I visited Denmark for the first time some two months ago, just some days before leaving to Japan. It was only a short four-day trip, but I think I still got a general feel of the city. Before going there, I thought it would be a mix of Scandinavian culture and Central European feel. And that’s how I felt it really is – in many ways similar to Stockholm or Helsinki, but with some of that European big city flavor.
Copenhagen is divided to many districts, and I got to visit Nørrebro, Østerbro, Vesterbro as well as the downtown (Indre by) and Christiania (which is an autonomous area within the city, quite an interesting thing in itself). I was somehow surprised to notice such a difference between the districts, being there for the first time and all. Østerbro and Vesterbro we’re definitely the most hipsteresque (if that’s a word) areas with lots of cafés, restaurants and small shops. Nørrebro has also many neat little shops, but is also clearly the area with most people from different countries. One of the main roads is filled with vegetable stalls and Kebab shops. The downtown area has a more traditional Scandinavian feel, with beautiful, old stone buildings and all the premises of the royalty. I was delighted to find a small, traditional shop there that sells marzipan! (Because I really like marzipan. You would think Anthon Berg‘s home country would sell a lot of marzipan everywhere, but I found that not to be the case at all.)
I went to Denmark because my fiancee was studying at the Nordisk Kollegium for some two weeks. It was a great oppotunity to see the city for the first time. We stayed at an Airbnb host and it was nice, although not quite as nice I imagined it would be.
I saw this old sign at the gate, and it immediately caught my eye. It reminds me of the dilapidated areas in the Resident Evil games.
This is from Nørrebro, close to a small park and many cafés. Brick buildings and bikes. I can not overstate how many bikes there were (although, to be honest, this is hardly a great picture to depict that…). They were literally everywhere (at least when compared to Helsinki).
I find all kinds of bugs really interesting subjects, so I couldn’t resist capturing this one. It was hanging on this abandoned looking freight bike.
This picture didn’t quite turn out the way I visioned it, but it has many elements that can be found in Copenhagen: small cars, fruit shops, Arabic text together with Danish and young, urban people. (Headphones = urban) Copenhagen felt so much more multicultural than Helsinki, which was a bit surprising.
Some vegetables for sale in Nørrebro.
This was an alley a few meters off the road with cafés and shops. Something you don’t find that easily in Helsinki, I think.
Our favorite food was porridge from a shop called GRØD. There are many different flavors available, and you can choose extra toppings if you like. Copenhagen is an expensive city, even when compared to Helsinki, so we found this to be both reasonably priced and super delicious. They also had some more savory foods, like lentil curry and risotto, but they weren’t quite as good, although for starters we had a cabbage salad with mustard seeds, and it was really 10/10.
The Round Tower is located at the heart of Copenhagen. It was built in the 17th century as an astronomical observatory, and there still is the observatory floor on the highest floor. The tower features a slope inside to get up to the roof.
Light sifting through the windowpanes creates almost a church-like feel inside the tower.
Later we went to visit Assistens Kirkegård (cemetery). It was nice to take a break from the city streets and noisiness. It was peaceful and quite beautiful there.
The trees gave off some interesting shadows.
Along the way to Christiania, we stopped by at Vor Frelsers Kirke (Church of Our Saviour). I forgot to take a photo outside, but it was quite nice inside as well, although nothing too special. To get to the top you have to climb the stairs outside of the tower, which I really liked.
View from the top.
One of the most famous and popular churches in Copenhagen is Frederiks Kirke (The Marble Church). This is my favorite shot from the whole trip. I liked the atmosphere at the church.
Sometimes it was raining, but that didn’t seem to keep the people from spending time outside on the terraces.
A view from our apartment.
It’s very easy to find kebab, even at night, if you’re into that sort of thing.
Not really sure if this was in use or not, but it looked pretty old.
Last but not least – we found a volunteer-funded gaming arcade (in Vesterbro) with a few different cabinets and a room with all the consoles. Luckily it was Thursday, as there was a promotion that you could play as much as you like for about 5 euros. We didn’t have too much time to spend there, though, as it was our last day.
I can recommend Copenhagen if you’re looking forward to spending your holiday in a city. I’m sure it’s even more fun in summer (well, now which town isn’t more fun in summertime…). Just make sure your wallet can handle it, because everything is quite expensive. As students, we had to refrain from the fancier restaurants, because the prices usually start from 15 or 20 euros for starters.