Thursday, May 31, 2012

Copenhagen International Sand Sculpture Festival 2012

The Copenhagen International Sand Sculpture Festival 2012 is one of the largest and most spectacular sand sculpture events taking place in Europe. The sculptures are created by some of the world’s most talented sand artists, including sand art maestro Sudarsan Pattnaik from India. They have created 21 sand sculptures and an almost 200m long frieze The festival is located on Ofelia Beach within walking distance of The Royal Palace Amalienborg, The Royal Playhouse and The Opera House. It takes place from today until 5 August 2012. -RS

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

The Marble Bridge

The Marble Bridge and riding ground at Christiansborg Castle are all that survived the devastating fire of 1794. The Marble Bridge with its two pavilions marks the main entrance to the palace. The pavement is paved with Norwegian marble while the roadway is cobbled. The Palaces and Properties Agency finished restoring the riding ground and Marble Bridge in 1996. -RS

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

The shot ice bear

"Polar bear with cubs" is a statue in Langelinie and represents Greenland. It was cast in bronze by the Danish sculptor Holger Wederkinch and was awarded with gold medal in 1929 in Paris. If you look closely you will notice the polar bear has some bullet holes, made by a German soldier under the Occupation of Denmark. -RS

Monday, May 28, 2012

The sausage wagon man

Throughout the city one will see these hotdogsellers's wagons (Danish pølse vogn mænd which is sausage wagon men if translated literally)and this guy was on his way to his usual spot opposite the Post Office Museum on Købmagergade. These guys are usually very talkative and locals catch up on the city's gossip and a general chat regularly. The simplest sausage wagons are portable and very temporary, but most are more permanent. They are typically a metal wagon with an open window to the street, and a counter where one can stand and eat the sausage. There's even an ecological hotdog seller next to the Round Tower further on in the street. -RS

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Houses for birds

The residents of this apartment building in Vesterbro has decided to attract more birdlife to the city. This trend seems to be picking up and I've noticed more and more birdhouses. The Danish Ornithological Society/BirdLife Denmark (in Danish: Dansk Ornitologisk Forening - DOF)even provides a database on which you can find birds reported to DOFbasen seen in the area of Copenhagen today! -RS

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Vesterbro Torv

Vesterbro Torv is a small triangular square which is situated at Vesterbrogade and Gasværksvej in Copenhagen. It dates back to 1850 and today has many outdoor cafes. Elias Church dominate the space. -RS

Friday, May 25, 2012

Shaking our booty

During the weekend of Pentecost in 1982, Copenhagen saw the emergence of its first carnival. Since then, the carnival has become an integral part of Pentecost in Copenhagen. This means that this year the carnival is celebrating its 30th anniversary. You can see the impressive carnival parade at Copenhagen Carnival. The parade starts at Højbro Plads (Amagertorv) at 10 a.m. and will go through Strøget to Rådhuspladsen. The parade is expected to end at around 3 p.m. Copenhagen Carnival 2012 is taking place from the 25-27th of May in Fælledparken. -RS

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Running along

The Copenhagen Marathon is an annual event and this year a record 10,500 people ran the race through the streets of the city. The Dane, Martin Parkhøi, number 39 in the photo won this year. -RS

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

The other Hans Christian

Most visitors to Denmark know of Hans Christian Andersen, the writer, but another one, Hans Christian Ørsted deserves more recognition. Ørsted was a Danish physicist and chemist who discovered that electric currents create magnetic fields, an important aspect of electromagnetism. He is credited with shaping post-Kantian philosophy and advances in science throughout the late 19th century. The oersted (Oe), the cgs unit of magnetic H-field strength, is named after him. Ørstedsparken is a public park in central Copenhagen and named after this great Dane. -RS

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

A transport hub

Copenhagen Central Station (Danish: Københavns Hovedbanegård, København H) is the largest train station in Denmark and has 13 platforms. Intercity, Regional trains, S-trains, taxis, buses and from 2017 a underground metro station carry the hundreds of thousand of passengers.

The current station recently celebrated its 100th birthday and plans to modernise it will see it running another century.

One thing that is particularly striking is the wooden beams which span the hall. Usually steel would have been used but the builders of the station opted for the more elegant solution.


Monday, May 21, 2012

What to do on a Monday

Like most cities around Europe Copenhagen's museums are for the largest part closed on Mondays. A few smaller museums might be open and one can use the opportunity to walk around town or take a tour.

However, at the moment the Botanical Gardens are awash with colour and would be a great place to wile away a few hours.

Renovations of the park will be finished around September 2012.


Sunday, May 20, 2012

A whale of a time

The Natural History Museum of Denmark houses one of the world's largest collections of whale skeletons. The museum is slightly off the usual route for tourists and unfortunately does not get enough feet through the door.

However, a number of the very large specimens are now exhibited in Maskinhallen in the corner of The Botanical Garden - in the company of the fin whale which beached in Vejle in 2010.

This exhibition is well worth a visit and the display is open from the 16th of May to 21st of October 2012.


Saturday, May 19, 2012

Copenhagen in miniature

The Museum of Copenhagen (Danish: Københavns Bymuseum) is the official museum of Copenhagen documents the history of Copenhagen from the 12th century to the present day. the museum is located in the former premises of the Royal Copenhagen Shooting Society. Outside the museum's entrance is a large scale model of medieval Copenhagen. -RS

Friday, May 18, 2012

The original is in Florence

Many visitors to Copenhagen is amazed to see the statue of David in copper on the harbour. There are many full-sized replicas of the statue around the world, perhaps the most prominent being the one in the original's position in the Piazza della Signoria in Florence, Italy. The original sculpture was moved indoors in 1873 to the Accademia Gallery in Florence, where it attracts many visitors. The one in Denmark is less of an attraction but still a crowd-pleaser. -RS

Thursday, May 17, 2012

A tale of three towers

The coat of arms of Copenhagen was granted on 24 June 1661 by king Frederick III of Denmark in recognition of its citizens' efforts in repelling the Swedish siege and attack on Copenhagen in 1658-1659. The central feature of the full arms are three towers rising above water, a symbol also appearing in the town's seal from 1296. Originally, the left and right towers represented Absalon's castle and the central tower a church building inside the castle. By the 16th century, the central tower was no longer depicted as a church tower, instead it had a gateway with a portcullis. King Frederick III modified the original symbol by adding a knight carrying a raised sword in front of the gateway. This photo is of the mile-marker on the Rådhusplads. -RS

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Little boxes

Above the restaurant in the State Museum of Art (Danish: Statens Museum for Kunst) is this piece with multi-coloured glass cubes. The museum was built in 1891-6 and consists of a main building with rooms for paintings and sculpture and an engraving department, as well as an annex for special exhibitions. -RS

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

The least well-known statue in Copenhagen

Underwater in Holmens Canal, between Højbroplads and Christiansborg, is probably the least-known sight in Copenhagen: the statue of Agnete and the Merman. The statue is based on old Danish folklore and illustrates the story of a woman, Agnete, that agrees to go to the bottom of the sea and live with a merman as his wife. The story is perhaps best known for Hans Christian Andersens interpretation from 1834. Off course, it ends badly... -RS

Monday, May 14, 2012

More plants than you can shake a stick at

In the Botanic Garden of Copenhagen, 21642 living specimens of plants represents a total of more than 8677 species from 285 families. In comparison, the total flora of Europe numbers some 11 thousand species, and the total world flora of higher plants is estimated to be between 260 and 300 thousand species. Due to the cold Danish climate, there are several very large glasshouses in the gardens. This are just one of them. -RS

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Trinitatis Church

The Trinity Church was inaugurated in 1656 and consegrated as a church for the professors and students of the University. Today it serves as ordinary parish church. It is, with the Round Tower part of the Trinitatis Complex near the centre of town. -RS

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Changing of the Guard

The Royal Guards have protected Danish Kings and Queens plus the Royal Palaces and Castles since 1658. Changing of the Guard is one of the oldest and most common of all royal ceremonies - a new guard exchanges duty with the old guard to continue their operational commitments - and the handover is mainly accompanied by a the Royal Guards music band playing traditional military marches. Visitors to Amalienborg can see this event daily at 12 noon. -RS

Friday, May 11, 2012

The Kneeling Barbarian

One of my favourite places to go on a rainy Sunday here in Copenhagen is the Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek. The entrance is free on Sundays and there is a very good coffeeshop located on the premises. I never fail to go and look at the Roman sculpture "The Kneeling Barbarian" which dates to ca. 20 BC. This exquisite work is part of a monument to the Roman Conquest of the East. -RS

Thursday, May 10, 2012

The Clown Prince of Denmark

Victor Borge was a Danish-American comedian, conductor and pianist. He was affectionately known as the Clown Prince of Denmark. Starting piano lessons at the age of two it was soon apparent he was a child prodigy who at 17 years of age gave his first major performance. After a few years as a classical concert pianist, he started his now famous "stand up" act, with the signature blend of piano music and jokes. Among Borge's famous routines is the "Phonetic Punctuation" routine, which earned him the admiration of Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and other greats of the entertainment industry. This photo was taken in Østerbro. -RS

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Copenhagen University

The University of Copenhagen (Danish: Københavns Universitet), founded in 1479, is the oldest and second largest university and research institution in Denmark. According to University Ranking by Academic Performance (URAP), University of Copenhagen is the best university in Denmark and 47th university in the world. Almost 60% of the students are female and the first female student was enrolled at the university in 1877. -RS

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Streetlights again

After more than thirty years of service incandescent light-bulbs are being replaced with energy-saving ones, also on street lighting. The biggest problem with these are the light itself which is cold and white. Another blogger wrote this: "Just to give you a comparison the rendition of colors by daylight is 100%, by incandescent lightbulbs 99%, and by energy saving bulbs 80%. Who needs reds anyway, right? For an indoor population in a country with such sparse daylight, this is pretty devastating news." I could not agree more. Luckily the weather has turned and for the next few months at least the natural light should make the switching on of these abominations unnecessary! -RS

Monday, May 7, 2012

Extreme ride

With more than 4.5 million annual visitors Tivoli is the most popular seasonal theme park in the world, the most visited theme park in Scandinavia. This particular theme ride at Tivoli is for the brave amongst us! Happy Monday! -RS

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Seeing the stars

The Tycho Brahe Planetarium is located at the southern end of Skt. Jørgens Sø near Vesterbro. It is named after astronomer Tycho Brahe, a Danish nobleman known for his accurate and comprehensive astronomical and planetary observations and opened on November 1, 1989.


Saturday, May 5, 2012

Apis Temple

The Apis Temple is located in the Frederiksberg Garden and was designed in the style of a Roman temple by the painter Nicolai Abildgaard and built in 1802. It served as a teahouse for the roayls and later as the entrance to the Copenhagen Zoo.

Of late the temple is occasionally open for the public and has been used for art exhibitions.


Friday, May 4, 2012

Springtime surprise

Amaliehaven is a small park located between Amalienborg Palace and the waterfront in the Frederiksstaden neighbourhood of central Copenhagen. It was established in 1983 as a gift from the A.P. Møller and Chastine McKinney Møller Foundation.

Japanese cherry trees currently blooms and plays a particularly destinctive role among the parks vegetation.


Thursday, May 3, 2012

A church and art centre

Nikolaj Kirik located very near the Stroget. It was the 3rd oldest church in Copenhagen behind St. Clemens and Vor Frue. While those churches were used by farmers, the Nikolaj Kirik was built for sailors, fisherman and tradesmen. (At one time, Copenhagen's harbor stretched right up to the foot of the church.)

The building was destroyed by fire, and rebuilt but the parish was dissolved in 1805. The building languished thereafter. Since 1917 it has functioned as a museum, library and lecture hall, but now is an art exhibition hall/gallery and is known as "Nikolaj Udstillingsbygning".

The Nikolaj Undstillingsbygning is open daily from Noon til 5pm. Admission for adults is 20 DKK; free for children 15 and younger. On Wednesdays, admission is FREE!


Wednesday, May 2, 2012

The brewer's collection

The Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek (Glypto-, from the Greek root glyphein, to carve and theke, a storing-place) is an art museum housing the personal collection of Carl Jacobsen (1842–1914), the son of the founder of the Carlsberg Breweries.

Jacobsen donated his collection to the Danish State and the City of Copenhagen on condition that they provided a suitable building for its exhibition. This museum is now a premier destination for locals and tourists alike.


Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Islands Brygge

Islands Brygge (English: Iceland Quay) is a harbourfront area in central Copenhagen established through a series of Land reclamations from the 1880s, serving both military, residential, industrial and dockland purposes.

Since 2000 it has undergone massive redevelopment and has become a fashionable and attractive neighbourhood.