CITY GUIDE: Copenhagen
If the idea of visiting a real life fairy tale interests you, then Copenhagen is your place! Home to Hans Christian Anderson who penned some of the most famous (and sometimes disturbing) fairy tales, Copenhagen is like stepping into a storybook which just happens to be filled with gourmet 7 Elevens and the most exciting Danish modern housewares and furniture. Even if fairy tales aren’t your thing the city has so much more to offer.
WHAT TO SEE:
Freetown Christiania : If hippie communes are your thing Christiania is a must visit. Actually even if communes aren't really your thing I still recommend checking it out. The self governed neighborhood was formerly a military base before it was taken over by squatters in 1971. The rules in Christiania are simple; no vehicles, no violence, stealing, guns, or hard drugs. Also taking photographs is TECHNICALLY not allowed inside but you should be able to sneak a couple shots.
The Little Mermaid Statue: OK so not everyone is going to check this out BUT personally I think it's worth the photo op especially if you had (have) dreams of being a mermaid. Kinda wish I took a picture WITHOUT myself in it though. Oh yea you'll probably have to wait in line (i.e. unorganized hoard of slightly aggressive tourists) to snap a close pic.
If you're lucky they may have this set up for Denmark Ninja Warrior. If you squint you can see me.
My FAVORITE store in Copenhagen Illums Bolighus is a 4 story department store of sorts but for home decor, furniture, kitchen items, lighting and pretty much anything you could ever possibly "need" for your home. If you have time go to one store in Copenhagen, go here.
Look at this rainbow of KitchenAid Mixers:
WHERE TO SLEEP:
Copenhagen has a great selection of hotels. Here are some of my favorites:
Radisson Blu Royal Hotel: Radisson Blu is a solid chain around Europe and the Copenhagen property is one of the best.
STK. PETRI - Hip hotel in the "Latin Quarter" of the city.
D'Angleterre - If you're feeling royal, check out Hotel D'Angleterre a landmark property dating back to 1755.
WHAT TO EAT:
My favorite topic!
In 2005 the Nordic Council of Ministers initiated the New Nordic Food Manifesto.
(SIDE NOTE: I think the Danes love manifestos. If you are into film history and/or watching strange films, look into the Dogme 95 film movement that started in Denmark in 1995. Danish directors most famously Lars von Trier created a very specific manifesto or as they called it the "Vows of Chastity".
Here are a couple of the rules:
+ The camera must be hand-held only.
+ The director must not be credited.
+The film must not contain superficial action. Murders, weapons must not occur.
+Temporal and geographical alienation are forbidden.
Anyway so back to FOOD. So Denmark essentially wanted to boost the production and consumption of their traditional food products. They wanted to create their own cuisine that was unique, locally sourced, and I would argue pretty avant-garde.
The New Nordic Cuisine really became well known thanks so NOMA also known as The World's Best Restaurant, which just recently closed its doors after 12 years.
Since we were not able to secure a reservation at Noma, we asked several locals what they would recommend for New Nordic Cuisine (that didn't have a year waiting list).
SIDE NOTE:The best advice I have for picking restaurants in a new city is to ask the locals. Just make sure you ask several different people Because sometimes strangers have bad taste.
We ended up at the restaurant Taller which is New Nordic and Latin American fusion. We opted for the 9 course tasting menu (hey they were SMALL plates!).
Here are some of the food pics I took that night.
Before dessert was served I caught wind of some commotion at a neighboring table. Thats when we found out they were serving live ants on a stick on top of some chocolate concoction. I ordered my dessert sans ants but my husband was feeling adventurous.