April 17, 2013, by Kiran
Coping in Copenhagen
Last year when my housemate Cara told the rest of us she wanted to do a study year abroad we didn’t want her to leave. Now I’m glad she did. (Sorry Cara, I’m aware that made it sound like I don’t like you anymore but on the contrary) I am glad she jetted off to Copenhagen but only because it gave me the excuse to go and visit her for a good old catch up and explore a different city at the same time. That is what I did this weekend.
I now don’t regret waking up at 4am to leave for my early morning flight from Gatwick. Arriving in Copenhagen (Kobenhavn) before midday, we spent the day speedily sightseeing by foot, by train and by boat. I was nearly persuaded to have a go at biking, which is a massive craze here but I’m clumsy enough without the help of a bike!
With Cara as my very own tour guide as well as the professional tour guide on the boat it’s safe to say I learnt a lot about the history and culture of Copenhagen, including a very special rendition of The Little Mermaid story.
The architecture of the buildings in particular are very impressive and along with all the cobblestone streets add quite a bit of character to the place.
One thing I absolutely loved about Copenhagen cafe’s is that all the outdoor seated ares come with blankets and heaters.I definitely think they should introduce this in England. However, hot chocolate with a straw I’m not too sure about…a burnt tongue is a definite!
A city bursting with culture, it even seeped down to the metro and we were treated to the 60 Seconds Kortfilm Festival, projected onto the wall of the station. A series of 10 sixty second films, we let a couple of trains go by so we could watch them all. This was one of the more lighthearted films called Love Life (a title which quite appropriately describes my weekend):
‘We could just go to Sweden. It’s half an hour on the train. No, I’m not joking.’ Casual trip to Sweden it is! Equipped with a packed salad and hopping on a train to Malmo, Sweden’s third largest city and this year’s Eurovision host country, we then had to hastily eat the salads because the dressing was leaking everywhere! Getting off the train we were greeted by this message:
Turns out that even if we did want to break the rule and buy a balloon, we didn’t have the means to as by the time we got to Malmo we realised that they probably didn’t accept Danish currency. Stranded with no money and no food except some really bad Belgian chocolate (who knew that was possible) we refused to let this get us down and decided to spend the day looking for Malmo’s greatest tourist attraction.
Even though along the way we got a tad bit lost, we soon discovered that the main attraction in Malmo was The Turning Torso. We could see it in the distance but we wanted to get closer. After about an hour of walking, we were convinced that the tower was just an illusion but then we saw it….and it really was just a twisty tower!
Mission accomplished it was back on the train to Copenhagen. Relieved we were now in a place where our money was valid and because we had been starving all day we went to Cafe Paludan in the city.
If any of you go to Copenhagen I definitely recommend paying this cafe a visit. An old book shop, it has been transformed into a restaurant but all the books are still on the shelves. It was like a library but instead of studying, everyone was eating. Happy days!
With no set plan we left the flat to spontaneously explore. Instead we attempted to climb trees for a while. However, we did see Rosenborg Castle where the Danish crown jewels are kept on the way so it wasn’t such a waste of time…
It was my last day and I still hadn’t sampled a truly Danish pastry and so this was on the do list! I am happy to announce we did achieve this but the plan did not include eating freshly made ice cream and pancakes as well but we did that anyway.
A little bit of souvenir shopping, another stop off at a cafe, appreciating Copenhagen’s street art, stumbling upon a meteorite outside the National History Museum, we finished the evening at a Jazz Bar.
Getting the metro back, we spoke to some of the locals and they gave us some tips on how to properly pronounce some Danish words. I don’t know how well I did but tusind tak to them anyway. That means ‘thank you.’ At least I can spell some of the words…
p.s. Sorry that this blog was extra long but there was so much to say! I promise that I did cut quite a bit…