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Stockholm+Copenhagen or Amsterdam + Ghent + Brugge in July

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Oct 9th, 2015, 03:30 AM
  #1
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Stockholm+Copenhagen or Amsterdam + Ghent + Brugge in July

Hello All,

My wife and I cannot choose between two destination sets for our 9 day break in the beginning of July 2016. We will either do:

- Brussels, Brugge, Ghent and Amsterdam

or

- Copenhagen, Malmö and Stockholm .

It would be great if you could advise us as to which one we should choose. We are a couple in our early 40's. My wife is crazy about crafts, antiques, ceramics and wooden toys. I like idling in cafes in the mornings; strolling in the cities, photography and my wine at night Looking forward to your ever so helpful advice...

All the best,

Medbird
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Oct 9th, 2015, 03:52 AM
  #2
 
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Probably Brussels, Bruges, Ghent and Amsterdam.

I haven't noticed a great antique scene in Copenhagen or Stockholm, I'm sure it's there, ceramics of course are in abundance and Scandinavian glass. Wooden toy soldiers are common in Denmark. I don't think Malmö is worth more than a day trip. I just think the other cities would suit your interests better.
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Oct 9th, 2015, 04:18 AM
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As Odin, I would go for Belgium and the Netherlands.
To complicate your decision process:
# Last year I had Mechelen (with you probably better known as Malines) as a base for Antwerpen, Brussel and Gent. All quickly reached with very frequent trains. Lovely unpretentious place with everything one expects from a historical Flemish city. I don't know about the wine, but they had a good afternoon beer on the Market Square.
# If you don't want to add to the crowds who think the Netherlands starts and ends with Amsterdam, why not stay in Haarlem (yes, the city the New York Harlem was named after)? Less then 15 minutes from Amsterdam, with eight trains an hour. (And less than half an hour from Schiphol airport.) A wonderful place in its own right. And also a good market square for you afternoon beer or wine or whatever you're in need of.
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Oct 9th, 2015, 05:36 AM
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I would do Copenhagen and Stockholm (but not Malmo which is a cute but an undistinguished small town) - but the budget will be significantly higher.

You other option is just too many places for so few days, although Amsterdam has a ton to see/do and Bruges is adorable.
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Oct 9th, 2015, 06:29 AM
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Bruges, Brussels and Ghent are close together and adding Amsterdam is a great idea, plenty of time in 9 days. Just so you know, neither Copenhagen or Stockholm are as expensive to stay in as say NY, where hotels are ridiculously expensive. Eating out is more expensive in Scandinavia, alcohol is about the same and supermarkets are way more expensive in NY (eg LIC etc)
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Oct 9th, 2015, 06:37 AM
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Gentse Feesten start on July 15 in 2016 - they'll be setting up the week before. It's a big city-wide festival.
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Oct 9th, 2015, 06:52 AM
  #7
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@nytraveler - could you please elaborate as to why you would prefer to do Copenhagen and Stockholm ? It would be great to learn from you. Thanks a lot.
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Oct 9th, 2015, 10:22 AM
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I happen to love both cities. They are very walkable and have a ton of things to see/do, including a number of castles (including current royal palaces) in the towns and a host of museums as well as Viking remains.

Some very interesting architecture, including a ton small summer houses with charming carvings. And both cities have places that feature local crafts including wood carvings.

The food is good and somewhat different - lots of herrings as well as reindeer and lingonberries.

Both have several good day trips, for Copenhagen we liked the Roskild cathedral/viking museum day best but there are also several to outlying castles. From Stockholm there is a wonderful boat trip out through the archipelago including Drottingholm castle. In the city don;t miss Skansen, esp when they have staff demonstrating traditional crafts, and the raised Vasa warship. Plus the Old Town is charming and royal palace fascinating.

Visited Malmo only once - on a business trip - and was there 6 days. After the first free afternoon we were looking for things to do in our free hours and a couple of times whipped over to Copenhagen.

This is not to denigrate Amsterdam or the cities in Belgium. We've been to both several times and enjoyed it - but somehow the Scandinavian cities seem more different.
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Oct 9th, 2015, 10:54 AM
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Truly appreciated @nytraveler, thank you. Would be great to hear from other community members as well as to how they would compare the two "destination sets"... Thank you!
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Oct 9th, 2015, 06:17 PM
  #10
kja
 
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For my interests, 9 days might work for Stockholm and Copenhagen, but not if you tried to add Malmo in. For my interests, 9 days would work well for Brussels, Brugge, Ghent and Amsterdam. YMMV. You might want to consult some good guidebooks, decide what you want to see and experience in these places, and then decide what itinerary works for your timeframe.

They are all wonderful -- enjoy!
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Oct 9th, 2015, 11:46 PM
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<>

There are no summer houses in cities. They are houses for summer vacations and are in the countryside. Very few have charming carvings, they are usually pretty plain. Denmark does not have the same style of stugas that you seen in Sweden but they do have very pretty thatched roof houses but this is in the countryside. In Stockholm you will see stugas on the archipelago or at Skansen.

If you are interested in wooden toys, Sweden was a manufacturer of toys called BRIO, you can visit their museum but it is quite far from anywhere. The wooden Darlarna Horse is a symbol of Sweden and a popular souvenir. Apparently there is a museum in Stockholm, I haven't been but will do now I found it.

http://woodenhorsemuseumsweden.se/EN/visit.en.html

In Denmark, Kay Bojesen is pretty well known for wooden soldiers

http://www.kaybojesen-denmark.dk/shop/webshop/gardere
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Oct 10th, 2015, 05:40 AM
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Both cities have government supported crafts shops that have a ton of wonderful things from local artisans on sale. We bought some charming serigraphs in Copenhagen, but the shops have all sort of crafts, including pottery, wood carvings, photographs and a large selection of serigaphs, lithographs, etc. Also many of the museums have great selections of posters if you have an interest in such.

And yes, we found many of the summer cottages - esp in Sweden - had very interesting carving and some in Denmark have thatched roofs. Naturally these are not in the center of cities but can easily be seen on day trips.
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Oct 12th, 2015, 08:28 AM
  #13
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Many thanks to all who took the time to answer. Now the decision lies with the Missus
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