Scandinavia! Day 10 – Copenhagen

After the late night last night we had a slow start to our morning, and didn’t get into town until close to 11. We hopped off the train at Østerport and walked to the most touristy of tourist destinations – the Little Mermaid statue. It was crawling with tourists. I counted at least 9 tour buses, but we got our obligatory “we were here” tourist photos.

A pretty walk along the water brought us to Amalienborg, the residence of the queen. We arrived just in time for the changing of the guard – not a very exciting event. In fact, the most interesting part was when the police gestured for observers to move closer and the majority of people (not us) stampeded forward. Seriously, they ran to ensure they had the best spot. We took advantage of the distraction to check out the nearby church.

After a lunch of sandwiches and a stop in a souvenir shop, we took another pleasant walk (have there been any other kind?) over to Christiania, a.k.a “Hippieville.” In the 1970s a group of hippies took over old military barracks and settled here. It’s…interesting. I’d show you pictures but you’re not allowed to take any – can’t have evidence of the stands selling hash!

Another long walk took us to the National Museum, which is free! It’s also huge – we got through most of the prehistory section on the ground floor in about an hour – and there are three more floors! We took a brief spin through one of the upper floors before calling it quits.

It’s afternoon here and we still have dinner and our evening in front of us but I don’t know what the wifi situation will be, the museum is closing and we have to leave, so I’m going to go ahead and post.


Scandinavia! Day 9 – Copenhagen (København)

For the first time the sun didn’t shine down on us all day. I woke to gray skies and they stayed that way all day.

After a slow morning, we grabbed the train into town and stopped off at the tourist info center. After loading up with brochures (and feeding our wifi addiction) we set off on foot to Christiansborg Palace.

Our walk took us through a lot of construction. The city is currently working on a  huge expansion of their Metro, so the soundtrack for our stroll included drills, crashing bricks, and trucks. Once at the palace, we stopped for pictures before wandering on. Eventually we ended up at a cafe for lunch. Andy and I both chose traditional open faced sandwiches – he more than I since he got herring and I chose meatballs.

Our next stop was the Round Tower. We hiked up the spiral ramp to the top for some nice views of Copenhagen, before heading back down and on to Rosenborg Castle. There we toured the rooms before ending in the treasury where we admired the Crown Jewels and felt very, very poor.

From the castle, we worked our way to the canals and got on the Netto boat tour. Our guide delivered the entire tour in three languages – English, German, and Danish – flowing seamlessly and effortlessly back and forth with all of them. We saw the back of the Little Mermaid statue and got a good look at a lot of the waterfront, but it was chilly! The clouds only began to break up a little near the end of the tour.

We ate dinner at an Italian restaurant along the canal, then began the stroll to Tivoli… with a few stops in souvenir shops along the way. I also insisted we stop at the statue of Hans Christian Andersen for a picture.

I love Tivoli! You enter along a bank of funhouse mirrors – I had no face, or a long torso, or super short legs. We watched the last bit of a pantomime/ballet, saw a rabbit robot mowing a lawn and listened to a jazz concert in a park. Sadly all the rides cost extra.

After convincing a group of ducks that we had no food to feed them, we found a spot on the bridge. For our last adventure in the park, we watched the Illuminations (a light show on the lake with water, smoke, and fire!). And now I must leave Tivoli and their free wifi so I leave you all with this post and a picture to help you feel poor, too.

Scandinavia! Day 8 – Roskilde & Copenhagen 

Dad and I took another morning walk to check out the area, find the train station, and look for an ATM (we didn’t find one). Once we got back and everyone was ready, we headed toward Roskilde to see the cathedral and the Viking Museum.

I was most excited to see the cathedral (Domkirke), where many monarchs are buried. I especially wanted to see the tomb of Margrete I. I read about her in a mystery novel when I was about 12 and I couldn’t wait to see the church. It didn’t disappoint. There were info boards about her! If you get a chance, look her up.

After the cathedral and lunch, things took a sour turn – we had a parking ticket. Apparently when you park in a two-hour lot, you need to put a clock in the window showing what time you arrived. Since I rarely get around anywhere in Europe by car, this was news to me! So about 45 minutes after we parked, we were given a ticket (we didn’t see it until the end of the two hours when we got back to the car). This thrilled Mom, and as you can imagine we heard about it off and on for hours. I have to admit that it bothers me that no one at the tourist office mentioned that to us when I happened to tell them that we were parked right outside in the two hour lot.

After a trip to city hall to try to contest the ticket (it didn’t work), we headed to the Viking Ship Museum. There they have five salvaged Viking ships from about 1030-1040 AD. We took the tour (informative) and then headed out to the shipyard and the reconstructed ships. I hopped on a war ship, of course.

Next up we headed back to Copenhagen to figure out our transit passes and meet up with some of Andy’s friends for dinner. 

After figuring out the ticket machine we grabbed a train into town. A nice walk in the sun brought us from the Metro past Christiania to Copenhagen Street Food. Yum!!! Dad and I chose Colombian while Mom and Andy opted for Brazilian.

I’m sure we’ll do more this evening, but I have wifi so I’ll take advantage and post now.