I arrived in Copenhagen slightly sweaty and eyes wide open to understand and explore this Scandinavian city that has become a culinary capital beyond belief.
Summer is tourist season. As such, many of the higher-end restaurants decide to take off—holiday on some of the local islands or elsewhere in Europe.
To take advantage of this very bicycle friendly city, I decide to park Doc, my bike, and don a bicycle-an electric bicycle with pedal assist—to explore the city. The electric bikes are available for pick-up and drop-off all over the city.
Realizing that just two days is not enough to truly get a sense of the city, I try to extend a night at my hotel. Sadly, there’s no availability. I scramble and find a place in the neighborhood that will accommodate me and my bike—but it’s going to cost me. Oh well. This is Scandanavia—I knew it wouldn’t be cheap.
Perhaps the most fascinating part of this grand city is Christiania—perhaps the San Francisco of northern Europe. In the 70’s a group of adventurous squatters and hippies crashed age-old military barracks here. The buildings were vacant and equipped with (free) electricity so the originals created a ‘freetown’ with a very hippy and laid-back way of life. And yes, plenty of weed to go around. Today, Christiania represents alternative thinking and, like San Francisco’s hey-day, a bit of a hippie culture and thriving movement. Don’t take pictures here, I was told. Outside the gates, I did get a few shots and met a wonderful lady who tends to many of the gardens. She showed me around.
There is plenty of “street art” graffiti and cozy cafés, and certainly open-minded people and an abundance of nature and openness.