A weekend in brief:
- Glögg was being served everywhere, and Hels and I quickly became addicted. Definitely the essential winter beverage.
- Tivoli – beautiful with its fairy lights, full of happy people, home to extortionately priced tat and site of the most bizarre animatronic Santa’s grotto you will ever see – worth the admission price for that alone.
- Degas – a highly recommended French restaurant.
- Vor Frelsers Kirke – utterly beautiful with the golden globe at the top of the spire glistening in the sun through the morning fog.
- Bastionen og Løven – home of quite possibly the best hot chocolate in the world, according to Hels anyway.
- Christiania – where Hels and I felt just a little out of place, but welcome nonetheless, at least in the little market. The drugs stalls are generally less welcoming, almost threatening – although that may be the attitude the locals adopt towards any couple that arrive dressed in smart designer clothing. Hels’s new Nepalese hat, purchased in the market, helped us to blend in.
- Charlottenborg Udstillingsbygning was one of the highlights of the weekend – a fabulous contemporary art gallery which is currently showing an exhibition entitled "From Dust to Dusk". If you like modern art and can get to see it, then I recommend that you do so. Our favourite piece (although we had several) was White Landscape by the German artist Christina Kubisch, which consisted of a large darkened room. On the floor, more than one hundred white painted speakers of differing sizes were illuminated from above by UV lamps so that they glowed in the darkness, and each gently and in turn played the sound of a tuning fork. Utterly mesmerizing.
- Strøget – shopping heaven. And like Jason, we also found lots of feet, which serve the useful purpose of making you stop walking, pause and look up and around.
- Barbar Bar was very cool. If I lived nearby, I think you’d find me there frequently.
- By train to Malmö across the Øresund Broen, which affords fabulous views across the steely grey and choppy Øresund that separates Denmark and Sweden. Malmö is every bit as beautiful as Copenhagen (or, to be more correct, København). Glögg and shopping were again high on the agenda, but not before we’d explored the Form/Design Center which was crammed full of the sort of things than any self-respecting Scandinavian interior designer would consider as must-haves, as well as David Design which was full of yet more things calling out "buy me! buy me!"
- Peder Oxe for more fine food – not just for tourists, as the guidebook suggests, but also popular with the locals, it seems.
- Nyhavn, on the other hand, truly is touristy.
- Finally and sadly, we had to leave. But leaving was made easier by virtue of the excellent trains once again, and the wonder that is Københavns Lufthavne – you can see why it has won so many awards. Without doubt the most logically and elegantly designed airport I have ever visited.
I think we’ll go again to Copenhagen. Highly recommended, though do expect it to be expensive. It isn’t necessarily the case that things in Denmark are more highly priced (although alcohol certainly is – expect around £4 for a pint or spirit+mixer), it’s just that the Danes don’t bother with cheap stuff. They clearly believe that if something is worth having or doing, then it is worth paying to have/do it right.