The country that has been rated for the happiest country of the world is my new home, since two months. So far, I can tell you: Do not underestimate Denmark!
When I arrived in Kolding, I felt comfortable from the first day. Although, Kolding is not a big city, the castle, the lake and the harbour at the fjord create a cozy atmosphere – or like Danish people would say „hygge“.
The university started with an orientation week that convinced me of the Danish education system. Everyone is called by his/her first name and you get to know people from all over the world. Additionally, I really like that professors set a high value on a personal development of each student. Thus, there is a plenty of sports, party, and training events.
‘Travel is the only thing you buy, that makes you richer’
Also, Kolding is a pretty good location to experience not only Denmark but also to visit Sweden. In general, you cannot compare Denmark’s and Germany’s population in cities (except Copenhagen). However, you can notice in Danish cities that people are full of creativity and got love for detail. Particularly in terms of fashion and furnishing, I was impressed by the Danish style.
When I visited Sweden, I made trips to Malmö, Helsingborg and Göteborg – I can recommend each of them. What I noticed, that all cities are shaped by their old towns, the ocean, and the Swedish architecture. As a result, they offer great opportunities for city trips.
‘Tak’ means ‘Thank you’
As I expected, Denmark’s everyday life is not quite different to the one in Germany in terms of living and partying. You rather notice a few little differences over the day, but the greatest challenge is the Danish language. Even though, everyone talks English, when I listen to a conversation between two Danish people I cannot even guess what they are talking about. Consequently, “Tuk” and the other two Danish cusses in my vocabulary have to be enough for my last two months, here.
Christmas is coming
For Danish people, Christmas is a huge event. That is why they start their Christmas preparation at the beginning of November. On the first Friday in November, the “Tuborg”- Truck serves the „Christmas beer” which is followed by Christmas Markets. Therefore, I got a Christmas feeling at the beginning of November, for the first time in my life.
That is also supported by Christmas dinner invitations from our Danish friends. Here is one Danish tradition absolutely necessary: The one who finds the big almond in his/ her dessert, receives the present from the host.
Conclusion: I would do it again!
So, I’m excited what the next two months are holding for me and to what extent Danish people celebrate Christmas. After everything I experienced in Denmark, I can say: I would do it again!
Text and Images by Vivienne Kowalczuk (translated)