I loved Nyhavn. It wasn't what I was expecting (major tourist attraction, tons of tourists, bars and traffic). It was really calm like it had just woken up, serene and quiet, full of light and color.
It wasn't difficult to imagine how it would be in full swing, back when it was an area for sailors and prostitutes, gambling houses and delinquency. Really it's the ideal setting for the image we have in our heads of where novels such as Moby Dick, or Jack London novels, could easily begin.
The spring appears not to have changed and the houses right next to it look like they're right off of a postcard.
I didn't expect her, that fairy princess, to be so small and far away, from us, from land, out there on her throne. Vandals have targeted and attacked it on multiple occasions, but it has also been subject of passions and lovers. She's just another citizen, but she's also special and every visitor has to go surrender at her feet (or rather to her fins). She knows that everyone has to take a picture in with a camera or their memories, which you should do. So there she is...absent, distant, and accustomed to fame, for better and for worse.
The Tivoli park is one of the oldest amusement parks and most beautiful in Europe. It is located in the centre of Copenhagen and is dearly loved by all inhabitants. It's a nice park because it still holds the charm of early twentieth century parks. It boasts a multitude of attractions and the environment in which it is located is phenomenal. It also has many restaurants for all budgets, in fact you can visit at night merely to eat at any one of them. During the day it is a little expensive, especially if you have children, but it's a must see.
Christiania is a seemingly lawless neighborhood of Copenhagen where everyone can do whatever they want, but always with respect for others and a few small rules. Within there is a really beautiful park. There are certain areas where you cannot take pictures, if you will understand. There are some bars with many people playing music and always a good vibe, and at night there is almost always a party. It definitely does not compare to any neighborhood in your city. Many houses are made by those who live in the neighborhood, while others are better quality, but overall the neighborhood is characterized as a kind of lawless neighborhood, where there aren't police unless something serious happens. A place worth seeing!
Within the beautiful city of Copenhagen, it's worth seeing the Rosenborg Castle and the King's Gardens. The castle is in the basement of the treasure of the Danish Royal Family. There, you can see crowns full of precious stones and metals. You can also visit the palace's dependencies, although it's not very large and it's best to walk in the garden so you can see the building from outside. The castle was built in 1606 by Christian IV as a summer residence. Today, it's still used by the Royal Family. The King's Gardens offer the best views of Rosenborg. It's a nice romantic place in Copenhagen.
Although they say "Amalienborg Palace" in the singular, it actually refers to a set of four different palaces spread out symetrically around an octagonal square, hence, Amalienborg Square. It's considered to be one of the best examples of Danish architecture where we can find a striking changing of the guard, which begins at 11:30 am in Rosenborg Castle and ends in this square around 12 pm. The soldiers dressed in blue pants, red jackets and enormous helmets keep the imperial tradition of the military compass. This ceremony is only done on a daily basis when the queen is in her palace.
This church looks cold like the marble it is made of, but only on the outside. Inside it is warm and invites you to sit and enjoy the mosaics and paintings. The Marble Church emerges from the surrounding buildings like St. Paul's Cathedral in London. It might seem that the temple is the best, but if you look carefully you can see that it is only a big dome mounted on walls that keep it on the ground. It was as if we were on scaffolding near the ceiling. A wonder to be so close. I recommend sitting and looking up, and thank the industrialist whose statue is in Nyhavn for his gift to the city.
What surprised me about Danish palaces is that they are not imposing in width, like Versailles or El Escorial. They prefer not to display the size of the building, but the simplicity and elegance of its lines. The Palace of King Christian IV, forms an unique and indissoluble part with the stock exchange building and the channel of Holmen, which continues its reflection. We had to go completely circle it to verify that the building itself is small, but the land where on which it is located is not. The rear, or the front, depending on how you look at it, has loggias that surround the visitor in the Vatican style. Too bad I could not visit inside.
This impressive castle in Hillerød was built between 1560 and 1630 by the Old Hans Van Steenwinckel. It's the largest palace in Scandinavia built in red brick and decorated with sandstone elements. Passing through the main doors, you find the beautiful Neptune Fountain in the middle of the courtyard. In 1878, it was transformed into the Danish National History Museum, and is now home to furniture, historical objects and a rich pictorial set along with a painting by the film director Lars Von Trier.
A perfectly preserved fortification of seventeenth century European architecture. The ponds which surround the fortification form a pentagon that the King Christian IV of Denmark began building in 1625 to function as a trench in the northern part of Copenhagen's wall defense. Once inside, you can find several buildings like a church or a windmill. Now it is a very important historic place in Denmark with a lovely public park.
You have to pass by the compound that forms the Langeline gardens, with the Citadel or Kastellet, because there you'll find the idolized mermaid.
The first few entries begin with a statue that's a favorite of the Danes, the Gefion, donated by the Carlsberg upon turning 50. It's based on the legend that the city was founded by the goddess Gefion.
We passed through green paths with busts of sculptures that reminded us of queens and victories, further down we entered the Citadel, which is still in use by the military administration today. It's a short walk that crosses the fortress from one side to the other and took us to the other side, where there's a commemorative monument so the allied soldiers.
It's worth it, if you have time, to take a leisurely stroll, so that you can enjoy the sun and the green of the gardens.
Without being a tall building, even though it's wide, without having an entrance that boasts an amazing decor, columns, or sculptures, but with a very elegant style typical of countries that have been profiting from trade, like Belgium and Holland, imposing without being ostentatious.
That's how the palace of the Stock Exchange forms a part of the set of buildings that makes up the Royal Palace and the Church of Holmen.
Of course, our eyes, haunted by the four dragons that, with their curled tails, make up the peak part of the roof of the tower of the Stock Exchange.
Copenhagen's opera house is the national house of ballet and opera in the country, and one of the most modern in the world. The construction cost over 300 million euros, it is one of the most expensive buildings ever built for an opera. The building was donated to the government by the company Mærsk, creating a controversy because such donations are tax free. Therefore is was somewhat like forcing the state to build an opera. The building is located in Copenhagen on the other side of the harbour which is compated to the palace of Amalienborg, in line with the marble church. You can reach it by boat to see the classic structure and return to the centre again by water. The Danish Royal Theatre manages the opera - it can host up to 1,700 people in its main hall. There is also a small experimental theatre. The theatre is the work of architect Henning Larsen.
For once I trusted the guide book rather than my intuition. I don't know if I was right, but I had no other choice as time wasn't on my side so I couldn't see the interior of the tower. The guide book told me that it's much nicer on the outside anyway. I read a little about the Rundetårn and learned that it's part of a trio of cultural buildings: it was designed for astronomical purposes, and stands alongside the Church of the Trinity and a library building. If I'd had more time, it might have been nice to enjoy the view from the 35-meter tower at the top of the 209-meter ramp up the inside...come to think of it, maybe I should ignore the guide book and go back!
The Church of Our Saviour (Frelsers Kirke Vor in Danish) is a Baroque church in Christianshavn, Copenhagen. It is famous for its strange spiral-shaped bell tower, from which you have beautiful views across the city. Bells ring a harmonious melody every hour from eight until midnight. It's located in an area planned by King Christian IV in the seventeenth century, although the church was built later. It's a work by the architect Van Haven, except for the bell, which was added later. From the top of the 90m tower, you'll also have a view of the hippy town of Christiania.
This square in Copenhagen is a key area of the city. There, as much the residents as the people ve travel there, accommodate ourselves by sunbathing (which is very nice here) and enjoying the atmosphere.
Also, the town hall is in this square, with its beautiful facade, decorated with sculptures of dragons and snakes and with its typical dark brick that is prevalent in the buildings in this city. There is also the Hotel Palace and other important buildings, as well as connections with the main sights in the city.
One of the reasons to go to this square is because it's really big and very beautiful, with a good atmosphere and friendly people, because if there's one thing Denmark has it's the noticeable kindness of its people.
It's one of those places you're going to pass by whether you want to or not.
The Copenhagen Central Station (Kbenhavns dans Hovedbanegrd) is the largest railway station in the country and located a 10 minute walk from downtown. It's the point where most domestic railway lines meet. The ticketing system is a bit complicated, so it is best to ask for help to ensure that you buy the ticket that you need. The station also has international services, connecting Denmark to Sweden and the city of Malmo, as well as Germany. There are some shops and places to eat. The first station was built in the mid nineteenth century, outside the city walls. It didn't seem to be too crowded. The regional trains offer on-board internet services, and are very comfortable.
The National Museum of Denmark is between Tivoli Gardens and Slotsholmen, the smallest island, where the Danish parliament can be found. It is the largest museum in the country. Located in a lovely eighteenth century building, it tells you the story of Copenhagen's journey from village to the big city it is today. You can see archaeological remains from Zealand, the island on which Copenhagen was founded, old artifacts ... there's a lot to see, and it's a very interesting place. You can see the golden horns of Gallehus, dating back to the fifth century, which were found in the sixteenth century in Jutland. Admission is free, and it's open every day until 5 pm.