Welcome to Stockholm city. Trendy, vibrant and buzzing with activity during the day. You will find a good balance between city living and nature and waterfronts. It is not just a beautiful city during the daytime – Stockholm also comes alive at night. So to get the most out of the nightlife experience, there are 5 basic things to master if you want to get the most out of Stockholm’s nightlife: location, transport, price, guest lists and after the club. If you are coming for the weekend and have no idea where to start, this is for you. Five basic things to getting the most out of Stockholm nightlife.
So let’s get to our five key tips for the newcomer to Stockholm nightlife
Location, location, location – that is key! There are two main areas that you might want to look at, Södermalm and Stureplan. The Södermalm district which is the southern part of central Stockholm and considered the “Brooklyn” of Stockholm, is the perfect place for a more relaxed vibe with options for bigger venues. Stureplan is where you can find the big clubs built for big spending. They will have the stricter door requirements, commercial venues and possibly longer queues. A good website to check for any bars or clubs around you in Stockholm city would be www.visitstockholm.com. It is not just good for suggestions, but for important information to newcomers to the city.
On weekends the trains run 24 hours on Friday and Saturday. This means that transport from the club to home is relatively easy and transport is usually running quite frequently. That goes for night buses as well. If you live anywhere that requires you to take a commuter train, be sure to check what time last trains are. All you will need is a fully topped-up access card that you can purchase at any Metro station. It gives access for both buses and trains for the night. You will have two options to choose from; either you can purchase credits, which works best for single journeys, or purchase a travel card (anything from 24 hours, 7 days, 30 days to annual. When all else fails, there is always the option of the Uber ride home.
Right let’s get into it. What is and is not expensive is relative. So instead of me telling you, it is better to give you some context so you can gauge for yourself on what to expect in relation to price.
A cheap beer at a pub in Stockholm would be roughly 50 SEK. That equates to roughly 5 Euros, 4 Pounds or 6 US Dollars. And that would be for a really cheap beer, nothing fancy. There are places around Stockholm called dive bars where you can find the cheapest drinks. They are loud, rammed and usually have sticky floors, but if you are not too picky this is the perfect start to your night. Lion Bar at Sveavägen is my favourite choice. Another solution would be to buy a couple of beers from your local Systembolaget and have a few with your friends at home before you step out. Hopefully saving money on drinks over the course of the night and spending less at the bar. But let’s be honest, how many times has that worked right?
Heads up, don’t be surprised if you walk into a ‘card only’ venue. Stockholm, and Sweden in general, are known for being at the forefront of progression. So the old fashioned cash is slowly becoming obsolete. That doesn’t mean cash wouldn’t still be accepted. Just saying don’t be surprised if they say “sorry we only accept card payments”.
Guest lists are not just a quick way to skip the line, they are a great way to get a discount and save money. Look online for emails and enquire about group deals if possible. My personal favourite way to get on a guest list is a guest list app called Keyflow, who do have a website too. Keyflow is becoming increasingly popular worldwide. Sweden has been at the forefront of its success for a while now. It is convenient and saves time for everyone. Just makes sense, since everything has an app nowadays.
This doesn’t mean the old-fashioned way of finding a number or email doesn’t work just as well. Be warned that not every place is listed on apps and some venues may not have guest lists. Quick advice, leaving it to the last minute would be asking for trouble.
After the club
If you are anything like me, this is the best part of the whole night. Stuffing your face full with hangover food after the club and stumbling into a kebab place. There are plenty of kebab places to choose from that cater both to meat eaters and vegetarians around Stockholm city at night. However, if all things fail, you can keep it simple with either burgers at MAX or McDonald’s, or a cheap hot dog at 7-Eleven. Nothing wrong with those options. But again like the theme of this whole guide, proactive beats reactive. So a quick visit to Hemköp or your local shop to stock up on food for home or more beers for the afterparty is not a bad idea.
To sum up
So to sum it all up, remember to plan ahead, do your research and have a rough idea of how you would like your night to play out. The Golden Rule: proactive beats reactive, and having a little extra spare cash on hand for just-in-cases doesn’t hurt anybody.
And look forward to more specific tips on our favorite nightlife hot-spots in Stockholm soon.