May032017

Walking Stockholm 4 days after April 7 terror attack

My wife and I were  watching TV in our hotel room at Radisson Blu Waterfront Stockholm in Sweden on July 14, 2016 when ‘breaking news’ came on BBC of a truck running over people in a Nice, France Bastille Day terrorist attack.

86 people dead. 434 injured in Nice.

My wife and I were watching TV in our hotel room at Best Western Amedia Wien in Vienna, Austria on December 19, 2016 when ‘breaking news’ came on CNN of a truck running over people in a Berlin, Germany Christmas Market terrorist attack.

12 people dead, 56 injured in Berlin.

Last month, I was watching TV in my hotel room at Radisson Blu Klaipeda, Lithuania on Friday April 7, 2017 when ‘breaking news’ came on BBC of a truck running over people in a Stockholm, Sweden pedestrian shopping street terrorist attack.

5 people dead.

4 days after April 7 Stockholm terror attack

On Tuesday, April 11, 2017,  I arrived in Stockholm and walked for more than five hours around the city.

Long story short, Stockholm seemed no different in terms of police on the streets than any other time I was there, aside from Drottninggaten and Sergels Torg, the central city square near the site of the truck attack, where flower memorials were in place in memory of the victims.

Stockholm Polis van

Stockholm Polis van in front of Ahlens Department Store on Drottninggaten.

Carrying on in Stockholm

My belief is all terror is local terror. Unless you are in close proximity to the attack or somehow connected to a victim, no reason to panic.

I walked about 11 km across Stockholm from Central Station to Clarion Stockholm on Ringvagen in Sodermalm and around the island to Marieberg, then to Sergels Torg and along Drottninggaten, to find the Stockholm memorial tributes.

Gamla Stan – Old Town Stockholm

Stockholm is a city built on 17 islands of the extensive Stockholm Archipelago consisting of some 24,000 islands on the east coast of Sweden.

Gamla Stan is the oldest part of the city on an island about 10 to 15 minutes walk from Central Station.

Norstedts

Norstedts is Sweden’s oldest publishing house (1823). This building on Gamla Stan has housed the publishing company since 1882.

Riddarhuset

Riddarhuset – House of Nobility, Gamla Stan, Stockholm

On the street outside Riddarhuset, I considered walking one route over a bridge with lots of car traffic or staying within the smaller streets of central Gamla Stan.

Pedestrian alleys are my style.

Stockholm Gamla alley

Gamla Stan tourist zone

Stockholm Gamla Stan-1

The weather forecast for Stockholm April 11 was clear skies. After 40 minutes, I was beginning to see some blue sky overhead at 4:00 in the afternoon.

Södermalm, Stockholm

Another bridge from Gamla Stan to Södermalm put me on the island for walking to Clarion Stockholm Hotel on Ringvagen. This was only my second time in Sodermalm in four trips to Stockholm since summer 2016.

Last November, in Napier New Zealand, I bought the Steig Larsson Millennium trilogy in a second hand shop. These are the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo books about reclusive computer hacker Lisbeth Salander and investigative reporter Mikael Blomkvist in Stockholm. Sodermalm comes up frequently in the books. The books were published by Norstedts.

Since reading the books and visiting Sodermalm in January, I found Sodermalm to be the part of Stockholm I enjoy most of the places I have been in the city.

View of Gamla Stan

Gamla Stan view from the heights of Sodermalm.

Sodermalm view

Sodermalm has rock cliff heights. This was a working class area in the 19th century and early 20th century. These days Sodermalm is an upscale, mostly residential area of the city, yet also plenty of shops, restaurants and pubs.

Sodermalm square

This part of the city also has some of the lowest restaurant and pub prices I have seen in Stockholm.

Sodermalm $8 lunch

Sodermalm Lunch 69 SEK ($7.83 USD). Two hours later I paid 94 SEK for a similar lunch special meal with soda near train station.

Stockholm love

I arrived at Clarion Stockholm and found myself in a hotel with loads of young athletes. Normally I would be upset when 8 people cram into an elevator I was riding alone to my room.

But I didn’t mind when packed inside a small space with eight Swedish women swim athletes.

Swim Open

Turned out to be an international 3-day swim event at the Eriksdalsbadet pool center behind the hotel.

Stockholm Erikdalsbadet

I headed back outside to explore Sodermalm and more of Stockholm in the three remaining hours before 8pm darkness.

People around Stockholm appeared to be carrying on with their regular business. Diners were dining, shoppers were shopping, people were making their way home after work by foot, bike, car and public transportation.

Sodermalm boats

Exercisers were running and cycling around the trails on the southwest side of Sodermalm. There are a high proportion of exercisers in Stockholm.

Stockholm boat season

Some of the boats covered for winter were being readied for boating season. In one covered boat there were sounds of a violin sailing through the air.

Swimming

After the noise of the streets walking three miles across Stockholm, I enjoyed finding myself on a calm and quiet path in the trees and by the water with only joggers and a few cyclists passing me.

Stockholm path

I continued around Sodermalm to Marieberg and eventually to the terror attack sites on Drottninggaten, before taking the subway back to my hotel.

to be continued…

 

About Ric Garrido

Ric Garrido of Monterey, California started Loyalty Traveler in 2006 for traveler education on hotel and air travel, primarily using frequent flyer and frequent guest loyalty programs for bargain travel. Loyalty Traveler joined BoardingArea.com in 2008.

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Comments

  1. “…all terror is local terror”

    What does that mean??

    I believe that one should go about living your life. There are certain things over which you have little to no control. Being in the vicinity of a terror attack is largely a random occurrence. Yet, that certainly does not mean that one should not be vigilant. There are certain locales where the danger risk is higher. You make choices and you take your chances.

  2. @Ron – Go about living your life is what I mean. No reason to be afraid of stuff not happening directly around you or worry about things that could happen.

    I hear from some readers and friends they are afraid to travel to Europe.

    Today could have been a bad day to attend an auto show in Billerica, Massachusetts.

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