Denmark day 6–castles and the search for traditional Danish food…

Today we went to the Northern part of Sjælland, to visit two castles: Fredriksborg Slot in Hillerød and Kronborg Slot in Helsingør.

We started off at Fredriksborg Slot, where we had the plan to eat a smørgasbord in Spisesteder Leonora, that should be located at the castle itself. Only: we couldn’t find it. And though we walked through a big part of the city centre, we couldn’t really find any restaurant serving Danish food. Plenty of Mexican, Sushi or Italian… but that was not really what we were looking for.
We decided to kill of our biggest hunger with some pølse and get to Helsingør to visit the castle and look for food afterwards…

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Helsingør is located on the tip of the island, only 5km away from Sweden. Kronborg Castle itself is located just alongside the sea, making our visit quite heroic if you ask me: it was blistering cold to get there. You need to walk for about 15 minutes before reaching the castle walls and I was frozen to the bone. Part of the moat was still frozen over as well – spring really hasn’t reached Denmark yet.

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The Castle is famous because it’s the setting of Shakespeare’s Hamlet. It’s also a UNESCO World Heritage site, making this our third and last one for this trip. As always: a full review on our website!

Now, we are both not the biggest fans of visiting castles from that period. We love the exterior, but the interior is pretty much the same in all of them. Way too posh furniture, an overload of golden ornaments and a small bed; making everybody notice that people in the Middle Ages were small… ;-) But, as UWH explorers… we couldn’t just skip the inside. And we didn’t regret it at all.

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The visit of the Royal Appartments shows you castle life in an attractive way. The 3 pictures just above are from a videopresentation on the wall, showing you the different phases the castle was built in.
Above you see Febe at one of the miniature displays of medieval castle life. She loved it!

The biggest attraction of this part of the castle is the impressive big hall. Never seen anything quite like that inside a castle!

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Through the inner courtyard you reach the nice chapel of Kronborg, finely decorated.

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But the biggest attraction of the castle lies in the cellars. Through dark halls you reach the sleeping Viking Holger Danske. Legend says he will awaken if Denmark ever gets into trouble… I wouldn’t want to run into him in a dark alley…

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After enjoying the castle visit (it was INSIDE…! Ah! The relief!), it was time to head back in the open and search for some nice Danish food. Our travelguide recommended a few good places to eat in town, but it turns out we ran out of luck again: they all seemed to close at 5 PM. We arrived around 4 PM – but couldn’t get any food anymore. Kitchens closed. As said, it is clear that the touristic season hasn’t started here yet…

We decided to head back to Fredriksborg to search for our Spisesteder Leonora again… and found it; only to see that it was closed as well. By that time we were really getting hungry. Luckily we had brought sandwiches for Febe, just in case. At least she was doing OK ;-)

Being food lovers, our holiday is just not complete without eating the local cuisine, so we decided to make one last guess and head off to Næstved, which was more or less on our way back and not too far from “home”. The travelguide recommended a good Rådhuskroen. And we got lucky in the end! Turned out they were open, very (child)friendly & served delicious food. Higly recommended if you are ever in the area!

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And with our stomachs filled, our sauna back home was a warm welcome after another cold, Danish day.

-A-

Næstved Rådhuskroen
Skomagerrækken 8 – tel. 55-720156

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