Friday, August 10, 2012

Falling in Love With Denmark, Again

This past weekend (long weekend), our family went on a driving trip around Denmark. We have traveled all over the place since moving here (France, Israel, Estonia, Latvia, Germany, Ireland, Croatia, Lithuania, Monaco, Holland etc), but really hadn't seen much of Denmark outside Copenhagen and a few outlying cities (Roskilde, Hillerød, Charlottenlund, Helsingør, etc.)

As we are planning to move home to the U.S. sometime this winter, we realized this was our last chance to explore some of the highlights of Denmark in the "good weather". So, we packed our summer clothes (and some fall and winter clothes), hopped in a borrowed car and set out for Jutland on Thursday afternoon. Our drive was smooth until Riley, apparently stricken by a bout of carsickness that we didn't know he was susceptible to, threw up all over himself. The clean up delay was substantial and we nearly missed our 5:30 ferry. The next one wasn't scheduled to depart until about four hours later. Fortunately, our ferry didn't leave on time. We were the second to last car to check in for the trip and we got sent to an auxiliary waiting lane which we quickly realized was the "you can come on the boat if there is room for you after everyone else boards" lane. Once all the cars were on, we drove up a strange side ramp and parked on a ramp inside the boat. There may have been room for one additional car, but that's it.

The ferry ride from Sjællands Odde was very nice. We ate dinner at the restaurant on the boat and it was delicious. We were still giddy from our race to catch the boat and Riley was feeling better. Once we got off the boat we drove into Arhus where we spent the first night of our trip. On the way to the hotel, Neil got pulled over infor turning right on red (not allowed in Denmark), but once the friendly police officer established that we were American, he let us go without a ticket. It was actually the best pull-over ever, as all he did was drive up and ask us to pull over through our open window. No sirens. Very polite and quiet.

Our hotel, a Raddison right near the Aros art museum in Arhus, was perfect and included a children's play area right in the lobby. The next morning we walked to Den Gamle By - the world's first open-air museum of urban history and culture. We had fun walking around and going into all the old buildings. After lunch along a river, we went and toured Aros - a really fantastic museum with a rainbow walkway on the roof that's pretty amazing.

An old bicycle repair shop in Den Gamle By

Aros's rainbow panorama
After Aros, we played in a public fountain - a highlight for Riley - dried off and headed toward Skagen. Our day in Denmark's second largest city was fantastic and we'd actually like to go back and explore it more. It shared many similarities with Copenhagen, but had a slightly different feel to it. Maybe because it's a college town?

Stay tuned for posts about Skagen and Legoland.

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