Cocooning as a religion
The Danes say they are happy to be alive, and this affirmation of vitality is especially felt in their capital, Copenhagen.
The emblem of the city is Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy-tale The Little Mermaid, who, from her rock, seems to observe the Copenhagen harbour with an air of melancholy. Yet Copenhagen (København in Danish) hardly engenders melancholy. Denmark’s capital offers visitors a double facet: that of a city proud of its architectural heritage and that of a metropolis with a warm and minimalist design that is resolutely turned towards the future.
Whatever the period chosen for strolling in Copenhagen, you cannot help being seduced by its gentleness and friendliness, which the Danes call hygge, an expression that means creating a warm atmosphere and enjoying the present moment with good people.
To counter the cold to which the Scandinavian regions are prone, the city is draped in multiple colours. The most famous example is the picturesque Nyhavn harbour district, where Hans Christian Andersen lived for 18 years and where the colourful facades are reflected on the waters of the canal. But you can admire dollhouse architecture everywhere in Copenhagen, with elegant brick buildings covered in pretty pastel colours.
The city has a reputation for being one of the most sustainable in the world and this respectful relationship with the environment is very apparent, as bicycles are king. You will have no trouble finding a rental store, so like any good self-respecting Copenhagener, take the opportunity to ride a bike. It will be your best ally for discovering Copenhagen’s secrets, as you ride through its many cobbled streets.
The numerous bars and restaurants reflect the cosmopolitan richness of the city, a legacy of long ago when Copenhagen was only a small port of merchants, founded by the Vikings. After your tour by bike, relax around a good beer brewed on site and enjoy a smørrebrød, a slice of buttered bread accompanied with fresh products that will delight your taste buds with their simplicity and quality.
Welcome to the capital of Denmark, which has made pampering a real lifestyle!
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© Text and photography courtesy of EnVols