Don’t you just love Scandinavians? Good-looking, fashionable, smart and incredibly sweet. And as if that wasn’t enough, they also have great food! So great in fact, that I kept eating pretty much non stop, duing my recent visit to the Danish capitol. My Danish friends, whom I had met during a semester abroad in San Diego always raved about their city, saying they would always come back here eventually. But what made it so popular?
Determined to find out what it is about Copenhagen that makes it so special, I finally managed to book a ticket. And boy, did I fall in love. With the city… and all its inhabitants. Now I completely understand, why nobody wants to leave this town.
So what is it, that magical feeling in this part of Scandinavia?
First of all, Copenhagen is bike central. I have never seen so many people biking around. There are special roads and traffic lights for bikers and tourists will have an easy time finding bike rental shops. Cycling is not just a cheap and easy way to get around here, it’s a whole lifestyle. The Danish respect nature and often are very health-conscious (apart from a bit of an obsession with alcohol, but I’ll get to that later).
You can rent the so called “city bikes” for just 20krone (3€). They are lined up throughout the entire city. Don’t worry that you will get lost – all bikes come with an attached map. Once finished with your two-wheeler, you will actually get your money back. Click here if you want more information on how to use the bikes.
Things to see in Copenhagen
Is this legal?, I wondered while walking through the district of Christiania where (soft) drugs of all sort were laid out on tables for public display. Christiania is actually a self-proclaimed free town in Copenhagen, which consists of a large commune living by their own laws. Marihuana is not actually legal there, but it is tolerated. I heard a tourist guide explain, that the dealers here manage to pack their stuff and disappear within seconds, in case of a police investigation.
The district has a completely different atmosphere to the rest of the city, with its painted houses and relaxed inhabitants, who sit outside, smoking and laughing.
Nyhavn – This is a very nice area at the harbor with lots of colorful houses. As soon as the sun is out, you can sit next to the water, do a canal tour (by boat) or listen to musicians.
The little mermaid – Even though the little mermaid statue is all but spectacular, it attracts thousands of tourists every day.
Centre – there are lots of historical buildings to see and many shopping possibilities (don’t forget the little side-streets, they often have great and unique clothes)
Let’s talk about food. I probably ate for two during my time here, but the food is sooo delicious so how could you possibly resist something like this?
Well, as you see – I couldn’t stay away from this yummy piece of heaven (also called Lagkage), a cake which is normally eaten on birthdays.
Denmark is well known for its bread. Especially famous is a meal called Smørrebrød, which consists of dark, healthy rye bread, topped with leverpostej (leverpaste), torske rogn (cod caviar), shrimps, remoulade and many other things. Popular for breakfast here: cheese bread topped with red berry jam.
Danish pastries, hot dogs, frikadeller (meat balls) and lot of delicious sea food are traditional in Denmark. If you go there for a visit, don’t even think about passing by the bakery without getting some goodies.
Drinks in Denmark:
Even though drinks, just like food, are usually quite expensive, that doesn’t stop the Danes from drinking. In fact, it was the most open party-and-drink-nation that I have been to. Both, from personal experiences and according to the statistics which state that Denmark belongs to the top 10 countries with the highest alcohol consumption. Needless to say that fun is guaranteed. Common Danish drinks are Carlsberg beer, the Somersby cider and Schnapps.
I could go on and on raving about Denmark and Copenhagen, but will leave you with these impressions for now. If I made you curious now, hop on that plane, for this city is definately worth a trip.