Alarm woke us up at 7am. I was awake most of the night, constantly checking the time in case we slept in!
I started off the driving in Copenhagen and it was raining but not heavy enough for the wipers continuously; it was annoying rain. We went over another long bridge, several kilometres long, and had another toll booth that was even more expensive than the last and cost $74 roughly. Just through the toll gate, the Swedish police were stopping every car and asking what the reason was for their travel. They were also inspecting the backseat and boots of cars for illegal immigrants.
Within Sweden, it was raining still and we had a further 550km to travel. Although it was a beautiful landscape of pine trees, green grassy fields and wooden houses painted red with white window frames, it was boring. There were lots of areas that were completely tree lined and you couldn't see anything! It made for a long 6 hours.
We stopped along the way for fuel and the odd bite to eat (cheese count: 16) but we were determined to get to Stockholm with ample daylight. Outside of our hotel, we parked the car for a small fee before entering the locked door with the special door codes I received in an email last week. There is also a code for the room door which is a long 6-digit code. Our room is huge compared to Copenhagen! It is a self contained apartment with full sized kitchen and an enormous bathroom. We dropped off our bags and drove the car to an underground carpark that is cheaper than street parking outside the hotel, as recommended by the hotel.
We walked to the nearby tram stop and got a paper ticket each. The tickets are a flat fee and allows you to travel for 75 minutes on all forms of transport. We only went a few stops before transferring at the train station to get the train into central Stockholm.
Central Stockholm was busy and it was as though everyone was in a rush due to the rain. I've never seen so many blonde haired, blue eyed people in my life! We got out of the station onto the above central square that is lined with rows and rows of clothing and jewelry stores. I was determined that during my time in Sweden, I would purchase a new weather proof jacket as my Kathmandu jacket that I've practically worn for 5 years straight has been slowly deteriorating and doesn't provide the warmth it once had.
Jip knew of a wonderful store called Stadium and it reminded me of a Kathmandu mixed with a Rebal sport outlet. We had come at the perfect season too as Sweden are heading into their colder months. I tried on a lovely thick, black jacket with sleeves the perfect length and I immediately fell in love. It is an actual Swedish brand and is their ‘Thermal’ jacket - so I knew it was going to keep me warm! Everything in the store wasn't overly expensive either. They had beautiful jackets that were only $100 that would have cost $300-$500 in Australia at Kathmandu. My jacket in particular was $270 AUD and it is something so thick and warm, I don't think I would have found it back home. Jip even bought a lovely rain jacket that is 100% waterproof for a bargain.
Back out on the street, we were both wearing our new jsckets and we headed for some cheap eats that are popular with locals. It is an inside dining hall with 6 different eateries to choose from. I had curry with salad and Jip had the spaghetti carbonara.
We found our way back to the train station and we bought the Swedish version of a Myki, the SL card. Same policy applies with these cards, you pay 31 Swedish Krona for 75 minutes of unlimited use on public transport. But, what is better is that you only need one card. You approach a service officer at the touch on gate and tell them that there are 2 of you and they will charge the card accordingly with regards to how many patrons are traveling.
We stopped at the Lidl supermarket right near our apartment and bought some breakfast foods and snacks. After a quick shower, I was in bed ready to sleep. We were chatting away when someone opened our door and came in and said “Oh sorry, wrong apartment” and walked out. I went down to reception to ask if there were duplicate codes for each room and no one was there. I called the hotel chain number and stated our issue and they were shocked. They said they would have to pass on my phone number to the Manager of the hotel and they will call me back. The manager was most apologetic and was dumbfounded about how it happened. We have new codes for tomorrow. Well, now it's time for sleep and our door is securely locked.