Lifecruiser in jailLast Saturday Mr Lifecruiser and I went to Långholmens Crown Prison in Stockholm, Sweden, to be locked into a double cell for the night.

No, we didn’t get arrested for doing something naughty in public, I swear! *giggles*

I got one of my “Let’s do something fun spasms” and booked a night at Långholmen, an old prison.

Afterwards I’ve come to realize that we did a very trendy thing: so called dark tourism, visiting places where bad things has happened. It seem to be very popular at the moment.

We found a special weekend package deal on the internet including a two course dinner and prisoners hats, which of course were impossible to resist for crazy peeps like us…. *giggles*

From the beginning the island were just pasture with a customs station. In 1724 there were buildings built for forced labor, to get to terms with all the vagabondism in Stockholm and later on it turned into a jail.

I guess we have the vagabondish blood from the vikings…

It was converted to a combined hotel and hostel in 1989. The name Långholmen is mentioned for the first time in the 1400s, but must have been used much longer since a silver treasure with German coins from the 900s has been found on the island.


It got it’s name from the long island where it’s situated. It’s about 1400 m long, 400 m wide and is located a couple of km from the city kernel.

This jailhouse has hold some of Swedens most wellknown criminals, like the spy Stig Wennerström and the author Lasse Strömstedt, as well as other guests to the warden, like the old famous Swedish poet and composer Carl Michael Bellman.

The Crown Prison was built in the early 19th century, but in the middle of the building is the gallery from 1866, which makes it very bright and striking appearance despite the fact that it’s the typical jail look.

Långholmen Gallery

What’s so cool about this hotel is that the rooms actually are the old prison cells. Though you get two cells as one room today, since one of them is the shower and toilet which of course, didn’t exist for the poor real prisoners before… but some of the furnitures actually are from the late prison time.

Långholmen Hotel Cell

Just think about it for the moment, wouldn’t it have been really cool if you got to lay in a really old authentic prisoner bed for the night? (By the look of it, I should probably be thankful that so was not the case…)


The past and today’s prisoners comparison:
Långholmen  Långholmen

I do look a bit nervous in the photo, biting myself in the lips, don’t I? *giggles*

Were there knocking on the walls to communicate with the neighbors in the other cells?

No, we couldn’t hear any knocking on the walls – maybe our neighbor prisoner had died from the rough times there? I mean, 15 hours hard work per day, only bread and water on the menu, isolation, dark cells in the cellar and corporal punishment is enough to break down even the strongest…

Or maybe he had been executed? Because it was here the absolutely last execution were done in Sweden, performed with a new guillotine from France (of course, where else?), but I’m really pleased by the fact that it was the first and last time it were used!


So really, were we served anything apart from bread and water?

Yes, and quite delicious dinner with a very compliance waitress serving on us, who also had a very good sense of humor on top of the very good service.

Kalix vendace roe with cheese waffles
Petit Chablis 2005

My Main course:
Pikeperch with asparragus and white wine sauce
Petit Chablis 2005

Mr L’s Main course:
Grilled veal entrecote with tomatoes and walnuts,
sage bouillion and mojo rojo

The restaurant as well as the pub Finkan (The Nick/Lock-up), are situated in the old prison hospital, but I sure can tell you that it’s nothing left of the hospital feeling!



Especially the nick is very cool decorated! I just love the old vintage images and the fact that a safeblower has been working on the safe. They really got the right details there.

Långholmen  Långholmen

In 1840 new ideas with cells for the prisoners and open exercise yards came along, which meant that Långholmen had to be changed to the similar form it has today. It weren’t particularly difficult to escape from there in the beginning, but on the other hand wasn’t the city so big and the underworld wellknown at that time and the jailbreakers could rather easily be found again.

Personally I was kind of surprised though, that this had been a functional jail up to the seventies – the last prisoner left as late as in 1975.

Today it’s used as a recreation area for the Stockholmers as it is very green and lush. We have to thank the prisoners during the 1800s for that, since this was a desolated island covered in stone, which they covered with mud dredged from the lake Mälaren and planted vegetation.

Långholmen  Långholmen  Långholmen

The old exercise yards is used as a café in the summertime, opening in the middle of May, so it was too early in the season for us to enjoy it.


Instead we went to the nearby café “Lasse i Parken“, which is very popular among the Stockholmers. Prepare to stand in a long line to order there!

Funny thing was: we were having excellent weather until we had started to eat our sandwiches out in the garden there. Dark, dark clouds appeared from no where and before we knew it, it was thunder and rain! We got stucked there for a while longer than planned due to the heavy rain….

So, do you think it was my bad weather curse this time too? *giggles*

In the same building as the hotel there also is a small Museum, opened every day, which tells some of the history of the prison life there.

Långholmen  Långholmen  Långholmen  Långholmen

Långholmen Långholmen Långholmen Långholmen

They also have different arrangements suitable both for team-building and for kick-offs. Of course some kind of jail-themed and sounds like great fun to me!

You can even hold your wedding there – no need for a striped wedding dress though – with the dinner at the Banqueting hall located in the oldest building in the complex, dating from 1670, the former spinning-house or women’s prison.

Would we recommend this hotel for others? Yes, without doubt, this is a very unique place to stay!

Of course, when going to jail, you don’t expect a 5 star rated stay there, but I must say that these 3 stars they got, felt like at least 4 stars. I assure you, I haven’t been whipped to say this ;-)

Actually it was soo good that we tried to get us thrown back in jail again when we were supposed to check out… *giggles*

OK, the real story was that the receptionist had to phone us, he thought we had left the hotel already without checking out or paying our bill which should have been done around twelve o’clock and this was around one o’clock. I guess you really have to obey the rules when in jail!

Since the beginning of 2006 it has been undergoing another renovating project to even lift it up a level higher and I must say that they have succeeded very well. Very neat, fun, interesting and above all: captivating!

The only disappointment though, was that there were no leg-irons waiting for us (even though we saw some there) and no ghosts clanking with their chains in the corridors at the night… but of course that was compensated by the other night activities.

What other night activities? Well, you do know what the prisoners are doing in the cells at night, don’t you? *giggles*


Check out Lå
Lifecruiser Långholmen photo slideshow

Captain Jailbird Lifecruiser

26 Comments on “To go to jail in Stockholm – a captivating pleasure”

    Caledonia said:

    Wow! What a great experience! It’s certainly different and I wouldn’t mind seeing that for myself!

    Did you get out early for good behaviour?

    Caledonias last blog post..Friday Feast #11

    Kango said:

    Well, that’s one heck of a trip. Nice hat, nice pics, great food. Hope it won’t go on your record. :)

    Kangos last blog post..Man Jumps From Disneyland Hotel 14th Floor


    Glad you had a great time. This wouldn’t appeal to me. I worked in Jails (local lock-ups) for 25 years. I’ve seen far too many cells. The food certainly looked far better than was ever served where I worked. Have a great weekend. :)

    Comedy Pluss last blog post..Are We There Yet? and Wading Through my Stream of Consciousness…

    Anders said:

    Great review! I have been there and eaten but never stayed there. But I have been tempted both once and twice!
    It’s a beautiful place, and you I guess you guys didn’t hear any ghost during the night??


    Anderss last blog post..Way to funny!

    Maribeth said:

    What great pictures and Captain Lifecruiser you look totally HOT!
    The food looked fabulous and I bet you had a great time!

    Maribeths last blog post..Saturday Scavenger Photo

    RennyBA said:

    What a great review from a astonishing place! The first time ever, I have had the urge to go to jail. Typically its you who’ve made me – your always for surprises!

    This post reminds me of my favourite Swedish song: ‘Slepp fangorna loss – det er Vär‘ (is there an English translation?)

    The dinner looks delicious and even waffles for a starter – woooow!

    You looks gorgeous in bed Jailbird :lol:

    RennyBAs last blog post..1st of May with Orienteering and a Spring Market

    Jeni Hill Ertmer said:

    What a great and very interesting post! Loved the pictures of EVERYTHING! I learn so much about Sweden and by extension, my Swedish heritage from your blog, I really have to thank you many times over for your lovely and informative posts.

    Jeni Hill Ertmers last blog post..Slowly Returning

    DianeCA said:

    This definately falls into the lets do something crazy catagory. Looks like a lot of fun though. Pretty posh dinner and room for a prison hehehe. Sounds like a pretty cool trip!!

    DianeCAs last blog post..Dating for grownups

    jesie said:

    This is something different and great for those who want the experience. Thanks for sharing. Fun adventure to pay money to stay in jail. :lol:

    jesies last blog post..Photohunt – Time

    Claudine said:

    I don’t know. I scare easily. I roomed in a castle in England once and had to sleep with the lights on!

    cooper said:

    You are an adventurous spirit.

    As long as it wasn’t haunted…..

    Lifecruiser said:

    I’m glad I did make you that curious Renny :smile:

    No wonder it reminded you about that song, because it’s from the now cult comedy movie with the same title and it was filmed (most parts of it) at Långholmen, but the Central prison building. We were in the Crown prison.

    The songs music and lyrics is made by Birger Sjöberg, but I haven’t seen any translation to English of it, sorry.

    About Release the Prisoners to Spring in Wikipedia.

    Lifecruiser said:

    Welcome to my “ship” Claudine :-)

    Funny, that you should say so. I forget to write that I didn’t feel the slightest creepy feelings in there, which surprised me a bit. It’s all about the atmosphere isn’t it?

    The first time we came to our favorite castle B&B in Scotland, at first sight the castle looked very scary and even the hallway to our room, but once in the room we got, I felt only good feelings!

    I was prepared to be scared and we even tried to scare each other (lol), but the atmosphere there were just too good!

    Eamon said:

    What an unusual and interesting article / experience / place to spend the night / hotel!
    I couldn’t do that after spending so many years in a boarding school that was like a prison ..

    Eamons last blog post..Bit Of Stop Motion Animation

    Debbie said:

    now this sounds like fun. I shared it with hubby and he like me found it really fascinating. We both love when people are creative enough to use something instead of tearing it down and building new. This is a very clever and creative use of an old prison. We have none to spare here in the USA!!!!!

    Debbies last blog post..First Set In

    aka R'acquel said:

    I hope my son will send my husband & I to a prison like that one day. :grin:

    new zealand accommodation said:

    Wow, I really had no clue there was this dark tourism thing! It would actually be fun to stay the night in a prison. Even without some of those ammenities.

    Ev Nucci said:

    :razz: Now that is soooooooooooo cool Captain! I mean seriously. Course, I can hardly fathom I haven’t ended up in jail yet! :wink:

    How cool is that? It looks like you two had a blast! The book is coming along, #3 has thrown me for a loop…but I never give up.

    Great to read you Captain…I’ve missed you!

    Ev Nuccis last blog post..The miracle of turtle doves

    Mar said:

    That is such a “different” experience and it sounds like lots of fun!! Never heard of such an hotel :)

    Mars last blog post..F is for fish

    debster said:

    That’s such a great ”get-away” holiday. Last weekend I spent a night at the pub with friends talking about what to do in London as a tourist and being native Londoners we tried to come up with ”alternative” things to do such as cock fight in East London or beat up a tramp for £20 – I actually had one guy offer me that a few weeks ago!?! But this jail thing needs looking into too :cool:

    Madrid Apartments said:

    Well, that certainly must have been QUITE an experience. Did you hear any ghosts or rattling of chains during the night? I’m sure many prisoners must have met their fate inside those walls!

    claudie said:

    and I missed this fabulous post in the jail! This is an original hostel! I’d like to have a night in one of the cells! I’m sure i could see a ghost! The guillautine was an inovation at its time and specially for nobles! Our poor Louis XVI could experiment it!
    And what did you with the other prisonner all the night in the cell??? Didn’t you afraid about an identification with an old dark personnality? I close my eyes! *giggles*

    claudies last blog post..COT AND MAY BELFORT

    Kuanyin said:

    What a fun adventure :!:

    You two are always up to something interesting! :lol:

    TorAa said:

    Well, after you have been released, I’m allowed to comment.
    Sorry it took such long time, but you know, we have learned our lessons. Hope you too have. LOL.

    astrid said:

    Usually I tend to shy away from “dark” places :roll: . But this one seemed fun ;) , Love the pics!

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