Earlier this month, on a total whim I decided to go see some of my closest friends who are studying in Copenhagen, Denmark. I knew almost nothing about the country other than that it was one of the happiest countries on earth, so I booked my ticket and was on my way!
I arrived in Denmark on September 1st and was thrilled that the weather was a little cooler than the high 80’s temperatures of Málaga. That first night, we went to a bar called Trøst were we got to see a ton of other students studying abroad and caught up with a few Dickinson friends. Although I really enjoy the people that I am studying with in Málaga, it was so nice to see a different batch of familiar faces from Dickinson.
We ended the night in Freetown Christiania which is a free anarchist community within Copenhagen (sorry, Mom). Christiania’s residents are very intense and prohibit any photographs, but I had heard so much about the hippy district and wanted to check it out for myself. Although it was kind of a sketchy place to be at night, it was really cool and definitely worth the trip.
We had a pretty late start to our morning on Saturday and started the day off at Paper Island or Papirøen, for lunch. We walked there and I got a quick glimpse of the canals and many bridges that connect Copenhagen. On Paper Island, there is an outdoor art installation called the Wish Tree Garden, which is a part of a series by Yoko Ono. The trees covered in small pieces of paper tied onto the branches with string containing the wishes of hundreds of people. Even though we were starving, we stopped to read a few and they were so simple but so profound and I absolutely loved them.
For brunch, my friend Nick and I were immediately drawn to a vendor selling pulled pork sandwiches and curly fries that smelled heavenly. The best part about the street food market is that there is almost every type of cuisine imaginable, so everyone in our group got to choose something different. When we finally snagged a seat in the outdoor seating area, our table was full of homemade pasta, traditional Moroccan food, burgers, and local Danish beer. There were absolutely no leftovers!
Nothing is more magical than Christmas! Read about my trip to 7 of Cologne’s most famous Christmas markets HERE
From Paper Island, we walked across the bridge to Nyhavn, and I got to see the quintessential painted houses and tall ships on the canal. The boys got ice cream and we sat on the curb to do some people watching and sunbathing before the girls continued the tour of the city. Walking, biking and public transportation are the main ways Copenhagen citizens travel throughout the city, and it was all so easy. The U.S. could really learn a thing or two from the Danes.
After taking a quick nap in Nick’s apartment, we made our way to Island Brygge where we got on a Go Boat that we had reserved for earlier that day. Honestly, this Go Boat ride was probably one of the happiest memories of my life. We had wine, grapes, cheese, bread, cookies, a speaker, the best friends a girl could ask for, and an absolutely breathtaking sunset. I have been making a list of magical moments abroad, and this immediately jumped to number one. Once back on land, I got to meet up with one of the very few friends I have known since birth. It was so surreal to not only see my college friends and my home friends collide but to have it happen across the world!
On Sunday, we woke up craving coffee and a big breakfast. We found a diner called The Greasy Spoon, where I got to try skyr, an Icelandic dairy product which is very similar to yogurt. After we ate, the ladies went to climb to the top of the Church of Our Savior which supposedly has the best view of Copenhagen. It did not disappoint. We climbed up the ancient wooden staircase to the top of the tower and saw panoramic views of the city. The weather was amazing and we could see all the way to Sweden!
I finished my trip with an ice cream sandwich and goodbyes from my friends who so graciously showed me around their new home. I left Copenhagen already dreaming about when I would get to come back, feeling a little bittersweet about returning to Málaga.