Denmark – Day 3+4 – Town and Aquarium

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Day 3 basically turned out to be the wasted day, we were all exhausted from yesterday’s late night amusement park walk, and so didn’t leave the house until quite late. We went to a nearby buffet brunch place for food, which had a surprisingly large selection of cooked and cold foods, I took the opportunity to load up on meats as well as have some American style pancakes with syrup and crispy bacon – something we rarely find in the UK.

A short ride away by bus, we’d hit up our first attraction of the day – the Copenhagen planetarium, which turned out to be really small and fairly crap to be honest, thankfully our Copenhagen card covered the cost, and got us entry into an IMAX short film which they were showing, and that cinema screen was really impressive – being so big that you literally cannot see the edges, we were shown a short space/universe video being the ‘feature’ of an underwater south Pacific documentary about… God knows what (as it was entirely in Danish). We took the opportunity to take in the video and simultaneously have a bit of a nap.
I don’t think I actually got any pictures of the planatarium as it wasn’t anything too special, and the exhibits were fairly standard space fare

The rain was full whack by the time we got outside, and so after walking to town we stopped at a coffee shop for drink and some muffins. I tried getting some pictures of the city hall in rain but I don’t think they are going to come out very well. We’d spend a few hours wandering the streets and having a shop about, we also dropped back in to see the ship, as my brother really wanted to go in again. Come evening time, most of the attractions and shops were closing, seems Denmark isn’t renowned for it’s late night shopping – stuck for ideas for things to do, we’d end up going to a shopping centre just outside of central, as it’s one of the few places around that seemed to still be open after 5pm (even then, the shops were set to close at 8pm).

Nothing too special inside and so lack of photos, had some ribs for dinner, and then had a good walk around the shops. Everything in Denmark is really seriously expensive, the restaurant we went to (which wasn’t even a posh one) was charging £7 for soft drinks, and £2.50 for tap water, with almost all main courses being upwards of £15.

Nothing much to report, once the shops started closing at 8pm we headed back home to rest and begin to pack, as we are leaving the country tomorrow.

Day 4 – Den Blå Planet and departure

We spent the remainder of our time in Denmark at the National Aquarium, not really much to say here, they did have some sea otters which was cool. Have some pictures. grabbed a shuttle bus from the Aquarium to the airport, and then set off for our flight home.

 

Denmark – Day 2 – Palace, Castle, and Tivoli Gardens

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Yet another rainy day,, the forecast has predicted rain and grey skies all day already, so after using the hairdryer on my shoes for a bit, we set out to find some breakfast.

A bakery a few bus stops away would be our choice, a small selection of Danish pastries and some coffee by the canal seemed stereotypically Danish in our eyes. The chocolate whirl was particularly nice to dip into my morning coffee.

First major stop of the day was Christiansborg Palace, the city’s main palace right next to their Parliament building. We would wander the interior, kitchens and basement ruins for a while, as they are all already included with our Copenhagen card. The rain picked up while we were inside and so we had to wait for a bit before moving on. They made us wear essentially small plastic bags over our shoes as it was raining, I took some extra in hope that I may be able to avoid soggy socks again today, as I actually had to use the hair dryer on my shoes in the morning before we set out.

We wandered around for a bit afterwards, checking out the national library called the ‘The black diamond’ and some of the neighboring gardens. The library building was impressive, though there wasn’t really much to look at, definitely seems more geared towards the locals than the tourists., as a lot of the major areas are for library members only.  We’d head off to Torvahallerne next to try and some lunch, it was a fair walk again and the rain picked up mid walk, drenching me somewhat, the rain began to seep through my left shoe again…

Torvehallerne turned out to be a collection of two big greenhouse style buildings with a fresh market in between, the buildings specialising in normal and dessert style food respectively, unfortunately only a small portion of the shops would actually serve food fit for eating ‘now’ (personally I do not deem a leg of parma ham to be acceptable lunch – and honestly even if I did, I’d have to get a mortgage to buy the thing, because Denmark), and those that did were very expensive. We spied a shop with a grand selection of Smørrebrød and bought a few of them, the bill came to a painful amount considering we were essentially buying a small unfinished sandwiches (>£7 each). We did enjoy them at least, particularly the fish and meat ones, which were topped with hollandaise and picked veg respectively and were a small explosion of flavours.

15 minutes walk away was Rosenberg castle, which wasn’t really much of a castle at all, more of a ‘small’ residence for royalty, the surrounding gardens and grounds were arguably more impressive than the interior of the castle which was quite dark and gloomy, but unfortunately it was still raining and we didn’t feel like adding mud to our attire. We were practically falling asleep in the castle cafe afterwards, and so decided to head back for a bit of rest before continuing our exploration for today

An hour or two later, we’d set out again for the nearby ‘church of our Savior’ which turned out to actually be closed for some reason, so we’d end up standing around waiting for the bus for a while instead. The weather forecast for a nice change was predicting no more rain for the rest of the day, and so after a Steak dinner we headed for Tivoli Gardens – a late night theme park which is the second oldest running theme park in the world. Walt Disney allegedly got his inspiration for Disney whilst walking through Tivoli gardens, and I have to say, it really didn’t disappoint.

Having the park open til midnight makes for some beautiful changes from the typical amusement park, with plenty of lights and carnival games as well as the larger rides in the distance glowing in the sky. Genuinely one of the prettiest theme parks I’ve been to, though unfortunately we didn’t ride much as the prices were a bit extortionate (or just Danish) – with single rides being £10 per person per ride, or a wrist band being around £40 (though we arrived too late for the wrist band to have been worth it).

My brother desperately wanted to ride one of the spinners, called Vertigo – his girlfriend recommended it to him which obviously meant that not only he had to go, but I had to be dragged on. This was one of those long arm spinners where the carriages also free spin, mid way through the ride the machine ‘locks’ and rapidly accelerates, getting progressively faster each rotation.

The attendant told us the ride reaches 60MPH / 100KMH and submits 5G’s – for reference, astronauts in a space shuttle are hit with 3G’s on launch. I already thought the ride was going fast after the 2nd acceleration, it would proceed to do so another 3 times – by round 4 my stomach fat was being pushed back to my back and hurting, by round 5 I was experiencing a loss of peripheral and colour vision, this ride is no joke. Theres are plenty of vids on youtube (speedup starts around 1:30) but I promise it looks more ridiculous in person.

Back on the ground after sitting for a bit to recover from my nausea, we’d finish off the remainder of the park and then come back towards the entrance where a live gig had kicked off, nobody we knew unfortunately as he was singing in Danish, but apparently the band – ‘TV-2’ is one of the biggest in Denmark – we quite enjoyed one of their songs , very catchy. The crowd was certainly impressive and made moving around pretty hard, the live music could be heard from most of the inner part of the park, so we continued exploring a little before heading back around midnight.

Denmark – Day 1 – Paper Island, Nyhavn, and Strange things

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So, super early start today, getting up for the airport at 4:30am for a flight around 7am.

Nothing particularly noteworthy about the flight, though I did accidentally try to smuggle on some scissors (I thought I had lost them, apparently they were in my luggage), the bag search lady was not too impressed.

We arrived in Copenhagen a little before midday local time, grabbed the train to Amegebro (or something like that? We actually memorised it as ‘I’m a gay bro’) and met up with our Airbnb host. The accommodation is decently sized and the beds are super soft and foamy (not sure if this is a good thing or not yet), the only real downside of the flat is that you need to walk up like 6 stories worth of stairs to get to the front door (75 steep steps)

After dropping our stuff off and having a quick rest, we were quickly off to Paper island, which has Copenhagen food street area – a covered ex warehouse or similar, huge location filled with just about every type of cuisine – the family split up and brought back a selection of nice food to the table, which turned out to be a pulled pork burger, a duck burger, some chicken… Thing, and some Korean fried chicken. All pretty good, no complaints here aside from the price, which was pretty high (though, unfortunately, just normal for Copenhagen, with all dishes in the food street costing over £10 and into the 15 range).

After eating our fill, we headed to Nyharvn – the scenic canal with colourful houses that you have probably seen in postcards or on social media feeds, it is the most distinctly Copenhagen thing that I am aware of. We would hunt around there for a little bit looking for a riverboat tour of the canals.

We found the riverboat tour after some searching around, it had been raining pretty much all day and so we were initially thankful to have a riverboat with a glass ceiling, at least we would be able to rest and stay dry for a bit after the long walk from the food street. Unfortunately the glass walls and roof weren’t fantastic at letting us actually see the sights the tour guide was pointing out, and the open air segment of the boat was crowded and wet – coupled with the fact that we had all been up since 4AMish, all of us actually ended up dozing off for some of the ride.

After disembarking the boat, we set off down one of the more lively looking streets, filled with shops and bustle – we’d spot a huge church down one of the side roads, and went to investigate…
The church was actually St Nikolaj church, though the inside was no longer being used for prayer, having been stripped down of everything heavenly and being replaced by… Something significantly stranger..

Denmark was about to get weird.

After flashing our Copenhagen cards to gain entry (tourist card) we would be greeted by a pure white church interior, some strange mouldings on the floor, and a very odd corridor looking like something from an Alien space station – there was very loud and ominous music blasting throughout the church, like industrial noises mixed with higher pitched organ soundings… It genuinely sounded like something from a horror film soundtrack. Going through the corridor would eventually lead to a staircase to upper floors, with the top one having bloodied lab coats and metallic railings and boat blueprints scattered around.. Meanwhile on the ground level, coloured polygon shapes were embedded in the ground, some emitting sounds or smoke… The staff were all dressed in lab coats as well. The whole thing felt like some sort of bizarre experiment, and I was half expecting the staff to stop us from leaving until we solved the puzzle, I’m sure a talented game dev could create a video game out of what we saw in there.

After being thoroughly baffled, we’d head back down the road and come across ‘the round tower’ (actually called that, how original), finally a more normal and traditional sightseeing structure. The interior was just a giant screw tapering, going all the way to the top where you could eventually get a 360 view of Copenhagen, there was also a hole down the middle of the entire tower, which would allow you to see all the way down from the top to the Base, complete with glass floor you can stand on – I opted not to.

And then things got weird again.

One of the side doors in the tower lead to a different ‘art’ exhibit, with floating halos and… This… Thing.
In similar fashion to the ‘ship’ we had seen earlier, this exhibit was also blasting the most ominous freaky horror film soundtrack you’ve ever heard, it would have felt right at home as part of ‘The Grudge’ or similar scary flick – the end of the room had curtains leading to a near pitch black partition with a movie screen showing… I’m not entirely sure what it was showing, but the noises and ‘music’ were freaky enough to make you not want to stick around long enough to find out.

You can check the freaky music in the exhibit below

We would head back to the flat afterwards, stopping by a Danish supermarket and shopping centre first – resting up, and then heading back out to a tiny 2 table Italian restaurant called Pasta House, there wasn’t much to eat around our Airbnb flat, with majority of the restaurants in Copenhagen apparently closing at 8 or 9pm, so were kind of happy to just be able to find somewhere to eat. I didn’t get any pictures of the inside but this was a real one man band kind of deal, with strange decoration and only enough seating for maybe 6 people, regulars would come and chat with the boss while he cooked, and then the food was rather strangely served up in one of those metal oven takeaway dishes, really not much to look at, but the food was reasonable at least.