Sigtuna. See where Sweden began – A Day Trip Travel Guide

Sigtuna is a town located within Stockholm County. It is a town but it is referred to as stad which means city in Swedish. Its status as a city has not changed because of its history as where Sweden began. Its locality gave it the prime protective position because attackers from the Baltic would have to travel through the waterways in order to arrive at the city. Thus, giving them time to prepare for attackers. However, when Stockholm was founded, it began to lose its importance as the political seat had moved. 

How to get here

Sigutuna is on the northern part of the county, and is situated between Uppsala and Stockholm. Its locality means that has easy connections from both cities. 

From Stockholm

The easiest way is take the pendeltåg 41, then take the bus 570 or 575 to Sigtuna. Since these are within the Stockholm county network, all you need is a valid period ticket.

From Uppsala

You can take SJ regional train to Marsta and take the sames buses from Marsta station. Also you can take bus 188 from Uppsala and takes about an hour travel. However, expect an extra fare because they are situated outside each others county. 

What to see and do

Walk on the 1000 year old street

It is not hard to miss, it is the main pedestrian street and it is located right near the bus stop. The street has changed over the last 1000 years but its location within Sigtuna has remained stable. The street is where Eric Segerfäll proclaimed that Sigtuna was now the capital of the new Christian Kingdom of Sweden.

Check out the church ruins

Yes, plural. The founding of Sigtuna was the beginning of a new Christian Kingdom and it was at the start of the medieval period which prompted the building of 6-7 churches that existed contemporaneously to one another. 

Visit Sigtuna's City Hall and the Main Square

The small city hall is 3 rooms and there is a tiny museum in it, and there is not much to see but it is still functioning for some events, including weddings. Approximately 100 couples get married here annually. 

This city hall is over 300 years old and the original had dilapidated into a shell of its original self due to war, famine, fires. So, in 1737, the mayor decided to design and rebuild a new one… a really small one. 

Storatorget, aka the Main Square, has been in the same location since the 1600’s. It has had several uses and has seen the passage of time. At one point it was used to pasture sheep and cattle but it is now used as a meeting place.

Walk by the shore

The town is located right on Lake Malaren, so it is an easy trip from Stockholm by train, bus, or even by ferry.

Many of the coastal lines around the lake were underwater 1000 years ago, as the water has receded 5-7 meters depending on which island you are on. So, you can think that you are walking on water when going down the Strandpromenade. 

There are also some great photo opportunities. As seen below. 

Search for runestones

Runes are the oldest form of writing in Scandinavia and especially in Sweden. Sigtuna has some of the largest concentration of Runestones within the city limits, as there are about 20 and 170 in municipality. There is some discussion that many of the Runestones found in Scandinavia are actually a contemporary response to the Christianization of the area. As Sigtuna also has the some of the highest churches per capita in the country. 

You can see a runestone that the wall is built into. As the stone was in place before the wall.
Take a free tour

Depending on the day there are one or more guided tours of the town. It is in Swedish, so if you are looking for an English one you will have to pay for it elsewhere. Regardless, even if you take the Swedish one, you can go to the sites they take you too and you can then read up on them. The tour is about an hour long and because of the pandemic there can only be 15 people in the group. So, get to the Storatorget early. 

For tour times, take a stop at the Sigtuna museum near Storatorget. 

The museum facing the Lake. On the other side is the entrance. When you visit, keep an eye out for the hidden cats.
Just a little clue for you.

Where to eat/stay

At the end of Stora gatan there is a hotel/restaurant called the 1909 Stadshotell. So, it will cover both of these needs.

Next to the hotel is another restaurant called Plåt Pelles Cafe that is delightful and has area in the garden to sit and enjoy the view of Lake Malaren. This can be seen in the photo under the section of ‘Walk by the shore’.

An additional restaurant is located right on the lake and it is located near the Båtklubb, at the end of Strandvägen. This place is called Våfflan, they specialize in waffles and you should stick to that part of the menu.

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