A Travellerspoint blog

This blog is published chronologically. Go straight to the most recent post.

Day 1

Melbourne to Copenhagen

flight_path.jpgWe arrived at the airport early and found ourselves through all the formalities and sitting at the gate lounge 2 hours before the schedule flight time. In line with the time honoured airline tradition we left around 30 minutes later than planned. We got the seats right. The flight had 3 sets of 3 seats across the plane. We booked two seats side by side in the middle set of 3 seats in economy. It meant we didn’t have to climb over anyone and nobody had to climb over us on the long haul flight. The flight was 13 hours and 13 minutes. Just as well we are not superstitious. Unfortunately we had a family of 2 adults and 3 kids coughing virtually non stop for the whole flight just across the aisle from us.
Doha airport is brand new and absolutely huge. Ultra modern and is everything you want an airport to be. We’re impressed. It was 36 degrees Celsius at 5.30 am when we arrived at Doha. The expected maximum was 43.
The 6 hour flight from Doha to Copenhagen passed uneventfully. We noted the skilful navigation that travelled in an “S” shape. They flew north initially to avoid Iraq, travelling over Iran instead. Then the turned left and went to the west of Ukraine. This flight was on one of the new 787 dreamliner planes. The windows are a bit bigger and instead of having a shutter you can raise and lower, you have a push button that can lighten or darken the tint on the window.
It cost us A$70 for a taxi from the airport to our hotel. As the crow flies it was less than 10 kilometres. The driver dodged grid lock down town and road works but we paid for it.
We ate dinner over the road at a pizza/pasta/burgers/salads place that was good value and most enjoyable. We went downstairs to use the free wifi in the lobby but 45 hours had passed since we got up on Thursday morning and we only had a few hours sleep on the long haul flight. Exhaustion overtook us and decided to call it a night around 8pm local time.

Posted by IanDarleneUK 22:48 Comments (0)

Day 2

Copenhagen

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IMG_0039.jpgWe walked to the Little Mermaid after breakfast. It was about a kilometre from our Apartment. The crowds that this small statue draw are amazing. Up to ten bus loads of people at a time are lining up to snap their photos. We joined the hop on hop off bus here. We did a full lap of the tour to get our bearings then got off in the centre of the city and explored the pedestrian malls.
We had lunch at an Irish Pub and visited a bunch of stores including a Lego store where there were some life size models. We reboarded the bus and got off at Nyhavn, a stunningly beautiful dining district adjoining a canal. We walked the length of the canal and snapped some pics. The walking had taken its toll by this time. So we returned to the bus stop and walked (again) to the apartment purchasing a bottle of wine on the way.
We returned to the same Italian restaurant for dinner but promised ourselves some local food tomorrow.

Posted by IanDarleneUK 10:45 Comments (0)

Day 3

Copenhagen

20140817_222604.jpg20140817_225705.jpgWe started the day with some chocolate croissants from a local bakery in line with our aim to go local with food today. The forecast is 18 degrees with showers though the day.
Once again, we walked to the Little Mermaid after breakfast to get on the bus. Our plan was to get to stop 13 on the circuit and change buses to do the alternative hop on hop off routes with the second day of our 2 day tickets. We had a bit of drama when the bus driver lost his cool with his rival bus company and his fellow drivers for not protecting their territory and scooping passengers off a nearby cruise ship onto his tour. We eventually made it down town. By this time it was raining.
We boarded the next bus with no waiting time. This was a plus as it only runs hourly. The alternative route didn’t live up to expectations and there was no desire on our part to hop off and look closer. We got off the bus after a full circuit and went back out into the rain. We crossed the road to go into the nearby visitor centre. We got a good map and had a look at possible wet weather options. We settled on having lunch at the nearby Hard Rock Café and then walked in the rain to the nearby central station. We used the ticket machines to purchase single use tickets to travel one station down the line to a shopping mall.
We got off the train and walked in the rain to the mall, perhaps 400 metres away. We shrugged off our wet hooded jackets and wandered for a while. We found a supermarket and after eventually working out how to get into it we found the items we sought and paid for them. We stopped for a coffee and then returned to the station in the rain and travelled 4 stops up the line to the station closest to where we are staying. We walked around 800 metres in the rain to our apartment and changed into dry clothes.
Not a signature day on the trip unfortunately. Found a few shops in the mall with curious names though. One with the unfortunate name ”Slutspurt” and the other called Drop Dead. On the plus side we mastered the local train system. Melbourne Metro could learn some lessons from Copenhagen. The spacious trains show you all the stations on the line and where you are along the line in an overhead display. We also worked out we can get a train from Osterport (our local station) to Malmo (over the border in Sweden). It’s a 45 minute trip. That’s the plan for tomorrow. For the rest of today, we’re chilling and staying dry.

Posted by IanDarleneUK 08:00 Comments (0)

Day 4

Copenhagen& Malmo

IMG_0062.jpg20140819_014857.jpgWe woke to partly cloudy skies and no rain. After breakfast we walked to the station, purchased tickets to Malmo and boarded the train for the 45 minute journey. The train travelled on the bridge joining Denmark and Sweden. The trains share the bridge with the cars on top and the trains below. We had showers along the journey and through the day, punctuated by brief bursts of sunshine. The wind was constant and fairly cold. The maximum was around 17 degrees.
Malmo festival was in progress meaning that many streets in the old, central part of the city were closed to traffic and open pedestrian malls. A giant concert stage was set up in one square and another was ringed with food stalls representing countries from around the world, with dishes available for purchase. We had a type of burger from a South American stand. The regular showers meant we had to seek shelter again and again and it wore on us. We returned to the central station and gambled on the accuracy of our interpretation of the Swedish signs and boarded one to Helsingor. We were either going to Helsinki or back the way we came. As soon as the train departed the in carriage display confirmed we were on the right train. Had we got it wrong we would have had a problem.
We walked back from the station to our apartment and put our feet up for a while. Having sufficiently recharged the batteries we started contemplating how to spend our last evening in Copenhagen. We decided to catch a bus downtown and eat at one of the restaurants in Nyhaven along the canal we explored the other day. It was enjoyable, a spectacular setting but a little on the cold side at around 13 degrees not counting the wind chill factor.

Posted by IanDarleneUK 03:24 Comments (0)

Day 5

Copenhagen / Cruise

IMG_0088.jpgIMG_0073.jpgClear skies greeted us this morning but it was windy and quite cold in the shade. We were packed and checked out by 9am. We caught a bus into town to help fill in the morning. We had a coffee at McDonalds, one of the few establishments open before 10am. Yes, it’s true, Darlene inside a McDonalds store. After the coffee we browsed our way through a large department store called Magasin du Nord. We caught the bus back after that. I got off the bus a few stops early to post a card I prepared while Darlene browsed. Then I walked the rest of the way.
We waited in the hotel lobby a while and used the free internet to get up to date. They called a taxi for us and it was a short ride to the ship. It is a huge ship. Boarding procedures were fairly quick and we were on board the Royal Princess.
The ship is one year old and carries around 3500 passengers. Our cabin is comfortable and relatively spacious compared to some other ships. We had a late lunch in the buffet after boarding and did a bit of exploring. We took the opportunity of a relatively empty laundry to catch up on some washing. Darlene left me in charge of taking the clean clothes out of the washing machine and putting them into the dryer. Unfortunately I neglected to push the button to start the drying process. D’oh. We ate dinner late, went to a 10.15pm Welcome Aboard show in the main theatre and called it a night.

Posted by IanDarleneUK 00:27 Comments (0)

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