Copenhagen Stories and Tips

Castles and Tivoli

Interior, Bankerat back room Photo, Copenhagen, Denmark

Another grey, grim day. It’s frustrating though, we want to see the city under sunlight and only did the first day. We went to Café Bankerat for breakfast this morning. They do brunches and also had an "English" breakfast with egs, bacon, sausage and beans which Graham liked though the sausages were a bit spicy. The breakfast I had was cold meats and cheese, yogurt, an egg and bacon. I’ve given in and am mainly having coffee now. Got a better look at the bizarre décor in the daylight. What a great place!

We decided against another tour and went to Rosenborg Castle, which was another place I’d really wanted to see. It’s not that far so we walked. We took what we thought would be a short detour through the Botanical Gardens but which turned out to be a bit of a round about route. Rather than a path just skirting the street edge, there was no apparent way out until the other side. But it was very nice and would be even nicer in full summer with more flowers out in bloom.

We had to walk back round a block to the castle entrance but found it easily enough. Rosenborg Castle is a smallish brick castle built in the 17th c for Christian IV as a summer home in the country but nearer to the city than his preferred castle, Frederiksborg. The castle has the ground and two more floors plus a lower level where the crown jewels and treasures are.

The place is chock filled with objects, furniture, paintings and tapestries. So many beautiful things including the Throne room guarded by three life size silver lions. Every item is numbered but there are no descriptions. You have to buy a separate guide book for that which we didn’t do. It was really spectacular, all the things and collections such as one room filled with porcelain and china, one filled with bronze items and little statues, and I do mean filled, floor to high ceiling. There was a dressing room used by one king that was all mirrored, floors and ceilings and walls.

There was a temporary exhibit set up in the middle of the grand Long Gallery on the top floor and it was all in Danish. Nice things there but I would have liked to have seen the gallery as one grand long room with the black and white marble floor.

We had a coffee stop after seeing the main things and before going down to see the treasures. There’s a café on the grounds but it’s very expensive as it turned out. Two coffees and exquisite chocolate cake which was like a ganache with a scoop of chocolate cream and strawberries on the side. It cost us more than the two entry fees to the castle!

We went back to see the treasury and jewels which were indeed spectacular. You can get up close to the cases with the items, the jewels, the crowns inside. That’s one thing that’s really nice here, you can get up close to a lot of the museum things rather than being guarded and held back away from them. Of course there are guards and staff in the rooms to watch but you can put your camera right up to the glass if you want to take a photo.

One case I really liked had dozens and dozens of tiny gold soldiers on foot and horse. Another room was all exquisitely carved ivory items. There were swords and armory for people and a horse, and another case had very tiny pistols.

I think there was a temporary exhibit in one of the other buildings by the gate house but we didn’t bother. I looked in the shop and bought a few things. It was too cold to walk through the park so we decided to go straight to Tivoli where we are meeting the others.

Tivoli was founded in 1843 and is one of the world’s oldest amusement parks. There are gardens, a little lake with boating, a pavilion, a concert hall and an outdoor stage. There are lots of rides for kids and adults, one or two that looked terrifying and which, judging from the screams coming from them, certainly had that effect on some of the people! There's another review in this journal with a fuller description of Tivoli.

None of us went on any of the rides except for Oliver who took a ride around in some antique cars. We just walked around taking it all in. The others weren’t planning to eat there and they left after about an hour and a half. We found a Viking themed restaurant that had pretty good burgers and chips and were satisfied with that. We walked around a bit more and caught the end of the pantomime performance at the Chinese style theatre. Since we weren’t really staying occupied with rides or games of chance, there wasn’t a lot more to keep us there until it got dark when it would all be lit up and there would be fireworks. I suppose we should have made the effort but we were tired of walking and it looked like it might rain.

Indeed it did a bit as we walked back to the bus stop and got back to the hotel but it didn’t rain too much until overnight. Tomorrow is our last day here!

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