Wednesday, 13 February 2008

Dark December Days in Denmark

Heavily decorated house in Silkeborg

After Christmas was over Nitoli and I went to Denmark to spend the days until New Year in Århus and Silkeborg catching up with family and friends. It was dark and depressing weather, but still nice and relaxing. For all the social calls I forgot everything about being a tourist, so I took no pictures of all that. However we also found time to be a little cultural and visit some of the local museums, which open specially in the Christmas days.

In Silkeborg we went to two museums. First we went to Aqua freshwater museum and aquarium, which deals with the wildlife and nature you can find in the lake district of Jutland, where Silkeborg is situated. They have lots of live animals, including fish birds and rodents such as beaver, otter and mink. There are also lots of little exhibitions giving an idea of the cycle of life in and around the Freshwaters of Denmark. It is an extremely child friendly place, which is all about seeing and touching, so we took along my nephew Asbjørn and my niece Johanne.

Asbjørn getting to touch a grass snake.

Johanne and Nitoli at the touch basin where you can stick down your hand and touch the very big fish there.

A charming resident at "Aqua"

The second museum we went to is Silkeborg Museum, which is mainly known as the home of the world famous Tollund man. He is one of the best preserved of the bog people - humans found in bogs around northern Europe having been preserved by the acid and other chemical features of the bogs. Around the year 400 BC he was either murdered or ritually sacrificed and thrown into the bog with the noose still around his neck. And today you can still go and stand face to face with him, as he lies there in eternal rest. Despite the fact that I lived in and around Silkeborg for almost my entire childhood and youth I never managed to see this unique man until this particular trip, where I came as a tourist from India.

The Tollund Man. The chemicals of the bog has made his skin all leathery.

A close-up at the Tollund Man's face. Incredible how you can still see the wrinkles in his forehead and the stubbles on his face, suggesting he hadn't shaved on the day of his death.

In Århus we re-visited The Old Town (open-air museum), which we both saw in the summer of 2006. It wasn't really new to us, but they had some special Christmas exhibits on, so we figured it was worth a new visit.

A dark, cold and depressing day in the Old Town. But it's still charming.

In one of the old reconstructed stores in the Old Town. Not that I'm wishing myself back to those days, but there was a different charm to your shopping experience.

Nitoli in the Old Town (Den Gamle By in Danish).

Nitoli in one of the old - and very basic - dining rooms.

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