October in Stockholm is wonderful. As autumn turns the many parks in and around the city all yellow and red, it is the perfect time to go out for day hikes and gather in small, cosy cafes for hot chocolate and cake afterwards. Below is a small list of my absolute favourite places for short walks and cosy fikas (coffee and cake in Swedish) during the prettiest season of the year.
1. Ulriksdal Slott
One of the many small castles surrounding the city, Ulriksdal Slott is nothing special in itself. The reason you should make your way to Bergshamra is the unbelievably pretty forest and garden surrounding the castle. The trees in this area colour bright yellow in autumn, it is an amazing place to be. The park and forest are situated right by narrow Edsviken,a cove of the Baltic sea. If you walk through the forest try to find the shoreline, from here you have a spectacular view over the lake, the park and the castle.
After the walk, the small cafe next to the castle serves some of the best hot chocolate in the city. This is one of my favourite parks around Stockholm, and if you would like to get an impression of the incredible green areas surrounding the centre this is an excellent place to go.
Djurgården is the least populated of the 14 islands making up the inner city of Stockholm. It hosts a great number of museums, including the famous Skansen and Vasa museum, making it a popular tourist attraction. A little beyond these museums, Djurgården is also a very beautiful park that makes it easy to escape the city and wander around for a few hours. There are trails running through the forest and by the shoreline on either side of the island.
Somewhere in the middle of it lies Rosendals Trädgården, a small farm with an attached cafe that sells food prepared from their own products. This is my all-time favourite place in Stockholm. I took my parents there two weeks ago and they very much enjoyed the afternoon. Try their carrot cake, and check out the store that sells many ecological products. The walk from Nordiska Museet to the farm by the blue gate is especially nice.
3. Nacka Strand and Hellasgården
Nacka Strand is Stockholms’ main sail yacht harbour and thereby a fancier place out of town. Pretty wonderful about it is that you can catch a free boat ride there from Nybroplan (boats run by SL) and continue by bus to one of Stockholm’s finest lakes in Hellasgården, a nature reserve just outside of the centre. This is one of Stockholm most popular places to go in all of seasons: in winter it becomes an ice skating piste, in summer you can swim and all year round they have a great number of activities. In autumn it is just a beautiful place to go.
The walk from Hellasgården back into the city is a very fine one with a couple of nice viewpoints over Jarla Sjö. If you continue to Hammarby Sjöstad, you can get a coffee in one of the most innovative recently developed neighbourhoods of the city.