So far, I’ve travelled all around Europe. While fun, I really wanted to see more of Denmark than just Copenhagen and its suburbs. Luckily I got the chance to do just that and had one of the best weekends of my time abroad. Specifically, I really wanted to make a trip to Jutland which is the bit of Denmark that juts up from Germany (Copenhagen is located on the island of Zealand whereas Jutland can be considered mainland Denmark, in case you needed a geography refresher).
The summer before I left for Copenhagen I had an internship in Miami. One day at lunch I was chatting with a coworker and mentioned my plans for the fall. She got really excited and told me that one of her very good friends was actually living in Billund, Denmark. How serendipitous! She made the introduction and we got to talking. Eventually, I ended up with some new friends and an invitation to spend a weekend with them in Jutland.
I started my journey by train on a Friday after classes which put me in Billund just in time for dinner with my hosts. I had an enjoyable time getting to know them and their young daughter. We got on swimmingly and the weekend was off to a great start.
It was a fairly relaxed trip, with no set schedule and only two main sights that I really wanted to see. Saturday was spent visiting one and Sunday the other.
As such, we had a late Saturday morning featuring a leisurely breakfast, my favorite. That afternoon we headed to the Jelling Stones and the accompanying Viking museum. The Jelling Stones are massive stones covered in carved runes. They were erected by King Gorm and his son Harald Bluetooth to commemorate the conquest of Denmark. If you remember my post about the Viking Ship Museum in Roskilde you’ll know how much I enjoyed this. The site itself was very scenic and the museum was cute, educational, and free. It featured a bunch of interactive exhibits my favorites of which were a representation of Yggdrasil, the tree of life, and a model of a Viking with various weapons sticking out of him.
After our jaunt at the museum we made our way to Vejle on the coast for a late lunch and an attempt to visit the deer park. Unfortunately, the sun sets early in the Danish late autumn so after a minor mishap with directions we didn’t make it to the park. However, we did visit The Wave which is a block of apartments built in an interesting Scandinavian design so not all was lost.
Finally, because my hosts are fellow Americans, we spent the evening watching college football. I really did miss college sports so I had a wonderful time hanging out with them and the dogs, even though I didn’t get to watch my beloved UCF play due to the time difference (I wasn’t about to stay up until 2am to watch the game!).
Sunday was dedicated to visiting LEGO House which is probably one of the coolest places I’ve ever been. It’s a whole museum/attraction dedicated to everybody’s favorite interlocking bricks. It’s so interactive and affords many an opportunity to build and show-off LEGO works of art (or abominations, depending on your skill level). I had an absolute blast here. There were so many stations filled with creative activities but I did have a favorite. There was an area where you built your own fish out of LEGO and then scanned it into a virtual aquarium. Of course, I built the most ridiculous fish with legs as a crime against nature. I don’t think I’ve ever laughed as much in a museum as I did when my fish plopped into the aquarium and started swimming amongst the other, nicer looking creatures.
I was happily able to spend a whole afternoon here, and I probably could have stayed longer but unfortunately I had a train to catch. The website makes it seem like it’s aimed at children but that’s not the case at all. The interactive bits were all-ages and even if you didn’t want to participate, the LEGO house is full of interesting and clever creations that are well worth a look.
With that, my quick jaunt to Jutland had ended. Although it was a quick trip, it was a great one. I absolutely loved the slower pace and the homey vibes. It was so nice to have a more “normal” weekend and a break from big city life. Plus I got to meet and hang out with some very cool people. So shoutout to Erin and Flip for opening up their home to me and being the absolute best hosts. I seriously cannot thank them enough!