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9.1.17

Five Days in Copenhagen

"They say you can’t run away from your troubles. 
But a little perspective works wonders"




My recent trip to Copenhagen was like a cold cold compress on the headache that was December. Frozen walks cleared a chest made tight from anxiety and soothed a head wracked with the relentless thoughts of the introvert. For the first couple of days I walked around the city restless, still under the heavy cloud of my own thoughts. They’d blown in with me, swirling around my head and I was worried that I would never be able to shake them, that they would ruin my rip like they seem to ruin everything else. But gradually, as I immersed myself in the new sights and sounds and as my camera filled with photographs and the sun came out they began to fade away

We spent five days in Copenhagen last week, renting a cosy apartment in Vesterbrogade, a beautifully stark 4th floor residence with a focus on the minimal yet striking traditional Scandi decor that I could only dream of achieving given my hopeless love of trinkets and treasures. The apartment was perfectly situated just off the long main street that housed restaurants, cafes, bakeries and florists. The scent of fresh coffee hung permanently in the air and the pavements brimmed with buckets of fresh flowers outside the numerous florists that lined our walk to the city centre one week ago today


Apartment booked through Airbnb - Get £30 off your next trip by clicking here

Having navigated our way to Strøget we wandered down the longest Pedestrian shopping street in Europe at 1.1K long, with bags of sweets in hand, breath fogging in front of us, taking it all in. It wasn't too long before we needed more than sweets to fuel us as found ourselves at the Torvehallerne KBH food markets, two great glass structures filled with every food you could imagine. Our eyes lit up at the sight of iced pastries, steaming vats of hot chocolate and handmade confectionary and our noses wrinkled at the gory displays of seafood, a thousand dead eyes staring unseeingly upwards. Amongst the hustle and bustle we managed to find seats at the window to watch the snow fall and eat rolled slices of steaming pizza from Gorms, glittering with shiny baby tomatoes ad dripping with olive oil





The next day we opted to take shelter in a local mall when the snow turned to rain, wandering through the chic little homeware stores each more like aladdin cave of wonders than the last and sat in a darkened cafe drinking coffee and eating pastries by candlelight. Hygee, the pillar of Scandinavian lifestyle and the word that has recently become fashionable, a gimmick almost in England was everywhere, we were experiencing it’s true unadulterated form. I went to Sephora, I don’t want to talk about how much I spent but I know own the ABH Modern Renaissance palette and YSL Mon Paris perfume which will both feature on my blog in the coming months




We lunched at WarPigs Brewpub a “Man vs Food” style venue in Copenhagen’s popular meat-packing district, the meat was chosen from the blackboard overhead, ordered by the lb at the counter and carved to order right in front of you. Half a lb of Brisket, Half a lb of pork belly, a bag of crispy chicken wings with celery and blue cheese and a tub of mac n cheese. Not cheap (£60 ) but also not easily replicated back home, a key draw on what typically turns one of our holidays into a culinary odyssey. I'm guilty of basing all of my trips around Photography opportunities and/or visiting great places to eat. The closest I’ve found to an eatery like this would be Bristols Grillstock restaurant at the Clifton Triangle, try it next time you’re there. Food and Drink can be very very expensive in Copenhagen but if you do your research and look around then you can find affordable places to eat and drink. Easier said than done when your fingers and frozen and your tummy is rumbling 





On Wednesday we wandered down through the city to the harbour, Nyhavn. The setting for the film “The Danish Girl” and a major draw to Copenhagen personally, the beautifully colourful houses making the place look like a beautifully elaborate childs toy. I had no interest in seeing the famous Little Mermaid Statue, another key attraction, so from here we wandered up to the Botanical Gardens at Øster Farimagsgade to take shelter from the bitter cold in the steaming palm house. The palm house dates from the 1870s and stands 16 feet tall above the gardens. We spent a happy hour or two running up and down the two central spiral staircases of the great glass-house taking hptohographs of one another, capturing every detail of the tiny warm oasis at Copenhagens frozen heart




Our final day took us up the coast, a 30 minute train journey to Humelbeck and the site of the Louisiana Museum. The building sat high on the coast, with views over to Sweden, filled with famed installation pieces and sculptures from notable artists. Most striking of all was the beautifully haunting work of Louise Bourgois on reflection and the idea of self. Her exhibition focused on cells as the structure of existence, a collection of intense psychological creations which evoke a deep sense of emotional resonance with the subject of pain. The pieces examine the link between the emotional and the physical, the body and the mind. As someone who questions everything and hungers for answers whilst remaining troublingly malnourished by this world we live in I felt truly connected to many of her works and sentiments  




Back in Copenhagen we refuelled at the Donut Shack before setting out to find something a little more substantial for dinner. A quick search of the local area led us to Voulez Vous, a French restaurant serving simple but beautiful handmade Italian food in the heart of Demark. We ordered pizzas with ham, a bowl of rosemary chips and glasses of cold white wine and settled ourselves into a cosy corner. We punctuated the freezing 20 minute walk back to our apartment with stops at various bars, racing one another to finish our pints before wrapping ourselves up in our scarves, coats, hats and gloves in order to continue to the next bar in the -6 degree cold. We arrived back at our apartment more than a little warmed by our many many pitstops 




The next day we flew back to England and I wrote the majority of this post high above the clouds, trying to capture every last detail before it faded away to memory and beyond. Aptly, Louise Bourgeois summed it up for me: 
"Some of us are so obsessed with the past that we die of it. It is the attitude of the poet who never finds the lost heaven and it is really the situation of artists who work for a reason that nobody can quite grasp. They might want to reconstruct something of the past to exorcise it. It is that the past for certain people has such a hold and such a beauty."




I loved my time in Copenhagen and I hope that this feeling of calm and balance remains with me when my feet touch the ground soon, too soon. I hope that my new found composure can sustain and comfort me until I am able to escape again and see the sun above the clouds once more. I hope most of all that life is a little kinder to me this year and that I am a little kinder to myself as a result. Hopes were not something I counted amongst my possessions when I boarded that plane one week ago but now I have a few of them. A precious little handful of hopes to clutch to tightly to my chest when the clouds are hard and heavy above my head instead of light and beautiful beneath my wings 





10 comments:

  1. What a beautiful trip - when you said the food was expensive, I didn;t expect quite that much! haha :) but if you loved it and it made the trip for you, then who cares for how much it cost! Definitely a place on my bucket list to visit! Alice xxx

    www.woodenwindowsills.co.uk

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Some places were ridiculous but there were also lots of little cheap places, it just took a lot of hunting around! I think we managed a good mix of splurging and saving food wise, I'm such a foodie I just couldn't resist some of the pricier locations. The Streetfood place was shut when we visited but I gather that's a pretty inexpensive way to eat in Copenhagen too

      Milly
      xx

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  2. Wow that apartment looks amazing and I never knew Copenhagen was so scenic! I must visit - although it does sound way too cold for me! haha xx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It was lovely but yes, I'd definitely like to return when it's a bit warmer! We should plan a bloggers trip soon

      Milly
      xx

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  3. Every time you posted pictures of your trip here it made me want to go SO BADLY! It's now fully on top of my travel list! x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It was amazing, a photographers dream come true! Definitely one to visit and the flights are really cheap which makes it a bit easier

      Milly
      xx

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  4. It is great photo report about your journey. I think you got a lot of positive emotions during this trip.

    ReplyDelete
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