Hey hey, dear friends! Welcome to Stockholm, the Swedish capital, the city where modern style meets historical charm in perfect harmony. You know what’s not so harmonious? The prices here—damn! No need to ask grandma for a loan, I’ve got your back with this ultimate guide on where to stay in Stockholm.
In this nicely done Stockholm neighborhood guide, we’ll explore the best areas to crash based on your interests. Whether you’re up for partying, gobbling Swedish meatballs, trying to be the next History Channel Influencer or just all the (fun) things to do here in Stockholm, I’ve got you covered!
So no more wasting time—let’s dive into the five top neighborhoods and my personal favorites for your epic Stockholm journey. Ready to find out? Yes. You’re. Don’t be ridiculous. It’s the land where a vodka and the ABBA museum meet each. I mean…
Warm up your Köttbullar (hmmm) and make yourself ready.
Let’s get in!
Backpacking Stockholm and looking for a specific place to stay but don’t have much time? These are my highest recommendations for places to stay in Stockholm.
Unlock Our GREATEST Travel Secrets!
Sign up for our newsletter and get the best travel tips delivered right to your inbox.
Best Airbnb in Stockholm: Cute little studio
Right in the middle of the Old Town, super bright, clean, and completely to yourself. This studio is the perfect home for your first stay in Stockholm. Be in a wonderful central location and close to all of the hot spots while having the option to just chill inside and have a relaxed day – you can’t do anything wrong with booking this awesome Airbnb in Stockholm.
Best Hostel in Stockholm: City Backpackers Hostel
City Backpackers is my pick for the best hostel in Stockholm. Centrally located in Norrmalm, this hostel is close to the transit, popular tourist attractions, restaurants, shops, and bars. They offer clean and safe accommodations and free wifi. There are also bike rentals, sauna, and ice skates to borrow in winter.
Sometimes the best way to experience a destination is from a good dorm room with good people. Book one of these sweet hostels in Stockholm and get ready for the time of your life!
Best Hotel in Stockholm: NOFO Hotel BW Premier Collection
This is my pick for the best luxury hotel in Stockholm. Not only is it located at the heart of the city’s coolest district, but it’s within walking distance to the top attractions of Old Town and Norrmalm. Comprised of 48 modern rooms, this hotel has free wifi, private parking, and a myriad of features that will ensure you have a good night’s sleep.
Gamla Stan is a small and charming island nestled between Norrmalm and Sodermalm. It is Stockholm’s Old Town and is one of the best-preserved medieval centres in Europe.
Norrmalm is a busy and bustling district. It is set just north of Gamla Stan and is home to Stockholm’s commercial and business districts. This area of the city is a haven for culture vultures.
Sodermalm isn’t just one of the coolest places to stay in Stockholm, but this neighbourhood regularly ranks as one of the coolest in the world.
Sodermalm might be seen as the coolest districts in Stockholm, but it’s neighbour, Hornstull is quickly rising the ranks and well deserving of a place on the list.
Ostermalm is an elegant neighbourhood located northeast of the city centre. It is one of the more exclusive parts of Stockholm and is characterized by its tree-lined boulevards, colourful buildings and diverse architecture.
Stockholm is a stunning city that seamlessly combines old, new, and nature. The city is best-known for its surrounding waters, massive green spaces, modern Stockholm culture style, and charming medieval centre.
But, there’s so much more to Stockholm, from lively nightlife and shopping to world-class food and culture. When it comes to the best places to visit in Stockholm, the list pretty much never ends!
It is the capital and largest city in Sweden and is the largest urban centre in the Nordic countries. It is comprised of 14 islands connected by more than 50 bridges. So as you can imagine, it’s quite a big city, and so picking the right neighbourhood to stay in is so important to make sure you make the best out of your stay.
Gamla Stan is the neighbourhood at the heart of the city. It is Stockholm’s Old Town and is one of the best-preserved medieval centres in Europe. Catering to tourists, here you’ll find a myriad of historic and cultural attractions, which makes it my top choice for anyone visiting Stockholm for the first time.
To the north is Norrmalm, Stockholm’s business and commercial centre. It’s where you’ll find everything from great shopping to world-class culture, and is my top pick for where to stay in Stockholm for one night or if you’re on a budget. It’s also where Stockholm Central Station is located, so if you plan on backpacking Sweden, this would be a great location to base yourself in.
Head east from here and you’ll arrive in Ostermalm. One of the most elegant and exclusive areas of the city, Ostermalm is my number one pick for where to stay in Stockholm with kids because there’s so much to see and do. From massive parks to outstanding museums, such as the Swedish History Museum, you and your family won’t be bored in Ostermalm.
Travel south through Gamla Stan to Sodermalm. A hip and trendy district, Sodermalm is the best neighbourhood to stay in Stockholm for nightlife thanks to its great selection of bars, restaurants, cafes, and clubs. It’s also where you’ll find excellent independent shopping and plenty of ultra-cool Scandi-style.
And finally, to the west of Sodermalm is Hornstull. This is one of the coolest places to stay in Stockholm because it has everything from beaches and bars to shops and restaurants.
Stockholm’s 5 Best Neighbourhoods to Stay in
Still not sure where to stay in Stockholm? Don’t worry, I’ve got you covered! Before you start your trip make sure to come up with a rough Stockholm itinerary of what you want to see. There are so many hotspots that being spontaneous can turn out really overwhelming.
Gamla Stan, call it Old Town, call it Stockholm city centre – is a small and charming island nestled between Norrmalm and Sodermalm. It is one of the best-preserved medieval centre in Europe. Comprised of narrow winding streets and cobblestone alleys, Gamla Stan is a labyrinth of history, mystery, legend, and culture.
This island caters to tourists and is packed with restaurants, shops, museums, and some of Stockholm’s best attractions.
From the massive Royal Palace and the modern Nobel Museum to Viking-themed restaurants and contemporary cocktail bars, Gamla Stan is the best neighbourhood in Stockholm to stay in for sightseeing, delving deep into history, or simply enjoying Swedish charm.
Best Airbnb in Gamla Stan: Cute little studio
Right in the middle of the Old Town, super-bright, clean, and completely to yourself. This studio is the perfect home for your first stay in Stockholm. Be central and close to all of the hot spots while having the option to just chill inside and have a relaxed day – you can’t do anything wrong with booking this Airbnb.
Best Hostel in Gamla Stan: Castanea Old Town Hostel
This is one of the best places to stay in Stockholm if you’re looking to go sightseeing. It is located at the heart of Old Town, and is surrounded by historic landmarks, cultural attractions, great restaurants, and charming pubs. It has a quiet and cosy atmosphere and a fantastic kitchen for guests. As one of the budget-friendly accommodations, a perfect opportunity to save some pennies for all the things to do in Stockholm.
Best Hotel in Gamla Stan: Hotel Sven Vintappare
If you want to expierence genuine Scandinavian hospitality, then Hotel Sven Vintappare is the right place. Nestled within a historic 17th-century building in Stockholm’s Old Town, the hotel exudes charm with Gustavian-style (had to google that) furnishings and modern amenities like flat-screen TVs. The beds are comfortable as so often in Stockholm. The central location provides easy access to Västerlånggatan shopping street. You can start your day with breakfast in the medieval wine cellar café, which is pretty cool. The property’s unique character is evident in its tiny staircases, uneven floors, and old locks. Really enjoyed that one.
Best Hotel in Gamla Stan: Lady Hamilton Hotel
Charming and comfortable, this four-star hotel is one of the best places to stay in Stockholm. It is located in the Old Town and offers easy access to popular tourist attractions and landmarks, as well as Norrmalm and Sodermalm. Guests can enjoy a sauna, plunge pool, and a modern fitness center.
Things to Do in Gamla Stan
- Be inspired by the exhibits and displays at the Nobel Prize Museum.
- Browse the exhibits at the Medeltidsmuseet (Medieval Museum)
- Delve deep into history at the Museum Tre Kronor.
- Dine on traditional Viking fare at Aifur Krog & Bar.
- Enjoy a cheap and delicious traditional Swedish meal at Nystekt Stromming.
- Excite your tastebuds at Stockholms Gastabud.
- Grab a pint at Wirstroms Pub.
- Explore Stockholm’s spooky past on a Medieval Ghost Tour
- Marvel at the massive Storkyrkan (Stockholm Cathedral).
- Visit the Royal Palace and watch the changing of the guard.
- Walk through Marten Trotzigs alley and make a wish when you reach the end.
We’ve tested countless backpacks over the years, but there’s one that has always been the best and remains the best buy for adventurers: the broke backpacker-approved Osprey Aether and Ariel series.
Want more deetz on why these packs are so damn perfect? Then read our comprehensive review for the inside scoop!View on Osprey View on REI
Norrmalm is a busy and bustling district. It is set just north of Gamla Stan and is home to Stockholm’s commercial and business districts.
This area of the city is a haven for culture vultures. Tucked throughout Norrmalm is a myriad of museums, art galleries, and institutions, including the Royal Opera House, the National Museum, and Kulturhuset, where you can see world-class performances and exhibits.
In addition to all of this, Norrmalm is also where you’ll find some of the cheapest accommodations in the city, from excellent backpacker hostels to affordable boutique hotels.
Not visiting for long? Norrmalm is also my number one choice for where to stay in Stockholm for one night because it’s well-connected throughout Stockholm and Sweden.
Best Airbnb for Budget in Norrmalm: Comfy bed in mixed dorm
Stockholm is an expensive city, but I’ve found an option for travellers on a budget too. This modern hostel offers you a comfy dorm bed for quite a cheap nightly price. There’s a laundry on-site, as well as available luggage lockers. Meet other travellers in the cool common areas, get a drink at the bar or challenge someone to a game of pool.
Best Airbnb in Norrmalm: Airy apartment w/ Terrace
Located in central Stockholm, you can find this beautiful one-bedroom apartment with a terrace. The nightly price is very affordable, and you get a whole place to yourself. Designed with modern decor, the Airbnb is super bright and airy, making every room very big and the atmosphere super welcoming. The Royal Palace, Abba Museum, Stockholm City Hall and Stockholm City Museum are within walking distance, and you’ve got a bus and metro stop nearby.
Best Hostel in Norrmalm: City Backpackers Hostel
City Backpackers is my pick for the best hostel in Stockholm. Centrally located in Norrmalm, this hostel is close to the transit, popular tourist attractions, restaurants, shops, and bars to ensure you have a full Stockholm itinerary. They offer clean and safe accommodations and free wifi. There are also bike rentals, sauna times, and ice skates to borrow in winter.
Best Hotel in Norrmalm: Comfort Hotel Xpress Stockholm Central
This hotel is ideally located in one of Stockholm’s best neighborhoods. This nice hotel is close to transit and is a short walk to great bars, restaurants, shops, and attractions. Rooms are well-equipped with modern amenities, and this hotel provides free wifi and luggage storage to guests.
Best Hotel in Norrmalm: Crystal Plaza Hotel
This Stockholm hotel is one of the best places to stay in. It’s located amongst well-known tourist attractions and is close to shops, restaurants, and bars. This hotel provides charming and cosy rooms with modern facilities. There’s also a fitness centre, laundry facilities, and an on-site sauna.
Things to Do in Norrmalm
- Browse the exhibits at the Strindberg Museum.
- Catch a performance by the Royal Swedish Opera.
- Delve deep into the world of art and design at the Nationalmuseum.
- Visit the Swedish Music Hall and get a lesson in the rich history of Swedish music!
- Excite your senses at La Neta City.
- Go for a waterside stroll along Strandvagen.
- Take the train or bus from Stockholm Central and visit Tyresta Nationalpark outside the city
- Spend some time at the Stockholm observatory.
- Grab a bite to eat at Kajsas Fisk.
- Pick up a souvenir or two on Drottninggatan.
- Stand at the centre of the city in bustling Sergels Torg.
- Step back in time at the Hallwyl Museum.
- Take a stroll through Kugstradgarden Park.
- Visit St. Jacobs Church.
Sodermalm isn’t just one of the coolest places to stay in Stockholm, but this neighbourhood regularly ranks as one of the coolest in the world.
Situated south of Old Town, Sodermalm is a large district located on the eastern side of the island of the same name. A popular gathering place for young, hip, and vibrant Stockholmers, Sodermalm is a neighbourhood packed with cafes and restaurants as well as bars, clubs, and pubs. Because it has something for every taste and style, Sodermalm is my top pick for where to stay in Stockholm for nightlife.
Best Airbnb in Sodermalm: Entire apartment in the hippest area
This apartment might not be one of the cheapest, but it’s still in the average price range for accommodations in Stockholm. The place is super comfy and clean, in pretty much the best location. Everything you want or need to see is within walking distance from your doorstep. Enjoy exploring the city during the day and come home to peace and privacy.
Best Hostel in Sodermalm: Mosebacke Hostel
This modern hostel is located in central Stockholm. It is just minutes from Sodermalm, the best neighbourhood to stay in Stockholm for nightlife. They offer clean and safe single, double and triple rooms and a substantial buffet breakfast is included with each reservation.
Best Hotel in Sodermalm: Hotel Point
Clean rooms, spotless beds, and wonderful staff – what more could you ask for from a hotel! This charming three-star Stockholm hotel is located at the heart of Sodermalm and is a quick walk to bars, clubs, restaurants, and popular tourist attractions. Rooms are comfortable and well-equipped with great amenities and features.
Best Hotel in Sodermalm: NOFO Hotel BW Premier Collection
This is my pick for the best hotel in Stockholm. Not only is it located at the heart of the city’s entertainment district, but it’s in close proximity to the top attractions of Gamla Stan and Norrmalm. Comprised of 48 modern rooms, this hotel has free wifi, private parking, and plenty of features.
Things to Do in Sodermalm
- Choose from a wide range of beers at Akkurat Bar & Restaurant.
- Dance the night away at Gota Kallare.
- Dine on delicious Swedish cuisine at Bla Dorren.
- Do as the locals do and pick up drinks to enjoy at Mosebacke Terrassen.
- Drink cheap beers at Bara Bistro Bar.
- Enjoy spectacular panoramic views out over the city from the top of Katarina Hissen.
- Feast on handmade pizza and a pint at super hip Omnipollos Hatt.
- Go to Scandic Malmen Cocktailbar for afternoon drinks.
- Head to Balthazar for good drinks and great music.
- Indulge in incredible Scandinavian and traditional Swedish cuisine at Woodstockholm Matbar.
- Party until dawn at Debaser Strand.
A new country, a new contract, a new piece of plastic – booooring. Instead, buy an eSIM!
An eSIM works just like an app: you buy it, you download it, and BOOM! You’re connected. It’s just that easy.
Is your phone eSIM ready? Read about how e-Sims work or click below to see one of the top eSIM providers on the market and ditch the plastic.Grab an eSIM!
Sodermalm might be seen as the coolest district in Stockholm, especially during summer, but its neighbour, Hornstull is quickly rising the ranks and well-deserving of a place on the list.
Located on the western side of the island of Sodermalm, Hornstull is a lively, vibrant, and up-and-coming area. Once a dodgy neighbourhood to be avoided at all costs, Hornstull is today a happening hood home to independent shops, cozy cafes, hip hangouts, and one of the coolest markets in town.
Hornstull is also where you’ll find the beautiful Tantolunden Park. This massive green space sits on the shores of Lake Malaren. And I tell you what, I love the Stockholm summer for that! It has trails, a beach, swimming, and sauna facilities, and is the perfect place to spend an afternoon in the sun.
Best Hostel in Hornstull: IYHF Youth Hostel Zinkensdamm
This hostel is ideally located in Hornstull, one of the best areas to stay in Stockholm. It is close to the bars and clubs of Sodermalm and is within walking distance of serene Tantolunden Park. This modern hostel has clean and spacious rooms with excellent shared facilities. Guests can also enjoy free wifi.
Best Hotel in Hornstull: Hotel Hornsgatan
Hotel Hornsgatan is a cosy and comfortable hotel in Hornstull. This is the best neighborhood in Stockholm to stay in if you’re looking to be surrounded by cool restaurants, bars, and shops. Rooms come complete with free wireless internet, flat-screen TVs, and excellent amenities.
Best Hotel in Hornstull: Hotel Hellstens Malmgard
This colourful and comfortable hotel is one of the best places in Stockholm to stay in. It is close to well-known attractions, like Folkoperan, and the sights of Old Town are just a short metro ride away. This hotel has stylish rooms with modern amenities, free wifi, and an in-house café.
Things to Do in Hornstull
- Drink cheap beers at Pub Klosters.
- Enjoy a filling and delicious meal at the Southside Pub.
- Enjoy a modern take on traditional opera at Folkoperan.
- Excite your sense with savoury tapas at Ramblas.
- Visiting the City Hall
- Explore scenic Langholmen.
- Feast on fresh and tasty sushi at Bistro Barbro.
- Hang out in the sunshine, go for a swim or enjoy a sauna at Tantolunden Park.
- Hunt for treasures at the weekly Hornstull Market (summertime only).
- Take in the views from the Skinnarviksberget scenic spot.
Ostermalm is an elegant neighbourhood located northeast of the city centre. It is one of the more exclusive parts of Stockholm and is characterized by its tree-lined boulevards, colourful buildings and diverse architecture. This district is home to many parks and museums, as well as art galleries, cafes, shopping centres, and cultural institutions.
One of the top highlights of Ostermalm is the island of Djurgarden. Once a royal hunting ground, today Djurgarden is home to a spectacular and massive park as well as some of the most famous attractions in Stockholm, including Skansen, the ABBA Museum, Vasa Museum and Grona Lund (an amusement park) All are only a short walk away from each other. With so much to see and do, it’s no wonder Ostermalm is my top pick for where to stay in Stockholm for families.
Best Airbnb in Ostermalm: Welcoming family apartment
Just like the friendly neighbourhood, this Airbnb is perfect for families too. Fitting up to 4 people with 1 bedroom and a comfy sofa-bed in the living room, you can bring your family along and enjoy the beautiful city together. The apartment is freshly renovated, super chic, and very bright, with big windows. The kitchen and washing machine are free to use as well.
Best Apartment in Ostermalm: Biz Apartment Gardet
This modern, bright and spacious apartment is conveniently located in Ostermalm, the best area in Stockholm to stay in for families. It is in close proximity to great museums and attractions and is a quick hop to restaurants, shops, and cafes. This four-star property has a kitchenette, private bathroom, diving area, and cosy rooms.
Best Hotel in Ostermalm: Scandic Park
Overlooking Humlegarden, this is one of the best Stockholm accommodation options for families. It has large and comfortable rooms with private bathrooms, flat-screen TVs, and modern amenities. Just moments away are a great selection of eateries, bistros, museums, galleries, and landmarks.
Best Boutique Hotel in Ostermalm: Elite Eden Park Hotel
This modern design hotel enjoys a strategic location near Östermalmstorg Metro Station, providing easy access to public transportation. Positioned in a tranquil area across from a park, it offers a peaceful environment while remaining within walking distance to central Stockholm. The hotel features quality amenities and over-the-top comfortable beds. (I still remember) The breakfast is really exceptional, including vegan alternatives. With its convenient location and high-quality offerings, it’s an excellent choice for exploring the city’s attractions. Pro tip: avoid the 9am breakfast rush-hour.
Things to Do in Ostermalm
- Delve deep into the history of Sweden’s most famous band at the ABBA Museum.
- Dine on delicious Swedish fare at Oaxen Krog & Slip.
- Enjoy a sweet treat or fika at Stuekatten.
- Experience a magical day at Junibacken Children’s Museum.
- Explore five centuries of Swedish history at Skansen, the world’s first open-air museum. One of my favorites!
- Journey to the Viking Age at Vikingaliv.
- Pack a picnic and enjoy a day in Humlegarden.
- See the world’s only preserved 17th-century ship at the Vasa Museum.
- Visit Gronalund for a thrilling day of rides, music, games, and treats.
FAQ about Finding a Place to Stay in Stockholm
Here’s what people usually ask us about the areas of Stockholm and where to stay.
Where to stay in Stockholm for the weekend?
Ostermalm. Personally, wandering through Djurgarden was my favorite part of Stockholm. So many attractions and Skansen – an open-air museum – shelter for more than 70 different species like elks, lynx, bears, and wolves.
Where to stay in Stockholm for nightlife?
Most of the vibrant and cool bars and clubs are situated around Ostermalm. But don’t miss Sodermalm and its bars with their chill and cozy vibes either.
Don’t Forget Travel Insurance for Stockholm
Do you know Bob? Bob has travel insurance. Be like Bob.
ALWAYS sort out your backpacker insurance before your trip. There’s plenty to choose from in that department, but a good place to start is Safety Wing.
They offer month-to-month payments, no lock-in contracts, and require absolutely no itineraries: that’s the exact kind of insurance long-term travellers and digital nomads need.
SafetyWing is cheap, easy, and admin-free: just sign up lickety-split so you can get back to it!
Click the button below to learn more about SafetyWing’s setup or read our insider review for the full tasty scoop.
Final Thoughts on Where to Stay in Stockholm
Stockholm is a stunning and world-class city. It is spread across 14 islands and manages to seamlessly combine its urban setting with its natural surrounding.
The city has a rich and diverse history and offers some of the most exciting nightlife, shopping, and dining in northern Europe. There’s no doubt about it – Stockholm is a must for travellers of all ages, styles, and budgets!
To recap; City Backpackers Hostel is my favourite option for visitors on a budget because it is close to restaurants, shops, and sightseeing, and provides free bike and skate rentals.
Another excellent option is the NOFO Hotel BW Premier Collection because it is within walking distance of hip restaurants, trendy pubs, and energetic clubs and bars.
If you didn’t quite find what you’re looking for – then there are also some great hostels across Sweden that I rate high too.
Do you own an awesome hostel, hotel, or apartment? Want to be featured on my list? Email [email protected] to find out how.
And for transparency’s sake, please know that some of the links in our content are affiliate links. That means that if you book your accommodation, buy your gear, or sort your insurance through our link, we earn a small commission (at no extra cost to you). That said, we only link to the gear we trust and never recommend services we don’t believe are up to scratch. Again, thank you!
Updated, August 2023