Copenhagen is closed … again

//Copenhagen is closed … again

They’ll be picnicking in the parks of Copenhagen today as the people of Denmark celebrate Constitution Day. Pretty much everything else will be closed – shops, museums and tourist attractions all out of bounds for visitors who have arrived, like me, on Holland America’s Eurodam, and those on Costa Atlantica, berthed just across from us in the freeport area.
And because our ship is not using the usual cruise terminal at Langelinie, it’s not quite such an easy stroll to get to the Little Mermaid or to walk further into the city centre for a drink at the bars of Nyhaven.
By coincidence, I was here on exactly the same day last year – on P&O’s Azura. I knew from that experience that it would be difficult to achieve much in Copenhagen on my own, so I took the precaution of booking an excursion through the Eurodam tour desk.
For $89, Renaissance Copenhagen promised to give me an opportunity to “follow in the footsteps of King Christian IV.” During the 16th and 17th centuries he was responsible for much of the architecture which adorns the city today and he ordered the building of Rosenborg Castle which now houses a museum of Danish Royal History.
I would have toured Christianshavn, which the King was inspired to establish after a visit to Amsterdam, and we would have finished up at the Round Tower, a fascinating astronomical observatory which I climbed last year.
Sadly, it was not to be.
A fuschia-pink envelope delivered to my cabin yesterday afternoon bore the message: “Important shore excursion information. Please open immediately !”
Inside was a note which read: “Despite keeping our sales open as long as possible we have not been able to meet our local tour operator’s minimum participation requirement. Regretfully, at their request, we must cancel your excursion.”
A suggested alternative tour to the Castles of North Zealand did not appeal, so I stood on my balcony this morning and watched other passengers board their coaches, or walk along the quay to take a hop-on, hop-off tour on a Big Red Bus, or pay $18 for the shuttle bus to Tivoli Gardens.
I’ll be relaxing on the ship, as I did yesterday when we were at sea with nothing more energetic than watching TV chef Valentine Warner prepare a trio of fish dishes in Eurodam’s Culinary Arts Centre.
A packed audience saw the star of What To Eat Now cook pollock with parsley sauce and bacon, lobster with a Pernod butter, and red mullet and rouille on toast. I fear the Americans in the audience were a little confused by his use of harissa paste in the rouille – they may be substituting chilli sauce if they make the dish when they get home.
Elsewhere on the ship there were foxtrot and salsa lessons, introductions to tai chi and digital photography, a wine tasting and a cocktail mixing class.
Then it was formal night – with a disappointingly small proportion of the passengers following my example and donning their dinner jackets – and a welcome toast from Captain Jeroan van Donselaar.
After an Asian dinner in Tamarind, our group adjourned to the piano bar, where Piano Man Michael was persuaded to break off from the advertised Rat Pack Tribute to sing a few hits by Elton John and The Beatles for the benefit of the British passengers.
Tonight is karaoke night in the Queen’s Lounge, so it could be our turn to entertain. I hope cruise director Ian has the earplugs ready.

By | 2017-06-15T16:00:05+00:00 5 June 2011|Cruise Destinations|0 Comments

About the Author:

John Honeywell is a travel writer specialising in cruise ships and cruise travel. Winner of CLIA UK's Contribution to Cruise award 2017.

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