48 Hours in Copenhagen

We don’t normally celebrate our wedding anniversary – it’s too close to both our birthdays and the start of the academic year, so no really effort is made and we’re both fine with that.

This year however, we thought we should do something special to mark the big 1-0. Our immediate thought – Copenhagen. Our favourite city to spend time in. The last time we visited was back in 2015 when we spent 5 days over Christmas just wandering around with big coats on. This time, we’d have just 48 hours to absorb as much Scandi culture as we could.

We stayed at the Bella Sky again, which was mostly fine. We’re used to the hotel being very quiet, but as we were still in tourist season, it was fit to burst with huge groups of tourists. I don’t know that I’d necessarily recommend this hotel, but it suited us for two days.

So what did we pack into those 48 hours? A lot of walking primarily, and visiting areas of the city that we haven’t visited before. Frederiksberg became our new favourite suburb, but we also had a wander around Amagerbro and the area around the DR studios (‘DR City’ as it’s known).

And we finally crossed the Inderhavnsbroen (Inner Harbour Bridge) from Nyhavn to Christianshavn after watching it being built over many years. We even got to stand on the bridge as it did the crazy opening thing (which surely cannot be safe???) – the middle of the bridge splits open to allow tall ships to sail through. Madness.

We didn’t eat loads of food, but enough to make a blog post about so that will follow, but definitely our favourite new stop for coffee with a view was the Original Coffee at the top of Illums. We went here several times – definitely a favourite new hang-out spot for us. And look at this view:

We of course explored both Illums and Magasin but we weren’t in the city to shop (which is just as well as the exchange rate was a disaster). Just across from Illums on Strøget is Hay House – an interior design wonderland. Two floors of beautiful Hay products, set out like a Danish apartment and almost like a museum. I was in heaven, but again that pesky exchange rate shattered my dreams buying it all. Instead, I just took a million photos so that when I win the lottery, I can re-create Hay House back in the UK.

I did manage to get a small memento however. Many years ago when Husband was on one of his many work trips to CPH, he stumbled across an independent jewellers called Ladyfingers – a shop featuring the work of female jewellery designers. I didn’t ever get a chance to visit on our previous trips, but I finally made it there this time and bought a beautiful necklace from Winberg Jewellery. The shop it situated on Jægersborggade which is an insanely trendy street and such a treat to visit. Wandering down here made for a pretty perfect Saturday afternoon.

In fact, everything we did made for a perfect trip. This was my 5th time in the city and Husband’s millionth, so we don’t feel the need to do all the touristy things. Just walking around, people-watching, and falling in love with the architecture (like the Mountain Dwellings building below) is satisfying enough for us.

Christmas in Copenhagen – Lillejuleaften

Kongens Nytorv at ChristmasChristmas used to be my favourite time of the year but I’ve felt my feelings on it change over the last couple of years as I’ve got older.  I try not to be a miserable grinch, but from the minute the shops start playing Christmas songs after Halloween, I start grumbling.

So Husband and I made a decision this time last year – we’d treat ourselves and go away on holiday for Christmas 2015.  My initial clicking around online led us to Florida as it would be lovely and warm, then Vegas popped up for a bit to tempt me, then we scaled it back to Malta before the flights all sold out, so almost in desperation we resorted back to our old favourite – Copenhagen.

We knew the metro was 24 hours, we knew there would be some restaurants open, and we knew the city, so Copenhagen turned out to be the perfect choice.  We arrived on the 23rd December and the sun was setting as we checked into our hotel – the AC Hotel Bella Sky.  It’s a few miles out of the city centre, but I have been desperate to stay there since I first saw it years ago.  It’s a beautiful hotel.

AC Hotel Bella SkyWe had a room on the 22nd floor right at the end at the front of the righthand tower.  I was very excited by our floor to ceiling windows.  Husband, with his fear of heights, was less excited.  We didn’t have the “city view” but we didn’t mind – we could see the Øresund Sound which was good enough for us.  We even got free breakfast which was a complete surprise.  Yay for daily eggs!

We went straight into Kongens Nytorv (which I have finally learnt how to pronounce) and into Baresso for a Jul Latte and a couple of Kanelroses.  This is our favourite coffee shop for people watching which always has seats available, and we reminisced over when I used to meet Husband here after work.  We then wandered around Strøget for a while, popping into shops and peering at window displays.

Strøget at ChristmasIt was lovely to be there with all the Christmas lights, but a tiny bit disappointing that there wasn’t any snow.  They are experiencing crazy mild temperatures for December as well – it was only a couple of degrees colder than the UK.   No matter.  We also missed out on the Christmas markets – they were literally taking them down as we walked through the Kings Square.  Hence the rather sad looking Father Christmas in the top photo.

Nyhavn looked beautiful as always though.

Nyhavn at Christmas

We rounded the night off at Tight which always has good food and lovely staff.  Except when Husband forced me to eat liqorice crème brûlée – what is it with the Danish and their liqorice obsession?

Copenhagen

Nyhavn

Iconic Nyhavn

Having a husband who works for a Danish company means that every now and again, I get an (almost) free trip to Copenhagen.  I haven’t been for about a year, and I was starting to get withdrawal symptoms so when Husband started planning meetings with his Danish co-workers, I started planning shopping and sightseeing.

It was lovely and cold when I landed on Tuesday (but not quite cold enough for snow – boo!) and after checking in to the hotel, we went straight out to Tight for dinner.  I hadn’t been here before, but it was perfect – perfect food, perfect atmosphere, perfect music playlist, and we had a really great evening.

Wednesday morning, and Husband went off to work (aww, sad), leaving me to have a very lazy morning.  I had a late breakfast in Baresso when I got to Fields Mall.  I was a few days too early for their 10th birthday celebration, but I still had a good morning of window shopping.

I had a three day pass on the Metro so I figured I may as well use it, so from Ørestad I took the M1 back up to Christianshavn, changed over to the M2 and got out at Øresund.  I had clicked around my phone that morning in the hotel room trying to find random things to do, and one of the things that popped up was Amager Strandpark – a beach park a few miles south of the city centre.  Even though it was February, it was so lovely and I spent a couple of hours wandering on the beach taking photos.

Back on the Metro at Femøren, and I got back to the room about an hour before Husband got back from work after spending quite a lot of money on a mocha.  With the addition of Google Now into my life, I had a regular reminder of the exchange rate right there on my phone, so for the first time I had a bit more awareness of how much stuff cost.  That was a mistake – I’d rather not know!  My mocha (with an extra shot of espresso) was £5.60.  £5.60!!!  No one ever said Copenhagen was cheap, so thank god for the free stuff I had found to do.

That evening, we went to Halifax which is my favourite restaurant in the entire world.  I could happily eat here every single day.  Not even exaggerating.

Thursday was another lazy day, with a slow walk down to the Royal Library for breakfast and some reading (you have to read in a library of course).  I walked around Strøget after that, stopping in at Illums Bolighus and Magasin Du Nord for some wish list lusting.

We got home late Thursday, and my whirlwind trip to Copenhagen left me so so tired.  Thank goodness it didn’t leave me broke as well – it’s a very good job I didn’t have any luggage allowance otherwise I would have bought pretty much everything in the above photos.