The very first open-air museum and zoo established in Sweden, Skansen allows visitors an up-close and personal view of Scandinavian wildlife while they stroll an uncanny replica of a quaint 19th century town. Skansen is located on Djurgarden Island in Stockholm and was founded in the late 1800’s as a way to showcase life in pre-industrial Sweden. Fearful that Sweden’s reputation as an important agricultural country might one day be forgotten; founder Artuh Hazelius created Skansen to preserve Sweden’s rural history. Alive with wandering moose and reindeer, Skansen remains a cultural time capsule that still hasn’t changed one bit.
- Watch shoemakers, silversmiths, and bakers showcase their skills in Skansen’s replica village, which offers a glimpse of what life was like in 19th century Stockholm.
- Visit Skansen in early December for the Christmas Market where farmers and shop owners from around Stockholm have been coming for over one hundred years to sell their wares.
- See the world’s largest cigar at the Tobacco and Matchstick museum, where tobacco is still grown by traditional, 19-century methods.
Located less than 4 kilometres from Stockholm’s city centre, visitors to Skansen often opt to walk to the museum, enjoying views of the Stockholm waterfront on the way. Ferries also leave regularly from Slussen to Djurgarden Island, where buses await to take passengers to Skansen. Private cars should be avoided, as parking on the island is limited and traffic can be fierce during the rush hour. The funicular railway offers a unique and scenic way up the Skansen Mountain and is especially useful for those travelling with small children.
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