Day 11 Dalby to Copenhagen: Copenhagen

17 miles of countryside then straight into outer then inner Copenhagen for the next 25 miles. Of the Danish population of 5.3million, nearly 1.7million live in the Copehagen area.

Like Holland and Germany, everywhere seems litter and graffiti free. Except for the great street art and deliberately chosen areas. Large buildings, especially industrial ones, are built to add to the landscape. An inner city incinerator, power station: both you have to look up to find out what they are.

The train bike storage capacity is great. Shame that doesn’t go for the manners of some of the cyclists. This may be a renound cycling friendy city: not all the cyclists are friend ly. The man who shouted near us (it couldn’t possibly have been at us) “get out the way, you’re going too slow”, clearly wasn’t around on the day the poll found this to be Europe’s friendliest city.

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Down to the Little Mermaid and tis done. Great trip, traveling with some lovely characters who knew a lot.

Here is our route

Day 10, Rodby to Dalby: Copehagen

Some immediate contrasts. Language: we should have listened more to Scandinoir cf the sub titles. I think tag, ya, will only get us so far. Prices: expensive. Few wind turbines. Hillier (that’s relative of course), rolling countryside. The electricity pounds are very dainty.

The cycle paths when they exist are good; drivers are not as caring of cyclists. And the return of the moped to cycle lanes. Mainly agricultural arable landscape, well manicured. More small towns, perhaps a bit more dilapidated than Northern Germany.

How do people know we are British even when we haven’t said anything? And why are we so rubbish at languages?

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The 2 mile bridge crossing was fun though best not to indirect too closely the rusted bits. Then upwards to the highest point of this trip…. Which is about the same altitude as our house. So downhill tomorrow….

Here is our route

Day 2 Ijmuiden to Den Helder; Copenhagen

Leaving the hills of the first day behind, North Holland stretches out like a bit of rolled pastry ahead of us. First we navigate the steelworks, now owned by Tata. Is this a crafty two way Brexit hedge position? The surrounding towns are quite different in feel to the surrounds of Port Talbot: a lot brighter with more space.

Again we are reminded of how cycling is the norm. People cycling in normal clothes along traffic free avenues. The occasional alium field draws the camera’s eye. The dune/dyke system dates from 1610, hopefully well maintained as most of today is below sea level.

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Den Helder is the home of the Dutch navy. Think one of the two ships was kind out at sea today, probably looking for the British fleet – that’ll keep them at sea for a whole then.

Here is our route

Day 1, Hook of Holland to Ijmuiden: Copenhagen

Reflecting that Dutch is a similar language to Welsh, to play Scrabble with, we set off to tackle the hills that are ahead of us. Stopping in the Hague for a coffee and to recall a stinking hangover after a soiree at the Ambassador’s residence some years ago, we caught up with the final destination of the Volvo Ocean Race.

A common theme with Harwich is bunkers. Unlike us the Dutch haven’t turned it into a personality trait. No doubt in a year the draw bridges will be up and customs a chore to navigate (grrrr).

We hadn’t expected the Highland cattle nor the cheeky fox. Bikes had been expected though perhaps not in the sheer volume and variety, nor motopeds using the cycle paths. Rohloffs abound. It’s fantastic to see how the infrastructure is not just bike friendly, it’s bike biased.

The landscape art interrupts the views of the sea, telling the tale of the people. On the day Mackintosh’s masterpiece seems to have died, it was good to reflect how art frames our lives: memories etched forever.

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We end up in steel town, though at a prettier marina than Port Talbot offers. A similar beach to Aberavon: the beer is more expensive!

Here’s our route.