Copenhagen – Day 1, Part 1 –

Last month I went to Copenhagen for the first time, and it was as amazing as I expected it to be. Beautiful scenery, very nice people, delicious food, tons of bikes everywhere, great beer, and even sunshine!

The trip was from Thursday to Sunday leaving from Edinburgh with EasyJet. I took the metro from the airport to the city centre, where the hotel was located. From the stop to the hotel it was a 5 – 10 minute walk, which was ideal. I was staying at the Best Western Hotel City, a hotel that its only stand out feature was the location.

The first full day in Copenhagen was Friday, and  the day started early, to have plenty of time to explore. The first stop was at Rosenborg Slot, a royal palace containing the crown jewels and a good amount of paintings, furniture and other objects. The palace was built in 1606, and served as a summer residence for the royal family. It is a very impressive building surrounded by a quiet park. On the Sunday, when walking past it again, there was a military parade near it, which was very interesting to see.

After the Rosenborg Slot, the walk continued to Kastellet, a former fortress built in 1626. Nowadays it is used by the Danish army, but people are allowed to walk through it (until a certain time) and have a wonder around. 
I was very impressed by the amount of people running, doing press ups, sit ups… Danish people seem to be really healthy, and into sports (how I wish I were more like them!). It also attracted my attention that you can see the soldiers doing their exercises and training. It was all very open and friendly!

At this point you may be thinking why I went there (or maybe not ;-)), but Kastellet happens to be very close to the Little Mermaid, one of Copenhagen´s leading attractions. So after a very short walk from the fortress, I reached the Little Mermaid, obviously surrounded by tourists taking photos as if the statue was about to get up and leave…
The sculpture of the Little Mermaid is based on a character by Hans Christian Andersen, one of the most important Danish authors of all times. Carl Jacobsen (head of Carlsberg) commissioned the sculpture after seeing a ballet based on the tale by Andersen. The Little Mermaid has been moved from its previous location and now is looking directly at the sea, as if she wishes she was there instead of waiting forever on a rock. 
I found the sculpture moving and sad, she is staring at the distance, as if she had lost everything and was missing it, wishing she could go back. One of my favourite things about statues, paintings… is imagining what they were thinking at that particular time, creating a story in my head (yes, I have a background in English Literature, and I´m obsessed with novels, tales, stories and all the likes).

When leaving the Little Mermaid I walked past a very pretty church that I had spotted in the distance earlier, with a stunning fountain just outside it. It happened to be Sankt Albans Kirke, built in 1887 and part of the Church of England. The fountain is called Gefion Fountain, and it represents the goddess Gefion managing a plough pulled by four oxen. 
The legend says Gefion was offered as much land in Sweden as she could plough in 24 hours. To achieve this, the goddess turned her four sons into very strong oxen, to help her with the task. They did so well, she created Zealand, the part of Denmark where Copenhagen is located. This left a hole in Sweden, which is Lake Vänern. Funnily enough, Zealand and Lake Vänern seem to have a similar shape!

And now judge yourselves! Click on the links below to see the shapes of both, Lake Vänern and Zealand:
Lake Vänern (Sweden)
Zealand (Denmark)
I don´t want this post to be extremely long (I think it is already long enough), so I will continue tomorrow. I hope you are enjoying it, and please, if you want to leave a review, a comment or simply say hi, you are more than welcome!

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