Category Archives: 2017 Winter Tours

Netherlands in Winter

I just wanted to mention a few wonderful events in our Dutch life. This post will be brief (don’t worry, not an overload of  history or art lessons) but some touchstones that make our life pretty wonderful..

A Warm Hoorn Welcome

November 12, 2017

….the first being a surprise welcome package we found nestled in our cockpit upon our return from the States. Left by our Dutch family that morning  it certainly brightened our arrival to a cold boat:

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A Winter Wonder Land

78°13’24.02″N, 15°38’48.8″E

(Longyearbyen, on Spitsbergen Island, SVALBARD ARCHIPELAGO)

Thursday-Thursday, December 22-28

Okay, we’re not going home for the holidays. No one is heading over here. So, what to do?

Why, go north, of course! Which is how we ended up in the Svalbard Archipelago on Spitsbergen, in a town 814 miles from the North Pole.

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Cathedral Squares

Cologne and Aachen

Tuesday-Wednesday, December 5-7, 2017

We’d heard some European cities celebrate the Christmas season with flair, including warm wine and hearty hot dogs. Since sipping glühwein and noshing on street treats while perusing a variety of wares augments the holiday spirit, we decided to check two out on our way to Hoorn. Of course, we can’t just go to a market when a huge stone presence, i.e., cathedral, demands your attention first. Almost like having to eat your peas before you can have cake. So, off we drove.

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PART VI: Hygge Land!

Central Jutland

Sunday-Monday, December 3-4, 2017

After our Sunday morning in Odense walking in Hans Christian Andersen’s footsteps we drove off the Island of Funen and back onto the mainland, or Jutland. Our next destination promised immersion into Denmark’s first official rulers in Jelling. This town gained prominence in the 10th century during the Vikings’ hey day. Here, Kings Gorm of Old (ruled 936?-958/9) and his son, Harald Bluetooth (ruled 958/9-985/6/7) established Denmark’s monarchy. The current monarch, Queen Margrete II, can trace her lineage back to Gorm, which is why some people consider this country’s monarchy the oldest in Europe.

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PART V: Hygge Land!

Moving a tad North, then a bit West

Friday-Monday, December 1-4

Packed up and ready to go, we headed north from Copenhagen to continue exploring Funen Island, our first stop being Frederiksborg Slot, the summer castle Frederik II (1534-1588) bought as a manor. A favorite of the king, it was also the birthplace of his son, Christian IV (1577-1648) who heavily renovated the place. Unusual in not being on a coast or river, Frederiksborg was constructed for the specific pleasure of the king, not for defense. And, it was definitely a beautiful ‘home’.

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PART III: Hygge Land!


Friday-Friday, November 24-December 1, 2017

After our first day when we performed our self-guided tour of Copenhagen we generally added one to two sites to our daily to-see list. Much more and our brains explode. Not really, but by the third site, especially a comprehensive museum, we’re so google-eyed and slack-mouthed it’s a wonder we don’t leave a trail of drool as we stagger from one display to the next.

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PART II: Hygge Land!

Museum Explorations

Friday-Friday, November 24-December 1, 2017

We tend to peruse guide books and websites both prior and during any travel we do. Of course, just experiencing a different area no matter where its location offers a different perspective on life; and, museums often provide an easy method for absorbing some of those views.

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PART I: Hygge Land!


Friday-Friday, November 24-December 1, 2017

Back in the saddle in a rented steed we headed for Denmark where hygge (pronounced ‘hoo-gah‘/‘hue-gah‘) flourishes. This little Danish word comes from Norwegian meaning well-being; and, to create an English definition simply relax in a comfortable setting with folk you care about and share thoughts big and small. Delectable nibbles and drinks can add to the ambiance if you so wish.  Ahhhhh… you’ve got hygge :)

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