Guest Post by Maria Kruk, an author for Stockholm.net
As long as Christmas celebrations came to their logical end, the expectations of St. Valentine’s Day just start to heat up. In very deed, in one month Jack and Jill coupes in all corners of the world will be true heroes of the day, and Christmas garlands and lights will be replaced with heart-shaped posters, red-colored decorations and vivid showcases’ adornments!
Since ancient times, this holiday has been a true celebration of love, tenderness, deep feelings and affections and all love expressions possible.
That is why to acquire the most memorable moments of St. Valentine’s Day many head to best known romantic spots on the world map. Among the commonplace travel destinations in Europe, Sweden stands aside, being “a newbie” in love celebrations: the Swedes have turned to Western ideas of St’ Valentine’s Day celebrations only several decades ago. Though, nowadays this country has already recommended itself as one of the best.
In practice, Swedish people call this holiday “The Day of All Hearts”, which cannot but add extra romance. The tradition of its celebration in Scandinavian states started with gardening: in 1960s, alike to their American colleagues, the Swedes and their close neighbors began to cultivate numerous flower species and to launch advertising campaigns on the eve of Valentine’s Day. At present, one can see gorgeously adorned streets, parks and stores, a few days before the very event.
Besides widely dispersed decorations, Sweden, especially Stockholm, might boast of huge parties everywhere, confined to those who are in love and willing to honor this feeling.
Notably, it is associated with young couples: in addition to exchanging gifts and love cards, they visit festive parties and shows at night clubs, concert halls and, of course, restaurants, sparkling with luxury and elegantly lit interior.
The most appealing are Brasserie Le Rouge, designed in Paris burlesque style, and Eriks Gondolen, with its charming panorama view of the Old City and Slussen. By the way, Stockholm features one of the top-ranked romantic places in the world that is Sandhamn, according to Travel and Leisure journal.
This harbor hosts the hotel, where it is possible to take hot tubs under the open sky, and thereby provides one of the most attractive ways to spend St. Valentine’s Day for couples.
Outside Urban Landscapes
Mature couples, in contrast, traditionally spend the day strolling around the most romantic sightings. Many of them might be found outside Stockholm suburbs, including the day trips to Gotland and Öland. Miles-long stretching beaches, calm and undisturbed atmosphere, and pure waters of the Baltic Sea – aren’t these great to rediscover forgotten tender feelings? Furthermore, Öland, the so-called “land of windmills”, was once beloved by Swedish royals, and many go there to experience truly festive excitement.
One more destination in the Stockholm’s vicinity is Mariefred village. One can recall its historical allurements, as this miniature town had risen around mighty Gripsholm Castle, but on St. Valentine’s Day it turns into a cradle of romantic atmosphere.
Old-fashioned cafes and galleries have captured the historic centre of the town, while ancient locomotive still courses across its narrow alleys.