"Arrival and First Day" Copenhagen Travelogue by grandmaR
Copenhagen Travel Guide: 3,887 reviews and 9,775 photos
We were supposed to land at 7:15, and actually landed about 10:35. My granddaughter carried both carry-ons. As we got off the plane, there were several guys standing there and I announced that my name was Beasley, and a young blond guy walked down the gangway with me. As we got to the wheelchairs (they wouldn't let them on the gangway) the wheelchair he was going to take was grabbed by an elderly woman who said she needed it. So we took another one. He wheeled me through customs and immigration.
Then he figured out which luggage carousel we would be at and said it would be 15 minutes, so in the meantime we both changed some money. The wheelchair driver and the exchange booth person both assured me that I didn't need to tip in Denmark - that people had already been paid.
I decided I didn't have the stamina to take the train into town (schlep the bags, find the train, buy tickets, get on the train, get off the train and find the hotel. So we got a taxi, which cost 380 Dk (Danish kroner). There are a little more than 5 kroner to $1.00
The taxi driver had never heard of the Saga Hotel, and the map and address was in the trunk of the cab in my carryon. I said it was near the railway station and Tivoli. So he got us there and said to me - where do you think it is? And I said, "Probably it's around that corner", and we turned the corner and there it was. He said "How did you know that", and I said I didn't know, but I thought I remembered on the map that was where it was. He said I must be a genius, and I said no that I just liked maps. He thought that was funny.
He warned us that we should keep our cameras and money well concealed in this neighborhood, but the neighborhood seems to be a mini-Chinatown and doesn't feel spooky at all. Although I did see a Sex Shop on the way in.
We were checked in before noon, and my granddaughter took a shower and soaked her foot (she just had an ingrown toenail done).
The receptionist told us that we could use the computer in the lobby for free, but that if we used the LAN cable in the room or the computer through the TV it would cost extra. I tried to log on from the lobby without success, and finally used their computer to send a message. The hotel receptionist told me that the hotel wi-fi was sagareception, and really it was Saga reception. Once I got logged on, I could get it from the room, although if I didn't send stuff right away the wi-fi apparently lost interest in me and told me that I wasn't connected to the internet.
Incidentally the hotel computer keyboard had the @ sign on a key in the third position which we never could figure out how to get to it. We always had to find one somewhere and copy it.
The menu on the TV tended to come up on the PPV area, but that there were free channels which had US movies on them. We could also sometimes get the Danish news and weather.
After I sent the email, I joined in the nap. About 1500, we went out to try to find the hop-on-hop-off bus. By the time we found it, it was 1630 and was the last bus of the evening. I also knew that it was too late for the last of the hop-on hop-off boats because they stop at 1615.
When the bus came, it was so full that there were no seats. Someone gave me a seat and my granddaughter stood until a lot of people got off at the cruise ship docks (Celebrity ship). Then we got to sit in a seat and listen to the commentary. Because of the weather the buses have rain tops in place on the upper decks. The driver didn't want to cash our vouchers because he said we wouldn't get the full benefit.
It was cold, damp and windy and I was OK, but my granddaughter was cold. We came to a KFC and Burger King (there are Burger Kings, 7-11s and McDonalds on every corner). Since we were cold and it was evening, we stopped in for dinner. She had a coke and I had what was billed as a lemonade but was carbonated as her brother reminded me we had seen in England. We managed after some difficulty (asking directions 3 or 4 times - fortunately the hotel gave us a map with the hotel marked on it) to find our way back to our hotel which is on a very back street.
My granddaughter took a nap, and I tried to log on to the hotel network, but couldn't get it in the lobby. Sometimes I can get it in the room but it is a weak signal. My granddaughter had the controller for the TV so I went to bed with the TV on. She woke up sometime during the night and found the controller which had slipped down behind her bed and turned it off.
I had set the timer on the TV to wake us up at 6:45. We went to breakfast, but my back is so painful this morning that I could hardly stand up long enough to take a shower. Breakfast was very good - they had cereal and milk, orange and apple juice various kinds of bread (rye crisp, pumpernickel and white bread) butter, rolls, sliced meats, cheese, liver pate, and Danish. I particularly liked the chocolate one. They also had tea and coffee. Breakfast is 7 to 10:30.
I hobbled up to the bus stop (which is only about 3 blocks and should be not be a problem) and we got on the first bus of the day for the red or Mermaid route. As it ended we caught the green route bus which took us past the infamous Christiania area which was started in an abandoned army barracks in Copenhagen, Denmark, in 1971. It is infamous for the pot smokers - but of course pot is illegal in Denmark. My granddaughter thought it was funny.
It was either raining or starting to rain or looked like it was going to rain and was pretty chilly and damp so I've given up on trying to do the canal boat trip. Besides my granddaughter left her voucher for the boat back at the hotel. We did see quite a bit of the sights of Stockholm including the Little
We got off the bus about 12:45 and the next yellow line bus didn't come until 1315, plus it was raining and I wanted lunch. So we started to walk towards the shopping street as I thought we might like to shop some. But first she wanted to go to the Hans Christian Anderson museum and Ripley's. I agreed to the HCA museum, so we went to that. It had a lot of dioramas with illustration of various tales, and was kind of interesting.
But we didn't get out until 12:25 which meant we missed the yellow bus. So we started walking up the shopping street and stopped for lunch at a place called Shawarma for lunch. There was a downstairs which operated like a fast food sandwich place. We climbed to the upstairs where the barman would go and get us the food - sort of like A1A Aleworks in St. Augustine where the bartender would go and get food from the restaurant upstairs. She had vegetarian humus for DK 35 with two pieces of pita bread, and I had marinated grilled beef with fries and a salad for DK 79. It was sort of disappointing as the beef was a little tough.
Then we walked around the corner to a taxi stand and got a taxi back to the hotel. My granddaughter took a nap. She thought we should rent the hotel bicycles, but really it wouldn't have been a good idea in the rain.
We went over to Tivoli, but it was really raining quite hard and was cold. We walked from the hotel through the railway station and out the other side and in the side entrance of Tivoli. I bought unlimited ride tickets which were 400 DK each. I should not have bothered and just bought individual tickets because we just couldn't do that many rides. We did see some live music (free with admission) and went on the ferris wheel, a Mine ride (roller coaster in tunnels), and my granddaughter went on some flying swings.
Then I saw a Danish restaurant called Divan II and the menu outside said they had smorgesbord, but what I didn't realize was that it was only for lunch (the menu being in Danish I couldn't read it all). This was a fancy gormet restaurant, and we weren't really dressed for it. So I guess I will have to wait until we come back to try smorgesbord.
When we walked back though the train station, I was sitting resting while my granddaughter went to look at something. I saw a map of the station and went over to it, and so I wasn't where she expected to see me when she came out. I saw her running around and called but she didn't hear me, so I moved out closer to the central clock, and she finally came around again I was able to flag her down.
My granddaughter took 192 pictures, and I took 149, so she feels she is 'winning'.
Tomorrow we leave Copenhagen on the Holland American Line ship Rotterdam
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