As I type this, I’m sat in seat 17B of a Norwegian Airline’s flight from Stockholm to London Gatwick, sporadically losing myself in a longing and reminiscent gaze out of the window. With blue skies and sunshine bouncing off the wing, I very much wish I was boarding via the adjacent 2:50pm queue flight to Bangkok.
Our time in sunny Sweden at the point I ended my last post continued as action packed and awe-inspired as it started.
During our final days in our gorgeous villa, we took it upon ourselves to gorge upon everything that the island of Resaro and the property itself had to offer. With a stone pizza oven on our terrace, sauna/spa room a few yards away and many bottles of red wine still to work our way through, you can imagine the sluggish, indulgent evenings that were spent.
Our sauna room, which we had failed to discover until our penultimate evening, was like discovering gold. The Swedish temperatures swing so quickly that skin sizzling sunshine can dip down into goosebump inducing degrees with a small sprinkling of cloud. We kept the sauna temperatures ready at sweltering levels at all times, awaiting our company in the evenings when we were too stubborn to sit indoors watching TV, but the lowered sun no longer welcomed us outside.
Not being capable of much more than a spin class or treadmill session sports wise, when on holiday I make the effort to get involved in any local activities on offer. In this case, with still waters as far as the eye could see, kayaking was on the agenda. We were up and out at an unholy hour in order to grab a few hours on the water whilst the forecast promised us sunshine, unintentionally manoeuvring into tree branches and demonstrating our impeccable 360’ kayak spinning skills before throwing in the oars and heading for a warm shower (and maybe.. probably.. absolutely another sauna session).
During our final day in our Resaro villa we explores one of the surrounding islands. With so many options and so many idyllic images returning with every Google search or guidebook flip through, we were totally spoiled for choice. We opted to jump on one of the regular ferries to the island of Grinda due to its vast offerings of wildlife, small beaches and two intimate yet highly commended restaurants. Following several hours of wandering in the beaming sunshine, exploring woodland and playing a game of Boule on the waterside (offered free by a lovely man at one of the restaurants), we nestled into The Grinda Inn as the weather began to turn. With a roaring fire and blankets at the ready, we felt as if we were almost able to experience the island’s wintery charm just a few hours after napping on warm rocks with the sound of soft waves crashing below us. Only one meal felt right to consume in these autumnal-like conditions. Swedish Meatballs (a confirmed menu staple of this trip)..
Our final day and night of our Scandinavian adventures took us back to where it all started – Stockholm. Having not spent much time exploring this city on our first night here, we took it upon ourselves to cram as much in as physically possible. We explored the Old Town, grabbing a few scoops of gelato and jumping into a lively bar for a game of darts (I know, who am I?) before heading to the area which had been at the top of this city’s to-do list – Sodermalm. Being East Londoners and loving a day spent exploring independent coffee shops and vintage shops, Sodermalm, with its eclectic offerings, sounded like the place for us.
The areas homes within the Old Town were filled with culture, with cobbled streets, narrow roads and gothic buildings. In comparison, Sodermalm was lower built, with wider streets in which to accommodate outdoor seating by many of the quirky independent coffee shops. Filled with interesting shops selling everything from organic skincare to vintage sunglasses, this edgy area is an absolute treasure trove for someone like me who love nothing more than collecting knickknacks and memorabilia which, yes I may never use, but I love to keep as memories of trips away.
Our accommodation for our final night in Sweden tested our sea legs and filled me with much more excitement than my sea fearing boyfriend. Docked just to the north of Sodermalm, Rygerfjord hotel offered up sunset views over the city from the comfort of our own king sized bed, set comfortably (and thankfully quite stabally) on the water. Absolute unexpected luxury and something that took us as far away from the holiday norm as we could have hoped and provide us prime central spot for inner city exploring.