For the first of the summer Bank Holidays, I was determined to get away from London. Turns out warm countries always sell out first, so it was going to be Copenhagen, where I found at £100 flight.
I don’t know much about Scandi countries — they all blend together in my mind as countries with very tall blonde people. We watched the first seasons of The Bridge and The Killing to get a crash course in Swedish and Danish cultural differences. One is that the Danes are known for their laid-back attitude.
One thing I did know about Denmark is its legacy of good design. Visits to the Louisiana Museum in Humlebæk and the Danish Design Museum were obligatory.
Tivoli Gardens was also a must on my list. It’s the world’s second oldest amusement park and home to the oldest operating rollercoaster. This place influenced Walt Disney and you can see those influences everywhere. You can see where he got the inspiration for It’s a Small World and Matterhorn. In fact, Matterhorn is almost an exact replica, except this version is slightly more roller coaster-y than the Disneyland version.
I also took the weekend as an opportunity to research and write an article about the craft beer scene in Copenhagen and drank some of the best beer in a really long time. The last time I enjoyed drinking beer this much was in Brussels.
Mikkeller was great but a little bit too ubiquitous throughout the city. My favorites were the neighborhood bars like Kolsters Tolv Haner in Norrebro. I was also determined to try Olsnedkeren which was closed the first night we tried to visit. They had an amazing mead-like beer.
Food in Copenhagen, however, is not something I would really rave about. I mean, yes everything was tasty and beautifully plated, but would I fly here especially for the food? Not really. I did book a restaurant opened by a Noma founder to see what the fuss was about, and while one dish was deliriously good, nothing else that evening blew my mind. I’d go back for the general ambiance of the city rather than the food.
The pastries were fantastic to go with afternoon coffee though!
The best thing we did over the weekend was rent bikes for the day. Even though we went to a dodgy bike rental that loaned Merv a bike with faulty brakes that almost lead him straight into traffic if not for his cycling experience and super quick reflexes, the day was awesome. I’ve cycled in quite a few European cities, but the day’s ride was absolutely delightful. Cycling past a mix of old and modern buildings in a big city will be the memory of Copenhagen I will always keep.
What a fantastic city with wonderful people!