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And Then, I Moved To Stockholm…


Modified: December 28, 2023

by Kirsti Mohammad



And Then, I Moved to Stockholm…


The decision to move to a new city can be both exciting and nerve-wracking. It’s a leap into the unknown, filled with anticipation and uncertainty. For me, that leap led me to the beautiful city of Stockholm, Sweden. With its rich history, stunning architecture, and vibrant culture, Stockholm quickly became a captivating place to call home.


Having lived in several cities around the world, each move brought its own set of challenges and rewards. However, my decision to move to Stockholm was driven by a deep curiosity to explore a country known for its high standard of living, innovative design, and well-preserved natural wonders.


Stepping off the plane at Arlanda Airport, I was immediately struck by the crisp, clean air and the breathtaking scenery. As I made my way into the city, it became clear that Stockholm was a city like no other. Spread across fourteen islands connected by bridges, the city is a picturesque combination of waterways, lush green spaces, and captivating architecture.


But moving to a new place is more than just admiring the physical beauty. It’s about immersing oneself in the culture, connecting with locals, and forging new relationships. Stockholm, with its welcoming atmosphere and friendly residents, made this process both enjoyable and rewarding.


Throughout my time in Stockholm, I have come to appreciate the city’s unique blend of traditional and modern influences. From the medieval charm of Gamla Stan, the old town, to the contemporary art galleries and innovative technology companies, Stockholm offers a vibrant spectrum of experiences.


Join me as I share my journey of adjusting to a new city, discovering Stockholm’s charm, immersing in its rich cultural experiences, embracing the Swedish lifestyle, and overcoming challenges along the way. Stockholm truly stole my heart, and I hope that through these words, it will capture yours as well.


The Decision to Move

Deciding to uproot your life and move to a new city is a big step. For me, the decision to move to Stockholm was a culmination of various factors that had been brewing in my mind for quite some time.


First and foremost, the allure of Sweden’s quality of life was impossible to ignore. The country consistently ranks at the top of global happiness and well-being indexes, and I was eager to experience the benefits firsthand. From its excellent healthcare system and high standard of education to its generous work-life balance and emphasis on sustainability, Sweden seemed like an ideal place to build a fulfilling life.


Secondly, Stockholm’s reputation as a hub of innovation and creativity was a major draw for me. The city is home to numerous global tech startups, fashion brands, and design studios. As someone with a passion for technology and design, I knew that Stockholm would offer exciting career opportunities and a stimulating environment to grow both personally and professionally.


Another key factor that influenced my decision was the country’s commitment to nature preservation. Sweden boasts an abundance of stunning natural landscapes, from its crystal-clear lakes and dense forests to its awe-inspiring archipelago. The opportunity to explore and enjoy these natural wonders was an adventure I couldn’t pass up.


Lastly, the prospect of immersing myself in a new culture and language was incredibly enticing. Swedish society is known for its egalitarian values, inclusiveness, and strong sense of community. I was excited to embrace the Swedish way of life, learn the language, and build connections with locals.


Of course, making the decision to move was not without its challenges. Leaving behind familiar surroundings, saying goodbye to loved ones, and navigating the logistics of moving to a new country can be overwhelming. However, the prospect of embarking on a new adventure and experiencing everything Stockholm had to offer outweighed any fears or doubts I had.


With my mind made up, I began the preparations for the move. Researching the housing market, visa requirements, and job opportunities became a priority. I reached out to expat communities, connected with locals, and sought advice from individuals who had already made the move to Stockholm.


Ultimately, the decision to move to Stockholm was a leap of faith, fueled by a desire for personal growth, adventure, and a desire to experience life in one of the world’s most captivating cities. Little did I know the incredible journey that awaited me as I embarked on this new chapter of my life in Stockholm.


Adjusting to a New City

Stepping into the unknown, I embarked on the journey of adjusting to life in a new city – Stockholm. The first few weeks were a whirlwind of emotions, as I navigated the intricacies of settling into a new environment.


One of the initial challenges was finding a place to call home. Stockholm’s housing market can be competitive, but with persistence and the help of local real estate agents, I secured a cozy apartment in a vibrant neighborhood. As I unpacked my belongings and settled in, the apartment started to feel like my own sanctuary amidst the bustling city.


Getting to know the city was another adventure in itself. Stockholm boasts a well-connected public transportation system, including buses, trams, and an efficient subway system known as the Tunnelbana. Navigating the intricacies of the transportation network took some time, but soon I found myself confidently hopping on trams and mapping out the city’s nooks and crannies.


Exploring the neighborhoods also played a key role in adjusting to my new surroundings. Each district in Stockholm has its own distinctive character and charm. From the historic streets of Gamla Stan to the trendy boutiques of Södermalm, each neighborhood offered a unique experience. I took the time to wander aimlessly through the streets, stumble upon hidden cafes, and soak in the ambiance of my new city.


Adapting to the Swedish way of life required some adjustments as well. One notable aspect is fika, a beloved Swedish tradition of taking a break with coffee and pastries. Embracing fika not only provided an opportunity to indulge in delicious treats but also allowed me to connect with colleagues and make new friends.


Language was another important aspect of my adjustment. While many Swedes speak excellent English, I felt that learning the Swedish language was crucial to fully immerse myself in the culture. I enrolled in language classes and practiced conversing with locals, allowing me to gradually understand and communicate in Swedish.


One of the most valuable resources during this adjustment period was the welcoming nature of the people. Swedes have a reputation for being friendly and helpful, and I found that to be true. Whether it was striking up conversations with fellow commuters on the subway or receiving recommendations from locals on the best places to visit, the kindness of the people in Stockholm made the transition smoother.


As time went on, I began to feel a sense of belonging in Stockholm. The once unfamiliar streets became familiar, and the city started to feel like home. Adjusting to a new city is a continuous process, but with each passing day, I found myself growing more comfortable and embracing the rhythm of life in Stockholm.


Join me as I uncover the enchanting charm and cultural experiences that Stockholm has to offer.


Discovering Stockholm’s Charm

Stockholm, a city that effortlessly blends history and innovation, captivated me from the moment I set foot in its beautiful streets. As I continued to explore, I discovered the true charm that makes Stockholm such a unique and captivating place.


One of the city’s main attractions is Gamla Stan, Stockholm’s enchanting old town. Stepping into Gamla Stan feels like stepping back in time, with its narrow cobblestone streets, colorful buildings, and medieval architecture. Exploring the area is a delight, as you stumble upon quaint shops selling traditional handicrafts, cozy cafes tucked away in hidden corners, and stunning historical landmarks such as the Royal Palace and Storkyrkan Cathedral.


Beyond Gamla Stan, Stockholm’s modern architecture also left a lasting impression on me. The city skyline is dotted with striking landmarks, such as the futuristic Ericsson Globe, the iconic City Hall with its towering spire, and the contemporary waterfront development known as Hammarby Sjöstad. Walking through the city, I couldn’t help but marvel at the seamless fusion of old and new architectural styles that define Stockholm’s skyline.


Stockholm’s natural beauty is equally captivating. With its location spread across an archipelago, the city offers breathtaking views of the water from various vantage points. The Djurgården island, in particular, is a treasure trove of green spaces and parks, perfect for picnics, leisurely walks, and even spotting wildlife.


A visit to the Vasa Museum is a must for any history enthusiast. This unique museum is home to the Vasa ship, a 17th-century warship that sunk on its maiden voyage and was salvaged centuries later. The museum offers a fascinating insight into Sweden’s naval history and the meticulous restoration process that brought the ship back to life.


As a culture lover, Stockholm did not disappoint. The city is packed with world-class museums, galleries, and theaters. The Moderna Museet showcases contemporary art from both Swedish and international artists, while the ABBA Museum pays tribute to one of Sweden’s most famous musical exports. The Royal Dramatic Theatre is a cultural institution, hosting performances ranging from classic plays to cutting-edge productions.


Food enthusiasts will also find themselves in gastronomic heaven in Stockholm. The city boasts a vibrant culinary scene, offering everything from traditional Swedish fare to international cuisines. Whether it’s indulging in traditional meatballs, sampling freshly caught seafood, or treating yourself to innovative Nordic cuisine at Michelin-starred restaurants, Stockholm offers a taste sensation for every palate.


But beyond the tangible attractions, it’s the intangible charm of Stockholm that truly stole my heart. The city exudes a sense of tranquility and harmony that is hard to find elsewhere. Whether it’s the sight of locals leisurely walking or biking along the waterfront, the serene parks where people gather to relax and connect with nature, or the strong emphasis on sustainability and green initiatives, Stockholm embraces a way of life that cherishes the well-being of both its residents and the environment.


Join me as I delve deeper into the cultural experiences and lifestyle that make Stockholm a truly captivating city.


The Cultural Experience

Immersing myself in the cultural fabric of Stockholm has been a truly enriching experience. The city is a vibrant hub of art, music, literature, and traditions that have deep roots in Swedish heritage, while also embracing a global mindset and diversity.


Art lovers will find themselves in paradise in Stockholm. The city is home to a myriad of world-class museums and galleries, showcasing a wide range of artistic movements and styles. The Nationalmuseum houses a vast collection of Swedish and international art, spanning centuries of creative expression. For contemporary art enthusiasts, Fotografiska offers an immersive experience with its rotating exhibitions of photography from renowned artists.


Music and performing arts also thrive in Stockholm. The city hosts a variety of concerts, festivals, and performances throughout the year. The Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra, with its rich history and renowned musicians, offers classical music enthusiasts unforgettable performances. Additionally, Stockholm’s live music scene caters to diverse tastes, with venues ranging from intimate jazz clubs to larger arenas hosting international artists.


Literature has a special place in Swedish culture, and Stockholm provides ample opportunities for bookworms to indulge in their passion. The Nobel Prize in Literature, awarded annually in Stockholm, celebrates the greatest literary works and writers from around the world. The city is dotted with charming independent bookshops that offer a cozy atmosphere for readers to browse and discover new stories.


One of the most notable cultural traditions in Stockholm is the celebration of Midsummer. This ancient Swedish holiday takes place in late June and is a time for gathering with friends and family to celebrate the arrival of summer. Dancing around the maypole, enjoying traditional Swedish delicacies like herring, and participating in festive games and activities are all part of this joyful celebration.


Food plays an integral role in any culture, and Swedish cuisine offers a unique culinary journey. From traditional dishes like gravlax (cured salmon) and smörgåsbord (a buffet-style meal) to modern interpretations of Nordic cuisine, Stockholm’s restaurants showcase the best of Swedish gastronomy. Exploring local markets, such as Östermalmshallen, allows one to discover an array of fresh and locally sourced ingredients.


Another cultural experience that cannot be missed is the Swedish love for nature and the outdoors. Stockholm is surrounded by breathtaking nature, making it easy to escape the city and immerse oneself in forests, lakes, and islands. The concept of allemansrätten, or the freedom to roam, allows everyone to explore nature and enjoy outdoor activities like hiking, canoeing, and even berry picking.


Being accepted into the cultural tapestry of Stockholm has given me a sense of belonging and connection to the city and its people. It has allowed me to appreciate and participate in traditions, explore diverse artistic expressions, and develop a deeper understanding of Swedish values and way of life.


Join me as I continue to embrace the Swedish lifestyle and share my experiences of living and thriving in Stockholm.


Embracing the Swedish Lifestyle

Living in Stockholm has given me the opportunity to fully immerse myself in the Swedish lifestyle, which is characterized by a unique blend of simplicity, sustainability, and a strong sense of community.


One aspect of the Swedish lifestyle that stood out to me is the emphasis on work-life balance. Swedes prioritize leisure time and relaxation, valuing the importance of personal well-being. This is reflected in generous vacation policies, flexible working hours, and a strong commitment to maintaining a healthy work-life balance. I have learned to appreciate the importance of taking breaks, spending time outdoors, and focusing on self-care.


Sustainability is deeply ingrained in Swedish society, and Stockholm exemplifies this commitment to environmental responsibility. The city’s efficient public transportation system, extensive network of bike lanes, and efforts to reduce carbon emissions make it easy to live a sustainable lifestyle. Recycling is also a way of life, with well-organized recycling centers and a culture of waste reduction. I have become more mindful of my own ecological footprint and have adopted sustainable practices into my daily routine.


The concept of “lagom” is another key aspect of the Swedish lifestyle. “Lagom” translates to “just the right amount” or “balanced” and is a guiding principle in many aspects of Swedish life. It applies to everything from work-life balance to home decor and social interactions. Embracing the idea of “lagom” has allowed me to find a sense of contentment and balance in my own life, appreciating the beauty of simplicity and moderation.


The Swedish love for nature is evident in every aspect of daily life. Outdoor activities are embraced year-round, whether it’s cycling along the city’s numerous bike paths in the summer or ice skating on frozen lakes during the winter. Stockholm’s proximity to nature also allows for easy access to forests, lakes, and the stunning archipelago. I have found myself exploring the outdoors more, taking long walks, and enjoying picnics in serene parks.


Swedes also have a strong sense of community and value social connections. This is evident in the concept of “fika,” which is essentially a coffee break where people come together to connect, chat, and enjoy a cup of coffee and a pastry. I have embraced this tradition, finding joy in connecting with colleagues, neighbors, and friends over a cozy fika, deepening my sense of community and belonging.


Lastly, the Swedish lifestyle encourages personal growth and lifelong learning. Stockholm offers numerous opportunities for personal and professional development, from language classes to workshops and cultural events. I have taken advantage of these opportunities to expand my knowledge, learn new skills, and engage in continuous growth and self-improvement.


Embracing the Swedish lifestyle has been a transformative experience for me. It has encouraged me to slow down, appreciate the beauty of simple pleasures, prioritize well-being, and contribute to a sustainable future. Stockholm has provided the perfect backdrop to fully immerse myself in this way of life.


Follow along as I navigate the challenges and joys of embracing the Swedish lifestyle in the captivating city of Stockholm.


Overcoming Challenges

Like any new endeavor, moving to a new city comes with its fair share of challenges. From the initial adjustment period to navigating unfamiliar surroundings, Stockholm presented its own set of hurdles. However, I embraced these challenges as opportunities for growth and learning.


One of the initial challenges I faced was the language barrier. While many Swedes speak English fluently, I knew that learning the Swedish language was essential to fully integrate into the culture. I enrolled in language classes, practiced conversational Swedish with locals, and sought out language exchange opportunities. Over time, my language skills improved, enabling me to communicate more confidently and connect with the local community on a deeper level.


Another challenge was building a social network in a new city. Stockholm is known for its strong sense of community, but establishing meaningful connections takes time and effort. To overcome this, I joined local interest groups, attended social events, and participated in community activities. By actively engaging in the local community, I was able to meet like-minded individuals and forge lasting friendships.


Navigating the Swedish job market was also a challenge. While Stockholm offers ample career opportunities, competition can be fierce. I faced the task of building a professional network, tailoring my resume to Swedish standards, and adapting to the local work culture. Through persistence and networking, I eventually secured a job that aligned with my skills and interests.


Adapting to the cost of living in Stockholm was another hurdle. The city can be relatively expensive, and it required budgeting and being mindful of expenses. I researched affordable alternatives for groceries, transportation, and entertainment, allowing me to manage my finances effectively while still enjoying the city’s offerings.


Cultural differences and norms also posed challenges along the way. Swedish social customs and etiquette may differ from what I was accustomed to, requiring me to adapt and familiarize myself with local customs. Understanding and respecting Swedish values such as personal space, punctuality, and the “equality principle” helped me navigate social interactions and integrate into the local community.


Despite these challenges, the journey has been immensely rewarding. Each obstacle presented an opportunity for personal growth and a deeper understanding of Swedish culture. By embracing the challenges, I have become more resilient, adaptable, and open to new experiences.


Overcoming these challenges has allowed me to fully immerse myself in the vibrant tapestry of Stockholm and appreciate the strength and resilience that comes from stepping out of my comfort zone. Stockholm has become not just a city I live in, but a place where I have developed new skills, knowledge, and connections.


Join me as I continue to navigate and conquer the challenges that come with living in Stockholm, and discover the immense rewards that lie on the other side.



As I reflect on my journey of moving to Stockholm, I can’t help but feel a deep sense of gratitude and fulfillment. This vibrant city has offered me a multitude of experiences, from immersing myself in its rich history and culture to embracing the Swedish lifestyle and overcoming challenges along the way.


Stockholm has a unique charm that effortlessly blends the old and the new, the traditional and the modern. From wandering the cobblestone streets of Gamla Stan to marveling at the city’s contemporary architecture, I have been captivated by the beauty that surrounds me every day.


The cultural experiences have been awe-inspiring, from visits to world-class museums and galleries to indulging in traditional Swedish cuisine. I have embraced the Swedish love for nature and the outdoors, exploring the stunning archipelago and picturesque parks that make Stockholm truly special.


Adjusting to a new city brought its own set of challenges, but I have grown and learned from each hurdle I faced – whether it was adapting to a new language, building a social network, or navigating the Swedish job market. These challenges have shaped me into a more resilient and adaptable individual.


Most importantly, the warm and welcoming nature of the Swedish people, the emphasis on work-life balance, and the commitment to sustainability have made Stockholm not just a city I live in, but a place I call home. The sense of community I have found has enriched my life in countless ways, and the friendships I have made will last a lifetime.


Moving to Stockholm has broadened my horizons, expanded my cultural understanding, and given me a deep appreciation for the beauty of this wonderful city. Stockholm has become a part of who I am, shaping my perspective on life and teaching me valuable lessons about embracing new experiences and stepping out of my comfort zone.


As I continue to embrace the Swedish lifestyle, immerse myself in the cultural fabric of Stockholm, and make memories that will last a lifetime, I invite you to join me on this captivating journey. Stockholm awaits, ready to captivate your heart and leave an indelible mark on your soul.