Her Scandinavian Secrets
-- 50 Travel Tips
Did you know...
1) 1.5 million Americans have at least one Danish ancestor.
2) Denmark is the happiest country in the world. In May
21009 The Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development
released a report showing that happiness levels are highest
in northern European countries -- with Denmark as the
number one country followed by Finland and the Netherlands.
1) Most state-run museums are free all the time. Some
are free on select days (often Wednesdays).
2) If you are 65+ you get 50% discount on train tickets
(Danish State Railway) and 25% off on Friday, Sunday and
3) Check with www.visitdenmark.com
for information about buying a Copenhagen Card that offers
unlimited free travel on all buses and trains in the metropolitain
area plus free or discounted entrance to many major sights
in and around the city.
(Source: Unbelievably Good Deals and Great Adventures
that You absolutely Can't Get Unless You're Over 50)
Have dinner with a Danish
is a helpful tip especially for women travelling solo.
When in Copenhagen, Denmark, don't miss your chance to
'Meet the Danes.' This is a service that arranges home-dinners
with a Danish family or, in our case, a single woman and
her friend. Our home-dinner was timed just right, at the
end of our visit to Denmark. By that time we were filled
with questions and the conversation never lagged -- we
talked till quite late. The food (a traditional Danish
meal which we toasted with Danish 'aquavit' schnapps),
was really delicious, as well. The cost is DKK395 for
adults, and children 10-14 yrs. DKK 150. Under 10 kiddies
are free. Meet the Danes requires at least a week's notice
in order to arrange for a home-dinner host. Check their
Have fun, everybody!
Virginia, Atlanta, USA
say this Copenhagen buffet is a great deal...
One great place to eat in downtown Copenhagen is Riz Raz.
There are several Riz Raz restaurants within the downtown
area - they are marked on the free tourist map of Copenhagen.
Riz Raz has a large vegetarian buffet for a very decent
price (especially for Denmark!) and the food is delicious
- especially the falafel balls which are a popular item.
There are also a la carte choices available and it is
licensed for alcohol. Frommer calls it the best food deal
Karen, Victoria, Canada
Since I don't understand Danish, when traveling in Copenhagen
I found the restaurant menus somewhat intimidating. Then
I discovered a wonderful restaurant named Riz Raz (two
locations in the city). They open at 11:30 for lunch and
it's a terrific Mediterranean buffet. You can see all
the food possibilities and help yourself to luscious salads,
fresh baked breads, desserts, etc. without having to decipher
the menu. Outside seating was available so you can people
watch while you eat. I ended up eating lunch at this restaurant
several times, and then having only a light snack for
Linda, Tualatin, USA
The small island of Bornholm...
My favorite place in the world is the small Danish island
of Bornholm located about 100 miles from Copenhagen (off
the SE coast of Sweden). It's accessible via plane, boat
from Germany, Ystad, Sweden, and Copenhagen. Undiscovered
by tourists for the most part, unless they're from Denmark,
Sweden, or Germany, it's a peaceful, very scenic, historic
escape with lots of handicrafts sold in small stores and
workshops all over the island. Multiple 'summer homes'
are available for rent.
Besides the little country roads through the farmland
in the interior, there are only a few main roads (still
only 2 lanes wide) one that encircles the island, one
that crosses the island North to South (45-60 min.) and
another East to West (30 min.). Added treat -- all have
bike paths next to them for those who care to tour by
bike. The northern part of the island has a rocky coast,
the southern part has beaches, including Duoedde with
it's high sand dunes, long boardwalk to the sea, and extremely
fine white sand that has been used for hundreds of years
in hourglasses all over Europe.
Four white Round Churches are unique and worth visiting.
In addition, there are castle ruins, bird sanctuaries,
prehistoric or Viking artifacts and rock carvings, geological
features, tiny fishing harbors in little villages all
around the coast, herring smokehouses, and two tiny islands
off the coast for day trips. I've been to Bornholm at
least nine times and am available and very happy to answer
any questions other JourneyWomen may have about visiting
Anne, Glendale, USA
cards not accepted everywhere...
When travelling in Denmark, Sweden and Norway I was surprised
to find that some establishments in Denmark did not accept
credit cards from outside of their own country. Be prepared
and make sure you have some Danish Krona in your pocket.
I also brought along some pre-paid international
calling cards so that I could make calls from Scandinavia
to the US. I had lots of problems using the cards in Swedish
hotels. Of the three I brought with me, I was able to
get at least one of them to work at any time. In Stockholm
none of them would work, however I did not try using them
from a pay phone. My suggestion would be to buy at least
three different brands of pre-paid calling cards at $10
each in case you find one or more do not work.
Deb, Eagan, USA
open air museum...
Just north of Copenhagen, just north of the small suburb
of Lyngby (accessible by bus) is a wonderful Open Air
Museum (Frilandsmuseet). Over 100 farmhouses, of all types,
from all over Denmark have been carefully transported
and recreated here with similar gardens and fields as
from where they came. Each rock and plank has been put
in place as it was before. Furniture is from the era of
the house. Allow yourselves several hours here and bring
a picnic. Both adults and children find it fascinating.
I suggest buying the book in the giftstore that explains
the histories of the farmhouses. In the summer they have
people demonstrating crafts and baking. My great great
uncle Kai Uldall was a director there for many years and
donated some of the land the museum is built on. http://www.nationalmuseet.dk/sw20384.asp
Lyngby (mentioned above) is also a pleasant place to spend
a day shopping, wandering and stopping for lunch. The
train stops right in downtown Lyngby.
Karen, Victoria, Canada
know when visiting Denmark...
I'm a Danish expat living in Canada. You should know that
Denmark has the most expensive sales tax (VAT) in the
world -- a whopping 25 % -- but the price you see is the
price you pay. Sales tax is already included in any posted
No need to tip in restaurants. They add
15% to your bill automatically. Eating in restaurants
is expensive. Try cafeterias where you can find open Danish
Sandwiches. They're great!
Don't exchange travellers checks in banks.
You'll probably pay $6 US dollars per transaction.
Take the train To Hillerod. Approximately
twenty minutes from town there is the most beautiful 16th
Century castle. Make a day of it. Walk down the mainstreet
called Slotsgaden to the castle and (after you've explored
it inside and out) have a little lunch by the castle.
It's an exquisite experience.
If they have ballet performances on The
Old Stage of the The Royal Theatre get tickets. You won't
Bodil, Vancouver Island, Canada
Copenhagen travel tip...
This is my advice for JourneyWomen coming to my part of
the world. Buy some open sandwiches at a smorrebrod shop
for lunch, and eat them on a bench in the Botanical Gardens
(near the National Art Museum). In the gardens is a huge
greenhouse, Palmehuset, which is also well worth a visit.
Another Copenhagen travel tip is to take a train trip
across the bridge (one of the longest in Europe) to Malmö,
Tyra, Lund, Sweden
bits and pieces...
If you like design, visit the store 'Illums Bolighus'
(not to be confused with Illums department store nearby)
on the Walking Street (Stroget) in downtown Copenhagen.
There are three large floors of the latest Scandinavian,
and modern design in housewares, furniture, lighting and
clothing. It is easy to spend a couple of hours there.
The store also has an open link to the Royal
Copenhagen Porcelain store next door. On part of the top
floor of Royal Copenhagen is their discount section. Discounted
items have a scratch through the 3 blue waves on the bottom
of the piece. If you spend over 300 Kroners at one time
in one store you can ask the store for a form for applying
for a tax rebate at the airport. The rebate is not as
high as one hopes but you do get at least half the tax
(the tax is 25% in Denmark) back. It usually arrives weeks
My sister says there is a great roof cafe
at the top of the Post Office Museum downtown. The opening
hours of the café are the same as of the museum
except Sundays where the café opens at 11.00 a.m.
The kitchen opens at 11 o'clock Thursday-Saturday and
closes one hour before the café. Table reservation
is recommended. Tel.: +45 33 41 09 86. Travelling with
little ones? Strollers are not allowed in the café,
but must be placed in the cloakroom on the ground floor.
Our Danish friends all strongly recommended
the canal boat tour out of Nyhavn downtown. We didn't
have time on our last visit but will definitely do it
next time we go.
For a great view of downtown Copenhagen
walk up to the top the Round Tower (Rundetaarn). The cost
is 25 Kroner. One of the kings used to ride his horses
up the inside wide winding ramp to the top. There is a
glimpse into an old church interior attached to the tower
and there is an art gallery halfway up. At the top there
is a short narrow winding staircase to the incredible
circular view of Copenhagen.
Karen, Victoria, Canada