Travel Journal: Copenhagen

Since high school, I have been very fortunate to visit places across this beautiful world. Travel has become an important part of my life and my wanderlust list is ever-expanding (India! Japan! Morocco!). After each trip, I arrive home with memory cards full of images. I share a few on social media, but the bulk of the images live on my computer and in the photo books I create (eventually). I always love seeing other people's photos from their trips and have long considered creating my own online photo journal to share my own. Now, with this little Emily Belson Photography corner of the internet, I've decided to start a new travel journal series to document our adventures and share with anyone who is interested. I am so grateful for each place I've experienced and hope you enjoy a peek into them, too!

This spring, my sister Carla and her boyfriend Max graduated from college and jetted off on a month-long trip through Europe. Patrick and I did the same after graduation (though to different cities) and some of our fondest memories were made together during that month between finishing school and beginning the "real world." I remember expecting us to be tired of each other after traveling together for a month, but just the opposite happened :) Needless to say, we were thrilled when they announced their plans. Like good siblings, we immediately asked which cities we could piggy-back onto their adventure. It worked out that we, plus my parents and brother (we live by the more the merrier :), could join them for the final legs of their trip: Denmark and Iceland. 

Copenhagen proved to be the cozy, gray, "hygge" city that our friends have raved about. We stayed in a beautiful Airbnb apartment near Copenhagen University across the street from a beautiful park with a lake. I loved getting to experience true Danish minimalism in the apartment with its calming light gray walls, tall ceilings, huge windows, and charming crown molding. I've drawn lots of inspiration from that apartment for designing our new home!

Our visit was over the summer solstice, a major holiday in the Netherlands, so we got to experience the local celebrations. Bonfires on boats (really) were lit on the water all over the city. It was almost like the Fourth of July with people relaxing along the shores of the canals and lakes enjoying neighborhood gatherings and live concerts. Visiting during the solstice also meant we only got a couple hours of semi-darkness each night- a weird experience. We stayed up playing card games each night until well after midnight because the sun was just beginning to set and no one felt tired! Everyone also woke up early because it felt like noon at six in the morning... Luckily, the coffee was fantastic throughout the city and compensated for our sleeping schedule. I'd learned about the circadian rhythm, but it was crazy to experience how much our bodies depend on the sun going down to begin to feel tired.

Overall, my favorite activity of the trip was strolling along the side streets admiring the colorful row homes with rose bushes growing up multiple stories. The whole city, with it's relaxed pace, cute cafes, and stylish bicyclists, was a wonderful experience and we hope to visit again soon. Below are a few photos I snapped while taking it all in with the family. Enjoy!

A few Copenhagen recommendations:

- Do: take a boat tour from Nyhavn harbour to get a better sense of the city, rent bikes and take in the city like a local, walk to the top of the Round Tower for great views

- Eat: at Restaurant Karla (order the platter loaded with traditional Danish items), Torvehallerne Food Market (get the porridge at GRØD)

- Drink: at Ruby cocktail bar