Travel

Gamla Stan

Establishment neighborhood
The Royal Palace
Slottsbacken 1, Gamla Stan
While the Swedish royal family no longer reside in this six-hundred-room palace on the lake (they now live in Drottningholm Palace just outside the city), the Royal Palace still brings plenty of drama and splendor. It is the polar opposite of the typically restrained Scandinavian aesthetic; here, the architecture and lavishly decorated 18th-century reception rooms and banquet halls are Italian Baroque through and through, which means plenty of gold and ornate stucco details. Watch the changing of the guard in the morning and explore the palace’s five museums detailing all aspects of Swedish royal life—past and present—from costumes, armor, and coronation carriages to jewelry and antique thrones.
Pharmarium
Stortorget 7, Gamla Stan
With an apothecary-meets-opium-den aesthetic, Pharmarium is a seriously atmospheric spot for a cocktail in picturesque Old Town. Inspired by Stockholm's first pharmacy (which opened in the same spot in 1575, no less) the antique-accented space is scented with herbs and spices to further the apothecary feel. This bar specializes in pairing food with drinks (some of the resulting flavor combinations are very interesting, like sweetbreads with chutney paired with a whiskey-based drink), but really it's the infused craft cocktails that are especially unusual, with many of the vegetables and herbs used grown in Pharmarium's own organic garden.
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