Sweden Trip, April 2018 Part 3

It was a bittersweet goodbye to Brittney as we parted ways to finish up the trip in Stockholm. Brittney was not able to go to Stockholm with us as she had to attend her classes. It was just my mom, dad, and myself. We started our drive back earlier in the morning because we had to return our rental car back to Hertz. As we entered Stockholm, it was magical. We saw some of the old buildings, some new, it was a bustling city and we also started recognizing the landmarks that Brittney had told us about. Stockholm was Brittney's stomping grounds as she had frequented the capital often for her travel weekends with the school.
We found our hotel, unloaded our bags and we drove through Stockholm to return the Volvo. My dad did a beautiful job driving in Stockholm. I was not a great passenger. With the bustling downtown Stockholm, people crossing the street at various areas other than the crosswalks. I am not used to driving in a busy city, I am also not used to being a passenger in a town car in a busy city. We didn't need the car for the rest of our stay in Stockholm because everybody in Stockholm walks and everything is easily accessible via walking.
We filled up the rest of the day. We walked back from Hertz to our hotel. We got ready to go out again and begin our adventure in Stockholm! We stayed just a couple streets over from the major shopping district, so every morning when we would leave our hotel, we walked through the shopping district to get to the historic Gamla Stan, which is the Old Town Stockholm. On our way back from Hertz, we found the famous Hay Market.
They have souvenirs, food, fruit stands and other handmade goods. It is right in the middle of the shopping district, I believe Chanel and H&M were next door (quite the contrast). The Hay Market is in between two buildings and on one of the buildings, they had steps of stairs and there were a lot of people just sitting and socializing, or eating on the stairs. My dad sat down to blend in with the crowd. He looked like a Swede!
Stockholm is the city of bridges, having 57 of them, we started walking on bridges right away. Since we were staying so close to the shopping district, we decided to go into some stores that we don't have at home. They have an H&M Home! We went in there. They have a very fancy Pizza Hut with the chandeliers and cloth napkins, so we ate a late lunch/early dinner there. They have fun grocery stores, one of my favorites in particular was Hemköp (pronounced Hem-Shop, the "k" has an "sh" sound), so of course I had to check that out.
From Flickr - I did take a picture of this exact Pizza Hut, but I guess I didn't think it was important to keep at the time... So I found the Pizza Hut that we ate at. Brittney told us about the "fancy" Pizza Hut, and being from where Pizza Hut isn't fancy at all, we had to see how Pizza Hut could transform into a fine-dining experience.

We were going on walking tours on the following days of the trip, but we were too excited to wait for the next day, so we explored Gamla Stan to prepare for our tour in the Old Town Stockholm. I could not wait for the next day to learn about these old buildings and the history of this part of Stockholm.
On our way home that night, we stopped at the Hemköp, which is in the basement of a department store called Åhléns. My parents and I walked passed the racks of beautiful clothing (and the rest of Sweden for that matter), my mom kept saying, "John and you would fit right into Stockholm with his and your fashion sense." and that is very true. My boyfriend, John has very good fashion sense and he dresses very "Stockholm" on the daily. I think when I convince him to go visit with us, he will absolutely look like a Swede with the way he dresses. In Hemköp, they had so many fun Swedish treats. We grabbed some items for dinner to take back to our hotel.
Image from Lonely Planet. I didn't think, at the time, that it would be necessary to take a picture of the grocery store, but since I am blogging about it, it might be helpful to have a visual. I'm so silly with how I love grocery stores. Products and food are fun! What can I say? 
Our first day in Stockholm left us wanting to see and learn more about Stockholm. It was just a little taste and we were so excited for our tours the following days. I was ready to find great souvenirs and discover new shops.