Two months from today, The Mechanic and I will be celebrating Christmas in Copenhagen!
We are both SO excited to visit the land of the everyday cyclist – even in the cold dark Danish winter we plan on doing as much biking as possible. We were told that Baisikeli is the best place to rent bicycles from, so we’ll check it out on first day there. I can’t wait to experience all the wonderful cycling we keep reading about.
But I’m also crazy excited about spending Christmas in Europe again. All that I love about Christmas, and it is my favorite holiday, seems to be European – Christmas markets with booths full of lovely local foods and crafts, gluehwein (or gloegg in Denmark), everything covered in tiny white lights, and everything seems to be just… classier.
Eight years ago, my extended family went on a Christmas river cruise in Germany, through Vantage Travel. My parents, brother, sister-in-law, aunt, uncle and cousin, plus my dad’s cousin and his wife, and I, all spent almost two weeks on a river cruise ship, from Nuremberg to Amsterdam. We arrived shortly before Christmas, and stayed a few extra days in Amsterdam, so the entire trip ended up being almost two full weeks (then a friend met me and we went back to Germany for another week. Ah grad school…). So we got to experience the Christmas markets.
We had the most amazing time, and it still ranks as my best Christmas ever.
So The Mechanic has a lot to live up to! ; )
We are staying in an apartment we found on Airbnb.com. I’ve never tried this website before but it seems like a really great deal. We are renting an apartment, so we’ll have a full kitchen in an apartment in a real neighborhood, not a hotel room in some expensive (or sketchy) tourist area. We’ve already been in touch with the woman who owns the place where we will be staying, and she’s recommended all sorts of things, everything from nearby grocery stores to what Copenhageners do on Christmas Eve, which is the main part of the holiday.
My main goal for this trip (other than biking of course) is to visit Tivoli Gardens. Tivoli Gardens is an amusement park and “pleasure garden” that opened in 1843, and apparently inspired Walt Disney to create Disneyland. Every photo I see of it is somewhat mind-blowing. And I’ve been to Disneyland and Disney World! Apparently the Christmas market there is so amazing it’s a tradition even with the locals; several have told me they go there with their children.
I can’t help but get excited at the magical world these images suggest.
There are plenty of other things we’ll do while we are there, I’m sure, including Christiania (yep, the hippie -uh, free- town everyone talks about), the Christmas market at Nyhavn, shopping (I love the Georg Jensen Fusion rings!), and plain old being a tourist and seeing the sights. Whenever I get cranky or stressed, I just think about this trip, and I feel much better.
So the next several weeks will be all about what to pack for this trip. I need to minimize what I take so I can bring as much stuff home as possible. I wonder if new bike panniers or a basket can count as a carry-on?
And this time, I will get to experience Christmas with my real knight in shining armor!