Where to Stay in Stockholm (2020 • COOLEST Areas!)

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In this EPIC GUIDE, we cover where to stay in Stockholm based on your travel style & budget. Check out the coolest areas in Stockholm!

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Sweden’s capital city is the perfect combination of modern style and historic charm. It has everything from winding cobblestone lanes and royal palaces to trendy bars, world-class restaurants, and sprawling green spaces.

But the one downside to Stockholm is that it can be crazy expensive. Which is exactly why we put together this guide for where to stay in Stockholm.

This Stockholm neighbourhood guide will look at the best places to stay in the city based on what you want to do. So whether you’re looking to party, binge on Swedish meatballs, or explore the coolest neighbourhoods in town, we’ve got exactly what you’re looking for – and so much more!

So let’s not waste any more time. Here are the five best neighbourhoods and our top choices for where to stay in Stockholm, Sweden.

 

Quick Tips – Where to Stay in Stockholm

  • Where to stay in Stockholm for your first time – Gamla Stan
  • Where to stay in Stockholm on a budget – Norrmalm
  • The best area to stay in Stockholm for nightlife – Sodermalm
  • The coolest place to stay in Stockholm – Hornstull
  • Best neighbourhood in Stockholm for families – Ostermalm

 

In a hurry? Here’s my top neighborhood for first timers:

Gamla Stan
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.
Places to Visit:
  • Be inspired by the exhibits and displays at the Nobel Prize Museum.
  • Delve deep into history at the Museum Tre Kronor.
  • Visit the Royal Palace and watch the changing of the guard.

 

Where to Stay in Stockholm

Looking for a specific place to stay? These are our highest recommendations for places to stay in Stockholm.

 

Best Hostel in Stockholm: City Backpackers Hostel

City Backpackers is our 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’s 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!

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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 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.

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Best Hotel in Stockholm: NOFO Hotel BW Premier Collection

This is our pick for the best hotel in Stockholm. Not only is it located at the heart of the city’s coolest district, but it’s a short walk to the top attractions of Gamla Stan and Norrmalm. Comprised of 48 modern rooms, this hotel has free wifi, private parking, and a myriad of features.

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Stockholm Neighbourhood Guide

Quick Summary: The Best Places to Stay in Stockholm

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Gamla Stan

  • 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.
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Norrmalm

  • 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.
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Sodermalm

  • 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.
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Hornstull

  • 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.
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Ostermalm

  • 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.
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Stockholm is a stunning city that seamlessly combines old, new and nature.

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.

The city is best-known for its surrounding waters, massive green spaces, modern style and charming medieval centre. But, there’s so much more to Stockholm, from lively nightlife and shopping to world-class food and culture.

In this guide, we’ll break down the best places in Stockholm to stay based on your interests, needs and budget.

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 as well as restaurants, shops and bars. There are some great Stockholm airbnbs in this area.

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 our top pick for where to stay in Stockholm for one night or if you’re on a budget.

Head east from here and you’ll arrive in Ostermalm. One of the most elegant and exclusive areas of the city, Ostermalm is our 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, 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 shop and restaurants.

Ready to really dive into Stockholm and learn more about this place? Refer to our backpacking Stockholm guide to get a head start before starting your trip!

The Best Travel Backpack?!

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Read our full review!

 

Stockholm’s 5 Best Neighbourhoods to Stay in

Still not sure where to stay in Stockholm? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered!

 

#1 Gamla Stan – Where to Stay in Stockholm for Your First Time

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. 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 attractions. From the massive Royal Palace and the modern Nobel Museum to Viking-themed restaurants and contemporary cocktail bars, Gamla Stan the best neighbourhood in Stockholm to stay in for sightseeing, delving deep into history or to simply enjoying Swedish charm.

Gamla Stan, Stockholm

 

Things to See and 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.

– 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.

 

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 the Gamla Stan 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.

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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.

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Best Hotel in Gamla Stan: Hotell Skeppsbron

Hotell Skeppsbron is a great option for Stockholm accommodation because it’s in the centre of the tourist district. A short walk from the metro, this hotel is close to the Royal Palace, the Nobel Museum and lots of eateries and bars. Comprised of 10 rooms, this hotel has a range of amenities.

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Best Hotel in Gamla Stan: Lady Hamilton Hotel

Charming and comfortable, this four-star hotels is one of the best places to stay in Stockholm. It is located in Gamla Stan 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 centre.

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#2 Norrmalm – Where to Stay in Stockholm on a Budget

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 are 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 our number one choice for where to stay in Stockholm for one night because it’s well-connected throughout Stockholm and Sweden.

Norrmalm, Stockholm

 

Things to See and 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.

– Excite your senses at La Neta City.

– Go for a waterside stroll along Strandvagen.

– 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.

 

Best Hostel in Norrmalm: City Backpackers Hostel

City Backpackers is our 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’s also bike rentals, sauna times, and ice skates to borrow in winter.

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Best Airbnb in Norrmalm: Comfy bed in mixed dorm

Stockholm is an expensive city, but we’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.

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Best Hotel in Norrmalm: Comfort Hotel Xpress Stockholm Central

This hotel is ideally located in one of Stockholm’s best neighbourhoods. It 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.

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Best Hotel in Norrmalm: Crystal Plaza Hotel

This hotel is one of the best places to stay in Stockholm. 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.

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#3 Sodermalm – Where to Stay in Stockholm for Nightlife

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 Gamla Stan, 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 our top pick for where to stay in Stockholm for nightlife.

Sodermalm, Stockholm

 

Things to See and 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 cuisine at Woodstockholm Matbar.

– Party until dawn at Debaser Strand.

 

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 breakfast buffet is included with each reservation.

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Best Airbnb in Sodermalm: Entire apartment in the hippest area

This apartment might not be one of the cheapest but it’s still on 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 in walking distance from your doorstep. Enjoy exploring the city during the day and come home to peace and privacy.

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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 property 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.

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Best Hotel in Sodermalm: NOFO Hotel BW Premier Collection

This is our pick for the best hotel in Stockholm. Not only is it located at the heart of the city’s entertainment district, but it’s a short walk 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.

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#4 Hornstull – Coolest Place to Stay in Stockholm

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.

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, cosy 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. It has trails, a beach, swimming and sauna facilities, and is the perfect place to spend an afternoon in the sun

Hornstull, Stockholm

 

Things to See and 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.

– 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.

 

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.

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Best Airbnb in Hornstull: Airy rooftop apartment

Located in the hippiest area of Stockholm, you can find this beautiful rooftop apartment. The nightly price is very affordable, and you get a whole place to yourself. Designed in light colours, the Airbnb is super bright and airy, making every room very big and the atmosphere super welcoming. Everything is in walking distance, and you’ve got a bus and metro stop nearby.

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Best Hotel in Hornstull: Hotel Hornsgatan

Hotel Hornsgatan is a cosy and comfortable hotel in Hornstull. This is the best neighbourhood 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.

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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 Gamla Stan are just a short metro ride away. This hotel has stylish rooms with modern amenities, free wifi, and an in-house café.

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#5 Ostermalm – Where to Stay in Stockholm for Families

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 royal hunting grounds, 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 and Grona Lund. With so much to see and do, it’s no wonder Ostermalm is our top pick for where to stay in Stockholm for families.

Ostermalm Stockholm

 

Things to See and 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.

– 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.

 

Best Hostel in Ostermalm: STF Gardet

This charming and modern hostel is located in northeastern Stockholm, just outside of the Ostermalm district, one of Stockholm’s best neighbourhoods. This property offers single, double and family-sized rooms with private bathrooms, TVs and wifi access. It is well-connected via public transit and is close to cafes, restaurants and parks.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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, style and budgets!

To recap; City Backpackers Hostel is our favourite options 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 Airbnbs in Stockholm to check out.

While Sweden can be very safe, it’s super important to make sure you get travel insurance! We’ve put together a roundup of the best travel insurance for backpackers – check it out here, or if you’re low on time, get a quote from World Nomads now, our favourite travel insurance provider.

 

Do you own an awesome hostel, hotel or apartment? Want to be featured in our list? Email [email protected] to find out how.

Yay for transparency! Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. This means that if you book your accommodation through the site, The Broke Backpacker will earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. Your support helps me keep the site going.


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In this EPIC GUIDE, we cover where to stay in Stockholm based on your travel style & budget. Check out the coolest areas in Stockholm!

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