|Bill and the Little Mermaid|
|Copenhagen's Happy Wall|
|a hint of the bridge|
Copenhagen is the capital and most populated city of Denmark, with a metropolitan population of around 2 M. Originally a Viking fishing village founded in the 10th century, Copenhagen became the capital of Denmark in the early 15th century. During the 17th century, under the reign of Christian IV, it developed into an important regional centre, consolidating its position as capital of Denmark and Norway. Copenhagen was third in the ranking of the richest cities in the world in terms of gross earnings in 2010, dropping from first place in the previous year.
|the offshore windturbines of Copenhagen|
The city has become more integrated with Scandinavia and the rest of Western Europe when the Øresund Bridge, a bridge-tunnel connecting the Swedish coast to the artificial island of Peberholm lying in the middle of the Øresund Strait for 2.5 miles. The remainder of the link is a 2.5 mile tunnel from Peberholm to the Danish island of Amager. It is the longest combined road and rail bridge in Europe. We saw a tiny bit of it from one of the viewing decks of the MV Explorer. As we entered the Copenhagen waters, we also saw, for the first time, off shore wind turbines. Before this we thought they were all onshore (that’s the way they are in America)!
Walking from Tivoli Gardens, first we encountered the Christianborg Palace which dates back to 1167. It is the seat of the Danish Parliament, the Prime Minister's Office and the Supreme Court. Also, several parts of the palace are used by the monarchy, including the Royal Reception Rooms, the Palace Chapel and the Royal Stables. Thus it is the only building in the world housing all three supreme powers of a government: the executive, the legislative, and the judicial.
|Nyhavn, 17th century waterfront of Copenhagen|
|the Marble Church of Copenhagen|
We then trekked to the Amalienborg Palace, the winter home of the Danish royal family. It consists of four identical palaces with classic façades and rococo interiors around an octagonal courtyard. In the centre of the square is the equestrian statue of Amalienborg's founder, King Frederick V. The four palaces were originally built for four noble families but when Christiansborg Palace burned down in 1794, the royal family bought the property. Amalienborg lies on a short axis, one end of which is the Marble Church also known as Marble Church and at the other is the Amalienhaven overlooking the Copenhagen Opera House.
|Copenhagen Opera House|
From there we went back to the ship through a leisurely walk along Strogert, the main shopping alley that runs through the center of the city. Many artists dotted the street with their unique acts for donations of coins. After Stroget we came across the City Hall completed on 1905, one of the tallest buildings in the generally low city of Copenhagen due to its tall, slim clock tower of over 105 meters. Then it was a ssort walk to Tivoli Gardens, a theme park, for the bus back to our ship docked at Langelinie Pier. .
We were back on board the ship on time, an hour before sailing. We had a sumptuous dinner buffet and the show of the Scot Jimmy Nairn who wowed the crowd with his virtuoso performance on the clarinet, saxophonem and bagpipes to introduce us to our next port, the Shetland Islands. and the seminars on Scotland and this archipelago and its capital, Lerwick, the following day at sea.