Copenhagen Weekend with Family


Apr 24th, 2013, 01:59 AM
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Join Date: Sep 2012
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Copenhagen Weekend with Family

Friday afternoon-Our family planned a weekend trip to Copenhagen in April. The kids and I would be attending the Justin Bieber concert as focal point for the weekend but wanted to spend two nights in the city for sightseeing. We live in Sweden and it is a short car drive for us to get to Denmark but we got going late that afternoon. You know, I give the kids advance warning to get all their stuff together and they were fiddling with their iPods and then we had to pack the last minute books etc. Sometimes advanced warning is never enough! So off we go. We made one stop for a toilet break and someone was hungry so I went back into the gas station to buy some hotdogs. My DH was flying in from a business trip to Germany and the goal was to meet him at Kastrup airport by 7 p.m.

We arrived at the Oresunds Bridge which crosses to Denmark from Malmö. The fee is quite hefty, like 375 SEK. I paid by card and whoops...I discovered it was quite a long bridge, some 8 km. long and very high off the water. Hmmmm, me as the driver doesn’t like bridges. The Porche next to me paid by credit card and was 0-120 k/h in about 4 seconds. The speed limit was 120 k/h and since I was the only other car on the bridge, we safely hug the center going 85 k/h. Don’t look down, keep breathing, I’m thinking to myself. Whew, we made it! Now another 4 km. in a tunnel before reaching land. My dd enlightened me with information about the fans in the tunnel and how they are used in case of fire. Thanks- I’m thinking!

We get to the airport some 45 minutes late and DH is waiting for us. I hopped out and he drove to the hotel. We booked at Hotel Bethel which is situated right on Nyhavn. It is a basic budget hotel which was or perhaps still is a seaman’s home. I’m not sure how many rooms they have but there is a reception, small elevator and wide stairs going up to the rooms plus a breakfast room that is open day round for self serve coffee and tea. We were on the 2nd floor and had a side view of Nyhavn canal. We had 4 beds in a large spacious room, high ceilings with private toilet and w/c, wide screen tv on the wall. Two of the beds were permanent and two were comfy fold outs. I brought pillows from home since I read in reviews that the pillows were so terrible. I enjoy my own pillow anyway and theirs didn’t look that bad. Beds were made up and hand and bath towels for everyone were provided. The cost for two nights was around 3,000 DK. Parking was not a problem on the street in front of the hotel and it by meter parking. I could not have been more pleased with the hotel and location.

We unpacked and by this time it was getting late and we were hungry. The four of us walked across to where most of the restaurants sit on the sunny side of Nyhavn. We decided on Vesuvius which served Italian food. We ordered three pizzas, two large beers and two colas. My favorite pizza was the one with prosciutto and ruccola and the crust on all were very good. Since were were sharing I liked that the pizzas were pre-sliced. The Carlsberg beers cost 58 DK a glass but dh and I each ordered a large which hit the spot. Service was very good except for the guy never brought my water even after he mentioned that he would. The total bill was 600 DK.

Back to the hotel and we hit the hay as it was around 11 p.m.

Saturday- We were up early and breakfast was served between 7-10 a.m. They had a selection of breads and rolls, some which could be toasted. Meats and cheese assortments and veggies for the morning sandwiches. Cereals and fruits, juices, coffee, tea and danishes. The red and yellow peppers were sliced so puny it was difficult to get the veggie on the fork so I opted for a cheese and cucumber sandwich. Oh, and a cereal assortment provided for a nice bowl with yogurt and chopped fruit. The hotel guests were English speakers, and a group of French and a couple of Germans. Filled up with food and coffee and off we go.

It was around 9.30 a.m. when we hit the street. We did a little walking discovery tour of the neighborhood before taking a boat tour. Behind the ‘sunny side’ of the canal are beautiful designer shops and furniture boutiques. Nothing was open yet so we window shopped. We rounded back to Nyhavn where the tours started and the four of us hopped on for the cost of 190 DK. The weather was fantastic, sunny and a nice 13 Celsius which made for a perfect morning. It was first time we had been in the Copenhagen’s harbor. Quite lovely to see the modern architecture of the Opera and Theater mixed with the old brewery and other buildings. We enjoyed it very much.

After the tour we made a pitstop back to the hotel which was not a problem since it was so convenient. Then we walked over to Ströget shopping street. We would probably be late for the changing of the guard and figured we could see that another time but as luck had it the guard were marching right down Ströget on their way to the Palace when we were so we caught a glimpse of them. We spent a good amount of time at Ilums Bolighus looking at great design and testing furniture, the Bang Olufsen store looking at their new wireless speakers and then to the Lego store for a good look around. Lego is always fascinating! My dd was getting a blister after breaking in her new pair of Eccos. She was limping around so we were looking around for a place to buy band aids. We headed over to the Magasin department store and found bandaids down in their gourmet grocery store. The band aid brought the spring back to her step and off we went again. (Note to self; pack band aids or the moleskin like so many Fodorites mention.)

Lunch time took us to The Royal Smushie Cafe on Ströget, which is owned by Royal Copenhagen. It sits back in an alley right beside the RC store. It was my second visit there and this time we sat indoors. We each ordered something different but my husband’s selection won for his Salad Nicoise. Fresh mixed veggies topped with salmon, dressed to perfection with a light oil and vinegar. I didn’t care much for my Croque Egg Benedict served with roasted potatoes. It was not what I expected and their variation was just ok. One of the kids ordered a chicken caesar salad that she raved about and the other the ‘smushies’ (Danish open faced sandwich). Hers was a roast beef with smoked potatoes. She could have mixed her order and sampled a few different smushies but dh didn’t read that on the menu. So it was smoked potato overload. Skip that one. Good coffees and fun waiter. Our bill was 680 DK.

We enjoyed the sunshine and lovely weather and took in some street entertainers. By this time it was 3.30 and we were ready for a siesta because in the evening we would be going to the Justin Bieber concert. So we walked back to the hotel where some of us read and some napped for an hour. Time to get our rally caps on because we needed to get our concert clothes on and it was ‘feeding time’ again. By the time we ventured out it was close to 5.30 p.m. We decided to see what looked good at Nyhavn again (so close to home). The weather was fantastic and the tables were full. The edges lining the water were even full with people. We would be dining in where ever that was. So we selected Nyhavn 17 which had a lighter menu. Once we got seated and I read the menu closer I was a little disappointed that we didn’t look at another place since there was not a huge selection but, oh well, we ordered burgers with fries for two and nachos with chicken for the other two. I ordered the burgers well done and that’s how they were served. Nice presentation on two huge pieces of ciabatta type bread. I ate mine open faced and removed the top bread since it was way too much. Fries were good and nicely seasoned. Nacho plates were large with the fakey tortilla chips, bright orange cheese and pseudo grilled chicken. Condiments were served on the side which is good because dd didn’t touch them. We ordered sodas for drinks. DH would have get his beer later since he was the designated driver that evening. Service was good but nothing over the top. The bill was 620 DK.

Saturday night and time for the Justin Bieber concert at Parken. We were walking to a cash machine and a white limo drove by. Limos like that are unusual in Europe (compared to US) but I didn’t pay attention. Someone yelled out, “How’s it going Copenhagen!!” My daughter caught glimpse and said it was Justin Bieber. She probably had the ‘Bieber fever’ so I didn’t believe her at first but figure it sounded like him and the limo was coming from direction of the top hotel in Copenhagen so it probably was him. My dh drove us to the Parken arena and we decided on a pick up place for later. The girls had no idea what to expect and were shaking when they saw the 48,000 fans waiting for JB. Concert was a 2 hours late start and done by 11.30. The youngest talked about getting an ice cream at a place we saw earlier but by the time we got back to the hotel it was near midnight and we opted for a decaf tea in the breakfast room and then bed. We really could have walked to and from the arena but will save that for another time. I was surprised that on the beautiful evening there weren't more people out on Nyhavn. It made for quiet sleeping, anyway.

Sunday- DH was up early and went for a walk at 7.30. I woke up and got ready and packed up while kids were waking. We were all ready by 9 and down for breakfast. DH had his own ‘star’ sighting when he walking down by the Palace- Princess Mary was out running. He’s usually not one to notice people like celebs but there weren’t many out that early on a weekend and he was pretty certain it was her. We pulled up her picture on the iPad to make sure and, yes, it was a definite. We were packed to go home and were out the door by 10. We were going to take the scenic Strandvejen road up to the Louisiana museum. It was pretty much a straight shot going out of Copenhagen following the water. My dh is a walking, moving gps and had driven the route before so we had no problems finding our way. I enjoyed seeing the Danish architecture and the beautiful beach homes along the way

We arrived at Louisiana by 11 a.m. just as they were opening. The kids were free and the tickets for DH and I were 220 DK. If you haven’t been there I would highly recommend this modern art museum which is a beautifully designed and sits on the water. It doesn’t feel like a museum and looks are deceiving from the outside where you don’t get the size of the place. It looks more like a home until you get in there. We started at the gift shop and I bought myself a scarf. I’m a sucker for totes and there were serveral I would have snatched up. Restraint! We walked through every corner of the museum indoors and out. They had an interesting exhibit of work by Tara Donovan, an American artist. And had another exhibit on Pop Art Design, plus a whole museum filled more! Lunchtime brought us to their cafe. Three of us did the buffet and my dh ordered an open faced lax sandwich. The buffet was excellent and fresh. Different salads, marinated carrots, fresh ciabatta bread with sea salt topping, some sort of ribs that looked like chicken drumsticks but were pork, a split pea with fennel soup and fresh croutons, roasted potatoes and caviar served on some kind of a creme fraiche/fromage blanc topping on grilled asparagus appetizer. Three sodas and one coffee plus the meals (kids were half price on the buffet). We paid 436 DK.

We were ready to hit the road again and took a short drive up to Helsingör for the ferry back to Sweden. The ferry travels every 20 minutes and we just got in the car queue with no reservation. We paid 370 DK for the 20 minute ferry ride back to Sweden. We stepped upstairs to buy ice cream and had to quickly eat and get to the car before docking in Sweden.

I highly recommend travelling in April when there are minimal crowds and the weather is usually good as it was in Copenhagen. Thanks for reading!
Finecheapboxofwine is offline  
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Apr 28th, 2013, 03:11 AM
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Too bad there's not an edit function as I forgot to add this information!

We took this trip April 2013. To put the costs into perspective- the Danish kronor exchanged to US dollars was the following for 2 adults/2 kids:

Öresunds bridge toll 57.00 USD
Hotel 2 nights including breakfast - 524.00
Vesuvius restaurant- 104.00
2 large beers- 10.00 each
Boat tour- 33.00
Lunch at Royal Smushie- 118.00
Dinner at Nyhavn 17- 108.00
Louisiana museum- 2 adults/ kids free- 38.00
Lunch at museum kids half price- 76.00
Ferry to Sweden- 64.00
Not including parking, gas and concert tickets.

Thanks for reading my report!
Finecheapboxofwine is offline  
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Aug 16th, 2013, 12:45 PM
Join Date: Apr 2011
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Thanks for your report. We are staying at the same hotel next summer so enjoyed your report on it and nearby restaurants.
livetoroam is offline  
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Oct 22nd, 2013, 09:43 PM
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Thanks for your report We too are staying at Bethel
dondonandjj is offline  
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Oct 23rd, 2013, 02:38 AM
Join Date: Feb 2012
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Oh, Copenhagen is really a very stunning place to enjoy vacations. I had been there last year and it was great fun.
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Nov 28th, 2013, 07:02 AM
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Thanks for your trip report. Friends are there now and it's made me want to go for a visit even more.
starrs is offline  
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Dec 9th, 2013, 04:04 PM
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Nice family outing to Denmark. Reminds me of our visit a few years back. Staying someplace right on Nyhavn likely a little noisy? We were not far from there on the harbor. Loved our stay...strolling Stroget to Tivoli, National Museum, etc. Coming across the bridge but no stop at Kronberg Castle or Gilleleje? Later also in Stockholm, Sigtuna.

Here's a joke. Years ago our son as a student studied in Sweden and could speak the language well enough that he could "pass." But then as he didn't have the vocabulary he came across as a "dumb Swede" so had to confess he was actually American.
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Dec 9th, 2013, 04:56 PM
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Finecheapetc thanks for the bridge report. I would rather swim across than drive on that.
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