‘If you are visiting one museum in Copenhagen, than let it be Louisiana Museum’ one guy told me.
‘Each time I talk about Louisiana, I have goosebumps’ the sales lady told us with almost-tears in her eyes.
So we decided to go to Louisiana Museum.
‘But wait! If you are going to Louisiana, you should also visit the Maritime Museum…it’s on the same train line’ I got this precious tip from Signe, a local friend of mine.
Eventually, our last day in Copenhagen was dedicated to visit these two museums. If you end up doing so (Highly recommended) better get a daily train ticket from Copenhagen’s Central Station and use it to visit both museums; Louisiana museum is located 25 miles north of Copenhagen (35 minutes train ride and get off at Humlebaek station) and the Maritime museum is located in Helsingor (another 15 minutes train ride from Humlebaek)
Before I write in more details about these museums, I have a confession to make; I have seen a lot of museums in recent years; thanks to living in New York and for traveling to other countries. And I must admit that these two museums (mostly the Maritime one) have amazed me and are definitely a must-visit.
Louisiana, Museum of Modern Art
This beautiful museum is located in the middle of a green and picturesque grove on one side and with a panoramic view of the coastline on the other side. Opened in 1958, the museum has gone through seven expansions, conducted by the well known Danish architects Jorgen Bo and Vilhelm Wohlert, who wanted to keep the architecture and the structure of the museum connected to its surrounding. Having big windows in such a way to allow daylight come in and at the same time, not to damage the Art. The architect have created an outdoor sculpture park where the visitors are walking through glass passage, leading them into the other pavilions.
Beside the sculpture park and other permanent collections, the museum is hosting various artists as guest exhibitions. One of my favorite permanent exhibit was the Giacometti gallery (3rd image) a two-floors gallery with floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the grove. I also enjoyed visiting the Children’s wing, which seemed to be popular not only among kids but also among their parents and grandparents, enriching them with various artistic activities.
Plan your visit around noon time and have your lunch outdoors (weather permits) to enjoy a beautiful panoramic view of the coast and of Sweden in the horizon.
Opening Hours: Tuesday-Friday: 11:00 – 22:00, Weekend: 11:00-18:00. Closed on Monday. Louisiana Museum.
M/S, Maritime Museum of Denmark
So this museum was an amazing surprise. At least for me.
It started with its location in the city of Helsingor, known mostly for Kronborg castle, where Shakespeares’ play Hamlet is set, but also known as a city with great dockyards, where ships were built. The museum itself is built in an old dry dock between Kronborg castle and the Culture Yard, as an underground museum (it took me a while to find the entrance) designed by one of the most renowned international architect Bjarke Ingles.
The entering hall of the museum transfers you immediately to an almost-real experience of an underwater maritime world. A hall colored in a deep blue tone and a red big float in the center of it, makes you feel you are in the middle of the ocean, underwater. The museum pays a great tribute to the history of Denmark as one of the world’s leading shipping nations, the life of the mariners and their families as well as the shipping and the trade cultures Denmark is holding.
In addition to the experiential exhibitions, presented in a very engaging and evocative way, there is also a permanent exhibition highlighting the creation and the building process of the museum itself. I highly recommend to see all the steps and process to execute this kind of a museum. The architecture of the museum is quite impressive; built in a dry dock, the floors in the exhibition area slope downwards and the hallways are actually made as glass walls, guiding the visitors through a continuous flow of spaces connecting one dock to another.
Some might tend to see this museum mostly for kids but I do think it is one of the most well done and explanatory museum for the Maritime life. Don’t miss it.
Opening Hours: Open Daily 11:00-17:00. Closed on Monday. M/S Maritime Museum of Denmark