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Danica Kragic Jensfelt’s guide to Stockholm

Director at the Centre for Autonomous Systems and Vice Dean at the School of Computer Science and Communication, Danica moved to Stockholm from Croatia 20 years ago.

Words Nick Rice

— I arrived during winter so given that I come from a city that lies on the Adriatic coast, that was a big shock for me because it was –15°C and really cold and dark. So, it took some time for to me to get used to it.

That first winter was so cold and we had snow until April. I have a lasting memory about the City Hall, which is by the sea. Everything was frozen and you could walk on the sea in front of the City Hall. Then later in the summer I was actually sailing in the same place where I walked during winter. That was a fantastic memory and it tells you about the differences that you can experience in the city.

— I love summer, like everybody else, because the temperature is not too high and the days are long. If you like sailing and walking and being outside, then Stockholm is amazing because there are a lot of parks. The city is not too large and public transport is perfect, so you can go anywhere at any time, which I love. But I also love the changing of the seasons… it would be boring if they didn’t change. As my husband says, there is no bad weather, there are only bad clothes.

— We have kids and we don’t have a car, so we walk a lot. We love spending time in Humlegården and then getting a Kanelbullar cinnamon bun in Café Saturnus. They have the biggest bullar in the whole city. We usually order just one to feed four.

— We also like to catch a bus to Stora Essingen. It’s very central but you can walk around the island.

– We go down to the marina where we have a sailing boat, and there is also a place you can take a swim in summer. It’s kind of like a beach down there. These two places are great for when I’m with the kids, but if I’m alone and need food for the mind, so I take a walk through all the concept stores, and go to the boutiques of the Swedish and Finnish designers like Rodebjer and Marimekko as I love fashion. In the 20 years that I’ve been in Sweden I’ve noticed an increasing attention being paid in society toward clothes and fashion as a tool for expressing yourself, and I love to see that. I see more print and colour in Scandinavian fashion too. Swedish fashion brands are expressing themselves more through colour, shape and form.

— There are many great restaurants in Stockholm of course but I love going to the central market hall Hötorgshallen and getting inspired by all the raw ingredients, the fruits and the vegetables. You get inspired because there are so many different nationalities represented there with food from different parts of the world, all in one place.

— Thinking about nearby escapes from the city, there is of course the archipelago in summer. During winter that’s more difficult but actually I love to stay in the city. It’s not too crowded, you always have enough space, so I like to walk around all the parks and enjoy the art that is all around – the architecture, the houses, feeling part of the city. I’d have to say this city is my favourite getaway.


Danicas’ Stockholm

Humlegården, Humlegårdsgatan 26,
Café Saturnus, Eriksbergsgatan 6,
Stora Essingen, Stora Essingen Island
Rodebjer, Smålandsgatan 12,
Marimekko, Norrmalmstorg 4,
Hötorgshallen, Sergelgatan 29,

Photographed at Norrmalmstorg by Dan Sjölund