About the Festival
The Nobel Week Lights, presented by the Nobel Prize Museum, is a unique fusion of light and legacy, set in the heart of Stockholm. This festival stands out as a beacon of creativity and innovation, inviting both local and international artists to contribute their light artworks. These installations are not mere decorations; they are profound celebrations of the achievements of Nobel Prize laureates. Spanning across central Stockholm, the festival features 17 awe-inspiring works of art, each telling a story of brilliance and discovery.
Featured Lighting Displays
- Interactive Light Displays: These displays are more than visual spectacles; they are experiences. Visitors engage with the installations, becoming part of the art themselves. Motion sensors, touch-responsive surfaces, and sound-activated lights make these artworks come alive with every interaction.
- Innovative Light Art Installations: Pushing the boundaries of traditional light displays, these installations incorporate cutting-edge technology and unconventional materials. They represent the intersection of art and science, embodying the spirit of the Nobel laureates they honor.
- 2D and 3D Projection Mapping: Buildings and structures across Stockholm serve as canvases for projection mapping. These displays use advanced technology to create stunning visual narratives in two and three dimensions, transforming the architecture into dynamic works of art.
- Fairy Lights: Adding a touch of whimsical charm, fairy lights drape over streets and alleyways. These delicate strings of lights create a magical atmosphere, weaving a dreamlike quality into the urban landscape.
- Illuminated Orbs: These glowing spheres dot the cityscape, ranging from small, handheld sizes to large, immersive orbs. Each orb acts as a standalone piece of art, radiating soft, ambient light that beckons visitors to admire their simplicity and elegance.
By intertwining the legacy of Nobel laureates with the creative expressions of artists, the Nobel Week Lights in Stockholm offers an illuminating journey through light, art, and science. Each featured lighting display is not just a spectacle but a homage to the enduring impact of great minds and their contributions to our world.
Festival Dates (2023)
The Nobel Week Lights in Stockholm is set to cast its enchanting glow from December 2 to December 10, 2023. This captivating period offers a unique opportunity to witness the city as it transforms into a luminous tapestry of art and light. Mark these dates, for they promise a journey through a realm of dazzling installations and awe-inspiring creativity, lighting up the winter nights of Stockholm.
Where It’s Located and How to Get There
The Nobel Week Lights Festival is not confined to a single location but rather spreads its radiant beauty across the entirety of Stockholm, Sweden. This sprawling urban canvas allows visitors to experience the city’s charm and history, illuminated in a new light. As you meander through the streets, parks, and waterfronts of Stockholm, each area reveals its own unique light installations, making the entire city a gallery of glowing artistry.
Traveling to the Festival: From Airport to Illumination
Arriving at Stockholm Arlanda Airport, you’ll find yourself approximately 40 kilometers (about 25 miles) away from the central areas where the festival takes place. Here are the best ways to transition from the airport to the heart of the light festival:
- Arlanda Express Train: The fastest way to reach central Stockholm, with a journey time of around 20 minutes.
- Airport Buses: A cost-effective option, airport buses take about 45 minutes to reach the city center.
- Taxi Services: Available at the airport, offering a direct and comfortable ride to your destination in Stockholm.
- Car Rentals: For those who prefer to drive themselves, several car rental agencies are available at the airport.
- Arriving by Train: A Scenic Journey to the Lights
Traveling to Stockholm by train from other Swedish cities is a scenic and efficient choice. Here’s a guide for reaching the festival from key cities:
- From Gothenburg (Göteborg): Direct trains to Stockholm Central Station take approximately 3 hours.
- From Malmö: Expect a travel time of about 4.5 hours on direct trains to Stockholm Central Station.
- From Uppsala: A short and frequent journey of about 40 minutes to Stockholm Central Station.
- From Linköping: Direct trains take around 2 hours to reach Stockholm Central Station.
- From Västerås: An hour’s journey on a direct train will bring you to Stockholm Central Station.
Each of these routes offers a comfortable and environmentally friendly way to travel, delivering you to the heart of the festival and the myriad of lights waiting to be discovered.
If you’re in Europe, you can also check out these other amazing lights festivals:
The Nobel Week Lights Festival invites visitors to immerse themselves in its radiant splendor from 4:00 PM to 10:00 PM each day. This window of time, stretching from the late afternoon into the night, is when Stockholm transforms into a mesmerizing world of light. As the sun sets, the installations begin to glow, creating a magical atmosphere that lasts until the final hour at 10:00 PM, offering ample time for exploration and enjoyment of this luminous spectacle.
Cost to Visit Nobel Week Lights
In the spirit of inclusivity and community, the Nobel Week Lights Festival in Stockholm is proud to be a completely free event. There are no tickets, no entry fees—just open access to everyone who wishes to partake in this captivating display of lights and art. This commitment to a cost-free experience ensures that the festival’s magic is available to all, embodying the true essence of a city-wide celebration.
Weather and What to Wear
In December, Stockholm wraps itself in the quintessential winter weather, offering a crisp and often snowy backdrop to the Nobel Week Lights Festival. Temperatures typically range from -1°C to 3°C (30°F to 37°F), creating a cool and sometimes frosty atmosphere. This seasonal setting adds to the enchantment of the light displays, with each breath visible in the air and the city’s architecture dusted in snow.
Recommended Clothing for Comfort and Warmth
To fully enjoy the festival amidst Stockholm’s winter conditions, dressing appropriately is key. Here’s a list of recommended clothing items:
- Thermal Underwear: A base layer of thermal clothing will keep you warm and comfortable as you explore the lights.
- Insulated Winter Coat: Choose a coat that is both warm and waterproof to protect against the cold and any potential snow or rain.
- Warm Trousers or Jeans: Thick trousers or jeans will add an extra layer of warmth for your lower body.
- Woolen Socks: Keep your feet warm with thick, woolen socks, especially if you plan to be walking for extended periods.
- Waterproof Boots: Opt for boots that are both waterproof and insulated to keep your feet dry and warm.
- Gloves or Mittens: Protect your hands from the cold with a pair of good-quality gloves or mittens.
- Scarf and Hat: A warm scarf and a hat are essential to protect your neck and head from the chilly winds.
- Layered Clothing: Layering your clothing allows you to adjust to different temperature settings as you move in and out of indoor and outdoor spaces.
Where to Sleep – Hotels Nearby
After a mesmerizing evening at the Nobel Week Lights Festival, retreat to comfort and luxury at one of Stockholm’s finest hotels, each offering a unique blend of convenience, comfort, and Nordic charm.
Radisson Blu Royal Viking Hotel
Located just steps away from Stockholm Central Station at Vasagatan 1, this hotel offers unparalleled accessibility to the city. Guests enjoy modern rooms with a touch of Scandinavian design, along with amenities like free Wi-Fi, an indoor pool, and an on-site restaurant that serves exquisite local and international cuisine.
Haymarket by Scandic
Situated in the heart of Stockholm at Hötorget 13-15, this art deco-inspired hotel is a perfect blend of history and contemporary style. The rooms are elegantly furnished, and guests have access to free Wi-Fi, a fitness center, and the hotel’s own brasserie, where the charm of the 1920s meets modern culinary art.
Hilton Stockholm Slussen
Nestled in the picturesque area of Södermalm at Guldgränd 8, this hotel offers stunning views of the city and the archipelago. The rooms are designed for comfort and tranquility, with amenities including free Wi-Fi, a fitness center, and a restaurant serving a fusion of Swedish and global flavors. Its prime location also makes it an ideal starting point for exploring the city’s vibrant cultural scene.
What to Eat
Immerse yourself in Stockholm’s gastronomic scene with a visit to these exceptional eateries, each offering a unique dining experience that beautifully complements the city’s festive ambiance.
Glassvillan is a gem for those who adore innovative cuisine. Known for its fusion dishes, the restaurant serves an array of creative plates featuring local ingredients. The ambiance is modern yet cozy, making it a perfect spot for those looking to enjoy contemporary Swedish flavors in a relaxed setting.
Woodstockholm is a must-visit for food enthusiasts. This restaurant is renowned for its commitment to organic and locally-sourced ingredients, crafting dishes that are both visually stunning and delicious. Their menu often features seasonal specialties, and the intimate, wood-centric decor provides a warm, inviting atmosphere.
Bistro Bestick offers a classic bistro experience with a Swedish twist. The menu includes a variety of traditional Swedish dishes, expertly prepared and presented. The restaurant’s warm ambiance, coupled with its reputation for excellent service, makes it an ideal choice for a comfortable and authentic dining experience in the heart of Stockholm.
More Things to Do in the Area
While the Nobel Week Lights Festival is a centerpiece of your visit, Stockholm offers a plethora of other fascinating attractions, each rich in history, culture, and entertainment.
The Royal Palace
Situated in the Old Town (Gamla Stan), The Royal Palace is not only the official residence of the Swedish monarch but also a treasure trove of history and architecture. Visitors can explore the magnificent state rooms, the Royal Chapel, the Treasury with the regalia, and several museums housed within the palace. Don’t miss the daily changing of the guard, a ceremonial tradition and a tourist attraction in itself.
ABBA The Museum
Located on Djurgården island at Djurgårdsvägen 68, this museum is a must-visit for music lovers. It’s an interactive exhibition about the world-famous pop group ABBA, offering visitors a chance to step into the shoes of the band members. Sing, dance, explore their costumes and records, and immerse yourself in the ABBA experience.
Also on Djurgården island, the Vasa Museum is home to the Vasa ship, which tragically sank on its maiden voyage in 1628 and was salvaged in 1961. The museum provides a unique maritime experience, showcasing the almost fully intact 17th-century ship, as well as exhibits related to the archaeological findings, maritime history, and conservation efforts.
A Final Sparkle: Wrapping Up Your Unforgettable Visit to Nobel Week Lights
As the Nobel Week Lights Festival in Stockholm draws to a close, we are reminded of the extraordinary blend of art, science, and culture that this event embodies. It’s more than just a festival of lights; it’s a celebration of human achievement and creativity, mirrored in the brilliance of each installation.
Whether you’ve wandered beneath the fairy lights, marveled at the 3D projections, or found inspiration in the interactive displays, these memories will linger long after the lights dim. Stockholm, with its Nobel Week Lights, truly becomes a beacon of wonder, inviting the world to share in its luminous, artistic, and intellectual journey.
Is parking available near the festival?
Yes, there are several parking areas near the festival locations. However, due to the high volume of visitors, it is recommended to use public transportation for convenience.
Can I smoke at the festival?
Smoking is not allowed in the immediate vicinity of the light installations to ensure a pleasant experience for all visitors and to protect the artworks.
Are pets allowed at the festival?
Pets are welcome, but they must be kept on a leash at all times. Please be considerate of other festival-goers and the installations.
Is the festival wheelchair accessible?
Yes, the festival is designed to be accessible to everyone, including wheelchair users. There are also accessible restrooms available.
Are there any food and drinks available at the festival?
Yes, there are various food stalls and vendors around the festival offering a range of snacks, meals, and beverages.
Can I take photographs and videos at the festival?
Absolutely! Photography and videography are encouraged, but please avoid using flash near the light installations.
Is there a lost and found service?
Yes, there is a lost and found point at the festival. If you lose an item, please contact the festival staff for assistance.
Are there any guided tours available?
Yes, guided tours are available, offering an in-depth exploration of the installations and the stories behind them. Check the festival’s official website for tour schedules and booking information.