Sunday, August 7, 2011
We decided to experience the Scandinavian Midsummer (summer solstice) celebration in Stockholm, Sweden. In Sweden, Midsummer is a national holiday which is celebrated on the nearest Friday to the actual summer solstice.
We spent our first day exploring Stockholm's Gamla Stan (Old Town). Gamla Stan is the well preserved center of medieval Stockholm.
Saint George killing the dragon.
A mix of very old and very new technology.
The Gamla Stan waterfront.
On the Friday that was Sweden's official Midsummer holiday, we celebrated the day at Stockholm's Skansen Park, along with many thousand Swedes.
And at least one Peacock.
Raising of the Midsummer May Pole.
The following day we visited the Vasa Ship Museum. The Vasa was a warship built for Swedish king Gustavus Adolphus from 1626-1628. About 20 minutes into its maiden voyage in 1628, it capsized and sank. It was found and recovered, largely intact, in 1961.
The amount and detail of the wood sculpturing decorating the ship was absolutely amazing.
This image of the stern tries to show how narrow and tall the ship was.
One of the ornate canons found.
A scale model of the ship painted in the colors that they found evidence it had been pained with.
My family name has been traced back to Hans Berggren, a member of the Stockholm comb maker's guild in the late 1700s. This is the Katarina Church where most of his children were baptised. Unfortunately, the church dating back to his time burned down in 1990 and was rebuilt by 1995.
A nearby building that did survive from his time.