On Friday we flew to Copenhagen via RyanAir. My friends had a pretty bad experience, so here are some tips to avoid their dilemmas:
- You have to check in online and print your boarding pass at home, but you can only do it within a week of your departure. If you wait to check in at the airport, you will be charged a hefty fee. We had already begun traveling within a week of our Sunday flight, so we didn’t have access to a printer. When we asked to do it at the airport, they sent us to another line and we had to pay around fifty dollars (in Danish Kroner). It sucked.
- Even though you have your boarding pass printed out already, once you get to the airport RyanAir makes you get your documents checked, and they will stamp your boarding pass. If you show up at the gate without doing this, they will probably give you a verbal warning/reprimand and initial it or something, but they could potentially send you all the way back to the check in desks, past security, and you could miss your flight.
- Your carry on bag must fit in the sizer. They want it to fit without you struggling to push it down. Even if you measure your bag and it technically fits, they may still make you check it. My friends had to size theirs several times, and that made us be in the back of the line. Because of that, since they say they only have room for the first 90 bags, they made them check their bags (for free, at least). My advice is to bring a bag that does not even look too big, like a book bag. I packed for the whole week in my one backpack, and it was really nice to travel light.
Once we got to Copenhagen, my friends who checked their bags had a very hard time locating them and could not get anyone to help them. They finally found them in a hidden part of the baggage claim room, and we took an Uber to our hostel because we were not mentally stable enough to figure out public transportation after all our RyanAir struggles. It was already dark by that time, so we just settled into our room. This was by far the nicest hostel I’d ever stayed in, and I would highly recommend it to anyone traveling to Copenhagen. It’s called Sleep in Heaven Hostel, and it had a really cool lobby/lounge area with a bar. We bought breakfast for the next morning, and it was delicious. There was meat, cheese, juice, coffee, bread, yogurt in milk cartons, fruit, and other yummy things. Saturday was our only time to explore Copenhagen, so we had a full day ahead of us. We thankfully didn’t have a whole lot on the schedule, though, so it was a pretty relaxing day.
First, we went to the palace, which was surrounded by a gorgeous park as well as armed guards, who looked as young as us. The palace was really beautiful! The Danish royalty knew how to do it right.
From there, we took a walk past this pretty church.
We also went to the main square, where we saw the changing of the guard. These guys looked really young, too.
We then walked to the area with all the colored houses, the ones that come up if you search Copenhagen on Pinterest. They were so cute and pastel. There were also old-looking boats in the water. We got some street food for lunch, and I got my first burger in Europe. It was delicious.
From there, we climbed up the tower of what I think is a government building to get a view of the skyline. It was free and actually had an elevator!
We also saw the famous Little Mermaid statue. Hans Christian Andersen, author of a lot of fairy tales including the Little Mermaid, spent much of his life in Copenhagen, so there were a ton of monuments and streets for him.
We went back to the hostel to relax a little bit, where we met a girl from Australia. She was staying in our room, traveling alone, and overheard us talking about going out that evening. She was super nice and ended up going with us to Tivoli Gardens. We got dinner on the way in a square that had a lot of cute food trucks lined up. I got a delicious pork sandwich, an orange juice (which they call appelsin), and a snegl, which was a cinnamon roll. It was amazing.
From there, we went to Tivoli Gardens, the second oldest amusement park in the world, and the place to be on Halloween. Even though there is an entrance fee, you have to pay to ride the rides. Because of that and our full bellies, we decided it would be best to just walk around, window shop, and gawk at all the beautiful, over the top decorations. We also got hot apple cider, which was oh so satisfying and came in a fun cup that I kept.
We flew to Rome the next morning, and spent a few hours there walking past a few major sites, like the Coliseum, the Roman Forum, and the Trevi Fountain. We got pizza for lunch and took a train back to Florence. I was so glad to be back and shower in my apartment. It was a hectic week, but I was so grateful I got to see all the sites I saw. I only wish I had more time in Ireland. And Rome, obviously.