Centrally located in Stockholm, the King's Garden is a lively urban garden/park/plaza that connects the harbor with one of Stockholm's main shopping districts. It contains a series of "outdoor rooms" including a formal entrance, fountain with planting parterres, stage for performances, a lawn area (was that artificial turf?) and a plaza with a sunken pool surrounded by steps ideal for people watching, oddly focused on a TGI Friday's Restaurant as a focal point.
There is lots to do here and this popular space is bordered by restaurants, galleries, cafes and night clubs.
The King's Garden has been dubbed "Stockholm's outdoor living room" and there is a full schedule of concerts and performances throughout the summer (when I visited) as well as an ice skating rink in the winter.
Have you been here? Share a tip or a photo with fellow travelers.
Idyllic Park in Central Stockholm
Nothing breathes life into Stockholm like long summer days spent in the parks that cover the city. Kungsträdgården (King’s Park), just across from the Royal Palace and Gamla Stan, is a quintessential green space on the waterfront that provides a picturesque spot for a picnic, fika (coffee break), or stroll.
I always make sure to walk slowly through the park so I can appreciate the serene break from the busy center of Stockholm. Young families, retirees, office staffers, and travelers like me all take advantage of this break from the busy city around them. The long, bright days lend even more opportunity to spend time in this idyllic part of Scandinavia.
St Jacob’s Kyrka (church) casts a long afternoon shadow over the lilacs, lilies, and lavender carefully looked after by the gardeners. The bushes and trees relieve the busy locals and travelers coming out of the Nordiska Kompaniet to the north and Gamla Stan from the south. There are many great cafes in the park and nearby to grab coffee, salad, or a delicious pastry. This park has shown me how Swedes are so keen to spend time in nature, whether in urban parks or out in the country.
Now in its fourth year, Stockholm’s Street Festival feels like a jaw-dropping, head-scratching collision of street buskers, magicians, acrobats, comedians, and other peculiar performers and entertainers.
The stage is set in Kungsträdgården, and over its three-day run, acts from Canada, France, Holland, Australia, Japan, and many more including Sweden will entertain, wow, and maybe confuse audiences with various street performances.
The ice skaters at the Kungsträdgårdens Isbana in Stockholm made me think of a Charlie Brown Christmas Special. I could hear the soft notes of the Vince Guaraldi Trio as skaters glided by with firm strokes. A young child held her mother’s hand, slipped once, and then eventually decided she no longer needed a guide and went off on her own. (Symbolic, perhaps.)
The Kungsträdgårdens rink is in the heart of Stockholm and is nestled between earth-toned buildings designed in the classical style reminiscent of the old town. When the rink is open, you will find locals circling the statute of Karl the XIII and the oxidized iron lions guarding him seemingly without a care in the world: It would be a terrible shame to waste a good, cold winter I can imagine the people thinking.
At the rink you can rent skates for 50SEK an hour. There are warming teepees placed throughout for you to huddle up and drink a hot chocolate or glog or lingonberry juice. At night the rink is especially popular and the music is less Charlie Brown and more Swedish House Mafia, but I still imagined Linus and Lucy and Snoopy going around and around to the soft piano melody of Skating.