Tourist’s guide to Stockholm metro – art and technology

The city transport network of the Swedish capital is one of the most advanced, well-maintained and comfortable on the European continent. Local buses and trams, commuter trains and ferries, as well as the Stockholm metro are all managed by SL. In addition, the city has a well-developed network of bike and taxi rental points.

Stockholm metro

The fastest way to overcome the Stockholm distances is obtained by metro. In Swedish it is called Tunnelbana, therefore the entrances are denoted by the letter “T”.

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Stockholm metro: general information

Entrance to T-centralen metro station

The metro system includes one hundred stations, of which only forty-eight are underground, and the rest pass on the ground or above the ground. The total length of three twisting branches on the Stockholm metro map is just over one hundred kilometers. All three branches meet at the T-centralen station, from which you can easily reach the bus station and the Central railway station. Stockholm residents call this point, from which you can leave anywhere (within the city, country, the whole of Scandinavia and even the world), “Stockholm C”. If you are lost in space, ask passers-by how to find this place.

GOOD TO KNOW! Each line forks at the end, so you need to be careful: routes that follow one direction on the same branch may have different end stops.

Fleetguard Filters

The Stockholm metro has many features. For example, the traffic on the lines is left-handed, since at the time of the opening of the subway Sweden adhered to this way of organizing traffic. And the equipment that moves on the ruts is exceptionally high-quality and ultramodern, corresponding to the advanced achievements of science and technology: from automatic train control systems to Fleetguard filters.

GOOD TO KNOW! Cars for the local metro are made to special order. They differ from all the others in the use of sandwich panels that are subject to complete recycling, that is, they are the most environmentally friendly cars in the world. At the same time, each of them has a name that can be recognized by looking under the cab.

The driver leaves the cab at each station

Another fact – the Swedish subway trains are not equipped with rear-view mirrors. The driver leaves the cab at each station to control the flow of passengers and announce to the microphone that he intends to close the doors (sometimes the doors close after a beep). Previously, co-pilots helped the drivers, but with the advent of video cameras and TVs on platforms, this position was reduced.

Historical reference

Subway construction

For Stockholm, the metro is everything: a paramount variety of public transport, and a visiting card of the city. The number of trips per year exceeds three hundred million. Once, Stockholm was a “tramway,” as Gothenburg and Malmö are now, but today it is the only “owner” of the subway in Sweden.

When it was decided to build a subway (in 1941), light rail trams drove through existing underground tunnels. Later they were converted into subway lines. The first line ran between Slussen and Hökarängen. The official launch of the Green Line took place in 1950. It was followed by Red (1964) and Blue (1975).

GOOD TO KNOW! The two “freshest” stations appeared in the mid-90s. Since then, the intensive development of the metro has stopped. Today there is an active discussion on the continuation of construction work.

Station decoration

Stockholm metro stations are another confirmation of how original this city is. Every corner of the capital sounds with engineering finds and unique design solutions. The Swedes manage to harmoniously combine non-standard ideas with national symbols, the ordinary with the strange, the predictable with the unexpected.

Entrance to Thorildsplan Station

It is not for nothing that the Stockholm metro is called the “Longest Art Gallery in the World”, and tourists without exception try to make photos of its stunning imagination stations. Talk about the feasibility of decorating the city’s attractions was carried out even before its construction began. They say that one of the sources of ideas for designers was the Moscow metro station, but the Swedes chose their own style – without undue solemnity, with taste, sometimes with a slight “crazy”.

At the Kungsträdgården subway station

Studying photos of metro stations in Stockholm, you can see sculptural compositions and mosaics, murals and installations, a rainbow and the ruins of Ancient Rome. Art objects are not only vertical surfaces, but also the space under your feet, above your head, as well as benches and signposts. Here is a mirror reflecting a non-existent opposite plane, there is a stained glass window with the Swedish prototype of the Titanic, huge cubes with the image of sky and clouds, or “rock painting”.

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Stockholm’s most beautiful metro stations

Ostermalmstorg station – a manifesto of the struggle for peace and women’s rights, Rinkeby – a reflection of the history of the Vikings, Universitet – breathes science, Kungstradgarden – resembles the wonderland in which Alice visited, and Hallonbergen – decorated with children’s paintings and sculptures. It is extremely difficult to distinguish the best among the 100 amazingly beautiful stations, because each person has his own preferences, but many agree that they are most worthy of the attention of travelers:

T-Centralen Station
T-centralen
  1. T-Centralen is the “heart” of public transport in Stockholm. The station room is two-level. The upper level is located at a depth of just over 8 meters, the lower level is 14 meters from the surface. T-Centralen has two exits, one of which leads to Sergels torg, and the second to Vasagatan. Over 10 designers worked at the same time on the design of the station, who covered its asymmetric arches with a colorful layer, “dressed” the arches and pylons in the heavenly color, and painted the arches with branches and leaves.
  2. Stadion Station
    Stadion
  3. Stadion is a station that is located on the Red subway line. It is located at a depth of 25 meters, was opened in 1973, has a “rainbow” design and inspires for extraordinary pictures – for example, in the winter you can take pictures here, “drowning” in flowers.
  4. Solna Centrum, which is on the Blue Line, “hides” at a depth of thirty meters. On its walls of rock, drawings are devoted to various social problems, including the issue of nature conservation. Not far from the exit from Solna Centrum is the Råsunda stadium.
Solna Centrum Metro Station
Solna centrum

Often exhibitions are held at the stations – at this time, passengers can admire the work of hundreds of authors, who consider it an honor to present their work in the metro museum. The state allocates more than a million euros each year to maintain and develop the underground gallery.

Metro map

Stockholm metro scheme is quite simple. It is almost impossible to get lost and confused in it, because the scrupulous Swedes thought out every nuance. The stations are equipped with electronic displays with up-to-date information about the route of a particular train, the exact time of arrival of the next three flights, etc.

Stockholm metro map

As already mentioned, the Stockholm subway is represented by three lines:

  1. Green At first it connected Slussen and Hökarängen, but later replenished with two more routes. Now the Green Line operates T17 (Åkeshov – Skarpnäck), T18 (Alvik – Farsta strand) and T19 (Hässelby strand – Hagsätra).
  2. Blue It operates the T10 route from Kungsträdgården to the Hjulsta station, and the T11 route connecting Kungsträdgården and Akalla.
  3. Red There are T13 routes (from Norsborg to Ropsten) and T14 (from Fruängen to Mörby Centrum) on the line.

There are crossings between adjacent stations, some have a common platform. There are also those that are conveniently located directly above each other. You can go from station to station using escalators or elevators.

Hours and Intervals

The Stockholm metro starts at 5:00 and ends at around midnight. Fridays and Saturdays at 4:00. At peak hours, the interval between train arrivals is no more than two to three minutes.

Fare

To travel around Stockholm by metro, you first need to pay the fare, the cost of which will depend on whether you have booked a one-time ticket or travel card.

Stockholm metro entrance
Single ticket

The first costs 44 SEK (4.29 euros). If you buy tickets in a bundle (for example, 16 pieces at once), you can save some money. The ticket must be shown to the controller at the entrance to the subway – he will put a stamp on it with the exact time. A single ticket is valid for 60 minutes – regardless of how many transfers you made.

SL Access card
SL Access card

The second option is an electronic smart card SL Access card, which is preferred by Stockholm residents and visitors who come for a long time. A universal card that allows you to travel on any type of Stockholm transport costs 20 SEK (1.95 euros) and is valid for six years – you can use it when you visit Stockholm again, present it as a gift or sell it.

A deposit is placed on the SL Access card, funds are debited from each account with a trip. You can replenish the card as many times as you like. If you want to use the card for two or three, notify the seller of the SL Access card first, and then the controller in the subway.

Travel card

A great solution for tourists – Travel card. This is a one-time card valid for:

It looks like Travel card for 72 hours
  • days (125 SEK or 12.19 euros),
  • 72 hours (250 SEK or 24.38 euros)
  • weeks (325 SEK or 31.70 euros).

To get a Travel card, you first have to spend 20 CZK on a SL Access card.

You can buy tickets and cards:

  1. In SL services at Central Station.
  2. At metro stations, including Stockholm C.
  3. In special machines, which are always in the subway or at stops.
  4. At the box office or at the turnstiles in the subway.
  5. Using the SL-Reseplanerare och biljetter mobile app.

Good to know! You can’t buy tickets in the train of the Stockholm metro. If you do not pay for the trip, you will be subject to a fine of 1,500 SEK (146.30 euros).

Prices on the page are for July 2018.

How to use the subway

Attach the SL Access card to the card reader

Knowing the cost of the metro in Stockholm and having a one-time ticket or travel card, it remains to figure out how to apply them. With tickets, everything is simple – they need to be stamped at the entrance by contacting the controller, who is sitting in a glass booth.

Turnstiles are provided for magnetic cards. Attach the SL Access card to the card reader – and that’s all, you can use the Stockholm metro with pleasure. Do not forget that the stations have bulletin boards where your current location is indicated by a red circle. In search of the desired station, consult the map of Stockholm, and in search of the desired route – with information on the luminous placards.



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