Some cities are more than a spot on a map. Copenhagen, my kære København, is one of those places. I like to say that if you come to Copenhagen as a tourist, there isn’t much to find. But if you come here in search of life, magic, fairytales, and peace you’re in the right place. This is my story about my city and finding inspiration and, yes, a little magic in every day life.
Years ago, Copenhagen was just a small fishing village, a hamlet unbeknownst to the world. A place where tall blonde Viking warriors ruled (and still kind of do). Fast forward to today: This city is a thriving hub of design, creativity, business and global notoriety. And, as noted, frequently tops the list as the happiest place on earth with the happiest people. Copenhagen makes ample room for simple living. The city is built to be bicycle friendly, like super bicycle friendly. Even the Crown Prince of Denmark is known for cycling his children back and forth from daycare. The locals follow his example, biking through rain, snow and sleet, rightfully earning the tag “The Viking Biking” people.
It’s not just the people that make Copenhagen praise-worthy. It’s the city itself. Its natural and innate appreciation of music and art, gastronomy, fashion, design all make it a special experience for all who visit. And, as an added bonus, the efficiency with which most things function, make it a peaceful and organized city. The unassuming simplicity of people strutting around in all black everything and skinny jeans (with just enough hint of color on their scarves and boots) give a a vibe of utter coolness.
And there is skinny dipping. Yes, lots of it – and most of it takes place in near freezing conditions. It’s tradition. But the seasons change (we actually have all four). Sunflowers in the summer and fairy lights and mulled wine in winter – showing the world that the darkest days can be the best time of your life.
If you walk around Copenhagen, making your way on cobble stoned pavements and passing moody murals, you will hear the faint sound of church bells tolling in the distance. You will pass cozy cafe windows, glowing by candlelight, casting shadows of the sweater-clad impossibly blonde and beautiful people inside. Sometimes, as you pass, the door will swing open and you catch a whiff of cinnamon and coffee, a silent, seductive invitation. (Author’s note: you should walk on, these cafes are wonderful, but 50 kr for an espresso shot? PS: walk in for the free postcards, though. Those are nice. And did I mention free?)
When you take the metro, you are likely to notice people sitting alone together, some looking out of the windows vacantly. Some will be lost in a book.
As you make your way past the commuters, take a moment to look around you. Have a look at the brilliant clear sky and take notice of the thoughtfully planted seasonal flowers around public gardens. Notice the artistic facades, the marble domes peeking into the sky, the piers with ice cream, swans gliding by (yes, real swans!).
Copenhagen is more than a place on a map. It’s a place where you will always be serenaded by water and celebrated by sky. The city has a touch of magic fairy dust to it and you will leave both inspired and humbled.
Do you have a story about experiencing creativity in your city? Tell us by writing to email@example.com… We’ll post your stories – and we’ll have a conversation. What could be more awesome than that?