Christian, Whitman College, is currently studying abroad at DIS Stockholm and living in a Homestay in the lovely, lush area of Bromma. Read about Christian’s surrounding neighborhood and some of his favorite places to explore:
Budget Friendly Tips to Explore Like a Local
Bromma is a stadsdelsområde, or borough of Stockholm, and a wonderful place to live, with a rich, warm history and a friendly hometown feel. The local shops, nature, and unique architecture also make this a charming location to explore in your free time.
What to See, Do, and Eat in Bromma:
The neighborhood in Bromma that I live in is called Ålsten, in the southern part of the borough close to Lake Mälaren. Bromma is a good neighborhood for those looking to be in the city, but not in the city. T-Centralen (Stockholm’s central subway station) is anywhere from a 50-30-minute train ride, depending on how far in the neighborhood you live, and there is a local tram, the Nockebybana, that connects the southern part of the borough with the main Green Line of the metro. That seems like a long train ride I know, but I promise it goes by quickly and it’s worth it.
A fun part about Bromma is the architecture! No two houses look exactly the same, and some look quite unique. Walking along the beach and looking at everyone’s home is a favorite pastime of mine.
Also, one of the more interesting quirks of Ålsten in particular are the townhouses that line the main street through the neighborhood, Ålstensgatan, because they look quite strange if you don’t know what you’re looking at!
These eerily similar townhouses that line both sides of the street were built in the 1920s as a part of the Social Democratic housing program at the time, to help house the influx of new urban residents in Stockholm. In Swedish, these are affectionately called Per Albin-radhusen after Per Albin Hansson, the Social Democratic Prime Minister who was responsible for the project and who also lived in one of the houses towards the end of his life. A fantastic and very visible example of the well-known Swedish social program at work!
The local square closest to where I live, Nockeby Torg, feels like stepping into a Swedish middle-class historical dream. A mixing place for local eateries, small businesses, the local grocery store, the apothecary, and my favorite bakery, one really feels the community and neighborly feeling that people from all over Sweden come to Bromma for. My favorite bakery in particular, Nockeby Bageri, always has a line out the door every weekend, with families on their morning walk waiting to pick up fresh bread for brunch, a semla bun (during the right season!) or grabbing a coffee whenever I go by.
While there are many fun things to look at in Bromma, my favorite by far is the lovely Lake Mälaren. Only a short 15-minute walk from my house is a stretch of beach called Solviksbadet, which has an outdoor gym (which the Swedes love!), great beach space for summer lounging, plenty of trails for walks or trail running, and views of the lake. Truly, you can’t beat it. Something about how Swedish people have been living along this beach for thousands of years is just so cool to me!
Bromma is a huge borough, with plenty to see and do that I’m sure I haven’t even experienced. But between the close-knit feel, proximity to the lake and nature, and a very convenient public transit system, I can’t think of a better place to relax and feel at home as a student studying abroad in Stockholm. Definitely recommend the Homestay experience, if you can’t tell!
Christian is a student at DIS Stockholm in Spring 2021 in the World of the Vikings Core Course. A longtime Sweden enthusiast, you can probably find him riding the public trains just for the experience and reading the Swedish ads just to make sure that he can. He is also a lover of any hill or trail that can be explored, so any good Stockholm nature recommendations, send them his way. Just don’t mention cross-country skiing.