On our second morning in Denmark, we got ready early to meet up with our castle tour, which Jared, our guide from Percussive Tours, booked through Viator. The bus was a large, comfortable double decker. The tour included an audio guide available in several languages, and there was food for purchase on the bus.
The drive to the first castle, was very interesting as the driver took us through many coastal areas on the way. From the bus, we were able to see beautiful Danish homes along the seashore. The audio guide explained many of the sights we passed, and our driver actually took us down an extra road to tell us about the architecture of the old fisherman’s homes in the area. Then we drove through the countryside before arriving at Kronborg Slot.
One of the most special things about Kronborg is that it is the setting of Shakespeare’s Hamlet. Our guide gave us the option of sticking with the group or wandering on our own before we entered the palace, but warned us that the bus would leave without us if we didn’t make it back in time. At first, we hung around the larger group, but quickly decided to break off as the tour was moving very slowly and we wanted to cover a bit more ground. We ended up getting to see many rooms inside of the castle before making our way up the tower to find an amazing view of the castle courtyard, and the nearby town and bay. Then we headed in the opposite direction to explore the dungeons. Once down there, you could wander as deep into the dungeons as you wanted, and after a while they were no longer lit. We used the flashlights on our phones to cast a bit of light, but it was still quite eerie. It was crazy to imagine being imprisoned in the dungeons and never seeing any light at all. Eventually we emerged from underground and left the castle to explore the grounds a bit. We circled the castle and moat and then jogged back to meet the bus in time.
The bus left right on schedule, and soon we were at our next destination: Fredensborg Palace. This is one of the homes of the Danish Royal family, and the stop was a just a photo and gift shop opportunity. The palace was actually undergoing some construction, but it was still interesting to see where the royal family actually lives. The gift shop sold Danish hot dogs and ice cream, and we got a chocolate shake, which was exceptional.
After the quick stop at Fredensborg, we headed for our final, and most impressive stop: Frederiksborg Castle. Approaching this castle was incredible. We walked under towers, over a drawbridge, and past an intricate fountain before arriving at the entrance to the palace. It was hard to tear ourselves out of each room since the architecture was so detailed. Perhaps the most impressive rooms inside of the palace were the chapel and the ballroom which were both elaborately gilded and cavernous in size. Eventually we made our way out to the garden, which was also huge and beautiful. There was a great view of the palace from the garden as well. We could have spent much more time exploring this giant palace, but eventually we had to leave if we were going to make it to the bus in time.
All in all, it was a fascinating day trip. We had a great time learning about Danish history and culture.