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      March 2013 > Wonderful, wonderful Cyclehagen

Wonderful, wonderful Cyclehagen

It’s claimed to be the most bike-friendly city in the world and, with cycle lanes on virtually every street, hundreds of bike hire companies, respectful car drivers (yes, apparently they do exist in other countries) and trains geared up to take bikes, it’s a hard claim to refute – as you can see from this short video.

I’m talking about wonderful, wonderful Copenhagen, home to Hans Christian Anderson, the famous Tivoli Gardens, and, of course, the iconic Little Mermaid – all of which you can discover as an add-on to a cycling holiday in Denmark.

Long before the French capital introduced the concept of borrowing bikes to get around, Copenhagen introduced a free bike-sharing scheme which has encouraged people to cycle, and helped bike hire companies and associated businesses to flourish. Wherever you go in the city, you will see bikes of all shapes, colours and sizes with a wide variety of attachments, including sidecars and child trailers; while cycling helmets have gone way beyond practicality and have now entered the realm of haute couture!

Copenhagen really is one of Europe’s great capital cities – with a history that dates back to 1043 – and, as such, it’s worth adding on a night or three, before or after, your cycling holiday along the Danish Riviera. What's more, most city hotels (including our recommended hotel, the fabulous 71Nyhavn) have bikes for guests to borrow as a matter of course, so that you can cycle out from the door as soon as you arrive.

You can, of course, choose to walk round the sights making use of the city’s excellent transport system; but don’t forget that you can take your bikes on the train and metro, too. Copenhagen opened its first cycle lane back in 1910 though the current network of 390 kilometres of designated lanes has been built up within the last 25 years. Today, 50% of Copenhageners choose to commute by bike every day, using the green routes through the city that were laid out to ensure a safe transport route for cyclists while also creating green spaces in the cityscape. There are bicycle lanes almost everywhere – and no steep climbs!

What’s more, cycling has huge health benefits, not only for individuals but also for the well-being of the city itself. Indeed, don’t be surprised if you’re accosted by the smiling friendly faces of the ‘cycling karma police’ who are often on the streets dishing out badges and free chocolates to cyclists. (Click here to see them in action.)

So if it happens to you, smile back – you’ve just been the recipient of ‘hygge’, that typically Danish attribute which is an integral part of the nation’s psyche, and which helps make Copenhagen such a relaxed place to explore.

Self-guided cycling holidays in Denmark

Posted: 07/03/2013 09:53:32 by | with 1 comments
Filed under: cycling, Denmark, heritage, lifestyle, transport

John Elliss
Very interesting post. I like it.
02/01/2015 11:40:32

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