If you're in Stockholm in the next few days, be sure to get over to Skansen to enjoy a piece of birthday cake. The world’s oldest open-air museum and zoo, on Djurgården island in Sweden’s capital city, is celebrating its 125th anniversary with special tours and chocolate cake, a favorite of founder Arthur Hazelius.
Since he founded it in 1891, Skansen has become one of Sweden’s top tourist attractions, giving visitors — and certainly those whose ancestors emigrated from Sweden — an insight into how Swedes lived during the 18th and 19th centuries.
About 150 homes, buildings and other exhibits from across the country were relocated to create "Sweden in miniature,” complete with industry and nature native to different parts of the country.
It’s also where many traditional Swedish festivals, such as Lucia and Midsummer, Walpurgis Night and New Year’s Day are celebrated. And the newly-opened Abba the Museum is close by on the island, as is the Gröna Lund amusement park. But you wouldn’t know it from inside the authentically historic and wooded 75-acre grounds.
For details on the 125th anniversary and general information, see www.skansen.se