Copenhagen is a beautiufl city full of rich culture and history, delicious food, sleek Danish design and happy, friendly people. But it’s no secret that, for the most part, the weather is not ideal. There is little more than 6 hours of daylight during the winter months. Add in a mixture of freezing cold, non-stop rain and practically gale force winds and it’s enough to have you sinking into your bed and never wanting to emerge.
But don’t fear – there are plenty of ways to make sure that you don’t fall into the dark abyss of a winter depression (see my previous post, 5 Ways to conquer the rainy-day blues), one of the most important is to be prepared! If you’re prepared for any and all weather systems, it’ll be that much more bearable. These are a few things that I think are essential to living in Denmark.
1. A good pair of sneakers
There is no doubt that sneakers are the footwear of choice here in Denmark, and in most other European cities. Not only do they look very stylish when paired with the minimilistic, yet fashionable, scandinavian trends, but they are also incredibly practical in a city where the main methods of transportation include walking, biking or catching the metro. I have two pairs of addidas superstars that I wear year-round.
2. … unless its too wet/cold, opt for boots
There are some limits to sneakers, though. Especially when in the midst of a massive downpour or walking on icy, snowy roads. In these times, its important to have a solid pair of either water resistant or proof boots that are also warm. My favourite are the timberland boots – I recently bought a pair in all black. So easy to pair with any outfit and they deinitely keep me warm. All they needed was a spray with waterproofing spray and they are good to go!
3. Warm outerwear
This is another item that falls into the waterproof/warm category. I find it amazing that you rarely see the Danes walking around with an umbrella. Instead, they rely on their trusty jacket do most of the work protecting them from the rain. It is definitely much easier to navigate your way through the narrow, winding streets of Copenhagen without having to worry about controlling your umbrella. So it is worthwhile investing in a good jacket. I bought an extremely warm, long jacket from Villa clothing for only 800kr (approx. $160 AUD).
4. A good umbrella
Although they aren’t used quite as often, it’s still a good idea to invest in a good umbrella. While this point might seem a little obvious, I mention it because there really needs to be a big emphasis on a good umbrella. There are lots of umbrella’s avaialble for not much money, but I guarantee that these will not withstand the high winds that are so often blazing across Denmark. Spend a little extra, and you’ll find yourself much more inclined to use your umbrella even in the worst of weather.
5. Cross-body bag
This one is specifically for the ladies. As I mentioned earlier, the preferred methods of transport usually involve some element of exercise, whether that be walking or biking. A cross body bag really comes in handy, becuase your arms are free to do whatever it is that you need to while biking or walking (in case you don’t have a basket on your bike!) My favourite bag is from Kate Spade – it is small enough so that it doesn’t take up much space, but big enough that I can have everything I need with me.
6. Your very own bike
Bike culture in Copenhagen is HUGE. Bikes are definitely the transportation of choice among Danes, because the city has been built to accommodate them with designated bike paths, traffic lights and even certain bridges. It might also be becuase cars are outrageously expensive, with a 150% tax on top of the value of the car. But there is no denying that it is defintiely the easiest way to get around – but if it is too much in the weather, there is always the option of taking the metro/busses.
7. For the homebody in me – Slippers!
Since arriving in Copenhagen I have spent a lot more time indoors – again, due to the fact that there are limited activities you can do outside while it is very cold. So, why not make yourself nice and comfortable inside too?! I don’t appreciate anything more in the cold months than my slippers. Even though the heating is constantly on, I still find that my feet can get quite cold while I am walking around the apartment. My slippers make sure that my feet stay nice and toasty.
Is there anything else you think should be added to this list? Make a note in the comments below!