Fall in love with Copenhagen

February 8, 2005

Fall in love with Copenhagen

The Danish Royal Couple might have met in Sydney, but they were married in one of the world?s most romantic cities, home of storyteller Hans Christian Andersen ? and in April, Copenhagen will celebrate the bicentenary of his birth.
?Copenhagen is one of the few places left where the word fairytale can be used freely ? from its most enduring literary legacy to its latest royal romance. It?s a charming, beautiful capital, with some of the most stylish design and architecture of the 20th century and excellent eating, drinking and shopping opportunities. Plus it?s run by Danes, so it?s very efficient,? says Australian Sally O?Brien, author of Lonely Planet?s Copenhagen guide.

In a nutshell, Copenhagen (K?benhavn) gets it right ? old-fashioned charm embraces the most avowedly forward-looking design and social developments, and wins it a permanent spot on those ?world?s most livable cities? lists. Scandinavia?s coolest and most cosmopolitan capital will have you planning to make it your home as well ? after all, this is style central, so you?re guaranteed a nice place to live.

Copenhagen is an appealing and still largely low-rise city comprised of block after block of historic six-storey buildings. Add the fact that all those great galleries, castles and canals are often within walking distance of each other (or a quick trip on efficient public transport), and you?ve got it easy.

Copenhageners of all persuasions tend to be fun-loving and you can get a sense of this throughout the city. You?ll find the pedestrianised street Str?get teeming with the music of street performers, the nearby Latin Quarter peppered with spirited clubs and the venerable Tivoli park offering family-oriented amusements ? all within minutes of each other. You can hop on a canal boat and tour the waterfront, admire the world?s finest collection of Viking relics, be dazzled by extraordinary
collections of modern and impressionist art, lunch on sm?rrebr?d (open-faced sandwiches) and Danish beer at outdoor caf?s and dance till the sun rises at any number of stylish clubs.

If any gesture symbolises the city, it?s the tradition of raising your glass, saying sk?l (cheers) while meeting the eyes of your Valentine and downing something strong in one fluid, easy movement. It demonstrates a readiness to enjoy oneself, without guile ? and if you can?t do that in Copenhagen, you can?t do it anywhere.
Highlights: ?The island of Christianshavn, plus all the fabulous Danish design stores and the Kunstindustrimuseet (Museum of decorative Art) for those of us who can?t afford to buy anything in said Danish design stores. And eating p?t? and herring every day. Going to see The Royal Danish Ballet as often as possible. The beautiful quality of light at the certain times of the year.? ? Sally O?Brien, author of Lonely Planet?s Copenhagen.

From Lonely Planet?s new guide to Copenhagen

2nd edition
ISBN 1 74104 035 3
234 pages, 26 pages colour, 39 maps
A$ 29.90

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