Visiting Denmark, a member of the Schengen Area, gives you the opportunity to visit other 25 countries within this area. The closest Schengen countries to Denmark are Sweden, Germany, the Netherlands, Poland and Norway. Sweden and Germany are the closest, so they’re the perfect choice for an adventurous flying visit, but this depends on where you’re staying. In our case, for example, we visited Sweden because we were staying in Copenhagen.
The Øresund Bridge
As you may know, Sweden is a Scandinavian country to the northeast of Denmark, with over ten million inhabitants. As neighbor countries, they share some cultural and historical bonds, but they’re still very different. Now, Denmark’s closest territory to Sweden is no other than the island of Zealand. Once there, the easiest and fastest way to cross is through the Øresundsbroen (Øresund Bridge).
This marvel of modern engineering conects the nations through an almost 16 km (9.9 miles) combination of three segments. First, a 3.5 km (2.2 miles) Danish underwater tunnel emerges onto a roadway across 4.5 km (2.5 miles) of artificial island Peberholm. Then it rises onto a 7.8 km (4.9 miles) bridge over the sea that ends on Malmö, Sweden. This ride is over thirty minutes by car and much less than that by train.
Our escape to Sweden
In our case, we decided to cross after we visited Kronborg Castle. After all, the town of Helsingør (Elsinore) is one of the closest areas to Sweden. The only difference there is that you can only cross by sea, with the help of the Scandlines ferries. The ride takes 20 minutes and it’s more interesting and relaxing that a car ride. The final destination is the small Swedish city of Helsingborg, which is the Sweden’s closest point to Denmark.
You can also get something to eat in the restaurants or purchase anything from the stores, as well as meeting new people or simply watching the landscape by yourself. Either way you decide to cross to Sweden, don’t forget to bring your passport and other relevant documentation, because security checks may be performed when you leave and/or when you arrive.
Our visit was rather brief, only a couple of hours in the afternoon, because we needed to get back on time for a concert at the DR Koncerthuset. So we had a very short time to visit some interesting sites nearby as well as exploring the streets and getting to know the Swedish people. So we walked a few blocks away from the station and, with the help of Google Maps, we found several interesting places to visit; we decided to go to two of them.
Places to visit
The first one we found was the Rosenträdgården, a small garden full of color and life three blocks away from the Helsingborg station. This peaceful place gives you a moment to relax and an amazing view of the part of the town that’s closer to the sea. You can also have a picnic there, because there are two small open-air cottages. It’s the kind of place you can visit with your kids, as it has lots of places to run and play.
The second place we visited in our small scape to Sweden, not so far from Rosenträd-gården, is a historical place called the Kärnan tower, the only remaining part of a 14th century Danish fortress that used to control the traffic in the Øresund strait and the surrounding areas in the Baltic Sea, along with the Kronborg Castle. That’s why it was considered the most important fortress in Denmark and it played an important part in the subsequent wars between the Danish and Swedish forces for the control of this area.
There are so many interesting places to visit in Helsingborg, Sweden, but we couldn’t stay longer. We made a list of places we’d like to visit the next time we go there, hopefully with much more time to spend. First, the Museum of Failure, located at 700 m (2296 ft.) from the train station, a place with the largest collection of innovative products and services that completely flopped. Another one is the Medical History Museum, located right behind the Karnan tower, where they show artifacts and procedures that the doctors used in the past. Finally, the Botanical Garden and museum Fredriksdals, a traditional place with an old classical Sweden style.
We hope that when you visit Denmark, you also dare to venture outside, into other countries. That way you’ll expand your experience and appreciate the awesomeness of roaming around the Schengen Area.
Have you been to Sweden already? Please share your experiences and recommend us other Swedish cities to visit in the comments section below!