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Trip Report Scandinavian and Baltic Adventure - our trip report

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On a cruise, we sailed for 11 days, exploring Scandinavian and Baltic ports of call. We departed from Copenhagen, where we spent a few days, pre-cruise. It was a wonderful, but very busy itinerary. I’ll include info about the cruise and our pre-cruise hotel at the end.

Copenhagen

Copenhagen is a very attractive city. We enjoyed walking around and seeing the sights:

Nyhavn – attractive waterfront area, lined with colored buildings.

Stroget – we really enjoyed walking around the many streets here, browsing the shops and admiring the architecture and fountains along the way.

Rosenberg Slot – this was some castle, used as a Danish royal residence. I especially liked all the decorations – the paintings (including on the ceiling), and furnishings (clocks, porcelain, lots of ornate stuff). We saw the throne room and the mirror room. The mirror room also had a mirror on the floor. The King would guide women in skirts to this room, so he could use the mirror to look up their skirts.

Adjacent to the castle was the treasury, where the Danish crown jewels are displayed.

National Museum – this place was huge and filled will sorts of interesting things - from the Stone Age, to the Vikings to modern times. We spent longer in here than we anticipated as there is a lot of see. I especially liked the Dutch perspective boxes – they had 2 of only 6 surviving in the world. The Viking exhibits were also very interesting.

Faelledparken – this is a large park with a really terrific skate park. We often search out skateparks on our travels for my younger son, who always brings his skateboard along. This park had the largest half pipe I have ever seen and very good vert bowls. The Danish skaters here were very good – I assume from practicing in such a good and challenging skatepark.

Ny Carlsberg Glypotek – this was a nice art museum with a beautiful interior courtyard. Their sculpture collection is wonderful (Rodin and Carpeaux are highly represented). I also enjoyed their Impressionism/Post-Impressionism collection – they had a wonderful Monet and Van Gogh.

Tivoli Gardens – we explored this in the evening as the lights were coming on. Fun.

Berlin

This was a short visit, as the cruise port was quite far from the city, but it was well worth the trip.
My son and I split up for the first 1.5 hours – I visited the Gemaldegalerie and he visited the Museum of the Resistance, which he found really interesting.

Gemaldegalerie – wonderful art museum (and no crowds)! They had Caravaggio, Van Eyck, Brueghel’s Netherlandish Proverbs (with an excellent sheet to interpret all the numerous proverbs depicted), two amazing Vermeers, de Hooch, Rembrandt, Bosch -- really a terrific collection.

My son and I met back up and did this walking tour:

Tiergarden – we walked to the Brandenburg Gate through a portion of the wooded and serene Tiergarden.

Brandenburg Gate – we took some pictures of this popular huge arch in Berlin.

Monument to the Murdered Jews of Europe – this was interesting to walk through – the heights of the various stones, or stelae, which are arranged in a grid, change, as does the elevation of the ground, from flat to rolling. At times, you are in the middle of a corridor of very high stones, on sloping pavement.

Sections of the Berlin Wall – in Potssdamer Platz and again near the Topography of Terror are preserved sections of the Wall that divided East and West Berlin.

Topography of Terror – this was a wonderful and in depth exhibit about the rise of the Nazis to power and their time in Berlin at this location (which was the Gestapo HQ). What was great was that it was all outside, paralleling a preserved section of the Wall.

Checkpoint Charlie – This spot, one of the best known crossing points between East and West Berlin, was Tourist Central and very crowded.

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