Whether you are planning a cultural trip filled with museum-hopping fun or just popping into one or two museums while in Stockholm, there are plenty of amazing art galleries and museums to choose from. Or if you are facing a rainy day in Stockholm, touring a museum is just the solution! Afterward, hit up a shop or mall. There really is something for everyone when you visit the capital city of Sweden.
This city is buzzing with activity and has museums in every shape, size, and genre. Finding the best museums in Stockholm is a breeze, there are so many scattered throughout the city you will find it hard to pick your favorite one. From the fun ABBA Museum to the incredible Drottningholm Palace, a day in the city's museums will be a day to remember!
Get ready to explore Stockholm’s best museums. Most of them prefer you leave large bags outside. Find a luggage storage locker to stow your things so you can stroll through the city from one intriguing place to another without worrying about where you'll store your belongings.
The Vasa Museum
Address: Galarvarvsvagen 14, Djurgarden
The Vasa Museum is the most visited museum in Scandinavia that is not an art museum. It was named after a 17th century ship that has been preserved. The ship sank in 1628 during its maiden voyage and in 1961, it was found in Stockholm Harbour. The Vasa has since been fully restored and is on display at The Vasa Museum. This is Sweden's largest museum and a must-see when in Stockholm.
The museum touches on the naval history of Sweden and has several other ships on display as well as interactive exhibits that really make your visit worthwhile. You can even board the Vasa and walk along platforms that allow you glimpses into the past.
Address: Djurgardsvagen 68, Stockholm, SE 115 21
Absolutely no trip to Stockholm is complete until you visit the ABBA Museum. The iconic Swedish pop group ABBA is credited with inventing modern pop and is not just a national icon, but an internationally beloved band. Spend an hour or two working your way through the museum.
There are exhibits with fabulous costumes, film clips, gold records, and so much more. One of the coolest features is an interactive experience where you can sing with ABBA avatars and pretend you are a member of the band. You can even try on some of their iconic outfits, well, at least your avatar can try them on.
You do have to buy your tickets in advance; you cannot buy tickets at the door. Walk back in time with some of their greatest hits blasting over the P.A. system such as Dancing Queen, Fernando, Waterloo, and Thank You for the Music.
Address: 2 Soedra Blasienholmshamnen, Stockholm, SE 111 48
Housed in a fully restored Renaissance-style building located on the Blasieholmen peninsula, the Nationalmuseum has the biggest art collection on display in Sweden. With over 16,000 paintings and over 30,000 sculptures and other objects from world-famous artists, you can easily spend the entire day checking out all the nooks and crannies of this marvelous art museum.
The art here is more traditional but there are plenty of modern pieces on display. The porcelain collection should not be missed and the art library is a treasure trove of Swedish art history. With a café and gift shop, you can have a bite to eat in between wandering through and learning about different art styles, Swedish artists, as well as international artists and styles.
Address: Stadsgardshamnen 22, Stockholm, SE 116 45
The Swedish Museum of Photography is actually one of the biggest contemporary museums in the world dedicated to photography. There are four large exhibitions per year as well as 20 smaller exhibitions. Opened in 2010, the Fotografiska is housed in an interesting Art Nouveau-style building that was the former customs house.
The building is also home to an academy, conference rooms, a museum gift shop, event space, and a rooftop café that is simply amazing. Try to snag a table next to a window for breathtaking views of Stockholm. The gourmet menu offers fresh, flavorful dishes using mostly locally sourced ingredients.
Address: Djurgarden 49-51, Stockholm 115 93
A visit to the oldest open-air museum in the world is what you absolutely have to do when you are in Stockholm. Located on Djurgarden Island, it is easy to lose track of time while checking out everything Skansen has to offer. Poke around on homesteads and farms that have been restored or created to showcase traditional Swedish lives from the 16th century to the 19th century.
Watch artisans work their craft including making pottery, tanning, and even glassblowing. Many of the items you watch being made are available for purchase. There is a zoo filled with native Scandinavian animals such as European bison, wolves, and bears. Educational workshops are great for kids to learn more about Sweden’s history.
Drop by the bakery in Skansen for some pretty interesting and delicious treats just like they were baked way back when. Kids will love everything they see in Skansen, and with more than 150 buildings and farms to explore, expect to spend most of the day here. There is a hotel located in Skansen if you want the full experience of the open-air museum.
Address: Skeppsholmen, Stockholm
This lovely attraction is home to the biggest collection of 20th-century art in Sweden. With works by Matisse, Dalí, and Picasso you will love spending time soaking up all the culture of Moderna Museet. The building itself is memorable with its bright red color, but when you walk inside you will not know where to look first. The permanent exhibits include paintings and sculptures of all shapes and sizes.
Temporary exhibits are rotated regularly and offer cutting-edge designs that make you stop and think about the beauty you are seeing. Sign up for a guided tour to learn even more about the pieces you are seeing or wander through on your own and take your time enjoying the atmosphere.
The Museum of Modern Art, or Moderna Museet, is the place to be even if you are not a fan of modern or contemporary art. Located on Skeppsholmen Island, you will have fantastic views of Strandvagen and Djurgarden and be completely surrounded by green spaces and nature.
Swedish History Museum
Address: Narvavagen 13 17, Stockholm, SE 114 84
The Swedish History Museum follows the Vikings as they pillaged Europe including how they rose to such power and their ultimate downfall. The museum is also sometimes called the Viking museum.
With over 10 million artifacts in the history museum, it will take you a while to see everything. Do not miss the Gold Room, filled with silver and gold artifacts. Marvel at many interesting and unique items made of solid gold or silver.
Learn about Norse mythology and explore the beliefs and origins of the Vikings. Discover more about Odin, Freya, Loki, and Thor; it is not like what you see in Marvel movies! After you are finished in the museum, sit down at the in-house restaurant and order the Viking Plate filled with traditional Viking foods and served with mead.
Address: Svensksundsvagen 5 Skeppsholmen, Stockholm, SE 111 49
The Stockholm Toy Museum is a charming museum that kids and adults will fall in love with. The traditional Swedish toys and games that are displayed are truly intriguing. The wooden toys with their moving parts will remind you of an era that is long gone.
Located just a short walk from the Museum of Modern Art, the Stockholm Toy Museum is on Skeppsholmen Island and is one of the biggest collections of nostalgic toys and games in Scandinavia. There is even a gift shop offering some replicas of the more popular toys and board games as well as reprints of some of the comics.
Address: Drottningholm, SE 178 02
Drottningholm Palace is still a working residence for the Swedish royal family with several areas that are not open to the public. There are, however, several large sections of the palace and the grounds that are open to the public. The 16th-century palace became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1991.
The gilded reception halls are breathtaking and are some of the most luxurious in Europe. Sign up for a guided tour so you can step inside one of the reception halls and learn about the history of not just the palace, but the royal family. Your guide will regale you with stories of past royals and their contributions to the palace.
Visit the Chinese pavilion and sit quietly as you look out over the manicured grounds. Check out the production schedule of the fully functional and perfectly preserved theatre. You may see a production you want to see while you are visiting Stockholm.
Address: Museivagen 7, Stockholm, SE 115 93
Learning more about AI and the most cutting-edge research in technology is just that much cooler at the Tekniska Museet. Spend a few hours exploring gadgets and gizmos that showcase the evolution of technology through the years.
There is a model railway you will want to see and even watch in action during your visit to the museum. Interactive exhibits give you the power to virtually create sculptures and even compose music using the power of your mind. Kids especially find this museum to be fun and exciting.
Address: Djurgardsvagen 6-16, Djurgarden
The Nordic Museum, or Nordiska Museet, was opened in 1873 and is the largest cultural museum in Sweden. Stories from the past come to life to give you a glimpse into the life of those living in the Nordic region. See furniture, fashion, textiles, jewelry, and model homes that helped shape the Swedish culture and span over 500 years.
The main exhibition is located in the Great Hall and is called The Arctic – While the Ice is Melting. This exhibit gives you a look into the changing environment of the Arctic and how people are adapting to the ever-changing weather patterns. The Nordic Museum was named The European Museum of the Year for 2022.
Swedish Museum of Natural History
Address: 40 Frescativaegen, Stockholm 114 18
There are only two main natural history museums in Sweden and the Swedish Museum of Natural History in Stockholm is the largest museum. The other natural history museum is in Gothenburg. The museum in Stockholm was founded in 1819 and was run by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences. The academy had been compiling donations since 1739 and it was time to start cataloging the items collected.
The museum is home to a full whale skeleton, several dinosaur skeletons, meteorites, fossils, mummified animals, stuffed animals, and even precious stones. There really is a little bit of everything that pertains to the natural history of Sweden. The museum is located within walking distance of Stockholm University and has over 11 million items gathered in its collections.
What are the best free museums in Stockholm?
Free museums in Stockholm are easier to find than you think. With more than a dozen museums offering free admission, you can museum-hop your way through Stockholm without spending a dime on admission fees. Even some of the more popular museums are free; Nationalmuseum, Army Museum, Royal Museum, Swedish Museum of Natural History (IMAX theater tickets are not free) and Moderna Museet (temporary exhibits are not free) are highly recommended. For more free things to do in Stockholm, read our guide here.
Which are the best museums in Downtown Stockholm?
Stockholm is a unique city in that it has been designed to encourage walking or the use of public transportation rather than relying on your own vehicle (Stockholm Central Station is a good starting point). Therefore, all of the museums in Stockholm are easily accessible from the City Centre or downtown Stockholm. Museums close to downtown Stockholm include Fotografiska. ABBA Museum, Tekniska Museet and Swedish History Museum.
Are there any cheap museums in Stockholm?
Cheap and free are always great when you are out sightseeing. There are many museums in Stockholm that offer free admission or cheaper admission making them budget-friendly and some of the more popular museums in the city. Why not try the Swedish Museum of Natural History, Nordic Museum or Drottningholm Palace?
Explore museums in Stockholm
Museums in Stockholm range from natural history to cultural history and everything in between. Spending time museum-hopping in Stockholm will be a fulfilling experience and you will learn more than you ever thought possible, especially if you take part in several of the guided tours. From an activity in the city at night to a learning experience in a museum with the family, Stockholm has lots to show off!