Ever since C started to visit Sweden (in total 3 times in the 4 years I have known him) it has become our tradition to spend a night in Copenhagen. This makes more sense when you realise that my parents have their house in Skåne which is in the South of Sweden and our closest international airport is in fact Copenhagen, Denmark and that is where we always fly into.
This year was no exception. In regards to timing it worked out brilliantly. My brother and I were unable to co-ordinate our holidays this year –each having our own commitments to uphold. I had a friend’s wedding to attend and he had work obligations, however after a brief skype session a couple of months before, we realised that our paths were going to cross. We would all be arriving at Copenhagen airport an hour apart. C and I were flying in from Mexico, and Patrik was flying in from Finland after visiting his girlfriend to then continue on to Abu Dhabi a couple of hours later. So we set up a date, and managed to have a lovely lunch together in the Hilton Copenhagen Airport Hotel before we went our separate ways (truly the international family!)
Talking of the Hilton Copenhagen Airport Hotel – this is now where we have stayed twice and we love it. No, it’s not as charming as some of the smaller boutique hotels in the centre, but I promise you – after you have travelled for the last 15 hours, queued in endless security lines, contorted your body in every shape possible just to find a remotely comfy position on the plane – the Hitlon is going to seem like a god-send.
Its a 5 minute walk from the moment you clear customs. You don’t even have to leave the building and you can push your trolly all the way up to the check-in counter! The rooms are fresh and clean – with impossibly white and fluffy bedding, not to mention that even in a king size bed you each get your own duvet – no pulling and hogging the covers here! And you can catch up on a few hours of much needed sleep!
Although admittedly you are not in the thick of things when you stay at the Hilton – however it only takes 10 minutes to get into town with the Metro which is a stone’s throw away from the hotel. What is incredibly convenient is that the metro operates for 24 hours so you never have to worry about how to get back.
After a few hours of much needed sleep – C and I dragged ourselves out of the hotel and made our way to Nyhavn which is a fantastic bustling waterside quay, with rows upon rows of restaurants and bars, which are probably quite touristy, but the atmosphere is so vibrant and fun you immediately feed off the energy. We were incredibly lucky with the weather, because the day we arrived, summer decided to arrive too – and there was just this buzz of excitement in the air. There is nothing like sitting on the water’s edge, doing a bit of people watching, drinking a beer and basking in the summer’s sun at 7pm.
I am sure most of the restaurants along this strip are more or less of the same calibre, but I can truly recommend Nyhavn Cafeen. The service is friendly, the wine is good and you must try the fried plaice with butter sauce, that just screams Scandiavian Summer! Not to mention the Moulles Marinieres were damn good too :)
Due to jeg lag the next day, C and I were wide awake at 5am and rearing to go! We managed to hold off until 7.30 before we made our way down to the concierge and ask for any good recommendations for brunch. It’s been a while since I lived in Scandinavia, and what I forgot about, is that Sunday is Sunday, and many shops do not open and even fewer restaurants are open for breakfast! However we were given a name of a cafe that could possibly be open but were warned that it was rather touristy.
I was a bit worried about the sound of this cafe – but I shouldn’t have been, it was probably the highlight of my day (surprise, surprise that my highlight revolved around food!). Cafe Norden, situated in the centre of town in Stroget, was a rather modern cafe, but with traditional charm. The huge windows, incredibly comfy seating and the smell of freshly ground coffee and baked cakes entices you to lounge hours on end.
Without really looking at the menu we ordered two brunch menus and sat back and enjoyed our coffee…I may be slightly biased here, but in my opinion Scandinavia serves the best coffee in the world. You can go to pretty much any cafe, restaurant, petrol station or kiosk and you will get a descent cup of coffee – proven by the surprising lack of Starbucks!. Not only that, you will get the coffee you ordered! One of my pet peeves here in Mexico, is that when you order a latte, you will get a cappuccino, and when you order a cappuccino you get a latte – and then when you finally think you have cracked the code and order a cappuccino expecting a latte…you get that bloody cappuccino…!
When the food arrived, it was apparent that the Danes really take their brunch seriously – no boring eggs on toast or a dry croissant! As it’s name sake indicates-it literally is breakfast and lunch together…a beautiful platter of fresh fruit, freshly made bread, hams and cured meat, salmon pate, scrambled eggs and bacon, a berry smoothy and a wedge of cake….all on one plate! It was heaven – although C and I could have completely shared the platter, rather than beeing two little piggies and ordering one each. Not only did it look fantastic but it tasted fantastic too – I have photos to prove it…enjoy :)
After spending a few hours at the cafe, taking it easy and catching up on the latest news, and of course after having eaten far too much food – it was time to explore the city. If you are lucky and have supberb weather, you can spend hours walking around Copenhagen, looking at shops, visiting museums, take a strol in Tivoli the second oldest and most beutiful amusement park in the world, stop for a massive Danish ice cream, wonder down to the water front, take a boat tour. It really is the perfect city just to amble around in. If you are not convinced that Copenhagen is for you – I hope that this post and the following photos will have changed your mind*
*Disclaimer: If it is raining this post does not apply ;) Good Luck!