Sweden // Day-trips from Stockholm //

Thank Viggsö for the music

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The rocky outcrop topped by dense pine forest that lies sandwiched between Grinda and much larger Värmdö to the south holds a big secret. It was here on the island of Viggsö that ABBA composed Dancing Queen, Fernando and several other chart-topping hits; shots of Viggsö were also used in ABBA The Movie. Agnetha and Björn bought a summer cottage here in 1971, closely followed in 1974 by Benny and Anni-Frid; the sound of piano music drifting across the treetops a sure sign that one or other couple had sailed their boat out from Stockholm to spend a few days away from the city. The two men would spend days at a time in Björn’s yellow wooden outhouse hammering away at a battered upright piano and strumming an old guitar – the restorative calm of Viggsö was at the heart of much of ABBA’s music-making.

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