and Gamla Stan.
Queen Elizabeth II used it as her private yacht in 1952. Now it has five indoor bars and two deck bars in the summer. Each room has different music from Swedish pop to hardcore. Live bands start at 8PM and DJs start around 10 or 11PM and spin until 5AM.
It’s 150 kroner (a little under $20 USD) to get in, but only if you are over 20 and you look the part. If you’re going out clubbing in Stockholm, you need to look nice.
It’s fancy and posh and, yes, expensive, but Café Opera is a legendary wine bar in Stockholm and if you’re lucky, you can spot a celebrity on your visit.
It’s ideal to book a drink table if you want to make sure that you’re going to get in. Also be prepared for a line at the nightclub (open Wednesday to Sunday), and be over 23, dressed to impress, and have the 200 SEK (a little more than $26 USD) in your pocket for the entrance fee.
Café Opera has soaring ceilings painted with cherubs and elaborate chandeliers while modernity rules in the club with leather seating and sleek lines – beauty for every taste.
Kungsträdgården SE-111 86
Yes, it’s Stockholm, and The Liffey is an Irish pub, but they feature local Swedish bands every night. And, every Thursday night at 8PM downstairs in the River Club, they have stand-up comedy in English. The comedians are often local, but occasionally big names come in. The show costs 50 SEK (under $7 USD), and it is definitely worth it.
Don’t like comedy or live music? You can still take advantage of the extensive whiskey bar along with live TV sports coverage.
Stora Nygatan 42
While not much to look at with a terrace that overlooks the road, Akkurat Bar in Södermalm is one of the best specialist beer bars in the city.
It was the first non-UK bar to get Cask Marque status (basically means inspections are made twice a year to judge the cask ales on temperature, appearance, aroma and taste) and a range of Swedish microbrews. Oh, and did I mention the hundreds of whisky options?
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