As we stepped off the train in Copenhagen, the station was packed with young 20-something people in muddy gumboots lying on the ground, passed out or still drunk hammering away on guitar strings – it was the day after the Roskilde festival – known as one of the biggest festivals in Europe.
But “the party isn’t over until the fat lady sings”, and there were many people still singing while playing their guitars at the station, and although Roskilde festival was over, another huge world famous festival had just begun in Copenhagen – the Jazz festival.
During the summer Copenhagen really feels like a melting pot of activity – there is always something happening, always something to do, and it has the same atmosphere as in Amsterdam – chilled & unpretentious.
For some reason it seems as though Jazz just brings out the best in people – what other music is enjoyed by so many people from such a wide age-group as jazz?
In Scandinavia it’s not very common that people mix over the age groups. 75 year olds don’t usually go to the same places as 20 year olds, but the Jazz festival really brought people in all ages together, all sitting down on the cobble stoned ground or stone stairs, tapping their feet and swinging from side to side with the rhythm.
They smoke more than any other Scandinavians, they exercise less and they don’t eat very healthy – yet they’re still happiest of us all, and during our stay there it actually seemed that way.
Was that really true? Were we just “lucky” because of the festival vibe, or are the people there actually happier?
We decided to simply ask the Danes themselves, and the answer was quite interesting.
One guy made an interesting point: “I think a better word would be ‘content’. We accept our situation and our outlook on things is often ‘it’s not as bad as it could be’. We’re not happier, we just don’t have very high expectations”.
In Copenhagen they have an area called Christiania, a place with their own rules, own laws and own flag, also it’s a place where they smoke and sell weed in public, and where we weren’t allowed to bring our cameras…
It’s a bit wacky and crazy in some places, and just absolutely stunning in others.
Nyhavn is the most beautiful harbor I have ever seen – with its colorful 18th century houses, and the nostalgic smell of waffles the whole way along Ströget is just irresistable.
Copenhagen has many sides, and just like in Amsterdam it’s up to you how you choose to enjoy your time there.