Population: 97 000 (metro 141 000)
Tallest building: City Hall (68m)
County: Östra Götalands Län
Area: 35.68 km²
Year visited: August 2018
Norrköping is currently the 9th largest city in Sweden (2nd largest in Östergötland after Linköping). The city, situated some hours southwest of Stockholm, in the bay Bråviken a few hours from the sea, has one of Sweden’s largest harbours. Five state works are located in the city. It is a former industrial city that has been turned to a knowledge city. The city center of Norrköping has been developed and vitalized the recent years. In contrary to many other Swedish cities, lots of beautiful historical buildings have been preserved.
The central station, Norrköpings Centralstation, is white and looks like an Italian castle. Opposite the station is Carl Johans Park with beautiful sculptures, fountains, trees and even palms, and the art nouveaux theater building Östgötateatern.
From there you can pass the bridge Saltängsbron over the river Motala Ström. Grand Hotel is facing the river. On the other side of the river Drottninggatan (Queen Street) begins, that pass through the whole city center.
Tyska Torget (German Square) is the main square in the city. Here you find the impressive Town Hall (Norrköpings Rådhus, built 1907-10), massive in size with its 68m high brick tower with a clock and a golden statue of St Olof and Hedvigs Kyrka, a church built in 1673 for the German inhabitnats.
From there Drottninggatan continues as the main shopping street with several department stores, three shopping malls (Linden, Spiralen and Domino), special shops, fastfood chains and restaurants, many housed in beautiful historical buildings. The church St Olai Kyrka (inaugurated 1767) is a main sight, a yellow baroque building with a campanile (city clock tower) in the same style. The lower part of Drottningg is less beautiful with 60s modernist buildings and malls.
Norrköping is known for its yellow and orange trams, many quite old. It is one of only three cities in Sweden that has trams (Gothenburg and Stockholm are the other ones).
Parts of Norrköping are quite hilly. Together with cobbed streets, many nice restaurants and trams it creates a nice atmosphere in the city.
Motala Ström (locally called Strömmen) is flowing through the city. The area on the South side of this stream is the Old Town - Industrilandskapet, a former industrial district that was turned into museums, restaurants, workshops and apartments in historical buildings, many painted in yellow, situated right next to the water. Surrounding the buildings are waterfalls and bridges. The Louis de Geer Congress & Concert Hall is very beautiful, a building that was formerly a paperwork, but was converted into the current use in 1994. Arbetets Museum (Museum of Work) is very popular, situated in Strykjärnet (the Flatiron building) from 1917, right next to the stream. Holmen Museum and Stadsmuseum (City Museum) is next to it, as well as Visualiseringscenter C, Sweden’s only digital science center, housed in a historical tower building. In this area is also Gamla Torget, the Old Square. The beautiful bridge Bergsbron passes right above the stream, in this former industrial area.
Along Motala Ström, locally dubbed "Strömmen", you find Strömparken and several riverside cafés and places. Notable churches are the neo-gothic St Matteus Kyrka from 1892 in Folkparken, Den yngre St Johannes kyrka, Den äldre St Johannes kyrka. There is a also a notable synagogue, Norrköpings Synagoga, in the city, and a 45m tall former water tower converted into students apartments. The city library, Norrköpings Stadsbibliotek, is a grey modern building in brutalist style.
Östra Promenaden and Södra Promenaden are large main roads, as well as Norra Promenaden where trams goes along a tree alley in the middle. On the West Bank of Motala Ström in the city center, there are more modern buildings, and a few highrises (nothing really tall though).
Norrköping has a small internatinonal airport, Kungsängen.
I made a business trip to Norrköping for a conference with my workplace, in August 2018. We stayed at the 3-star hotel Scandic Norrköping City, a modern midsized hotel near the central station with good breakfast. Modern and comfortable but nothing special. Fräcka Fröken was a nice restaurant at Kungsgatan, near Strömmen, that I visited. I went for two days, and travelled by train from Malmö and found the city very beautiful, especillay with Swedish standards. The weather was mixed, quite warm but not hot, clouds on the sky but partly sunny.
Norrköping, 9th largest in Sweden, actually feels larger then Linköping, that is the 5th largest in Sweden and largest in Östergötland. I got the impression that Norrköping reminds of some city in Eastern Europe (Krakow, Riga or Prague).
Back to top