Courtesy of the American Spouses of Brunssum Travel Information Guide
Denmark’s climate is similar to Holland‘s but wetter and cooler. Always anticipate some days to be gray. We went in the springtime and we had both sunny and wet days.
There is a military lodging in Copenhagen, which is open to other military ID card holders. The Copenhagen Maritime Naval Base in Holmen. The Naval base is in a haven (harbor) directly across the city. You can drive to the city (less than 10 minutes) or take a water taxi directly outside the base. The water taxi will take you to the site of the Little Mermaid and other stops along the harbor. Lodging cost for us (family of four) was 40 US dollars (when converted) a night. The room is a soldier’s barrack room and the bathrooms are down the hallway. Downstairs is a cafeteria. The room was very clean, simple in accommodations but an excellent price for the area. This is a no frills place to stay. The Naval Base is beautiful and has a spectacular view of the Copenhagen harbor. The phone number for the Naval Base is 32664131 Fax number 32664139. You may want to talk to a person in the Danish section at JFC to help you book the room. We did.
We drove to Copenhagen. We took the A-1/E47 to Puttgarden (north of Hamburg) where there are ferry services to Denmark. (Zealand Island). The cost of the ferry was €48. The total drive time with kids was 11 1/2 hours (downtime will be expected with a ferry, nice break). You could probably map a quicker route driving A7/E45 towards Kolding and crosses the toll bridge from the Fyn (Fun) Island. We drove home this way, and were able to see more of the country.
Things to see in Copenhagen:
TIVOLI GARDENS: This houses an amusement park, concert stages, 37 restaurants, and firework displays every Weds. night.
ROSENBORG CASTLE: This museum houses the crown jewels and tells the history of Danish Kings through 300 years.
STROGET: “stroll street” This is a collective of streets, which make one long line of shopping through the center of the city. Considered the longest shopping street in the world. Stroget refers to the area and is not a street name. Ask any local where Stroget is and they will easily show you.
THE LITTLE MERMAID: A small statue located on the shoreline in Lanelinie harbor area. I read somewhere that she is the most photographed statue in the world. The bronze sculpture was created by Edward Eriksen and was inspired by Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Little Mermaid.”
CHRISTIANSBORG SLOT (palace): The Royal Reception rooms can be toured here, as well as the changing of the Guard. It is not as grand as Buckingham Palace. You can also tour the Royal Stables and coaches, the Ruins of Absaolon’s castle, the Royal Arsenal Museum and much more.
Day-trips from Copenhagen
There are 3 castles north of Copenhagen. There are organized tour buses, which you can take for castle tours. Or you can drive to all 3 in about 1 hour’s time (which we did). The advantage of a guided tour is a wealth of information about each castle you see; otherwise your driver in the car has no clue on what is being seen! If you do the tours on your own, research ahead of time. When we went there was no guided tour of the castles (all self-guided).
FRENDSBORG PALACE: (the lesser) we did not visit this castle. Build in the early 1700’s, during the reign of King Frederik IV. This castle is a short distance north of FrederiksborgSlot. www.frederiksborgmuseet.dk
KRONBORG CASTLE: This castle is often referred to Hamlet’s castle based on the Shakespearean play. It is located northeast of the other two. It is on the very tip of North Zealand Denmark and you can see across the sound to Sweden. Beautiful drive along the coast and worth seeing.
FRILANDSMUSEET: (the open air museum) Great for the kids. Pick a nice sunny day to go here. This is an outdoor museum on 86 acres of land with 100 rural buildings from 1650 to 1950. Nice way of seeing how the Danish lived. They brought all the buildings from all over Denmark and put them back together stone by stone in this one area. All authentic. Must see. There is a second museum in Arhus north of Legoland called Den Gamble By. (www.dengamleby.dk) This is a great open-air museum to see the merchant life of the Danes. This is a good drive from Copenhagen. My guess 3 hours. But if you are going to Legoland, check this one out too!
VIKING SHIP MUSEUM: This is located west of Copenhagen and is located in Roskilde. This museum houses Viking ships dating from the 11th century. Nice history tour for the kids.
You can probably do this as a morning or afternoon trip. www.vikingeskibsmuseet.dk
There are lots of museums located in Copenhagen not mentioned. Art museums, Ripley’s, ect. Be sure to check out the Copenhagen city pass for discounts. Worth purchasing if you do a lot of sightseeing. Purchase at the tourist offices.