Next stop Copenhagen

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Copenhagen The Little Mermaid It had been our intention to stop over in Gothenborg to visit the Volvo Museum.

What we did not do in advance was check the opening hours.

We have become so accustomed to everything being open every day that it did not cross my mind while preparing for our trip to check the hours.

While having an early breakfast on the day of our departure from Stockholm we registered that it was New Year’s Day and that it was possible that the Museum may be closed. What we had learnt while travelling in the Scandinavian countries was that commercial enterprises closed on Saturday afternoons, Sundays and Public Holidays. As soon as we had finished breakfast we went to check out and asked the Receptionist if she could check to see if the Volvo Museum was open. She did so and confirmed our worst fears – it was CLOSED.

We learnt that we were very fortunate because, from the following day, 02 January, there would no longer be a direct train to Copenhagen due to the influx of Syrian refugees into Sweden and then trying to go to Denmark with the increasing numbers. There are insufficient security staff at the Stockholm Station to check every passenger and Denmark are not happy with an uncontrolled influx. From 02 January passengers would change trains at Malmø and every passenger would be fully checked before continuing on their journey to Copenhagen.

It was bitterly cold when we left Stockholm in mid-morning and, about midday, it started to snow. In fact, ice formed on the sides of the carriage windows and was quite beautiful. We were also treated to a field of trees covered in icicles too. In fact the 4.5 hour train ride from Stockholm to Copenhagen was lovely all round. It was quite fascinating to see the land change from hilly to very flat and on arrival in Copenhagen the weather had improved significantly to it was no problem walking to our hotel for the next 2 nights.Copenhagen Entrance to our hotel 3Entrance to our hotel

On arrival in our room we were very impressed as it was much bigger than any we had enjoyed until now and there was a lovely LONG bath. There was one problem. The temperature in the room was close to 35-38 deg F which was a bit of a shock to the system. When Trevor checked the thermostat it was set at 6o so we reported it we were moved to a smaller room in which the thermostat was working. When the repair man came the following day we learnt that the hotel had recently installed new digital thermostat controls and they were still learning how to use them!

The hotel was conveniently situated near the station and within walking distance to town. We spent the rest of the day walking around taking in the atmosphere of the city. My brother had told us that visiting Tivoli Gardens was an absolute must to visit. We did not know what these were at the time and so were unaware when taking photos of beautiful lights and spinning rides that they were part of the Tivoli Gardens, the 2nd oldest Amusement Park in the world.

The following day we walked down to the Tourist Office and purchased tickets for the Hop-on/Hop-off bus which included, as in most cities, a trip on the river boat. Of course, Trevor asked for the Senior Citizens’ Rate which saved 8 Danish Krone (DKK) (R20 at thetime). It was a day of intermittent rain and bitter winds so we were pleased that both the bus and boat had covered areas. Using these buses and boats is an excellent way to see and learn about the cities when you have limited time. The bus driver stopped and gave us 10 minutes to admire and photograph the famous statue of the Little Mermaid which is so much smaller than I had imagined. It was so cold that 10 mins was more than anyone needed. It was a matter of click, click, click and back on the bus. We then alighted at the Rosenborg Castle and Gardens. Eveen though it was Winter the gardens looked beautiful. We did not go into the casstle as it was rather costly with Rand/Euro exchange. It is still used as a Royal Residence today.

We had seen the entrance to the Tivoli Gardens on our way home and decided to go that evening. At the Tourist Office in the morning Trevor had also asked about Senior Citizens’ Discount for Tivoli Gardens and they said that there was not one. We were rather disappointed as the cost was 120 Euros each. We decided to go anyway as we had heard that it was very special. When we got to the ticket office Trevor again asked about a discount and we got 10 DKK each (Saving R45). Yes, it was expensive but wow it was more than special. It was positively amazing. Dozens of lit up craft shops, fair rides, water features and, and , and.... We walked around for more than 2 hours an around every corner was something new!Copenhagen Tivoli Gardens 4Lights, lights and more lights in Tivoli Gardens Copenhagen Tivoli Gardens 3Christmas sleigh in Tivoli Gardens

 

 

 

One funny incident was – Trevor was taking pictures on the I-phone with which neither of us is very au fait. Somehow he managed to get the setting to go to video and he could not work out how to get back to photos. For about 20 mins he and I tried various things - turning it off, pressing other buttons, but no luck. We met a family with a daughter of about 12 so we asked if she might know what to do. She took the camera gave it a swipe and up came photos – she did it in 10 secs! Rather embarrassing really.

 

I would love to show you so many more pictures of the lights and shops and rides in Tivoli Gardens but it is just not possible

 

 

 

 

 

When we had been at the hotel earlier we had been told that we could move back to the original room as the thermostat had been repaired. Well, not quite. The repair man had simply removed the new digital one and put the old manual one back. At least it was working and I had a lovely soak in the long warm bath before a good night's sleep. Tomorrow we are off to Cologne.

 

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