Copenhagen: Palm Trees & January

Copenhagen

January 2016

3 Days away

Me and my cousin K

By British Airways

Stayed at this lovely Airbnb

The gist of it:

K and I were committed to going on a weekend away together this past January. We went through a list of options and settled on Copenhagen, where neither of us had ever been. Even though January was a cold time to visit and the days were short, everywhere we visited was bustling. Cold countries know how to keep warm in winter.

We stayed at an AirBnB in Vesterbro. The location was slightly outside town but the trains were great. Even when I screwed up the currency  conversion and put over GBP 100 on my travel card (idiot), the lovely lady working at the ticket counter in the train station refunded me the cash no questions asked. I will forever be grateful to the people who work for the Danish metro.

We found everything we thought we would find in Copenhagen – amazing food, drinks and design. Even the 7/11s were a delight. Two of my favorite spots we went to were bars, Mikkeller Bar (craft beer) and Lidkoeb (cocktails). We also ate well. Which you would expect! For our expensive dinner we went to Cofoco and it was really not that expensive in the end. I did not know when I booked it but the brand Cofoco was everywhere! The chef clearly has a knack for expansion. Our meal was delicious as well.

We walked a lot. I feel like we saw most of the city, but we did not put any pressure on ourselves to see all the sites.  The Tivoli gardens were closed for winter, so we could not see the site. We didn’t go into the design museum but the gift shop is great.

One of the only destination on our list was the Torvehalleren. K works for the Boston Public Market and wanted to check out the Danish equivalent. We also stumbled into the botanical gardens and Ny Carlsberg Glyptoteket. Both of which featured palm trees in abundance. We ended up having lunch in the atrium of the Glyptoteket to spend more time in the green. The lunch, like everything else in Copenhagan, did not disappoint.

What I read:

How to be Both by Ali Smith

Photos:

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Copenhagen

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Is it too early for spring? Probably.

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Some of Torvehallerne’s produce

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Botanisk Have

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K in Botanisk Have

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Rosenborg Slot

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Kongens Have

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Kastellet

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Den lille Havfrue (The Little Mermaid)

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The atrium at Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek

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K wandering through the Glyptotek

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A snowy corner in Christianshavn

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Athens

Athens, Greece

January 2015

Four days away

Me and J

By British Airways

Stayed at King George Hotel

What I read:

Moonwalking with Einstein by Joshua Foer

The gist of it:

I wish I had written this post as soon as I got back from Athens. Similar to Rome, the city is a layer cake of history. The Acropolis towers over every view and around every corner there is another ancient marvel to take in. Between the outposts of history, the modern city is less impressive. I expect it would be hard for most people to fall in love with Athens at first sight, which is so easy to do in European cities like Paris or Barcelona, but that should  not takeaway from everything it has to offer.

We had a great trip. I highly recommend going to Athens in the middle of winter because the attractions had no lines and the restaurants and bars were full of Greeks. The city has a great energy – the only obvious evidence of the country’s recent hard times, in my opinion, are the graffiti plastered over every surface and the stray dogs, of which there are many, though they all seemed to be docile and well fed.

We booked our trip through the BA sale and so got a great deal on the hotel. The view from Breakfast, which was an impressive array (!), was of the Acropolis and it was in the middle of the city. We spent our four days exploring and eating – we saw the Acropolis, the Temple of Olympian Zeus, the Ancient Agora, the Panathenaic Stadium, the Acropolis Museum, the National Archaeological Museum and walked up Filopappou Hill. We also went to Central Market. Mediterranean produce always makes me greener with envy than the perfect lettuce leaves on offer. However, the men selling their wares were not abashed when it came to staring (ladies be warned).

There were also loads of cool coffee shops and bars to check out – my favorites were Taylor Made (coffee, cocktails and cool Athenians) and Barley Cargo (for beer lovers).We also had a bunch of great meals. I have listed my favorites below.

Top restaurant recs:

Cafe Avyssinia – tasty Greek fair with very friendly staff! It was a great place for lunch.

O’Thanasis – We went to this no frills gyros empire twice. I could eat souvlaki for days.

Manh Manh – more expensive and filled with less Greek people than most of the place we ate, but very tasty.

Photos:

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 #streetart – there was no shortage in Athens

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Different corners of the Acropolis

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Views of Athens from the Acropolis

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAJ in the Roman Agora

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERACity Streets and Ancient ruins  OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA  A turtleOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA The Panathenaic Stadium

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Temple of Olympian ZeusOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Central MarketOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA The Acropolis from Filopappou HillOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA  Our experiment with a self timer OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA The view looking towards the sea from Filopappou Hill

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe Ancient Agora