The train rolled into Copenhagen on a beautiful Monday afternoon and I was immediately in awe of the city. As I wandered to my hostel I took in some of the views that were on my list of things to do: Rosenberg Castle, The King’s Garden and more. I checked in and settled in to my room before coming up with a plan for the remainder of the day: grocery store dinner in the park. It was sunny and beautiful and I wanted to make the most of it. But when I stepped out of the hostel doors to head to the store the sky opened up and the rain came down in buckets. I changed my plans and grabbed a bizarre combination of foods to eat in my hostel bed. I spent the evening relaxing, reading, blogging and researching. The next day I had a lot planned and I wanted to be well rested!
On Tuesday morning I joined the free walking tour that left from my hostel. I met a hilarious guy named Sergio from San Francisco and we started chatting away. He owns a successful food truck business in the Bay Area, and we discussed how he started his business as well as his opinion on the food truck meals he had so far in Copenhagen. Over the next three hours I followed a guide around the city and learned a lot about the different areas of town, important buildings, interesting facts and heard some jokes. The tour was filled with all kinds of useful information as well as suggestions on other parts of town to see and areas to visit in more detail.
At the end of the tour a few of us decided to head over to Papirøen (Paper Island) and try a variety of foods. We each ended up with different foods and discussed how delicious it all was. From there we headed to Christianshavn to the Church of Our Savior. This was high on my list as you can climb a ton of stairs within the church, then a narrow, spiraling staircase outside at the top of the church spire. We arrived to find out that the tower and stairs were closed due to poor weather, so we opted to have some ice cream instead.
Then it was on to Christiania, the hippie neighborhood that operates by their own set of rules. This was an absolutely incredible area to experience – from the amazing street art and laid back way of life to the blacksmith and amazing nature walks. We enjoyed exploring the area and hearing some of the inhabitants stories. The weather wasn’t agreeing with our plans though, so we headed back towards city center and our hostels. I had walked a bit over 8 miles by this point and was ready to kick back and put my feet up.
Wednesday started with one of my favorite activities: shopping! Copenhagen has a lovely outdoor shopping area so I explored some local shops and found a few little gems for myself. After dropping my loot at the hostel I grabbed an extravagant hot dog and met up with Sagar from my walking tour. We rented city bikes and headed out to see more things around the city. Our stops included exploring The King’s Garden and it’s sculptures, sweating inside the humid greenhouse at the Botanical Gardens, debating how they mow the lawn around the Kastellet (a star-shaped fortress surrounded by steep walls and water), biking various parts of the city while testing out the functionality of our motor-assisted bikes and finally getting to climb to the top of the Church of Our Savior.
The remainder of the day was spent exploring nearby areas, grabbing another lovely grocery store dinner and sitting at the edge of the harbor people watching while I ate. The sun was shining and the tourists (and locals!) were out in masses so it was great to kick back with a beer and take it all in.
On my last full day in Copenhagen I started the day with a jog around town. Nyhavn was nice and quiet that morning, then I made my way over to The Little Mermaid, around Kastellet and then headed back to the King’s Gardens. After I cleaned up, I visited Christiansborg Palace and went to the top of their tower to take in the views (for free!) The history behind this building is very interesting and the tower was nicely updated and made into a tiny museum. Next I grabbed a hot dog from my favorite vendor, but this time kept it simple and less messy, then went to Sømods Bolcher, a local candy shop where you can watch them making the candy. Afterwards I wandered, did a little more shopping and sight seeing, and then bought train snacks for my ride to Stockholm the next day.
Copenhagen was an amazing city that really won me over. I loved the architecture, the walking, the people and pretty much everything about it. It is absolutely on my list of favorite places I have been. I cannot wait to go back and spend more time in Denmark. Cheers!