Långholmen is a green oasis in the city, and a popular spot for walks, picnics and swimming. The small beaches, located right outside the former prison, are usually crowded in summer. However, up until 1975, Långholmen was used as a prison island. Since 1989 Långholmen Prison has been a 112-room hotel and hostel, renovated in 2007/2008. In the former prison hospital there is now a restaurant and pub.
Långholmen was originally rocky and barren. It was used as a temporary military camp for soldiers serving in the Swedish Army fleet during the Russo-Swedish War 1788-1790. During the 18th century prison inmates also covered the island with mud dredged from the surrounding waterways. After several years, the fertile soil transformed much of the island into lush gardens with a somewhat exotic flora, due to the introduction of various seeds that were spread via trade and merchant ships passing by the island. This peculiarity still persists, and today the island is considered a lush retreat.
In 1993 a JAS 39 Gripen fighter aircraft crashed on Långholmen during a display at the Stockholm Water Festival. The plane caught fire on impact, but the fire was soon put out. The pilot successfully ejected, and despite large crowds of spectators, only one person was injured. A sculpture in stainless steel by Thomas Qvarsebo, depicting a paper plane with its nose drilled into the ground, was placed on the spot in 1994.
Långholmen Football club was founded in 2002 and is now an important part of the sporting and social life of the expatriate community in Stockholm. The club was founded by a group of expats who regularly met on the gravel pitch on the island. Although English is generally the main language used by Långholmen players and the majority of members have tended to be from the British Isles, the club has always been proud of its international mix of players. The decision to have the club's home shirt with black and white stripes is indeed homage to the island and its history. Having started out in Stockholm Division 8, the lowest football league at the time, Långholmen Football club have achieved numerous promotions and will now play in the Swedish national football league Swedish football league system in Division 3 Östra Svealand with current assistant manager Stuart Lascelles taking over as head coach from Chris Latham for the start of the 2010 season.
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- Rullor 1724-, Ämnesordnade handlingar, SE/KrA/0450/F I/16, Swedish National Archives, Army fleet Archives. https://sok.riksarkivet.se/bildvisning/A0052015_00268 . Retrieved 21 August 2019.
- A woman was hospitalized for three weeks for burns. "Coping with a Credibility Crisis: The Stockholm JAS Fighter Crash of 1993", p. 27. Swedish National Defence College. Retrieved 23 January 2012.
- Långholmen Hotel and Hostel - Stay in the old prison.
- Stockholmskällan - historical images of Långholmen.
- Långholmen FC -