Europe Journals

Fall 2009 Trip to Europe

An October 2009 trip to Europe by ch2001

Grossmünster (Great Church) Photo, Zurich, Switzerland More Photos
Quote: In October of 2009 we took a week long trip to Europe exploring the cities of Zurich, Copenhagen and Malmo.

Day 1 - Zurich

Marriott Zurich

Hotel | "Great Hotel in a Quiet Spot"

Marriott Zurich Photo, Zurich, Switzerland
Quote:
We stayed at the Marriott for two nights. When researching the hotel we learned there are two buildings to the hotel - the main tower has renovated rooms and the second tower has renovated rooms. Ask for one of the renovated rooms.

The room was extremely nice - new bedding and furniture. The bathroom was spacious and modern. The workout facilities were top notch - new equipment, big steam room, and a quiet relaxation space.

The hotel sits on the north end of town, less than a five minute walk from the train station. It takes just fifteen minutes to reach the Grossmunster.

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on November 26, 2009

Marriott Zurich
NEUMUEHLEQUAI 42
Zurich, Switzerland
41-1-360-7070

Confiserie Sprüngli

Attraction | "Amazing Swiss Chocolate"

Confiserie Sprüngli Photo, Zurich, Switzerland
Quote:
There are numerous Sprungli stores in Zurich, but the one located on the Paradeplatz is by far the best - the one located in the Hauptbahnhof is open on Sunday.

A 200 gram box of chocolates (pralines and truffles) cost me roughly 20 franc, but so worth it! The dark and milk chocolates are both spectacular. We also sampled the Luxemburgerli, which were scrumptious. The hazelnut is the best in my opinion.

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on November 26, 2009

Confiserie Sprüngli
Paradeplatz, Bahnhofstrasse 21
Zurich, Switzerland 8022
+ 41 44 224 47 11

Le Dezaley

Restaurant | "Traditional Swiss under the Grossmunster"

Le Dezaley Photo, Zurich, Switzerland
Quote:
This restaurant serves up traditional Swiss food. The restaurant is a bit hard to find - sits on a steep side street across from the Grossmunster. Reservations are highly recommended as many parties were turned away in the short time we were there.

Le Dezaley is known for their fondue, and the locals seem to like it. It's large enough to split between two to four people. We split the fondue and a sausage between two people and weren't able to finish it all. The inside has a mountain ski lodge feel to it - once you enter from the cold you won't want to leave.

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on November 28, 2009

Le Dezaley
Romergasse 7/9
Zurich, Switzerland
+41 44 251 61 29

Day 2 - Zurich

Cafe Schober

Restaurant | "Tasty Hot Chocolate and Pastries"

Cafe Schober Photo, Zurich, Switzerland
Quote:
Cafe Schober is a Zurich institution - and you should definitely pay it a visit on your trip! It was recently purchased and the new owner has made some changes to the menu, although they have kept the hot chocolate for which Cafe Schober is known. The hot chocolate is made with fresh milk and chocolate - make sure to order the whipped cream. The pain au chocolat we ordered were excellent. The outdoor seating is popular all throughout the day, and I highly recommend enjoying your treats there.

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on December 1, 2009

Cafe Schober
Napfgasse 4
Zurich, Switzerland CH-8001
(01) 251 80 60

Grossmünster (Great Church)

Attraction | "A Frightening Climb for an Amazing View"

Grossmünster (Great Church) Photo, Zurich, Switzerland
Quote:
This is a must do for everyone visiting Zurich, not only because you can burn off some of the chocolate you gorged on, but for the breathtaking views of Zurich and the alps. The climb is a mix of steep stairs, winding stairs, and ladders. When you emerge on the platform there's a 360 degree view of Zurich. Look toward the lake for an amazing view of the Alps on a clear day.

There is a sign in the church listing the hours the tower is open. The climb costs 2 francs.

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on November 26, 2009

Grossmünster (Great Church)
Zwingliplatz, Altstadt
Zurich, Switzerland 8001

Vorderer Sternen Grill

Restaurant | "Popular Sausage Stand with the Locals"

Vorderer Sternen Grill Photo, Zurich, Switzerland
Quote:
Called Zurich's most famous sausage stand, it sits next to the UBS bank building at Bellevue. It's a cross between a stand and a restaurant with plenty of covered and outdoor seating. They have red and white sausages that come with a roll (5-7 CHF). If you plan to eat there you buy your sausage and sit down, at which time a waiter will take your drink order (5 CHF for a soda). I highly recommend the Vorderer Sternen Grill for lunch!

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on November 26, 2009

Vorderer Sternen Grill
22 Theaterstrasse
Zurich, Switzerland
+41 044 251 49 49

Zeughauskeller Restaurant

Restaurant | "One of the Best Meals of the Trip"

Zeughauskeller Restaurant Photo, Zurich, Switzerland
Quote:
We almost skipped Zeughauskeller because some of the reviews said it was touristy - but it was inexpensive compared to some of the other restaurants in Zurich so we tried it and loved it. It's housed in an old armory with vaulted ceilings - a traditional Brauhaus setting. The mix of diners was skewed more toward travelers, but there were many locals. They have a great menu of traditional German food - sausages, weinersnitchel, etc - we stuck to the seasonal special menu. The wild boar, local to the Zurich area, was mouthwatering! If you're in the mood for a heavy, authentic German meal, this is your place.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on November 26, 2009

Zeughauskeller Restaurant
Bahnhofstrasse 28a near Paradeplatz
Zurich, Switzerland 8001
41 (44) 211 26 90

Day 3 - Copenhagen

Copenhagen Strand Hotel

Hotel | "Perfect Location, Great Hotel"

Copenhagen Strand Hotel Photo, Copenhagen, Denmark
Quote:
The Strand is in a great location - central to everything to see in Copenhagen. Nyhavn, Slotsholmen and the Strøget are each only a five minute walk from the hotel - Christianshavn is just a ten minute walk. The lobby of the hotel is very comfortable - plush couches, comfortable chairs, and lots of candles. The registration desk transitions into a full service bar with beer on tap, wine, soda and a cappuccino machine. There's also a computer with free internet access.Our room was on the top floor and faced south into a courtyard behind an apartment building. The room was fairly small, but the bathroom was spacious and we had a balcony complete with table and chairs. The bed was extre...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on March 20, 2010

Copenhagen Strand Hotel
HAVNEGADE 37
Copenhagen, Denmark
45 33489900

Cap Horn

Restaurant | "Good Danish Food, but Expensive"

Cap Horn Photo, Copenhagen, Denmark
Quote:
For our first meal in Copenhagen we wanted a Danish restaurant close to the hotel, so we consulted our guidebook for restaurants near Nyhavn, a canal lined with restaurants that is popular with tourists and locals. Our first choice was closed, so we went with our back up – Cap Horn.We would have liked nothing more that to sit outside by the canal but it was raining and a bit chilly. After a quick look over the menu and coming to terms with the high prices we went inside. We both ordered beer and bowls of pumpkin soup. Ryan ordered white fish in an odd celery sauce and I ordered Coq au Vin (not very Danish). We were pleased with the dinner until the bill came. The total was 600 Kroner...Read More

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on March 20, 2010

Cap Horn
Nyhavn 21
Copenhagen K, Denmark 1051
+45 33 12 85 04

Day 4 - Copenhagen

Tour of Slotsholmen

Best Of IgoUgo

Story/Tip

Photo of Copenhagen, Denmark
Quote:
We left Højbro Plads by walking south toward Slotsholmen, the birthplace of Copenhagen. We crossed the Højbro bridge and stepped foot on the island where Bishop Absalon built his castle and founded the city. You could spend a whole day exploring the buildings around Slotsholmen. The main focal point of the island is Christiansborg Palace, former residence to the roayal family, and now home to the Royal Receiving Rooms, the Prime Minister’s office, the Supreme Court and the Folketinget, or Parliament. We entered a courtyard on the north west side of the palace to have a quick look at the outside of the Thorvaldsens Museum which houses works by Denmark’s most famous sculpter for whom the building is...Read More

Lagkagehusets

Restaurant | "Best Danishes in the City"

Lagkagehusets Photo, Copenhagen, Denmark
Quote:
Lagkagehusets was featured on Samantha Brown’s Passport to Europe and many books and sites recommended a visit. In the windows were hundreds of pastries in dozens of varieties. We went inside, grabbed a number and tried to figure out what to get. The counter separating customers from the employees had numerous muffins, Danishes and rolls strewn about. Behind the counter was a wall of bread. To the right was the front windows with all the Danishes – separating the customers from this sugar heaven was a flimsy railing and it took all my strength not to reach over and grab a chocolate covered Danish. We decided to order some Dream Cake – featured on Passport to Europe – and two Danishes. Ryan’s wa...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on March 20, 2010

Lagkagehusets
Torvegade 45
Copenhagen, Denmark

Christiania (Freetown Christiania)

Attraction | "A Quick Walk through Christiania"

Christiania (Freetown Christiania) Photo, Copenhagen, Denmark
Quote:
On 1971 squatters took over the vacated military base and created a self-proclaimed autonomous neighborhood. They have adopted their own laws and have developed their own government. We were nervous to explore this section of the city, so when we approached the entrance we were a bit hesitant. Over the entrance was a large wooden sign with "Christiania" painted in gold letters. Directly ahead was a large red building and a path leading further into the neighborhood. We walked along the street, known as Pusher Street due to its infamous stalls selling soft drugs. The first thing we noticed was an abundance of junk piled left and right of the path. A bit further along we started seeing people; so...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on March 20, 2010

Christiania (Freetown Christiania)
Prinsessegade, borough of Christianshavn
Copenhagen, Denmark

Christiansborg Palace

Attraction | "Tour of the Castle over Centuries"

Christiansborg Palace Photo, Copenhagen, Denmark
Quote:
The Castle Ruins Under Christianborg Palace are on the island of Slotsholmen. The ruins are of Bishop Absalon’s castle and the castles/palaces that followed, and sit directly under the current palace. The museum ran along a path sprinkled with signs explaining what stood in various spots. It was interesting to learn about the various incarnations of the castles and royal palaces over the evolution of Copenhagen from a small fishing village into the capital on a nation, although the actual space was a bit creepy.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on March 20, 2010

Christiansborg Palace
Prins Jørgens Gård 1
Copenhagen, Denmark
(45) 33 92 64 92

Vandkunsten Sandwich

Restaurant | "To Go Lunch Spot"

Quote:
Two blocks west of Slotsholmen we stumbled across a sandwhich shop that smelled amazing – it was literally a hole in the wall. Vandkunsten sandwich shop was in the basement of a residential building on Rådhusstræde. We ordered chicken curry pockets, grabbed a couple cans of Carlsberg from a shop across the street, and made our way to a bench along the Frederiksholms Kanal, the canal that seperates Slotsholmen from the rest of the city. I couldn't have asked for a better meal.

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on March 20, 2010

Vandkunsten Sandwich
Rådhusstræde 17
Copenhagen
3313 9040

Church of our Saviour (Vor Frelsers Kirke)

Attraction | "Best Views of the City"

Church of our Saviour (Vor Frelsers Kirke) Photo, Copenhagen, Denmark
Quote:
Vor Frelsers Kirke or Our Savior’s Church is in the center of Christianshavn and is covered in red and brown brick. At the top is a grey painted bell tower and above that a outside spiral ramp accented with a gold painted railing. The ramp winds around the spire and comes to a stop below a large gold orb. An image of this spire is what made me want to visit this city, so needless to say I was excited to climb to the top. There are 400 steps total, 150 of which are outside. The climb is a bit frightening on a 250 year old wooden staircase. The view when you first get outside is amazing. You can see for miles and miles. I quickly made my way to the top – having to wait ten minutes for a visitor ...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on March 20, 2010

Church of our Saviour (Vor Frelsers Kirke)
Sankt Annae Gade 29
Copenhagen, Denmark 1416
45 32 57 27 98

Christiansborg Palace

Attraction | "A Not to Miss Site"

Christiansborg Palace Photo, Copenhagen, Denmark
Quote:
Most of Christiansborg Palace was closed to tourists, but in the afternoon tours are offered in English of the Royal Reception Rooms. These rooms are used by the royal family to greet heads of state or ambassadors, and house some of the royal parties. The tour started in a grand lobby of marble. We had to put blue plastic slippers over our shoes as to not damage the parquet floors of the rooms. There were four other people on our tour – a Japanese couple and two girls from Spain. The tourguide led us upstairs – repeatedly telling us not to touch anything. In each of the rooms she told us how they were used in the past and their purpose today. One room featured a large mural of King Christian IX...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on April 11, 2010

Christiansborg Palace
Prins Jørgens Gård 1
Copenhagen, Denmark
(45) 33 92 64 92

Day 5 - Malmo

Wheel of Malmo

Attraction | "Wonderful View"

Wheel of Malmo Photo, Malmo, Sweden
Quote:
The Wheel of Malmö was temporarily set up in the center of Malmö's main square. It was taller than any building in the square and even S:t Petri kyrka two blocks away.

We had a heated pod all to ourselves. The view from the top was amazing – all of Malmö could be seen, even the port just to the north of the train station. We spun around and around many times, but had a wonderful time retracing our steps and pointing out new and interesting sites.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on April 11, 2010

Malmohus - Slottsparken and Kungsparken

Attraction | "Green in the Middle of the City"

Malmo Photo, Malmo, Sweden
Quote:
The western side of the old town is mainly comprised of the Malmöhus and two parks: Slottsparken and Kungsparken. The streets just east of the parks are mainly residential and have houses from as small as a one story cottage to a four floor apartment building – all in different bold colors. We walked along Malmöhusvägen, the main entrance on the north side of the castle. To the right in the distance the Turning Tower can be seen – from this close it’s apparent that it is the tallest building in the city. As we approached the castle the first thing I noticed was that it did not resemble the image I associate with a castle. Malmöhus has a fairly low profile and is made of red brick surrounded by a ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on April 11, 2010

Apoteket Lejonet

Attraction | "Oldest Pharmacy in Malmo"

Apoteket Lejonet Photo, Malmo, Sweden
Quote:
The oldest pharmacy in Malmö is called Apoteket Lejonet. The name is on the exterior above the door alongside a large gold lion. Dark wood was everywhere inside – from the shelves to the moldings along the ceiling. A balcony with a railing surrounded the entire store on which sat shelves of white ceramic containers of all sizes.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on April 11, 2010

Stortorget

Attraction | "The Heart of Malmo"

Stortorget Photo, Malmo, Sweden
Quote:
Stortorget is the main square in Malmö and contains many of the city’s most important sites. In the center of the square is a large statue of King Karl X Gustav of Sweden, who took the city from Danish dominion, riding his horse. On the east side of the square was the Rådhus, or city hall, which looked a great deal like some of the buildings of the Slotsholmen in Copenhagen.

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on April 11, 2010

S:t Petri kyrka

Attraction | "Pretty Church in Historic Malmo"

S:t Petri kyrka Photo, Malmo, Sweden
Quote:
Just east of Malmo's main square is S:t Petri kyrka, the city’s oldest church. The exterior was brick of various shades of red and brown. The altar was carved of wood and was accented with gold paint.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on April 11, 2010

Day 6 - Copenhagen

Kastellet

Attraction | "A Wonderful Stroll"

Kastellet Photo, Copenhagen, Denmark
Quote:
A bit further north of Amelienborg Slotsplad is the still working military fort of Kastellet. Before walking through the fort there were a few other sites to see.St. Alban's English Church sits just before the entrance to the park surrounding the fort. The church is absolutely beautiful with its gray stone facade.Just past the church is the Gelfionspringvandet, an enormous fountain announcing the entrance to the park.We walked north through the park toward Copenhagen's city symbol - Den Lille Havfrue. The Little Mermaid sits just off the shore on a rock and is much smaller than one would think. After helping a tourist with some photos - we snapped a few pictures...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on April 11, 2010

Kastellet
Kastellet 68
Copenhagen, Denmark
3311 2233

Frihedsmuseet

Attraction | "An Inspiring Museum"

Frihedsmuseet Photo, Copenhagen, Denmark
Quote:
We did not have much time to squeeze in a visit to Frihedsmuseet, a museum dedicated to the Danish resistance during World War II, so we powered through the exhibits. The museum was in a one-story brick building and had a large gray army truck parked out front. Upon entering we realized the outside was deceiving. The museum sits five feet below the ground allowing for an airy space. The main hall featured a wood beamed ceiling and a floor to ceiling stained glass window. We walked around the perimeter of the space stopping at the displays that seemed the most interesting. I found the museum to be very intriguing. The Germans took over Denmark in one day - the Danish government received word that...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on April 11, 2010

Frihedsmuseet
Churchillparken 6
Copenhagen, Denmark

Rosenborg Castle and Rosenborg Castle Garden

Attraction | "See How Royalty Lived"

Rosenborg Castle and Rosenborg Castle Garden Photo, Copenhagen, Denmark
Quote:
With an hour before Rosenborg Slot opened, we decided to explore Rosenborg Have. The park was massive and the colors were amazing. Some of the trees were five stories tall and the leaves were a mix of yellow, orange and red. We walked around the park taking in the cool fall air and marveling at the scenery.The Rosenborg Slot is on the western side of the gardens and looks massive as there are no other buildings surrounding it. The castle was built as the summer residence for the royal family, and is now used as a museum and depository for the Danish crown jewels. A moat circles the castle and a small bridge connects the island to the gardens. A soldier unlocked the gate and Ryan and...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on April 11, 2010

Rosenborg Castle and Rosenborg Castle Garden
Center Of Copenhagen, Oster Voldgade 4a
Copenhagen, Denmark 1350
45 33 15 32 86

Copenhagen City Hall (Københavns Rådhus)

Attraction | "Great quick diversion"

Copenhagen City Hall (Københavns Rådhus) Photo, Copenhagen, Denmark
Quote:
We took a quick peak inside the Rådhus. Upon entering we walked up a flight of stairs into the main hall of the building. The three story, vaulted ceiling room was lined with Danish flags. It's definitely worth a visit to see the main room - if you have time take a tour.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on April 11, 2010

Copenhagen City Hall (Københavns Rådhus)
City Hall Square
Copenhagen, Denmark 1550
45 33 66 70 32