Mon, July 15
Early this morning we came through the narrow strait between Sweden and Denmark and glided into Copenhagen’s beautiful harbour.
Our tour took us by coach around this city dating from 11th century where high rise has been relegated to the suburbs so as to not spoil the skyline. Coppery green towers alongside gingerbread houses, inlets and millponds surrounded by willows, dozens of bicycles along cobblestone streets. Home to Hans Christian Anderson and our own Princess Mary.
We were then taken to the canal for a guided boat cruise. The canal district is busy and fascinating and gave us a different perspective of the Church of Our Saviour which has a unique tower with an outside spiral stairway. Other highlights were the Tivoli Gardens, a unique amusement park, and of course, the Little Mermaid which was situated not too far from our ship. Some of these photos did not come out as well as we would have wished; unfortunately the sun was in the wrong position at that time.
On our return, we decided to walk uptown which was only about a 20 minute away, where we found a nice cafe for lunch. Herrings, cheese, salad and rye bread and butter for Alex and fishcakes, salad, rye bread and butter for me, washed down with the Dane’s beer of choice, Carlsberg.
On our way back to the ship, we revisited most of the places that the coach had taken us, including the lovely Amalienborg Palace which is the official royal residence. We were amazed that people are permitted to walk right up to the buildings which surround a pretty square. Although 4 armed soldiers stand guard, security is low-key and quite different to what we are used to. The soldiers were friendly and allowed to speak to us and providing you do not stand too close, were more than happy to pose for photos in their picturesque uniform.
We found out that many people live in Sweden because it is cheaper and commute to Denmark by train. English is taught in schools from the age of 9 as a second language. Numerous cafes and restaurants line the streets around the old harbour and boats are lined up nose to tail along the lengths of the canals.