Rosendals Trädgård, Stockholm

Rosendals Trädgård, Stockholm
Ostensibly a working lesson in biodynamic agriculture, most visitors come not for education but to stroll in the grounds among fruit trees and bushes, past neat vegetable patches, through the rose garden and along raked gravel paths, stopping at a complex of greenhouses that also host a shop and restaurant. The garden’s produce is on offer here in salads, hot dishes and sandwiches that showcase the on-site bakery’s wonderful bread, loaves of which are also for sale, along with other food items from the gardens and beyond. Another store sells plants, gardening tools and accessories.

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Grandpa, Stockholm

Grandpa, Stockholm
Grandpa is the oldest in what is now a group of three stores (one a short distance away on Kungsholmen, the other in Gothenburg, selling a well-chosen mix of new and old items—furniture, lights, stationery, books, bags, wallets and clothing, with an emphasis on Scandinavian labels. Downstairs are enormous educational maps and charts, rolled or mounted along with weathered objets for that instant heirloom effect.

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Biologiska Museet, Stockholm

Biologiska Museet, Stockholm
In an effort to show the people of Sweden the diversity of their country’s wildlife, Gustaf Kolthoff shot and stuffed great swathes of it and then had this museum built in 1893 to house the collection. The intricately carved dark wood exterior, based on Norwegian churches, is a clue that this is no ordinary museum, still that doesn’t prepare the visitor for what’s inside. The centrepiece is a two-floor, 360-degree diorama that places Kolthoff’s trophies against painted landscapes – an amazing sight, at this late date curious and slightly unsettling. Much the same can be said of the glass case of bears on the ground floor, which has them in a family group, tentatively holding each other’s paws.

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Russ & Daughters Cafe, New York

Russ & Daughters Cafe, New York
Anyone who thinks that they don’t make ’em like they used to should head this way, to an entirely new eatery that looks as if it’s always been here. Parquet floors, comfortable booths with glass dividers and above them lit signs for goods from the famous original Russ & Daughters store, still thriving a few streets away: canned sprats, kippered salmon, marble halvah, rugelach, bialys. There’s a counter around the bar at which to savour a remarkable Bloody Mary and inventive takes on Jewish-American food – the Eggs Benny has our highest recommendation. Avoid the weekend brunch melee if at all possible, it’s best Monday to Friday.

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New York Public Library, New York

New York Public Library, New York
Time evaporates in these beautiful surroundings. Completed in 1911, this is truly a palace of knowledge and learning, with long marble corridors, murals, chandeliers and a world-class archive. To better appreciate the NYPL’s architecture, audio tours are available. Or settle down in the DeWitt Wallace room, selecting from 200 current magazines and 22 US and foreign newspapers. Homesick Englishmen are advised to avoid the Children’s Center, where the stuffed toys that inspired the characters of Winnie-the-Pooh, Piglet, Kanga, Eeyore and Tigger reside in permanent exile.

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