Places to visit in Denmark

Old Dec 16th, 2008, 08:02 AM
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Places to visit in Denmark

I'm planning a trip to Denmark for late April/early May and would like to know the best way to get around the country. We're thinking maybe for 2 weeks. I definitely don't want more than a few days in Copenhagen (maybe 4). Very interested in architecture and history (vikings!), and scenery. Also as budget is a bit o' a concern, don't mind hostels and hoofing it with a backpack.
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Old Dec 16th, 2008, 08:27 AM
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As you head north from Copenhagen, stop by the Louisiana arts and sculpture gardens - www.louisiana.dk/uk/Menu/Visit+Louisiana - in Humlebæk. For a preview go to this family video (not my family...) at
www.youtube.com/watch?v=lHtJCGKt4h4.

Humblebaek is on the train line from Copenhagen, about two thirds up towards the Hamlet Castle at Helsingør.

For a flavor of the "real" traditional Denmark, go west to Nyborg and keep going, meander around the wide open flat landscapes, from one fishing village to another, by train, by local buses and ferries - people will gladly advise you at every step of the way.

No need to book ahead, take along a little phrasebook and dictionary since in rural Denmark not everybody of a certain age speaks English, but by pointing at a few keywords (and by memorizing some...) you will always find a room for the night.

Start by looking at a good map and at this website:

http://tinyurl.com/6mvs53
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Old Dec 16th, 2008, 10:29 AM
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One of the most interesting places outside Copenhagen is Roskilde.

First, the Cathedral where the Danish kings are buried.

Second, the Viking Ship Museum. It is spectacular.
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Old Dec 16th, 2008, 11:10 AM
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Thanks guys this is definitely helpful. This will be our first trip to Denmark, hopefully not the last. Do you suppose it's worth while to try and squeeze in trips to Oslo or Sweeden while we're there or just to focus on Denmark?
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Old Dec 16th, 2008, 11:40 AM
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Hi, krodster -

I second the recommendation for Roskilde - it's got architecture, history, and scenery!

Enjoy!
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Old Dec 16th, 2008, 11:41 AM
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Two weeks in Denmark will be just fine. Between what Copenhagen offers and picking from among the daytrip excursions from there, like those already described (Vikings at Roskilde, Helsingør, Louisiana), plus other sidetrips to Arken (museum of modern art), maybe a boat trip to Hven, Dragør (port city w/architecture), Grev Moltkes Palæ, the university's Botanical Garden & Museum, taking the long bridge across to Malmø and Lund (there is some Sweden for you!), that would easily be two weeks already if you did them all.

Then a week in the countryside, boating, hiking, soaking up the sea breeze, and getting back to Copenhagen, that will quickly take care of the second week.

Oslo and Stockholm are a long way away, rushing there, to a different language and culture, will only dilute your memories of Denmark. Let those sink in, then go visit the others some other time.
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Old Dec 16th, 2008, 12:02 PM
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I lived in KBH for 20-plus years of summers and then visited, on short visits after that. I never had a car. I spent whole summers there.

Danmark has an excellent train system and buses along with S-tog (S-train) in Kobenhavn (Copenhagen). There is also a light rail system in KBH.

I went all over the country, by train, for decades. Then when I'd get off the train somewhere I'd just transfer to a bus. I seldom even had to take taxis anywhere.

You can also rent bicycles all over Danmark. I biked many, many miles as I owned a bike while living in KBH. You can take the bike on the various transportation systems, get off at your desired stop, and bike on.

If you bike, I suggest buying a pair of rain pants and a hooded, rain jacket. I've had my Helle Hansen brand of both for over three decades. They hold up quite well. They can be purchased here in the U.S. these days. Happy Travels!
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Old Dec 16th, 2008, 12:17 PM
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I agree about Roskilde. A great place to visit - the ship museum is amazing. A good job you're not there at the beginning of July when the rock festival takes place!

Odense, home of Hans Christian Andersen is also well worth a visit.
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Old Dec 16th, 2008, 01:03 PM
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Aarhus - a nice enough regional town with in its suburbs the famous Bog Man - ancient corpse preserved in a bog - on display. Also a famous folk museum here.

Fredericksborg Castle is lovingly set in a lake - said to be Scandinavia's largest castle it's also called the Danish Versailles - lavish interior - can take a boat there from town or walk around the lake. Frequent trains to within about a mile of the castle.

rebild near Aarhus has the American Immigration Center or whatever the call it if tracking ancestors.

Consider the Round the Sound excursion - via Malmo and Lund, Sweden to Helsingborg - boat to Helsingor and train back to Copenhagen.
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Old Dec 16th, 2008, 02:13 PM
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Another vote for Frederiksborg,
http://wictor.dk/wictor/frederiksborg/frbSlotGB.html

Odense (H C Andersen's birtplace) is worth an overnight.

Roskilde (the "d" is silent) is a must.

If you are going to Jutland (Aarhus), there are very nice national forests on the West coast.

One of them was started just after the Napoleonic Wars (Denmark was on the wrong side) so that the Danes could rebuild their fleet with mighty 100-yr old Oak trees.

Enjoy your visit.

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Old Dec 16th, 2008, 02:31 PM
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Aarhus old town is fantastic.
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Old Dec 16th, 2008, 09:01 PM
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An easy ride on public transportation from Copenhagen, is to Dragor --- Old style thatched roof houses and all very charming.

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Old Dec 17th, 2008, 05:24 AM
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Wow this is awesome. So I'm wondering if it would be possible to just bike to most of these places that are considered the suburbs of Copenhagen? Would it be best then to base like a week stay out of Copenhagen and do a few day excursions, and then tour the rest of the country (or select parts rather) and then return to CPH to fly home? I'd really like to see some of the scenery.
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Old Dec 17th, 2008, 06:28 AM
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<i>Roskilde (the &quot;d&quot; is silent) is a must.</i>

Are you sure? I always hear it pronounced Ros-skil-duh.

<i>So I'm wondering if it would be possible to just bike to most of these places that are considered the suburbs of Copenhagen?</i>

Are you a biker? You can do it, but it is a long ride. Copenhagen to Hiller&oslash;d, for example, is roughly 40km. On the bright side, it is pretty flat and their are bike lanes everywhere. So, if you are a bike tourer, then it is a great option. If you are just looking for transport, then you should count on the bus/train.

If cost is a concern, then you can certainly do it all via train and bus. This site will give you door to door directions:

http://www.rejseplanen.dk/

But, if you want to do this, then I would suggest doing a hub and spoke approach. For example, Hiller&oslash;d is not that far from Helsing&oslash;r, but it is not so easy to get from one to the other without a car. So, on public transit, I would suggest doing Hiller&oslash;d one morning or afternoon from Copenhagen and then Helsing&oslash;r on a different day.

Also, be realistic about costs if you are concerned about budget. Copenahgen is the second-most expensive city I have ever been too, only slightly behind Oslo. And, yes, I am including such &quot;expensive&quot; cities as Zurich, London, and Tokyo. A hot dog from a stand, for example, will be at least DKK 20, which is nearly $4. Sitting down, even at an ethnic place or cafe, will likely cost around DKK 100 (almost $20), just for a main and tap water (and the tap water is not that pleasant).

Most of the destinations mentioned are right on. I would add Skagen, if it were summer, but not much need in April or early May. Also, do look into Southern Sweden (look beyond Malmo, which I don't think is much more than a poor man's Copenhagen), which is easily accessible.
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Old Dec 17th, 2008, 06:50 AM
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I can second many of the recommendations made here: Roskilde, Hiller&oslash;d, Helsing&oslash;r, Aarhus, and especially Louisiana (lovely grounds to wander with a great deal of outdoor sculpture). Another destination about two hours south of Copenhagen would be the Cliffs of M&oslash;n in Zealand. People don't think of cliffs or high places associated with Denmark, but these white chalk cliffs are quite lovely. The rural countryside on the drive out to the cliffs was also quite picturesque, and the prices were a bit lower this far outside of Copenhagen. We had a rental car, but I'm sure that you could find bus or rail service to somewhere in the vicinity (Stege most likely) and then perhaps rent a bike.

Incidentally, if you haven't traveled in Scandinavia, be aware that most hotels provide a hearty breakfast (usually a buffet) that will keep you going for much of the day. Although hostels may be cheaper, I'm not sure they offer the extensive breakfasts that even modest hotels sometimes provide. Given that the cost of dining out is so great in Denmark (I think that food and drink are what make Denmark so expensive; lodging isn't much more expensive than other European capitals), the price differential between a hostel and a modest hotel could be made up by the value of a good breakfast (with meats, cheese, and likely herring in addition to traditional breakfast fare).
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Old Dec 17th, 2008, 06:54 AM
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So I'm noticing everyone saying that the food is so expensive. Did anyone ever just pick up things at a grocery store and make their own meals? I remember being on a budget in Paris and I wound up eating mostly baguettes and cheese that I could buy cheaply at the market and make last for three days. This is not to say that I'm not going to taste the cuisine (hell I'm a major foodie) but I'd rather spend more money on the sights and less on the food, at least this go around.
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Old Dec 17th, 2008, 07:12 AM
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Yes when in Denmark i do the supermarket route for feeding - look for the Aldi or similar discount stores for really affordable pricing.
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Old Dec 17th, 2008, 07:21 AM
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Sure you can buy your own picnic ingredients in the stores, but for someone used to US-American supermarkets and fast-food prices those prices are not exactly budget either, it is simply an expensive country. Not as bad as Norway or Ireland, but...
Still, the food tends to be worth the money you pay!

God appetit!
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Old Dec 17th, 2008, 09:54 AM
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Tivoli is of course a must

But the world's oldest amusement park Bakken is a short S-tog ride into the suburbs - on the coast and unlike pricey Tivoli Bakken is free and offers many free shows once inside as does Tivoli - as well as typical and not so typical carnival rides.

But there were several stages there each with something on the summer night i went there.

surrounding the amusement park is a vast Deer Park, good for rambling.
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Old Dec 17th, 2008, 12:23 PM
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We didn't find the food in Scandinavia to be any more expensive than what's in London, Paris, NYC, etc.

We enjoyed Bakken because it was full of Scandinavians and not tourists like us.
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