Finding our Danish style

Exploration and shopping, those were today’s operative words.

Slightly unexpectedly (shouldn’t have been) we woke up far too early. Having fallen asleep around 8:30pm last night, we were wide awake by 6am. We tried to keep ourselves in bed, but with the sun shining how could we not get up!

Around 7 we decided we needed coffee and a pastry. A quick scan of our custom Google map showed that Coffee Collective should be our destination. So back to the Nørrebro neighborhood we headed. Eli needed sustenance ASAP, so we dropped into Bagt bakery for a lemon bar and our first (but certainly not last) tea cake. We arrived at Coffee Collective and found a charming spot with a knowledgeable staff who were serious about coffee culture. We marveled at how quiet things were this morning, and the barista, Rene, told us all the Danes were still sleeping because everyone stays up late on Saturdays partying!

Once back at the flat, we quickly prepped for the day. I purchased our prepaid card for use with Bycyklen, the city bike system. Copenhagen is the world’s bike capital, and for good reason. Everyone here bikes, with 43% of the population using bikes as their main transportation. Every street, and I mean every street, has its own bike lane on each side. It's such a great way to get around the city and I wish more US cities could do this. Coming from Minneapolis, which prides itself on being “bike friendly,” Copenhagen put it to shame. Bikes are everywhere, making the city feel that much more vibrant and alive.

After grabbing our bikes, we headed down into the heart of the city, making our first stop at Gammeltrov fountain. From there we oriented ourselves and just started exploring. Eli was quickly taken in by all the shopping, stopping about every third store to see what he could cop. The shops we visited are too many to list, but lets just say we looked at a LOT of sneakers.

Eventually we made our way to Torvehallerne, the beautiful open air food hall. The choices were plentiful and it was almost too hard to choose what to eat. But then we came across, Hija de Sanchez, and it was easy to choose these tacos! Eli also grabbed an absolutely scrumptious Dolce de Leche milkshake from Is à Bella.

Fried egg taco was to die for!

Refueled we plotted our next adventure, landing on heading into the park and botanical gardens. A lovely stroll had us stopping to chill and watch the duck on the pond. After relaxing for a bit, we headed across the street to Kongens Have park, and Rosenborg Castle, former home of the King of Denmark. We watched the changing of the royal guards, and enjoyed the walk through the massive gardens.

Eventually we made our way back to Strøget, the pedestrian only shopping street. This, of course, allowed Eli more shops to stop at, including a brief look around Louis Vuitton. Mercifully, Eli had had enough shopping for the day, and he wanted to just go “biking around.” I was all up for that, so we grabbed some bikes and headed north a bit to see the tourist trap, the little mermaid statue. I can only say this is not worth it so many times, but it is not worth it. The statue is small but the crowds are large.

The little mermaid

Having enough with the crowds, we decided to grab a snack, and I chose Cafe Pixie. While refueling with snacks and a drink, we also enjoyed the Hygge with all the other Danes at the cafe. These people truly know how to live and enjoy life. The pace is slow, the laughs are loud, and the company wonderful.

Eli then reminded me that the Chelsea match was starting soon, so we hit the internets to find a pub to catch the match at. Turned out there was a place called The London Pub on the next block from our flat, so we biked the 3 miles back to the hood. We enjoyed the second half in the company of two Brits who had just moved to Copenhagen the day before to start business school. Chelsea beat Newcastle 2-1 on a deflected own goal, in the final minutes, by the US’s DeAndre Yedlin. This added some nice symmetry as one of the blokes was from Newcastle, and Yedlin was the yank playing for them!

Satisfied with the victory, we took some down time at the flat, but not for too long. Our bellies were not so gently hinting that it was dinner time. We decided to bike down into the up and coming meat packing district of the city to eat at mother. Neapolitan pizza FTW! Started things off right with a Negroni aperitif and bufala bruschetta, before simply devouring our margarita pizza!

Once again satisfied, we biked through the darkness back to the flat. And again, biking this city is just magical. Even at night, this was perfect, maybe even better than in the daylight. Bikes are the main transportation, so all the cars make sure to watch out and, in truth, there aren’t that many cars on the roads.

Back at the flat, we reminisced about the day that was, and chatted about what was next. Today was simply glorious!

23,850 steps, 11.94 miles.