Morgan’s Swedish museum tour

Swedish museums were the first thing I wanted to explore once I had free time after class. The history, art, and culture of Sweden is fascinating to me, and I’ve enjoyed every place I’ve visited so far during my study abroad experience. Here’s a few of the best ones, their highlights, how much I paid for a ticket, and why I would recommend visiting to feel immersed in Swedish culture.

This museum has ten exhibits with a wide range of subjects, from exploring ethics surrounding AI and human enhancement to showing video game development throughout history. Some of the exhibits were interactive (Play Beyond Play, the video game one, especially) and others were more like a traditional museum with plaques and fragile things in glass cases. Even when the concept of some of the exhibits didn’t interest me at first, I still learned a lot and had fun going through each section, and ended up spending the most time in the last exhibit we visited – the opposite of what I usually do. My favorite exhibits were Play Beyond Play and Zero City, an exhibit focusing on how to reduce carbon emissions to create more sustainable living.

I really enjoyed going to this museum! I paid 170 SEK for my ticket and spent over two hours going through the exhibits. It’s open later on weeknights than a lot of other museums I went to, which makes it easy to visit after class. There is a small playground outside that is clearly meant for children, but we still had fun climbing around and playing with some of the equipment. There are also a lot of great photo opportunities outside and throughout the museum, making it very fun and something I won’t forget soon!

With a few hours to kill, my friend Lauren and I checked out the Nobel Prize Museum in Gamla Stan. It is surprisingly small from the inside, but it still has a lot of interesting things on display. It featured personal possessions that Nobel Prize laureates have donated to the museum to display (pens, pairs of glasses, lab equipment…) and the museum also provides a free self-guided audio tour for visitors to learn more about Alfred Nobel and the creation of the Nobel Prize. Because the museum was closing soon, we decided to stop following the audio tour and only read the item plaques after about six stops. Even without the audio, we still had fun and got to see items of real Nobel Prize laureates, which is a word I didn’t know the definition of until the audio tour told me.

I spent 100 SEK on a student ticket and about 90 minutes in the museum. It was definitely an interesting experience because the items on display were not Nobel Prize winning ideas, like I had assumed, but instead just items that belonged to people who won. Still, it was absolutely worth the visit, and I loved being able to see the context of why certain items were featured.

I could easily spend another four hours walking around this museum – I think this one is my favorite so far. The Nordiska museet’s exhibits highlight Nordic life and how it has changed across centuries, along with how climate change is impacting the Arctic Circle. The museum tells its history throughout three interwoven concepts: nature, family, and ideas. Each room also has a video of an actor’s portrayal of a person’s life whose belongings are on display, adding another level to learning the history. It was beyond cool to see how a real person could have reacted to events in the world, and in their lives, and see physical possessions from that person in a case in front of me! There were a few interactive elements (note me trying to advertise the blog), but I spent most of my time looking at all of the intricate artwork.

Overall, I paid 150 SEK and spent almost three hours in the Nordiska museet. Because of their operating hours, I could only go on a weekend to fully experience everything there was to see, but even with the long commute I would absolutely go again. Because the Royal Djurgården is so expansive, I need to make my way over there again before my trip is over to see the other museums and activities.


Okay, I admit this one might be cheating, but I have to mention it. Each station along the T-bana transit route is decorated with artwork with a ton of different mediums and styles, and I am always amazed when I visit a new stop. It makes traveling somewhere always seem beautiful and introspective, and longer commutes feel exciting because I get to see how each stop is decorated. Each day I take the train is like going on a mini museum trip!

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