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Treasures of Copenhagen

First of all - I use Czech English so please don't laugh :) - any comments welcome below the article :)

I like Denmark, some say there are the happiest people in the world. There's something about it. Every person I met was cool. While I counted every Danish crown, the Danes ordered another beer. One would almost envy them. Beautiful land, great salaries, amazing and rich history, and surprisingly fantastic food. I would like to take you to Copenhagen where I spent 4 days during my journey through Scandinavia. I did not choose Copenhagen as a start by accident. Many times I visited Vejle and wandered in magical nature - by the way, Vejle is very much mentioned in the film "Danish girl" - trailer here, but I have always unfortunately skipped this beautiful city and now it is finally time to explore!

I would like to point out beforehand that my heart hates tourist attractions. I do avoid all places where I see hordes of buses and Chinese tourists making a selfies, or I prefer to visit these places late in the evening or early in the morning when the light is good for taking pictures. So I'm sorry, but I do not recommend the statue of Little Mermaid - it was really disappointing to me - not because of a beautiful sculpture (which, incidentally, has twice the head cut off  and nearly one hand) but mainly because of the disgusting crowds that would preferably mute you with their iPhones or Samsungs.

So let's discover Copenhagen!

1. -For me number 1! - Christiania.

I always thought that ruin bars in Budapest could hardly overcome by anything, but only until I crossed the boundaries of the Free State of Christiania in the heart of Copenhagen. It's hard to imagine in today's world, that something like this anywhere else in the world, can work. This place is a clear proof of the liberal and free-thinking mentality of the people in Denmark. It is a totally iconic place, despite the fact that my experience with drugs is only a few joints and many people would be surprised by the availability of all sorts of drugs in Christiania. Immediately there you can feel a breath of hippie, wonderful paintings on the original barracks will immediately catch your attention, and I am personally interested in the laws of local government, which give local "street cleaners" a guarantee of a cigar break every 15 minutes. (Was this law written by the Czechs?)

Let's see what Wikipedia says:

Freetown Christiania, also known as Christiania (Danish: Fristaden Christiania or Staden), is an intentional community and commune of about 850 to 1,000 residents, covering 34 hectares (84 acres) in the borough of Christianshavn in the Danish capital city of Copenhagen. It was temporarily closed to residents in April 2011 by the Danish government, but later re-opened.

Christiania has been a source of controversy since its creation in a squatted military area in 1971. Its cannabis trade was tolerated by authorities until 2004. Since then, relations between Christiania and Danish authorities have been strained.

Founding of Christiania

After the military moved out, the area was only guarded by a few watchmen and there was sporadic trespassing of homeless people using the empty buildings. On 4 September 1971, inhabitants of the surrounding neighborhood broke down the fence to take over parts of the unused area as a playground for their children.Although the takeover was not necessarily organized in the beginning, some claim this happened as a protest against the Danish government. At the time there was a lack of affordable housing in Copenhagen.

On 26 September 1971, Christiania was declared open by Jacob Ludvigsen, a well-known provo and journalist who published a magazine called Hovedbladet ('The main paper'), which was intended for and successfully distributed to mostly young people. In the paper, Ludvigsen wrote an article in which he and five others went on exploration into what he termed 'The Forbidden City of the Military'. The article widely announced the proclamation of the free town, and among other things he wrote the following under the headline Civilians conquered the “forbidden city' of the military”.

Christiania is the land of the settlers. It is the so far biggest opportunity to build up a society from scratch - while nevertheless still incorporating the remaining constructions. Own electricity plant, a bath-house, a giant athletics building, where all the seekers of peace could have their grand meditation - and yoga center. Halls where theater groups can feel at home. Buildings for the stoners who are too paranoid and weak to participate in the race...Yes for those who feel the beating of the pioneer heart there can be no doubt as to the purpose of Christiania. It is the part of the city which has been kept secret to us - but no more.

Ludvigsen was co-author of Christiania's mission statement, dating from 1971, which offers the following:

The objective of Christiania is to create a self-governing society whereby each and every individual holds themselves responsible over the wellbeing of the entire community. Our society is to be economically self-sustaining and, as such, our aspiration is to be steadfast in our conviction that psychological and physical destitution can be averted.

The spirit of Christiania quickly developed into one of the hippie movement, the squatter movement, collectivism and anarchism in contrast to the site's previous military use. The 1976 protest song I kan ikke slå os ihjel (translated: "You cannot kill us"), written by Tom Lunden of flower power rock group Bifrost, became the unofficial anthem of Christiania.

more of the story here 

True, the best time to come is afternoon or evening when local pubs and clubs are all open. I was here at 9:00 in the morning, and that's when all waking up here. However, this time gives you the better opportunity to discover different corners, have a cup of coffee or just chat at the stands with locals, where you can buy a good "stuff". But do not worry, Christianity is not just about drugs. This place is full of workshops, paintings, galleries, and a pleasant afternoon can be spent here because there is really lot of things to see.

2. - Food market.

Food and I just do not go together, or it really goes well. The food market has been a big surprise for me, but now I can say with a calm heart that this place is a gastronomy heaven. I highly recommend local open face sandwiches, but be careful if you are used to open face sandwiches from the Prague, this is another league. Both in quality and size and of course a price. Again here I have to mention Budapest. Unfortunately, the renowned market on the Danube's shore is, according to this store, second category. 

I will not name everything but in more than 60 stalls you will find everything from fresh fish, meat, chocolate, exotic spices, but also restaurants. I personally made the most of the fish-carnations, the roast pig, and the amazing Tacos at Hija de Sanches bistro. Food market can be found at Frederiksborggade 21

3. - Boat ride.

With a doubt, I can recommend a boat ride, but only if you get up and go with the first possible boat, which is mostly half-empty, because Samurais from China are still asleep and the Ms. Guide is fresh and full of strength. The best platform to get a ride I found opposite Christiansborg Slot 1, where you can admire house of parliament before boarding or the statue of Absolon opposite.

The advantage of this particular place and time is that the ship is also coming to distant places in Copenhagen, even in the canals where the local inhabitants live, and it is possible to compare this cruise with Amsterdam. The guide speaks English and German and please watch low bridges!!

4. - Rosenborg Chateau.

Again the place where you will probably fight little bit, but from the point of view of Danish history, this place is unique and is worth a visit. If you buy a snack or just good wine on the market, you can arrange a little picnic in the park that surrounds the castle or just sunbathe. Do not throw away crumbs, there are carps in the canal and you can feed them. The Castle itself captured me, so literally I forgot to take pictures. I would also like to advice you to take a printed guide while buying a ticket, which will take you through all the castle areas in detail. I mostly recommend the last floor, where is a richly decorated hall with huge tapestries that display Danish history and are unique.


Wikipedia mention:

Located on the third floor, the Long Hall was completed in 1624. It was originally intended as a ballroom. Around 1700 it was used as Royal Reception Room and for banquets. It was not until the second half of the 19th century that it became known as the "Knight's Hall".Christian V had the hall partly modernised with twelve tapestries depicting the King's victories in the Scanian War (1675–1679). The stucco ceiling seen today is from the beginning of the 18th century. It shows the Danish Coat of Arms surrounded by the Orders of the Elephant and of Dannebrog. Side reliefs depict historical events from the first years of the reign of Frederik IV, including the liberation of the serfs, the founding of the dragoons and of the land militia among them. The frescos in the ceiling by Hendrick Krock, represent the Regalia.Among the main attractions of Rosenborg are the coronation chair of the absolutist kings and the throne of the queens with the three silver lions standing in front. The Long Hall also contains a large collection of silver furniture, of which most is from the 17th century.


5. - New harbor.

At New Harbor, go for dinner. The new harbor was originally red light district and the local pubs will still give you in the atmosphere of the sailor's lodge. Little rooms above the pubs with naughty girls are no longer here, but you can just sit on the sidewalk and listen to local artists. Behind the corner is the beautiful Frederik Kirche - Rococo Pearl of Copenhagen.

This is my TOP five, but beautiful places there are far more. I could continue with the famous Round Tower, Opera, and of course I can not forget the iconic Tivoli Park. I sincerely recommend to plan a trip to Copenhagen in July, when a jazz festival is taking place and concerts are free here every day and everywhere in the city.

Book the best hotel in the center, it is worth the extra charge. - Here I offer a small tip: if you want to save some crown when booking through booking.com, use this link and you save 10% of the price - and that's at least a fish burgers or beer in the market :)

And finally, some tips:

- Danes love bikes! They are everywhere!
- Do not forget the Hamlet - Castle Kronborg is a bit of away, but it is worth it!
- They say they have the best beer, but of course do not believe it ...go to Czechia for a best beer.

The whole gallery of Copenhagen here, thanks and be fine!


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