Your local guide to hip Södermalm

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July 7th, 2018

Södermalm, a neighborhood full of life and exciting streets, stores and restaurants wherever you go. There is everything from prize awarded restaurants, art museums and Stockholm’s best view to small unique boutiques, green parks and probably Stockholm’s last café to only take cash. The inner city is just half an hour from Zleep Hotel Upplands Väsby. Take the train directly to the central station and switch to the metro or take a lovely walk through the old town.

Shop till you drop

Södermalm is known for its many secondhand stores that extend from cosy Mariatorget to upbeat Hornstull. There are the cheaper options such as The Red Cross and Myrorna, then we have Beyond Retro and the Swedish chain Humana. You will find the more exclusive brands at Fru- and Herr Judith or Filippa K Secondhand. There are many more stores to stroll around in in the area but no matter where you end up, there is something for everyone. Are you in Södermalm between April and September? Then don’t miss out on Hornstull Market that is open Saturdays and Sundays every week. Here you can get street food from all corners of the world, secondhand clothes and accessories, antiquities and handmade jewelry and decorations. It is just next to the waterfront that leads up to Tantolunden – a big green area where you can lay down on the grass, play volleyball, mini golf, or why not go for a swim if the weather allows it.

© Hornstullsmarknad.se

The main shopping street is along Götgatan, a walking street between Slussen and Skanstull. There you will find famous Swedish brands like H&M, Monki, Weekday, Filippa K, Hope, J.Lindeberg and many more. There is also a variety of smaller malls with a good selection of stores. Among others, Ringen in Skanstull, Bruno at Slussen and Skrapan on Götgatan.

The cultural scene

Regardless if you are interested in art or not, it is hard to leave Fotografiska unimpressed. The Swedish Museum of Photography exhibits the world’s most acknowledged photographers in an old industrial building by the waterfront of Slussen. The museum is one of the world’s largest assembly points for photography art and has become one of the most popular tourist attractions in Stockholm. The museum has one of Stockholm’s best restaurant views from the panorama window on the third floor, overlooking the water and city. The award winning restaurant is operated by Paul Svensson and has a big focus on sustainability, zero waste and organic and local products. In 2017, the restaurant was named the best museum restaurant in the world. Enjoy the view over a cup of coffee from the café or visit the bar in the evening and grab a drink.

Are you interested in music and theater and want to discover the cultural scene during your visit? Mosebacke offers grand concerts, theater plays and standup with comedians from all over the world. Start your evening with a beautiful view in the Champagne Bar with a drink on the terrace, eat a good dinner at Mosebacke Etablissement, watch your idol perform on stage and finish the evening by dancing all night long. Mosebacke has four different bars, one terrace and in the night it is transformed into a big nightclub – in other words everything you need.

©Mats Frödin | Söder Teatern

Galleri Hantverket is the place to go if you are looking for Swedish craftsmanship and design. You will find the boutique on the corner of Götgatan/Åsögatan where artists and craftsmen of all material have gathered. Here you will find decorations, statues, jewelry and many other things. Everything comes directly from the artists’ studios, and both the craft and shaping is done by the artists themselves.

Folkoperan is a small local opera house in the middle of exciting Hornsgatan. Folkoperan believes in opera for everyone and is driven by the desire to develop the art of opera beyond the traditional frames. The adjoined restaurant Folkbaren, is a top class restaurant with great food and a varied drinks menu.

A gastronomic experience

Södermalm is full of great restaurants in different price classes. Do you want to eat 104 meters above ground with a 360-degree view over all of Stockholm? Well then you clearly need to visit Restaurant Himlen, meaning ‘Sky’ in English – quite a suiting name. The restaurant that is placed on top of Södermalm’s only skyscraper serves traditional Swedish flavors of high quality. They also have a lounge where you can enjoy a drink before or after your meal while taking in the magnificent view.

Teatern, ‘The Theater’, in the shopping mall Ringen in Skanstull is a food court in a class of its own. All restaurants are food concepts developed by some of the best chefs in Sweden. You will find everything from gourmet hotdogs and vegan burgers to Asian fusion and Italian classics. Speaking of flavors from all over the world, make sure not to miss Indian Garden. It is a prize awarded Indian restaurant that have several venues around Stockholm. Their curry was awarded the best in Europe in 2014, so you can surely say they know what they’re doing when it comes to Indian cuisine.


©Peter Frantzell | Ringecentrum.se

Fika – The Swedish way

Fika is the fundamental core of Sweden. Basically what it is, is grabbing a coffee and something sweet or a small snack and sitting down with a friend. It is not to be rushed and is seen as a great way of catching up. You have fika at work at the morning meeting, fika after lunch, and don’t forget the afternoon fika to give you renewed energy. Fika is to Sweden what hygge is to Denmark – strongly associated and a must in the everyday life. Of course, Stockholm is packed with fik – a café to fika – and in Södermalm it is almost impossible to go wrong. Södermalm is the Mekka for coffee nerds with many cafés having won best coffee in the Whiteguide, a Swedish version of the Michelin Guide.

A obvious choice for great coffee is the area around Mariatorget where there are several cosy cafés, both inside and outside. DropCoffee are serious coffee gurus with many prizes and awards to show off. Among others, they have won Swedish Roasters-, Barista-, Latte Art- and Brewers Championships several years and have been awarded coffee bar of the year by Whiteguide twice. They just can’t fail to provide a good cup of coffee. Around the corner from them you have one of Johan & Nyström’s many cafés. The staff knows their stuff and does it with a smile on their lips. Enjoy the outdoor serving in the sun and don’t forget to try their cinnamon buns – a must for a traditional Swedish fika. A bit closer to Slussen you have the café with the perfect name – Kaffe, just plain and simple, meaning ‘coffee’. It is probably one of few places left where cash is still king and where it is still quite cheap. A really good cup of coffee is between SEK 15-25, and the Italian feeling overwhelms the venue with a great smell of espresso, biscotti and toasted sandwiches. Kaffe is a popular place among locals who you can see sitting there for hours with their morning paper, so come early if you want to secure a spot.

Closer to Skanstull you will find one of Stockholm’s oldest cafés from the 40’s called Gunnarssons. It is a classic café that serves the traditional fika with buns, biscuits, pastries and cakes as well as sandwiches and lunch meals – so basically everything you need. They have two floors, and in the summer an outdoor terrace, so there is plenty of space, yet the café is often very busy. Visit Gunnarssons if you’re looking for a genuine fika experience. If you would like something a bit more modern, then go to Fabrique just next door. It is a stone oven bakery with a cosy feeling and fantastic pastries and bread. It is almost just a hole in the wall with few places to sit and a small disk where they offer everything of the highest quality.

High above and down below

Stockholm is known as Scandinavia’s Venice with water and canals separating the islands and thereby the districts. Södermalm is full of beautiful areas where you can go to relax and take a break from the everyday life. Södermalm is filled with ups and downs so wherever you go you will either have a great view over the city or be close to the waterfront. Hidden between Södermalm and the opposite district called Kungsholmen is Långholmen, a small island under the bridge connecting the two districts. It is somewhat of a hidden gem and most definitely worth discovering. All along the canal are classic varnished wooden boats neatly lined up in a row, and the entire island is one big green park with just a few houses. There are many places to go swimming, and on the highest hill there is an amphitheater where they host concerts and plays in the summer.

In Södermalm you will also find Stockholm’s best view. Get off at Slussen and walk along Monteliusvägen, a walking path along the edge with a great view over Kungsholmen. Behind it, there is also a small park named Ivar Los Park where you can lay in the grass and tan or let the kids play on the playground. Continue to Skinnarviksberget for an even better spot where you can sit on the smooth cliffs and watch the sun go down. It is the perfect place to have a picnic and a beer.

Are you after more of a scenic place to take a powerwalk or a jog then get to Skanstull and walk along the water of Årstaviken, a beautiful path with many opportunities to take a swim or grab a coffee. This is also where you will find Boule Bar that has become a popular social activity where locals gather for an afterwork. Keep walking and you will arrive in Tantolunden and Hornstull Strand – same as mentioned earlier, where there are several outdoor activities and an outdoor gym.

Beautiful Långholmen, the island between Södermalm and Kungsholmen

Regardless of what you are looking for in Stockholm, Södermalm has a wide selection of everything you can imagine. If you are arriving to Stockholm from Arlanda Airport, it is just a 10 minute train ride to Zleep Hotel Upplands Väsby. From there you can easily get into town with the train that goes all day round. We look forward to welcoming you to Zleep Hotel Upplands Väsby outside of Stockholm.