The summer of 2017 proved to be a golden period for the Vasa Museum in Stockholm, with the popular tourist attraction drawing a larger crowd than ever in the months of June, July and August, topping its previous summer record and beating the summer of 2016 by 13 percent.
“We’re so pleased, this is absolutely fantastic,” Martina Siegrist Larsson, a spokeswoman for the museum, told The Local.
“We have a very interesting offering – an almost 400-year-old ship wreck in near perfect condition – and I think the visitor numbers is a direct receipt of that.”
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The Vasa sank in front of hundreds, or even thousands, of onlookers in the Stockholm harbour as it took off on its maiden voyage on August 10, in 1628.
The warship, which was built on the orders of Sweden’s King Gustav II Adolf, sunk as a result of being top-heavy, making it fatally unstable. It had just travelled some 1,300 metres when it sank.
The ship was discovered and salvaged, with a largely intact hull, in 1961 and was installed in the Vasa Museum in 1988. It’s regarded as one of Sweden’s top tourist attractions, with more than 1.3 million visitors last year.
“We can clearly feel the effects of an increased number of tourists in Stockholm and we’re very happy that many of them choose to come to the Vasa Museum,” the head of the museum, Lisa Månsson, said in a statement.
“One of the main reasons for the success is that we can offer many of our visitors the opportunity to take part of Vasa’s history in their own languages. During the high-season we have staff at the museum who speak a total of 14 languages. This means that we can show off the ship all the while offering a personalized experience that transcends cultural borders,” she said.
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