Guides

6 TOP Areas + 2024 Hotel Guide

Aerial view of Stockholm's historic Gamla Stan with colorful buildings and boats along the waterfrontAerial view of Stockholm's historic Gamla Stan with colorful buildings and boats along the waterfront

The capital’s numerous islands and fun attractions will make your holiday unforgettable! But first you’ll need to find a place where to stay in Stockholm!

I visited Stockholm and got to know the city pretty well (loved it!)! So keep reading and you’ll find everything you need to know about planning your trip from which are the best areas and most fabulous hotels!

Stockholm Old Town (Gamla Stan) is the best area in this big city, as it has many iconic attractions and beautiful surroundings! But if that’s not your scene, don’t worry, you’ll find 5 more areas below, each catering to different interests!

For each of those areas I manually compared all the areas and hotels in Stockholm and handpicked only the best ones, which I then sorted by budget so that you can easily pick your favorite, be it luxury, mid-range or budget accommodation. 

Please note that this capital city is pretty expensive (compared to other European cities), so I definitely recommend booking your favorite hotel here, in advance and scoring a cheaper price!

If you’re in a hurry…

Busy shopping street in Stockholm with pedestrians, shops, and city life
Busy shopping street in Stockholm with pedestrians, shops, and city life

Ready to book your holiday, including the hotels? Then check out this short list with the best hotels in Stockholm Old Town:

Which area should you choose?

Firstly, make sure to check out this map with all the areas in the Swedish capital that I will talk about in this post:

A colorful map highlighting the best areas to stay in Stockholm, with numbered locations and labels for easy navigationA colorful map highlighting the best areas to stay in Stockholm, with numbered locations and labels for easy navigation

1. Stockholm Old Town (Gamla Stan) – for first timers

Colorful facades of old town Stockholm buildings in Stortorget square with people milling about
Colorful facades of old town Stockholm buildings in Stortorget square with people milling about

Welcome to one of the most beautiful and the oldest medieval areas in Europe!

Everything has been so well-preserved here over the years that you’ll feel as if at any time a medieval knight will pop out of nowhere! 

Old Town (Gamla Stan Stockholm) has countless attractions and before you jump to see them all, take some moments to explore the cobble-stoned streets and snap some pics of the colorful houses! 

After that you can check out the incredible Royal Palace (Kungliga Slotten), the home of Sweden’s royal family! You should also stop by the Parliament building (Riksdag) and the Stockholm Cathedral, which has stunning architecture!

I know, there are so many incredible things to do in Stockholm! If you don’t know where to start, check out my 3 day Stockholm itinerary, where you’ll find so many useful tips. 

Stockholm has a fascinating history and it is actually the birthplace of Alfred Nobel! They hold Nobel Prize Awards on December 10th – anniversary of Nobel’s death. 

There’s actually a place called the Nobel Museum, which I highly recommend visiting as it’s super fun – you will learn more about Nobel laureates such as Marie Curie, Nelson Mandela, and Winston Churchil

By the way, Gamla Stan has easy and convenient access to the rest of the city via public transport or ferries that connect the islands! Stockholm’s metro system is amazing and you can go anywhere around the town. 

Here, you’ll also be surrounded by many awesome restaurants and cafes, where you can enjoy their yummy pastries! One of my favorites is their version of cinnamon rolls called kanelbulle. They go perfect with a cup of coffee! 

A collage of three hotel photos to stay in Stockholm Old Town: an opulent room with vintage furniture and candelabra, a plush bed with a colorful tapestry above, and a regal room with red drapes and a classic writing desk.A collage of three hotel photos to stay in Stockholm Old Town: an opulent room with vintage furniture and candelabra, a plush bed with a colorful tapestry above, and a regal room with red drapes and a classic writing desk.

Luxury (€230 and up)

  • Collector’s Victory Hotel – here’s a charming hotel just a short walk from the attractions and all great restaurants in the Stockholm city centre! The accommodation boasts beautifully-designed rooms with a naval theme and modern amenities.
  • Hôtel Reisen in The Unbound – enjoy the stunning sea views from your rooms in this luxurious hotel that’s ideally located just a short walk away from the attractions. Here you can relax in their spa center with a nice Swedish massage. 

Mid-range (€130 – €230)

  • Collector’s Lady Hamilton Hotel – this hotel has a wonderful central location and some amazing rooms! They have their own sauna, plunge pool, and there are plenty of places within walking distance where you can eat, drink and shop.
  • Scandic Gamla Stan – housed in a mid 17th-century building, this hotel comes with rooms that have a Gustavian-style décor and a flat-screen Tv.

Budget (up to €130)

  • Castle House Inn – here’s something a bit more affordable in Gamla Stan that offers rooms with city views and bike rentals! The Royal Palace and the other attractions are within walking distance!
  • Castanea Old Town Hostel – check out this super affordable hotel that’s centrally located and has rooms with wooden floors and laundry facilities.

2. Norrmalm – where to stay for the urban atmosphere

Train entering a station with Stockholm's old town and city hall in the background
Train entering a station with Stockholm's old town and city hall in the background

If you walk a bit to the North from Gamla Stan, you’ll reach the fabulous neighborhood of Norrmalm, the business and commerce district of Stockholm (also known as CBD or “The City”).

This area is centrally-located plus it’s very well connected to the rest of the neighborhoods and other cities in the country through the T-Centralen metro station and Central Station Stockholm. 

I would definitely recommend to those of you who love that hyped urban atmosphere and staying right in the middle of everything! 

Have you heard about Stockholm Syndrome? The robbery took place in 1973 in Kreditbanken bank (map). It lasted for six days, during which the hostages developed a bond with their captors.

Normalan is like a museum-paradise, there are lots of cool places to visit here like the National Museum, the Royal Swedish Opera and the House of Culture (Kulturhuset) which is more than a museum as it hosts a theater and live performances. 

This is where you’ll also find the Drottninggatan pedestrian street which has lots of shops and cafes!

NOTE: Make sure you always have a card with you! Many places in Stockholm don’t accept cash and I know nowadays most of us don’t walk around without a card, but it’s important to know this!

If you want to take a break from the urban affair you can head to Kungsträdgården Park (map) (King’s Garden), one of the most beautiful parks in town. 

There are also countless shops here, from small designer shops to big outlets, as well as plenty of hotel options for all budgets (amazing luxury hotels as well!).

A collage of three hotel images in Norrmalm, Stockholm: a sleek hotel bar with modern lighting, a contemporary bedroom with a red accent wall and chic decor, and a stylish lobby with comfortable seating and warm lighting.A collage of three hotel images in Norrmalm, Stockholm: a sleek hotel bar with modern lighting, a contemporary bedroom with a red accent wall and chic decor, and a stylish lobby with comfortable seating and warm lighting.

Luxury (€180 and up)

  • At Six – here’s a super modern hotel with a central location that has fabulous rooms with amazing city views! The accommodation also has a restaurant that serves international cuisine, a fitness center and private parking.
  • Grand Hôtel Stockholm – you’re going to love these rooms! They have such an amazing design, a fine dining restaurant and a spa center where you can relax after a day out!

Mid-range (€120 – €180)

  • Scandic Hotel Continental Stockholm – enjoy the stunning views from the rooftop terrace of this hotel, which has a restaurant. The property is right across the street from Stockholm Central Station (the train station).
  • Haymarket by Scandic – this art-deco themed hotel has a perfect location just minutes walk away from the attractions and it offers a small cinema (OMG) and 2 restaurants.

Budget (up to €120)

  • City Backpackers Hostel – are you wondering where to stay on a budget in this amazing neighborhood? Here is your answer! This colorful, friendly hostel is super close to Stockholm Central Station, which is a very good advantage!
  • Downtown Camper by Scandic – here’s the amazing Scandic hotel that comes with a swimming pool, a spa and 2 restaurants. While here you can try yoga and join the movie

3. Södermalm – Stockholm’s hipster area

Tranquil scene of a bridge and waterways in Stockholm with buildings and greenery
Tranquil scene of a bridge and waterways in Stockholm with buildings and greenery

Conveniently located south of Gamla Stan, around a 30 min walk away, this area is one of the coolest and trendiest ones in the capital city and a great spot for those who want to enjoy Stockholm’s nightlife.

Södermalm is pretty big! To get around more easily, you should know that in the North part you’ll find some amazing attractions like the Stockholm City Museum, also the Mariaberget (map) observation deck where you can catch a gorgeous sunset. 

By the way, if you’re looking for more places to admire the views in this area, I’d also recommend the Monteliusvägen (map) and Fjällgatan (map) points! You’ll love both of them!

Then in the Hornstull part of the island you’ll find lots of green areas, Tantolunden is probably the biggest one where you can stroll around during the day. 

So many things to see here! And the cherry on top is probably the hipster SoFo area (abbreviation from South of Folkungagatan), where you’ll find lots of restaurants, book-shops (perfect for those who want to get some souvenirs) and cafes. 

Here you can enjoy the city’s lively nightlife, especially during the weekend! Around Sofo there are lots of places where you can grab a drink! Snotty Sound Bar is a really fun one, where you can start the night!

P.S. If you want to try the famous Surströmming, the traditional Swedish tinned fish – be prepared because it is super smelly. Some people compared it to the smell of a rotten egg! 😉

A collage of three hotels in Södermalm, Stockholm: a serene bedroom with light decor and artwork, a vibrant lounge area with plush seating and eclectic lighting, and a cozy dining area with candlelight and rich brown tones.A collage of three hotels in Södermalm, Stockholm: a serene bedroom with light decor and artwork, a vibrant lounge area with plush seating and eclectic lighting, and a cozy dining area with candlelight and rich brown tones.

Luxury (€180 and up)

  • NOFO Hotel – this wonderful upscale hotel is located in a nice historical building from 1780 with a very convenient location, right in the middle of the island. They offer cozy rooms, an inner courtyard, an on-site restaurant and daily breakfast.
  • Hotel Rival – how cool is this 1930s Art Déco building? Inside is even more amazing and it has rooms with large ABBA pictures, Tvs and also a bar. 

Mid-range (€100 – €180)

  • STF Hotel Zinkensdamm – sleep like a baby in the cozy rooms of this hotel that has a modern decor. The accommodation offers a sauna and fun activities like playing mini-golf!
  • Hotel Hellstens Malmgård – dating back to the 18th century, this hotel is set across the water from the city center and it has individually decorated rooms and a terrace. 

Budget (up to €100)

  • Skanstulls Hostel – this awesome 2-star hostel has some unbeatable prices and some superb rooms, all at the same property! They even have their own kitchen that you can use to prepare your own meals and save some bucks to spend on other attractions.
  • STF Långholmen Hostel – such a unique hotel that’s housed in a refurbished 1800s prison building! Don’t worry though, everything is so modern and it also offers bike rentals, a restaurant and a bar.

4. Östermalm & Djurgården – best place for culture

Amusement park rides at Gröna Lund in Stockholm with cityscape and blue sky in the background
Amusement park rides at Gröna Lund in Stockholm with cityscape and blue sky in the background

This area is absolutely huuuge!

Most of its attractions are set in the Southwestern part of the area, so I’d recommend getting your hotel there so that you don’t have to walk a lot to reach your attractions.

Östermalm is located around a 30 min walk away from Gamla Stan, in the Northeastern part of the city and it also includes the gorgeous Djurgården which is like a smaller national park.

Outside of the attractions, it is an upscale residential area, and I would recommend it for families but also those who want to really explore all those attractions. 

The famous ABBA Museum which is super fun and even has a dance floor (I may have enjoyed the karaoke there a bit more than I can admit!). Then there’s the Army Museum, the Swedish History Museum, Vasa Museum and the Viking Museum where you can dive into Viking history! PRO TIP: Definitely watch the Vikings TV series before your trip if you’re into this!

If you’re traveling with your family, the Gröna Lund amusement park and the Junibacken museum are definitely a must-see – SO much fun!

Right near Östermalm & Djurgården there’s a little island called Skeppsholmen which is connected to the mainland via a bridge from Norrmalm. But you can visit it from this side as well via ferry and I highly recommend doing it as it has even more museums and parks.

If you enjoy Stockholm’s natural side, consider visiting the Stockholm Archipelago, which is made of a total of 30,000 islands! 

A collage of three Östermalm & Djurgården hotel interiors in Stockholm: a living area with an ornate stove and chandelier, a modern lounge with iconic egg chairs, and a bedroom with warm wood tones and contemporary design.A collage of three Östermalm & Djurgården hotel interiors in Stockholm: a living area with an ornate stove and chandelier, a modern lounge with iconic egg chairs, and a bedroom with warm wood tones and contemporary design.

Luxury (€230 and up)

  • Ett Hem – such a great hotel with a gorgeous design! Simple tones reign over the rooms and the lounge areas and you’ll find an outdoor fireplace where you can warm up!
  • The Sparrow Hotel – could this be the long-lost hotel of Jack Sparrow? You’ll have to go and see! This four-star hotel has beautifully-decorated rooms with courtyard views and seating areas, plus a fitness centre for those who don’t want to miss out on gym day!

Mid-range (€140 – €230)

  • Villa Källhagen – this amazing hotel is located in a super beautiful building that boasts a traditional Swedish style and it has a gourmet restaurant and an outdoor terrace surrounded by a gorgeous garden. 
  • Backstage Hotel Stockholm – ABBA fans, this place is for you! Set in the same building as the ABBA Museum, this hotel offers rooms with balconies and a complimentary breakfast. 

Budget (up to €140)

  • Biz Apartment Gärdet – I recommend this cool condo hotel if you want to enjoy a more local atmosphere, right in the middle of this beautiful district. During your stay you’ll be able to enjoy the stylish decor, modern kitchen and access to a laundry room as well.
  • ProfilHotels Riddargatan – here’s an affordable hotel for your city break or longer stay that has rooms with free Wi-Fi, wooden floors and also a bar. 

5. Vasastan – best place in Stockholm for relaxation

Public square with a metro entrance, flowers, and buildings in Stockholm
Public square with a metro entrance, flowers, and buildings in Stockholm

Looking for a place that’s a bit more tranquil? Then Vasastan, also called the “Stone City” by local people, could be the place for you.

Located 20 min away from Gamla Stan, Vasatan is kind of a popular picnic spot! Yep, many people come here to enjoy the weather and a bite in the area’s lush parks!

Vasastan is also a bit more tranquil than the city centre and it has lots of affordable hotels! Don’t worry it even has a metro station so you can get pretty much anywhere you want in Stockholm.

Although not as busy, the area still has some fun attractions that you can visit like the Stockholm Public Library which is pretty big! There’s also the Observatory and the Bonniers Konsthall-Contemporary Art Gallery.

If you want to take it slow and enjoy the famous FIKA concept then head to one of the cafes in the area. Gast Café is a lovely place!

For anyone who doesn’t know, FIKA is an amazing Swedish tradition – it is basically taking a break to enjoy a beverage, often coffee, and a pastry.

I feel like I could FIKA all day long! 

P.S. If you’re looking for more affordable hotels in the city, check the Hökarängen, Gubbängen and Bandhagen areas, which can be much cheaper! 

A collage of three hotel vistas in Vasastan, Stockholm: a view from a hotel room showcasing hanging chairs and the city skyline, a chic salon with blue armchairs and natural light, and a simple yet stylish room with bunk beds and a vivid wall color.A collage of three hotel vistas in Vasastan, Stockholm: a view from a hotel room showcasing hanging chairs and the city skyline, a chic salon with blue armchairs and natural light, and a simple yet stylish room with bunk beds and a vivid wall color.

Luxury (€160 and up)

  • Hotel Ruth – loving the cozy vibes and wooden aesthetics of this hotel! The accommodation comes with a restaurant on-site and a terrace!
  • Best Western Plus Time – the rooms here have super large windows that overlook the city and some even come with a balcony. You’ll also find an on-site bar and free Wi-Fi. 

Mid-range (€100 – €160)

  • Hotel Hellsten – chill in the sauna after a day of exploring the city at this hotel that’s housed in a 1800 building and a fitness center. 
  • Blique by Nobis – this is truly a gorgeous, modern hotel that I can definitely recommend! The rooms are very stylish and sparkling clean and they also have an on-site restaurant, a bar, a garden and a fitness center.

Budget (up to €100)

  • Crafoord Place Hostel – looking for something a bit more affordable? Then check out this hostel which has rooms with shared bathrooms, a kitchen and also laundry facilities. 
  • ibis Style – this hostel has double and shared rooms, a bar where you can mingle with the other guests and a fitness center.

6. Kungsholmen – where to stay for the local vibe

Colorful waterfront architecture of Kungsholmen in Stockholm, with vividly painted buildings in shades of orange and yellow, boats moored along the quay, under a clear blue skyColorful waterfront architecture of Kungsholmen in Stockholm, with vividly painted buildings in shades of orange and yellow, boats moored along the quay, under a clear blue sky

Maybe this is your second time in Stockholm and you want to explore the not so touristy part of the capital city, or maybe it’s your first time but you love staying in a more residential area where you can really mix with the locals!

Either way I feel like you’ll love Kungsholmen, a residential area located 20 min away by public transport from Gamla Stan and the city’s main sights!

This is also a pretty big area, so maybe you should get some hotels in the eastern part of the neighborhood which is closer to central Stockholm.

Its laid-back feel and lush parks make Kungsholmen so incredibly cozy! Here you can relax with a tea while admiring the waterfront views in Rålambshovsparken, and really taking in the local vibe! 

Kungsholmen is also known for the Stockholm City Hall, which you can totally visit! 

A collage of three hotels in Kungsholmen, Stockholm: a room with a dark bedspread and vibrant orange wall, a lounge with a modern sofa and abstract wall art, and an entrance with a colorful mural depicting a face with sunglasses.A collage of three hotels in Kungsholmen, Stockholm: a room with a dark bedspread and vibrant orange wall, a lounge with a modern sofa and abstract wall art, and an entrance with a colorful mural depicting a face with sunglasses.

Luxury (€200 and up)

  • Sky Hotel Apartments – here are some great apartments perfect for those who’d want to have their own kitchen and more space. The accommodation also offers free access to a shared laundry room
  • Courtyard by Marriott – this super modern hotel is set within walking distance of the Thorildsplan Metro Station, and it comes with rooms that overlook the lake and a restaurant. 

Mid-range (€120 – €200)

  • Aiden by Best Western – enjoy a sauna sesh after exploring the city at this hotel that has rooms with wooden floors and a Tv.
  • Clarion Hotel Amaranten – a great hotel near a metro station that has rooms with city views and a fitness center.

Budget (up to €120)

  • Stay in City – these simple yet well-equipped rooms come with everything you need for your stay including a private bathroom and free Wi-Fi. 
  • Hotel Fridhem – crash in the comfy beds of this hotel that offers a complimentary breakfast and rooms with a desk.

Best apartments in Stockholm

Cobblestone street in Stockholm's old town during evening with warm lighting and buildings



Cobblestone street in Stockholm's old town during evening with warm lighting and buildings

Planning to spend a longer time in Stockholm? Or maybe you’re traveling with your family and friends? Either way, you might look into booking an apartment that has more space than a hotel room and a wider range of facilities!

If so, check out the best ones I found in the capital: 

  • Biz Apartment Bromma ($$$) – such amazing apartments! All are so beautifully-designed with stylish furnishings and come with a kitchen and a lounge area. 
  • Unity Hammarby Sjöstad ($$) – some great apartments where you’ll have a lot of space, the use of a kitchen and a flat-screen Tv.
  • The Studio Hotel ($) – these studios have a small kitchenette, a dining area and also a terrace. 

Best hotels near Stockholm Airport

Inside a spacious and modern airport terminal with passengers and signage
Inside a spacious and modern airport terminal with passengers and signage

Looking for a hotel right near the airport? This can be super convenient if you have an early flight and want to get a good night’s sleep! 

Stockholm has 4 airports but out of all, Stockholm Arlanda Airport (ARN) is the main one and probably where you’ll arrive. This airport is located 40 km from the city center and it’s actually the largest airport in the entire Sweden.

So let’s check out the best hotels: 

  • Clarion Hotel Arlanda Airport ($$$)  – one of the best luxury hotels located between Terminals 4 and 5 that offers an outdoor swimming pool and a sky bar!
  • Radisson Blu Arlandia Hotel ($$) – set right near the airport, this hotel offers an indoor pool and room service. 
  • Good Morning Arlanda ($) – this hotel is 1.5 km (less than a mile) away from the airport and it comes with a free airport shuttle and a restaurant. 

FAQs about where to stay in Stockholm

Panoramic view of Stockholm, showcasing the iconic City Hall with its tall tower and golden Three Crowns, the Royal Palace, and surrounding historic buildings along the waterfront, with bridges connecting to lush green islands in the background.Panoramic view of Stockholm, showcasing the iconic City Hall with its tall tower and golden Three Crowns, the Royal Palace, and surrounding historic buildings along the waterfront, with bridges connecting to lush green islands in the background.

🤩 Which areas are best to stay in Stockholm?

Old Town (Gamla Stan) is the best area to stay in Stockholm! There you’ll find all the main attractions and great hotels like Collector’s Victory Hotel.

📷 What is the hippest part of Stockholm?

Södermalm is the hippest area in Stockholm, it has lots of cool cafes, bars and many Instagrammable places!

💃 Where is the lively area in Stockholm?

Old Town (Gamla Stan) and Södermalm are the liveliest areas in the city! Both boast so many restaurants, bars and cafes!

📅 When is the best time to visit Stockholm?

The best time to visit Stockholm is from May to September, that’s when the weather is at its best!

💶 Is Stockholm an expensive city to visit?

Yes, Stockholm is a pretty expensive city to visit but you can still do it if you’re on a tight budget! Just go for the cheaper hotels and visit it during the low season (December to February).

🚇 What is the best way to get around Stockholm?

The metro is the best way to get around Stockholm, they have a great system! But you can also use the tram, the ferries that go between islands and the buses.

⚠️ Is Stockholm a safe city?

Yes, ranks show that Stockholm is one of the safest cities in Europe! However make sure you take care of your belongings, as in any other places that you visit!

Conclusion

Evening view of Stockholm with Riddarholmen Church spire against a twilight sky and city lights reflecting in the water
Evening view of Stockholm with Riddarholmen Church spire against a twilight sky and city lights reflecting in the water

What a place! I’m so happy you’ve reached the end of this post on where to stay in Stockholm!

I loved my time in this city (can’t wait to come back!) and I’m sure that after reading the article you’ll also feel pretty inspired to decide which areas and hotels are the right ones for you!

If not, don’t worry, you can always come back to the article. To help you out, I’ll leave my 2 favorite hotel options below, both set in central Stockholm:

There you go! Remember what I said earlier, Nordic countries ain’t cheap, so it’s better to book your hotel here in advance!

Enjoy your holiday and if you have other questions don’t hesitate to drop them in the comment section below, I’d be happy to help out!

Happy travels,

Yulia


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Promotional collage with images of Stockholm's architecture and hotel interior suggesting places to stay in Stockholm, Sweden
Promotional collage with images of Stockholm's architecture and hotel interior suggesting places to stay in Stockholm, Sweden

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Promotional image with silhouette of Riddarholmen Church's spire at sunset, titled 'Best Hotels Stockholm Sweden'

Promotional image with silhouette of Riddarholmen Church's spire at sunset, titled 'Best Hotels Stockholm Sweden'

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