Too short but well worth it.
14.08.2009 - 17.08.2009
On my way back to the Netherlands from Sweden and Norway, I stopped in Copenhagen. I had been there about 2 weeks before but only for one night. I was blessed to stay with Dan Meyrowitsch, his partner Megumi and their daughters Simone and Namoi. Dan and Megumi are friends of David King; they were fantastic hosts and put me up on short notice, even after having just had a visitor from Japan. One night they took me out to have dinner with their friends Teresa, Soun (sp), and their two daughters. We had a tasty vegetarian meal in Christiana and toured this colorful anarchist experiment in urban living. Regretfully, I did not take a lot of photos. In fact, I some how failed to get a picture of Dan and Megumi! Let me assure you, this is not a reflection of their most generous hospitality and a delightful stay full of interesting conversation and lots of advice on what to do during my short stay in Copenhagen.
I saw several of these funky bikes in Copenhagen. They seem like they'd be better for Portland than the Bakfiets due to the weather-proof carriage.
Dan and Megumi live 6KM out of downtown (about 20 minutes by bus or train) not far from one of Copenhagen's many miles of greenway trail that connect various parks and greenspaces. This is a shot I took of a cormorant in a large wetland park near their house. The shoreline was a patchwork of wide and thick riparian vegetation, grassy shore, and trail, providing a mix of natural and landscaped lakeshore.
I was also off-the-ball in not taking more photographs of Christiana. The entire atmosphere of the place was a cross between the Oregon Country Fair and a City Repair VBC creation. The "downtown" had a cozy feel of a medieval village food, bikes and lots of hash. But- as evidenced by the photos I did take- I was most intrigued by the forested lake shore interspersed with homes creating a very rural feel right in the heart of Copenhagen.
This is hard to see but it's the sign over the exit to Christiana. It reads "You are now entering the EU." Those Christianians don't like government in any form.
The last day in Copenhagen I went on a fantastic bike ride southeast of downtown on an absolutely stunning network of greenway trails, parks, and natural areas.
I came across this strange linear hill, that I would call a "ridge" or "bluff" if it didn't have such dubious natural origins. Regardless, this odd, mostly forested landscape feature overlooks a low density neighborhood SE of downtown. The slopes were densely forested but the top had a park-like feel with cut grass, orchard trees, and lots of ripe berries and plumbs (kind of like Powell Butte) plus spectacular views of the surrounding city. I had a fun little bike ride along the top, gorging myself on himalayan blackberries and plumbs... before dropping down to and continuing on the greenway trail.
I kept biking south along the waterway. The greenway trail is similar in direction and orientation from Copenhagen's downtown as the Springwater on the Willamette and Oaks Bottom Wildlife Refuge is to Portland's downtown... however the former is much longer and the surrounding greenspace much bigger.
Eventually you leave the city and enter a big nature preserve with trails and occasional lookout towers built for birders. Unfortunately, I didn't have the time to reach and climb one.
One the way back I followed another greenway trail that cuts north through a newer dense neighborhood the Copenhagen's east side. This amazing structure with natural wood siding and ecoroofs has the appearance of a dense village on a hill. I saw it and instantly new it was special. The next day while riding the train to Germany, I saw it featured in an article on Copenhagen in a travel magazine. Unfortunately the article was in German so I learned nothing new about the amazing building.
Check out this video of this very "cool" Wildlife/Trail crossing. It could be a model for a pedestrian bridge to Gateway Green. See if you can't count how many times I say "cool" in this video?
Here is the map of one of the large parks, Amager Faelled, on Copenhagen's east side. This particular area was laced with trails and mixed landscaped and natural areas. Whether by design or due to limited maintenance dollars, I found this combination to be characteristic of many Copenhagen parks and greenspaces.
On the train back to Hamburg, I passed through the Denmark countryside and saw lots of windmills.
Coming soon. Adventures in Nijmegen, Holland.