If you didn't already know this, Lady Gaga has Fibromyalgia. She suffers from chronic pain and recently had a bout with her condition which required her to cancel any remaining European tour dates. In August we gave Ivy the gift of Gaga for her birthday. What better way to celebrate than a weekend in Copenhagen for a Gaga show. Obviously Gaga bailed on our plans but fortunately for Ivy, she still had two rockstars to help her celebrate in Denmark.
Copenhagen has been on our list cites to visit. Our friend Michelle lives and teaches in the city so it made sense to travel somewhere with a friendly face and place to stay. Also detecting plenty of good suggestions and high praise from anyone who'd visited the city, we were excited for a new adventure in Scandinavia.
Touching down in the driving rain we knew we'd be experiencing Copenhagen in its normal fall setting. The overcast skies, moderate breeze, and dampening fog gave us a real glimpse into how life unfolds under the maritime weather. We were generally prepared for the weather conditions we encountered. Only needing one change of dry, warm clothes after a day touring around on bikes. We all would have loved to have had a rubber coat, long insulated boots, and a pair of gloves but the weather gave us a perfect reason to sneak away into a cafe or restaurant to warm up with local comfort food and drink.
Very early into the weekend, we all noticed the calm and quiet mood Copenhagen gives off. The normal stresses of city living somehow don't apply here. Away from the tourist areas, the streets were eerily devoid of cars or people. The Danish seem quite content with being cozy at home eating pastries if they can't be out on their bikes. With bicycles being the preferred mode of transportation here, the noise, smell, and congestion of cars are almost nonexistent. The infrastructure and layout of the city are perfect for cyclists and gives you no excuses, not to ride a bike. People here seem healthy and happy. I would venture a guess and say that bicycles are a contributing factor for their mellow lifestyle.
We did our best to experience the city from all angles. Using bikes, buses, trains, and boats we were able to get a feel for the city's neighborhoods, culture, and food. Copenhagen is a beautiful city that is forward thinking and efficient on many aspects while still making art, and culture a priority. Venturing through the city we found ourselves in the strangest places where art and creativity lurked everywhere only to move a few blocks to find stunning modern architecture surrounded by history.
While I think the bike scene and laid back vibe of Copenhagen are something special that everyone should experience at least once, a return trip might require a little more incentive. The city is safe, clean, and easy to navigate. I highly recommend it for a short weekend trip like ours. If you find yourself in here, get on a bike and ride everywhere! You'll enjoy the ride and leave wondering how an urban area with so much activity and life can feel so relaxing and calm.