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The Southernmost of the Nordic countries, Denmark is still a monarchy, more interestingly though; Denmark and its neighbors Sweden and Norway were part of the same power under the Kalmar Union. Denmark itself is twice the size of Massachusetts, or approximately the size of Colorado’s Front Range. The Faroe Islands, Greenland and an archipelago of 443 named islands along with Denmark proper form the Kingdom of Denmark.

Much like Norway, Denmark has a phenomenal safety rating, which means that while it’s lower on the travel stress scale, I’ll also have to make sure that I don’t get too comfortable and make myself an easy target for pickpockets. The Danes have a lot going for them, which makes this a great spot to visit (or live): DenmarkVsCO

According to the Economist, the United Nations and other sources, Denmark has one of the highest standards of living, income equality, social mobility, and education and healthcare programs in the world. In fact, according to If It Were My Home, if you lived in Denmark instead of the U.S. you would have 26% more free time and would use 50% less oil. 

What to see:

  • DenmarkStripCopenhagen: Located on the island of Zealand, Copenhagen plays host to palaces, Tivoli gardens, museums, and Noma – 2014’s best restaurant in the world (now #3).
  • Bog bodies: Extremely well preserved bodies found in Denmark’s peat bogs.
  • Skagen: Pack your pastels, this is where the artsy go to find coastal painting inspiration.
  • Traces of the past:  Eight UNESCO sites dot the Dane landscape, here’s a sampling:
    • Stevns Klint: Geological site possibly marking the meteorite impact site responsible for the disappearance of over 50% of life on the earth (65 million years ago).
    • Roskilde Cathedral:  Scandinavia’s first gothic cathedral built of brick.

Why you’re good to go:

  • Mobility: Bus, train, and metro standards are high here; if you’re feeling adventurous, rent out a bicycle and see the kingdom on two wheels.
  • Victim compensation program: Denmark has a program to provide financial compensation to victims who suffer serious injuries due to crime.
  • Security: Scandinavia is probably safer than most cities in the U.S. Again – my challenge here will be not letting my guard down.
    • Both Sitata and GeoSure give Denmark an A+ safety rating.
  • No visa requirement for stays of up to 90 days.

Why it can be dangerous:

You’ll find some crime here in the larger cities, much like you would in any large city. Be aware of pickpockets around train stations, at the airport and around tourist attractions, especially in Copenhagen.

More security details from the US and Brit international services:

Security situation per FSO
Country profile per US State Dept (Lots of goodies in the safety and security section)

Things to know:

As always – when traveling:

  • Let The State Department know you’ll be in country, enroll in STEP to make it easier for them to contact you should there be an emergency.
  • Take U.S. Embassy contact info
    • Telephone: 3341 7100
    • Emergency after-hours: 3341 7400
    • Dialing from the U.S.: 011 45 3341 7100
    • Non emergency: [email protected]
  • Follow alerts via the State Dept Twitter feed
  • Let your friends and family in on your travel plans. TripIt offers a great app.
  • Travel insurance: In case of emergency, trip cancellation or lost luggage.  The concierge service alone is worth it. I’ve had great success with AIG TravelGuard.

With a host of cultural offerings, geologic and geographic attractions and a great safety rating, Denmark was an easy choice to include on a travel itinerary that already included some other Scandinavian countries.

Have you been? What did you think?

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