Things to do

When dusk falls – join in the walk along Kastellet ( The Citadel) in Copenhagen

A Great Prayer Day tradition is to walk along the ramparts of Copenhagen city, however, as they were all torn down in 1850, citizens walk around the citadel instead.

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Picture and text by Bente D. Knudsen

Only a Copenhagen tradition, and established in the 17th century, was the annual evening walk along the ramparts of the city to enjoy the delights of a spring evening, and the church chimes of Frue Kirke, on the Thursday night before the Great Prayer Day .

This year the Great Prayer Day on 26 April is no longer a bank holiday, however, the event the evening before is maintained at Kastellet. The event is free for all to join in.

At the time, the ramparts were quite extensive, encircling the city, with the main entrances via Østerport, Nørreport and Vesterport ( hence the name port – which means gate in Danish).

As the city was expanding in the middle of the 19th century, and Copenhagen needed more space to build housing for all its new citizens, the ramparts were torn down around 1850.

So the well-to-do Copenhageners took up the tradition of walking along Kastellet instead. A tradition many maintain to this day.

You can join in as well – the citadel will be open and actually arranges many events on this evening of 25 April  2024.

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The Kommandant, Commander of Kastellet, is delighted to invite all citizens to join in the Great Prayer Day traditions, the  evening starts loudly as the canons send off their salute from Grevens Bastion.

There will be music on the church square and a spring choir concert in the church ( free tickets are needed to enter as this is a popular event in a small church).

Of course there are snacks available: you can buy cake, hot wheat buns and coffee in the canteen.

It all starts at 17:00 and continues until sundown at 22:00 when the citadel closes for the night.

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Highlights of the program:

17:00  Welcome and canon salute at Grevens Bastion

From 17:15 to 19:45 several concerts will take place at the church square, open to all.

The concerts inside the church are free as well but you need to get a seat ticket, they are distributed from 16:30 on a first come first serve basis:

18:00   Free church concert by the students’ choir ( only with tickets available from 16:30 at the church door as spaces are limited)

18:45    Free church concert by the Armys Music Band ( only with tickets available from 17:15 at the church door as spaces are limited)

At 20:45 the  Student’s choir will sing from the church square and at 20:35  the flag is taken down – a special ceremony on this evening.

Visit the museums at the citadel – entrance is free:
Kastellets Historiske Samling /Norgesporten
1. Regiment DLR Mindestue /Norgesporten
Livjægernes Museum /Kongeporten

The old mill will be open from 18:00.

Tug of war:
At 20:00 you can enjoy the competitive fun when two old student homes, Nordisk Kollegium vs G. A. Hagemanns Kollegium ) have a go at each other in an amicable tug of war. In Danish “campus” homes are called kollegium  and they are not attached to any particular campus – but are student homes open to all university students

Find more information about all the events here.

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