Things to do

They are early this year…the blossoming cherry trees

According to the Danish meteorologists the spring blossoming is early this year, a result of the exceptionally mild winter. Take advantage, now, and in the coming weeks, of a special sight – the magnificent pink cherry trees.

By Bente D. Knudsen      Pictures: Hisham Ammar

They are really a short-lived joy – the pink flowers of the numerous Japanese cherry trees around in the garden’s of old villas from the 20s and 30s in Copenhagen, Frederiksberg, Hellerup, Charlottenlund, parts of Aarhus and Odense too.

Apparently they are too pink to be “real” Japanese cherry trees – however in Denmark they are known as Japanske Kirsebærtæer.

However, if you do not feel like cycling around, peeping over hedges or climbing fences to see them, take advantage of some of the public places where they are in abundance.

The most spectacular sight is the cherry tree “boulevard” of the old cemetery on Bispebjerg.

It has become so popular to go, around 150,000 visitors are expected in April, that a number of volunteer “Cherry tree guides” will help visitors in order to avoid disturbance of funerals and burial services.

A good tip would be to go during weekdays and early evenings to avoid the crowd. Public access is from 7:00 until 22:00. The municipality asks the public to respect that it is NOT a park but a cemetery and picnic’s and blankets do not belong on tombstones.

They are worth it though, which the many visitors seem to confirm. So maybe take an evening ride to Bispebjerg Kirkegaard.

Less awesome, as there are fewer trees, is the sight in Kongens Have in the midst of Copenhagen, but not less beautiful of course, or in the Frederiksberg small public park just off Falconer Alle called Hostrups Have.

Another good place to go is the park at Langelinie called Kirsebærlunden.

This park consists of 200 so-called real Japanese cherry trees, which were a donation to the city of Copenhagen from the Japanese Consul Seiichi Takaki in celebration of H.C. Andersen’s 200th birthday.

Mr. Takaki is also the Chariman of the famous Japanese bakery chain called Andersen. The Andersen Bakery was founded in 1959 by the then president Shunsuke Takaki after a visit to Europe and a life-changing encounter with Danish pastries!

The flowers are not as pink as the ones normally found in Denmark, they have a much less bright pink colour.

Take not though, due to the location next to the harbour front at Langelinie they bloom later in April.

This year during the weekend from  29 to 30 April you can participate in the big cherry tree festival, a colourful and spectacular event, The Sakura Festival, which takes place for the 10th time in 2017 at Langelinie. Read more about the Sakura Festival here.

If the weather is nice, bring a picnic and enjoy the sight of the surprisingly many Japanese Copenhageners.

If you have no idea what to expect from a Sakura Festival then enjoy our picture reportage, courtesy of our photographer Hisham Ammar from the festival in April 2016, in our article here.