If you are planning an expedition to the Nordic realm of Denmark and its capital Copenhagen, then it is time to brush up on some fun facts about your destination.
Denmark invented bacon
Bacon has become one of the worlds most recognized and loved foods, and it was the Danish producers who developed it and introduced it to the world. It was the English who first discovered their love for Danish bacon, with imports beginning back in 1867.
The castle of Hamlet is a real place
English playwright William Shakespeare often drew on historical events or settings for inspiration. For his play Hamlet, he set the action at Elsinore Castle – directly modeled on Kronborg Castle in Denmark. It is believed that Shakespeare was drawing on the story of Amleth, a Viking tale chronicled in the 12th century.
The Danish flag has a lot of history
Denmark’s flag holds a record – it is the oldest flag in the world that is still in use by an independent nation. The current design of the Danish flag was first acknowledged in 1219. Its official name is the Dannebrog – the flag of the Danes. The precise origins of the design are unknown, but it is believed to have been derived from a banner or ensign from the Crusader wars.
The Tivoli Gardens was a political maneuver
Built in the 1840s, the Tivoli Pleasure Gardens in the center of Copenhagen are one of the must-visit highlights of the city. It was Danish architect George Carstensen who persuaded King Christian VIII to build the amusement park. Carstensen’s winning argument was that when people amuse themselves, they forget politics. The Tivoli Gardens served as one of the major inspirations for Walt Disney’s design of Disneyland.
Denmark is the land of fairy-tales
If you are familiar with fairy-tales such as The Little Mermaid, The Little Match Girl, Fantasia, and The Ugly Duckling, then you should probably learn a little bit about Hans Christian Andersen before your visit to Denmark. Possibly one of the most famous Danes, Hans Christian Andersen was born in 1805 and lived in Copenhagen, where you can visit the house he lived, the cemetery where he is buried, and of course the statue of The Little Mermaid which has become an iconic emblem of the city.
Surviving the Nazi occupation
Denmark was occupied by the forces of Nazi Germany during World War II. To help inspire and give strength to his people, each day King Christian X would ride through the streets of Copenhagen.