We headed off on our cruise on the Gustafsberg VII promptly at 11am. According to the brochure, it was a 2 hour cruise - the reality was slightly different - it was a 2 hour cruise one way! We then had just over 2 hours to explore Gustavsberg and then a 2 hour return trip, so in fact in total 6+ hours. The boat we were on was a steam boat that has been in service since 1912, when Stockholm hosted the summer Olympics.
We left from the Nybrokajen docks and headed up the canal past Södermalm the largest of Stockholm’s 14 islands - it has a population of about 124,000. Next we passed Fjällgatan and the Viking Line Terminal where we will catch the ferry to Finland on Tuesday. We also went past Djurgarden (an island to the north of Södermalm) where we passed the Vasamuseet and Skansen, an open-air Museum which we plan to visit tomorrow. We made our way up some narrow canals past lovely summer homes and lot’s and lot’s of boats of all shapes and sizes. We travelled past Nacka, Skuru, Björknäs and Tollare, where there used to be a paper mill from 1922 till it closed in 1967. It was demolished in 2011 to make way for new developments, mainly in the form of apartments. The building is nearing completion, but there is still much work to do to clean up the seabed which is contaminated with Mercury which was used in paper production. There will be this beautiful new housing development, but at this stage it is uncertain when, if ever, the people who move there will be able to access the beach and water in front of the property.
We stopped at Artipelag Art Gallery to unload the majority of the passengers. Artipelag is a privately owned Swedish Art Gallery built by Björn Jakobson, the founder and owner of the BabyBjörn Company. The idea was to create a building in harmony with the natural surroundings on the 54 acre grounds. We will visit it when we return to Stockholm, which we will do as it is a wonderful city that I have fallen in love with.
We stayed on the boat to our final destination of Gustavsberg. It’s claim to fame was originally making bricks from the mid-1600’s, then Sweden’s first porcelain factory was established there, and more recently artisans have continued to produce ceramics, household porcelain and glassware.Read more