Archive for Helsingor
2011 has again been a good year for me to discover wonderful new places in the world. Rather than bore you with a very brief and inadequate description, I thought I’d rely on the old saying of “a picture paints a thousand words” or rather in this case a photo. Here are my favourite photos I took during the last year.
My first trip of the year was to the Danish capital of Copenhagen. I’ve been there many times and decided to head up the coast to Helsingor and the famous Kronborg Castle. It is said to be the setting for Shakespeare’s famous play “Hamlet”.
I spent a couple of days on the Montenegro coast at Sveti Stefan overlooking this iconic iselt.
My first diving trip to Manado was extremely rewarding. On a night dive I managed to capture a couple of pictures of the elusive Mandarin Fish on a night dive.
Queens Colours 1/24th Regiment
The Battle of Isandlwana in 1879 was the greatest defeat a British force ever suffered at the hands of a native army. On that fateful January day, the Queens Colours of 1/24th Regiment were lost in the Buffalo River. Two weeks later, against all odds they were recovered. Queen Victoria added a wreath of immortals around the crown as reminder of what happened to those colours at Isandlwana. Today, they are hanging in the Havard side chapel in Brecon Cathedral, Wales.
Burning Bush / Fire Extinguisher
High in the Sinai Mountains in St Catherine’s Monastery. It is a hugely significant religious site and this picture is of the Burning Bush. I found it slightly amusing that there is a fire extinguisher next to it…just in case.
Soldier on guard, Hall of Valour
The Battle of Stalingrad was an horrendous fight to the death for hundreds of thousands of Russian and German soldiers. Today at the Hall of Valour at Mamayev Kurgan in Volgograd, there is a permanent guard.
Petra through the Siq
The Siq at Petra is a long passage all visitors have to travel through to reach the famous Red City. As you approach the end, you get your first glimpse of the Treasury in Petra.
Kotor – cruise ship
The old walled town of Kotor in Montenegro is a popular cruise destination.
This photo isn’t so much a favourite, I just want to highlight a problem (excuse the blurriness). When threatened, Pufferfish expand their bodies. Its a rare sight and is incredibly stressful for them. On this night dive in Aqaba, the guide annoyed this Pufferfish enough for it to puff out it’s body. I was really annoyed that someone meant to educate and protect the marine environment could do this. It was at a 5* PADI centre in a marine park.
If you want to visit a fantastic spa resort in a stunning setting, the Ma’In Hotsprings 260m below sea level in Jordan will not disappoint.
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Thats all from me for 2011, now I’m looking forward to 2012 which will take me to more new places and the Euro 2012 Championships in Ukraine.
About 30 miles heading north up the coast from the Danish capital, Copenhagen is Kronborg Castle. It is was of the most important Renaissance castles in Northern Europe and was the scene for Shakespeare’s play “The Tragedy of Hamlet: Prince of Denmark”. Kronborg dates back to 1429 and ships passing though the sound had to pay a tax. This was a very lucrative business making the Kings very rich.
It’s a very easy day out from Copenhagen with trains running regularly to Helsingor. From there, it’s a 10 minute walk to the castle which you can see almost as soon as you get off the train. The train ticket system around Copenhagen can be a little confusing so if you aren’t sure, just ask at the ticket office at the main station in Copenhagen. The journey takes around 45 minutes and there were around 3 trains an hour.
Helsingor is the end of the train line so there is no danger of missing your stop. Once you arrive at Kronborg, you cross over the bridge and make your way to the inner courtyard. There is no charge at this point and there are also wi-fi points at various spots where you can connect your phone and listen to MP3 audio tours.
If you want to explore the inside of Kronborg, you’ll need to purchase a ticket which includes a guided tour. There are various prices depending on which parts of the castle you want to visit and the most expensive ticket is 95DKK (around 11GBP).
The castle chapel is beautifully decorated inside and was originally consecrated in 1528. It escaped undamaged in the fire of 1629 and the vivid colours give you an idea what the castle was like in its heyday.
The first part of the guided tour takes you under the castle where you meet Holger the Dane. He is said to be the protector of Denmark and is an important symbol for the Danish people. There are a series of passages and dark corridors which were once home to the soldiers who lived here.
The next part of the tour takes in the various living areas of the castle including the Royal Chambers and the Ballroom. The decoration inside the castle is wonderful and there are various items of furniture and art on display.
The Danish Maritime Museum is also based at Kronborg but for some reason, I managed to miss out going there. As day trips go, visiting Kronborg from Copenhagen is definitely worth while. If possible go during summer as you will also have access to the Telegraph Tower which offers stunning views over the sound.