COPENHAGEN, DENMARK

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

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There is one cool Metropolis in Denmark, which even the great Shakespeare had to include in his plays.

When Hamlet stands in the Danish Royal Palace, asking himself and us: "To be or not to be, that is the question"

Regardless of his circumstance, it seems William Shakespeare has never been to Denmark, and he, like many before and after him, found some fascination with the country and it's inhabitants.

Copenhagen is edgy and modern, while it retains the magic of it's past. Hans Christian Anderson, Master of fairy-tales, the virtuoso existentialist philosopher, Soren Kierkegaard, with his subjectivist theological assertions, Peace Noble Prize winner Niels Bohr, Jorn Utson, the genius architect who designed one of the most spectacular buildings in the 20th Century: The Sydney Opera House. Also of the later generation, Lars von Trier, Gabriel Axel, Oscar winner director Susan Bier, and the young, cutting edge architect Bjarke Ingels.

When you think Copenhagen, the statue of the 'Little Mermaid' is foremost in most people's mind. Tourist's are flocking to the small statue, cameras flashing and a look of satisfaction on the faces of the spectators: Now they really seen Copenhagen, is what their expression says.

But there is so much more to this city: One of the best Ballet companies the Royal Danish Ballet company, The Royal Danish Theatre, both spectacular with great performers and director/choreographers.

The National Museum is the largest in Denmark, housing a vast collection of archaeology and Cultural History. The National Gallery has a magnificent collection, dating from the 12th century to present times, representing all the great Danish artists, like Emil Nolde, Elmgreen, Dragset, Superflex Haanig, as well as works by Rubens, Braque, Matisse, Leger and Picasso. Another amazing and important museum is the Carlsberg Glypotek, founded by 2nd generation Carlsberg philanthropist Carl Jacobsen, and consisting mainly of his personal collection of classical Egyptian, Roman and Greek pieces, the largest collection of Rodin sculptures outside of Paris, a huge collection of Impressionist and Post impressionist painters, like Monet, Renoir, Cezanne, Toulouse- Lautrec, van Gogh and lots of Danish Golden Age painters.

In the sculpture garden north of Copenhagen is the museum of Modern Art, with over 3000 artifacts, named Louisiana, with works by Picasso, Giacometti and Dubuffet, and a large collection of Modern Danish artists.

Vesterbro is the city's most popular destination, beginning with the world famous Tivoli Gardens, an old brewery called Elephant gate, fairgrounds, a Pantomime theatre, and the old Tycho Planetarium. Nearby is the Copenhagen Zoo. This is a green city filled with parks, including a place for open-air concerts.

The historic center of the city, Indre or A.K.A. the Inner city, also known as Fredriksstaaden, or the Medieval city, was developed in the 18th century by Fredrik V, in the rococo style, housing four mansions, the 'Amelienburg' and. the Royal Residence. Right across the water is the newly completed Copenhagen Opera house, in the center of Holmen Island. Alongside the water are the colorful buildings from the 17th and 18th century, framing the canal which runs from the harbor front to the large Kongen Nytrov square, laid out in1870 by Christian V. It houses some great buildings that exhibit art year round.

All said, Copenhagen deserves the admiration of visitors and residents alike, for achievements in days gone by, and the edgy coolness of the new era.

Try to arrive a couple of days before the cruise and leave some time after...I promise you won't regret it.





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