Visiting Stockholm: Getting There

Travel

Travelling to Stockholm

During May 2016, we travelled to Stockholm from Aberdeen to attend the Eurovision Song Contest Grand Final and I have to say that getting there was one of the most stress free journeys I have ever taken.

Flying from Aberdeen, Scotland and having Oslo, Norway as a brief stop over had originally made me a bit wary as I’ve never really had stopovers before as I always think of them as a “running around manically at the airport to try and catch a transfer” type of situation but it was exactly the opposite – especially since all the luggage was automatically transferred making that one less thing to worry about.

I was lucky enough to have a window seat so I could see all the snow covered mountains as we flew over them – it was beautiful! It looked something like this…

Upon descent the scenery was also amazing and what really struck me was how colourful all the buildings were (this was also true for flying into Stockholm). Reds, yellows, blues, oranges – in fact every colour and it sure made a difference to the grey buildings of Aberdeen. Imagine something like this being viewed from above…

It’s a sure fire thing that my travel journeys never go without some minor mishaps and this journey was not to be an exception since the first one happened as soon as I disembarked the plane. I was carrying my bag in my hands down the steps at the exit of the plane, unaware that the shoulder strap had got caught around the handrail at the top – unaware that was until I got a quarter way down the steps and got swiftly pulled back. I swear I almost got whiplash.

To add to my embarrassment, I was the last one to leave he plane so everyone waiting in the shuttle bus saw everything! Oh well, it could have been worse considering I was travelling on Friday 13th. I now sympathise even more with Madge even although her incident was cape related and mine was bag related…

The first thing I noticed about the airport in Norway was how quiet it was. Seriously! Although there was lots of people going around it was remarkably quiet. I’m not sure if that’s normal outside of UK airports but I found it odd – in a good way! Maybe it’s because I didn’t understand the language, maybe it’s because the accent is softer spoken or maybe it’s simply because British people are noisy bastards – I’m not quite sure.

The stop over in Oslo I had expected to be be longer than it actually was and now thinking back, the reason it was shorter than I had expected was due to the time difference from the UK…which, incidentally I didn’t fully realise had happened until the following day!

There was a small delay and sadly there was no free (unless you sign up, give away details, wait for email and by the time it’s all complete you are almost boarding anyway kind of irritation and nonsense) wifi in the airport but there was a group of gymnasts throwing other members of their team up in the air and catching them again so that kind of passed the time somewhat..as did the wine…

Once on the flight there was a very young member of the same gymnastic team looking very upset at the fact she would be sat away from anyone else in her team so one of her friends said something towards the direction of where people were already seated (I’m not sure what but I can only assume) and immediately there was a huge, no fuss, shuffle around to accommodate the little girl. I thought that was so nice and I’m pretty sure, in my opinion, that this wouldn’t happen on a UK flight? Anyway, we were one step closer to Stockholm…

When we landed in Stockholm and since Norway didn’t have a smoking area inside the terminal, by now I was ready for my first cigarette when we got outside the airport.

However, I didn’t have to wait until getting outside, and this is one of my big shocks of the trip – Stockholm airport has what I can only describe as “smoking showers”…

A short way after getting off the plane we noticed these “cubicles” that were slap, bang in amongst the shops, bars and restaurants and they had inside of them – people smoking REAL cigarettes. I could not believe my eyes and I just had to go inside – not simply because of the craving but also due to sheer curiosity. Basically, it’s a glass fronted area concealed by a slide door with air holes that when you go inside there’s space for about 5 people, there’s ashtrays and “air suckers” that suck all the smoke away upwards to…somewhere else?

Don’t get me wrong, it’s very claustrophobic, kinda stinky, feels very strange smoking in such a public place but I’m a fully grown adult and I am perfectly aware that it’s a disgusting and stupid habit…but it was soooooo good!

It has to be said – this was a very pleasant journey from start to finish. Now we were more than ready to deal with the public transport system and get to our hotel.

What about you? Have you ever travelled to Stockholm? Let me know about your journey in the comments below or tweet me @stevesays2014

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