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Festival Season

One of the coolest things I experienced from my time here was the diverse and constant mix of festivals that I had the chance to attend. But I don’t mean the Danish festivals like Fastelavn and the Great Prayer Day, which I only heard about during class.

I’m talking about things like the Adventure Festival, DOX, and the Danish Coffee Festival. I found myself immersed in a kaleidoscope of festivals that celebrated the city’s diverse cultural heritage. Seeing advertisements for these festivals, and following the posters for more information was such an organic way to explore the city the way a local might.

The first festival that I went to was the DOX Film Festival, where I was enthralled by the power of storytelling through cinema. One particular film, centered around a Finnish gamer, offered a captivating glimpse into world unlike any I had ever learned about. It described his struggle with high expectations as he kept reaching the pinnacle of gaming and failed to secure his final medal, until he overcame his mental block. It was a testament to the universality of human experiences, transcending borders and cultural differences. Though I only saw one of the movies, the festival itself provided a platform for unique narratives and sparked in me a deep admiration for the transformative power of film – an avenue I had never explored, yet it inspired me to get into videography.

I had the chance to attend the Danish Coffee Festival, hosted by the Specialty Coffee Association of Denmark, with one of my close friends from home, who was also a coffee enthusiast. It transported me to a world of flavors and craftsmanship in a culinary setting, which I had never had the chance to explore. I found myself engrossed in the art of brewing and the science of coffee as I savored velvety espressos and expertly poured pour-overs. The festival pulsated with the energy of baristas showcasing their skills, and the air was filled with the enticing aroma of freshly brewed coffee. This escapade left me with a profound appreciation for the intricate journey from coffee bean to cup.

One of my favorite festivals was the Copenhagen Sakura festival, where I had the chance to be immersed in a mesmerizing tapestry of Japanese traditions. Langelinie Park was awash with beautiful cherry blossoms, and as I wandered through the festival, I had the chance to experience a bit of Japanese culture through traditional music performances, a karate demonstration, and even a mochi-making workshop. I had not expected to learn about Japanese culture in Copenhagen, but it emphasized to me the value of cross-cultural connections and the diversity that Copenhagen harbored.

Perhaps this is not a festival, but it most certainly felt like one. Venturing into the Reffen food market, I embarked on a culinary adventure like no other. A bustling hub of creativity and flavors, it offered an array of delectable treats from different cuisines from all around the world. I had the chance to try amazing street food that still pushed the boundaries of culinary innovation, inspiring new ideas for me to cook and exposing me to the stories of the people behind each food stall. While Copenhagen is known for its food, the restaurants and the sit-down places are old news. Reffen was something I had never heard about until I got here, and I endeavor to try as many cuisines as possible while I was here. (My recs: try the African place, Baobab, and the Argentinian tacos place).

The grand finale of my festival escapades was the Copenhagen Adventure Festival, a haven for adrenaline seekers and adventure enthusiasts. Here, I indulged in a series of thrilling activities that fed my hunger for excitement. From a tantalizing “wild” food tasting experience with a celebrated chef to an exhilarating kayaking adventure around and across the harbors, and from an insightful camping workshop to a chance to embrace the great outdoors, I found myself immersed in a world of exhilaration and discovery. This festival reminded me of the joy that lies in pushing boundaries and embracing the unknown.

As I reflect on this compilation of experiences, I am humbled by the richness of Copenhagen’s cultural tapestry. Each festival I encountered – whether it was food, music, or art – unfolded a unique chapter in my exploration of the city. Copenhagen truly shines as a haven of diversity and creativity, where residents and visitors alike can revel in the magic of its dynamic festival scene.


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