I had the privilege of visiting Copenhagen in the spring earlier this year, while on a business trip. It was a fine opportunity to catch up with lovely friends on site. Beyond the crispness of the air and beauty of the heritage buildings all around, the Copenhagen visit was a fine tasting of what a city of culture has to offer.
Admittedly, I am something of a philistine, not knowing exactly what to expect in the city. Some argue it is something that is desirable in travel, but I guess it can also be said that I have cheated in having friends bring me about some. I visited Copenhagen by high speed train from Stockholm via Malmo, and while some may argue that the Swedish countryside is painfully plain, one will always find photo opportunities if one looks out for them. (I was especially pleased at being able to see that little lighthouse while passing through Malmo). That said, I am grateful that it worked out nicely, and perhaps I could share some of the sights.
Particularly of note was the Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek, a glorious museum housing the works of art collected by Carl Jacobson, heir to the Carlsberg estate (yes that Carlsberg brewery). To those who visit, make sure your camera is fully charged, your sketch kit is well stocked and you’ve checked out exactly which days have free entry. It is the kind of place where one can easily spend an entire day appreciating the statuary, plentiful as one would expect from exploring the gorgons’ lair. One cannot help but marvel at the sheer effort and skill that went into the creation of the art pieces (I kid you not, the “skin” on some of those statues actually has texture. Unless it is actually petrified skin).
The canals of Copenhagen need no introduction, so I shall refrain from making an extensive one. In fact it’s arguably something visiting folks are unlikely to miss, which I think it great because that spares the waterways from becoming yet another item one must specially visit to check off that touristy list. I would recommend the view from the end at Nyhavn, however.
For those who prefer a restful stroll through meticulously maintained greenery, I would recommend the gardens of Rosenborg castle. The royal hermitage may be something less than one would expect of massive fortifications, but one should probably not miss the opportunity to visit the site of Denmark’s crown jewels, and its very own Royal Regalia.
One can also visit the Kastellet Star Fort of Copenhagen, a massive structure I can promise you to not recognize on first sight as a walled fortification. Those sloping walls make one think it’s some weird artificial hill, which would be a gross underestimation of what its defensive capabilities really are like. It would be good, while there, to visit the statue of the Little Mermaid (Incidentally, apparently famous but being an ignoramus I only learned of its existence while practically on top of it).
It is with some regret that I only have an image of the entrance to Christiania, Copenhagen’s resident hippie town and something of a pocket dimension of awesome in our dull grey reality. I was unable to visit in depth this time, but have resolved to rectify that over time.
And last but not least, a visit to the cafes around town serve as delicious reminders why some pastries are Danishes. reinforces exactly why some pastries are Danish, why Star Forts are pretty sweet defenses and why Christiana is awesome. While I regret that there is only so much one can experience without turning the whole exercise of visiting into a gnarly trudge through a list of tourist items on a checklist, I would prefer to think of it as whetting the appetite for a future visit. To those who have visited the city, I hope you like the pictures. For those who have not, I hope the images inspire you to make that trip sometime. Enjoy!
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