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Europe 2016

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No trip to Amsterdam is complete without a stop in one of the bruine kroeg, or brown cafés. These are the Dutch equivalent of Irish pubs, cozy spaces where people gather to relax over beers and comfort food. And Café Papeneiland is a...
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Amalienborg Slotsplads 5, 1257 København K, Denmark
When you think of a royal palace, you usually think of one set building. In Copenhagen's case there are actually four distinct buildings which surround a large central square. Why four? Apparently, because it was originally inhabited by four noble...
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Den Sorte Diamant, Søren Kierkegaards Plads 1, 1221 København K, Denmark
I’d like to believe that had my public library been as stunning as the Black Diamond in Copenhagen, I would have spent more time studying at the library and less time doing whatever one does when one is supposed to be doing their reading. But the...
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1217 København K, Denmark
Situated right next to Christiansborg Palace, the old stock exchange "Børsen" dates back to 1640 and was commissioned by Christian IV as part of his massive series of infrastructure projects. While no longer an active stock exchange, the building...
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Østergade 52, 1100 København, Denmark
Illum is one of two major Danish department store chains. The store is famous for its excellent selection and taste and features fashion, interior and design options as well as a large beauty section. It even features a delightful bakery with...
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Strøget, København, Denmark
Copenhagen's pedestrian-only shopping street, Strøget, stretches from the city square (Radhusplasn) to Nyhavn (Kongens Nytorv) and is lined by shops, cafes, department stores and restaurants. Walking the street from end to end is an absolute must...
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Amagergade, København, Denmark
For a taste of traditional Danish architecture, the tiny street of Amagergade on Christianshavn is a must-see. Featured in an old Danish TV series, this street is lined with beautifully painted old buildings that convey all of Copenhagen's...
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Vesterbrogade 3, 1630 København V, Denmark
I got to Copenhagen with zero idea that there would be an amusement park right in the middle of it. Let alone a 19th century amusement park, which makes it all the more magical and romantic (in the antiquated sense). At age 23, I still enjoyed...
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Frederiksborg Slot, 3400 Hillerød, Denmark
A Renaissance castle just isn't the same without a sprawling garden to go with it. Luckily, not only is Frederiksborg Slot (castle) the largest Renaissance castle in Scandinavia, it also has an amazing garden that lives up to its stature.
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Julius Thomsens Pl. 1, 1925 Frederiksberg, Denmark
Bike culture is a core part of the Copenhagen lifestyle. One way to experience this is to take advantage of Copenhagen's relatively new tourist bikes. These are the white bikes located throughout the city (check the website for pickup points). You...
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Nordre Toldbod 18-24, 1259 København K, Denmark
This gentleman is 3 meters tall and weighs around two and a half tons. He keeps an eye on the docks where the Queen's launch docks and is perpetually gazing out at Maersk Group's corporate headquarters. He's been there for a year or two so far,...
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An essential part of experiencing life in Copenhagen, is a walk along the Norrebro lakes. A popular spot for locals, the lakes are lined by periodic cafes and always alive with joggers, people on dates, and locals enjoying the weather. They also...
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Prins Jørgens Gård 1, 1218 København, Denmark
The success of the TV drama Borgen has piqued international interest in the building that houses the Danish government. Christiansborg Palace (from which Borgen takes its name) is also the tallest tower in the city center, and it’s free to...
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Bådsmandsstræde 43, 1407 København K, Denmark
In 1971, squatters moved into the barracks on an abandoned military base and established Freetown Christiania, an autonomous district in the middle of the city. Later, many dwellers built their own homes on the 86-acre property. Although the...
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Gl. Hovedvagt, Kastellet 1, 2100 København, Denmark
While the little mermaid is good for what she is, just about everyone who sees her finds her...well...small. It shouldn't be a surprise for something that is quite literally called the LITTLE mermaid, but somehow she often still disappoints. What...
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Ved Stranden 26, 1061 København, Denmark
I'm usually not a fan of these types of tourist tours. In the case of the Copenhagen canal tours though, it's well worth making an exception. Not only do the boats show you a number of popular parts of Copenhagen, they'll also take you into areas...
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Grosser Muristalden 6, 3006 Bern, Switzerland
The German word "bärengraben" sounds an awful lot like what would happen to you if one of Bern's heraldic bears got a hold of you but it's really the name for the 1857 "bear pit" that was used to house the animals until 2006. The city's new "Bear...
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Kochergasse 3-5, 3011 Bern, Switzerland
This grande dame hotel in the center of Bern has played host to politicians, diplomats, authors, and heads of state for more than 150 years. The service and hospitality is top-notch, and the 128 rooms are large and comfortable. Ask for one with a...
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Bern, Switzerland
While touring Bern I stumbled upon the KindliFresser, or "Child Eater", Fountain right in the middle of busy Kornhausplatz. Bern is famous for it's many 16th century fountains, but I hadn't been prepared for one this creepy. The villain is eating...
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Bim Zytglogge 3, 3011 Bern, Switzerland
Switzerland has eight UNESCO World Heritage Sites and the Old Town of Bern was among the first to receive that recognition. You'll understand why when you stroll along the postcard-perfect Kramgasse, the main axis of the area. At the end of it...
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Monument im Fruchtland 3, 3000 Bern, Switzerland
Located to the east of Bern in Schöngrün, the Zentrum Paul Klee is immediately identifiable by the three massive undulating wave-like buildings of the architect Renzo Piano. The large art center, completed and opened in 2005 is home to over 690...