The free Millennium tour in Stockholm
Stieg Larsson’s Millennium trilogy has sold 23 million copies worldwide and chronicles the adventures of Mikael Blomkvist, the publisher of a financial magazine named Millennium, and his research partner, Lisbeth Salander, a brilliant hacker with a troubled past. Although books are fiction, most of the locations mentioned in the story are real. We will show you the most important ones.
A great part of the story takes place in Södermalm. Södermalm is a city district of Stockholm and is the southernmost island of the 14 on which Sweden's capital city is built. It is one of the most densely populated districts of Scandinavia. The island is connected to surrounding areas by a number of bridges. Larsson himself lived here, as well as his characters Mikael Blomkvist and Lisbeth Salander. The Stockholm City Museum has put together a guided two-hour Larsson tour with lots of detailed information about the author and the city, but with this guide and a city map you can explore Stockholm and discover the Millennium locations on your own and for free.
Bellmansgatan 1 is maybe the most famous address in Stockholm since the trilogy was published. It’s the home of journalist Mikael Blomkvist, one of the main characters. Groups of curious people from all over the world gather here to see his apartment. Nobody knows why Larsson chose to let Blomkvist live in this particular building. A family named Blomkvist lives in one of the apartments, but they didn't know Larsson. Overlooking the Saltsjon bay and Stockholm's medieval old town, the building offers some impressive views. We leave the Bellmansgatan and go to Lisbeth’s apartment.
Mikael Blomkvist’s apartment(Photo by max2win)
Lisbeth’s new apartment
It’s a 950m (about half a mile) walk to Fiskargatan 9, the luxury building where Lisbeth Salander buys an enourmous top-floor apartment. The mysterious Salander character is Larsson''s vision of Pippi Longstocking all grown up. She always manages to get things done on her own. We walk further to Kvarnen.
Lisbeth Salander’s new apartment(Photo by Washington Post)
After 500m (0,3 miles) we reach Tjärhovsgatan 4 where we find Kvarnen, a 100-year-old beer hall. Lisbeth Salander meets the girls of the rock band Evil Fingers in this bar. Mikael Blomkvist and his colleagues at Millennium also come here. Lisbeth tries to attract Mikael's attention by kissing Miriam Wu when Mikael and Dag Svensson are there having a beer.
Kvarnen bar and restaurant offers a massive wooden bar and such dishes as fried herring, served with a shot of anise liqueur and an Eriksberg beer. You can find the menu on kvarnen.com (if you understand Swedish). After some rest and Swedish food we continue to the Millenium office.
Kvarnen(Photo by Washington Post)
Just 350m (0,2 miles) away from the bar we stop at Götgatan 17A, the building in which Blomkvist's fictional offices were located on the third floor. The space, which actually houses apartments, is just above the real-life Greenpeace offices. The seven eleven supermarket where Lisbeth Salander often shops large packs of Billy's Pan Pizza can be found a little further on the Götgatan at number 25. From there on we walk to Mellqvist Kaffebar.
Millennium Office(Photo by Washington Post)
It’s a 1km (0,6 miles) walk to the Kaffebar. On the way we can see the synagogue (Sankt Paulsgatan 10) which is also mentioned in the books. Mellqvist is a tiny neighborhood coffee shop and is known in the books just as Kaffebar. The cafe is frequently visited by coffee-quaffing Blomqvist and was also one of Larsson's favorite spots, before he died of a heart attack in 2004. This is the last location of the tour. When you have finished your coffee, it’s another 700m (0,4 miles) walk to reach the starting point of our tour, Bellmansgatan 1.
Mellqvist Kaffebar(Photo by lycko)