Sunday in Uppsala

A Sunday morning in late July seemed like the perfect time to visit Uppsala, the fourth largest city in Sweden.   Home to about 140,000 people, it’s a university town located about a 45 minute train ride north of Stockholm.   We arrived to a very quiet place ready for some exploring with no itinerary or plans in mind.

A quick walk from its newly refurbished train station and we’re at the Fryis River which cuts Uppsala in half.  It’s a beautiful walk along the river and a great way to start exploring the town:

Along the riverOne of the dominant sights from most vantage points around the city is Uppsala Domkyrka (cathedral)We arrive here just as their Sunday service is getting underway so only get a quick peek inside.  It is a beautiful building and is the tallest church in all of Scandinavia:

Uppsala domkyrkaWalking past the church and up a hill, we quickly arrive on campus at Uppsala University and take a moment to look back toward the church to appreciate how lush and green this city is:

Uppsala domkyrkaWe tend to end up walking through graveyards in our European travels as they tend to be very beautiful public parks.  Uppsala gamla kyrkogård is no different:

Graveyard in UppsalaWalking through here, we encounter a few families tending to grave sites.  One moment in particular I will always associate with our day in Uppsala was walking past a woman tending to the grave of her late husband who died only a few months earlier.   The woman was almost 90 and watching her lovingly tend to the plot brought tears to my eyes.  The quiet of the morning and the stark reminder of their lives together engraved on the large tombstone under which she stood was a touching moment on this trip for me.

Our walk through the city brought us back down the hill toward the river where we stopped for a delicious coffee and sweet treat at this peaceful cafe:

Stopping to "fika"After the relaxing snack, we start to make our way back toward the train station, the sleepy city only now starting to come to life.  Here again is the cathedral:

Quiet Sunday morningAnd once more, as we leave the older part of the city:

Uppsala domkyrkaIt was a really beautiful way to spend part of a Sunday.  Quiet, touching, peaceful, and a nice respite from the activity in busy Stockholm.   I was reminded by this day trip the importance of leaving some of your travel itinerary to chance.   Uppsala left a mark on me far beyond the limited time I spent in its presence.

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