I can’t tell you how excited I am to host this tour to Denmark, Sweden and Norway (via the sumptuous subtropical gardens of Singapore) next year, taking in the World Rose Convention in Copenhagen. You’ll see gardens, castles, parks, cafes, shops, shipwrecks (!) and historic architecture, plus some of Scandinavia’s most spectacular natural scenery. (Note: Our trip centres around the World Rose Convention but you can pick and choose which events you want to go to, or simply enjoy a couple of free days exploring Copenhagen’s many other attractions instead. I’ll be doing the design stores in between my rose fixes!) For a full emailed itinerary, get in touch with Jacqui Currall (her details are at the bottom of the page). Here’s a tempting taster:
Thursday 21 June
Fly from Auckland to Singapore on Singapore Airlines for a two night stopover, including a fabulous full-day guided tour of the city, taking in the sensational contemporary Gardens by the Bay and the beautiful Botanic Garden with all its stunning subtropicals and amazing orchids.
Saturday 23 June
We depart for Denmark tonight, but first we have a free day to explore Singapore, relax, go shopping or see more of the local sights. Check out late (at 7pm) then we transfer to the airport to fly on Singapore Airlines to Copenhagen.
Sunday 24 June
Welcome to Denmark! We arrive at 6.30 in the morning and take our coach to Odense, the charming third-largest city in Denmark and a 2.5 hour journey that takes us across the incredible architectural Storebælt Bridge. We’ll be staying in Odense – the home of Hans Christian Andersen – for two nights.
Monday 25 June
After breakfast, we’ll begin our coach trip to the town of Faaborg where you will have free time to explore the harbour, old streets and historic mansions. Its many restaurants serve a wide variety of Danish and foreign dishes. Plougs Gård on Vestergade, built around 1790, is one of the finest buildings in the town with its Neoclassical façade. Then we’ll visit the fairytale-pretty Egeskov Castle, in its beautiful lake setting.
Tuesday 26 June
After breakfast, we’ll check out and hop on the coach for our guided tour of Hans Christian Andersen’s Copenhagen, including visits to the Hans Christian Andersen Museum and his childhood home. Then we’ll drive to Aarhus, Denmark’s “happiest” city for a two night stay.
Wednesday 27 June
After breakfast, our first visit will be to the grounds of Marselisborg Castle (unless the Royal Family is in residence). Marselisborg Palace is located in Aarhus and is the royal couple’s summer residence. The castle is surrounded by an English-style park with ponds, a rose garden and a number of works of art. After the castle, we’ll head to Aalestrup to smell the roses at the Jutland RosenParken, followed by the Aros Art Museum, then return to our hotel.
Thursday 28 June
Today we’ll make our way from Aarhus to Copenhagen, to visit the open-air town museum Den Gamle By, one of the top-rated Danish museums outside of the main cities, in the Aarhus Botanical Gardens. It’s a super cute recreation of a historic town. Then we’ll be driven to the port to catch the ferry from Aarhus to Odden and on to Copenhagen. (On arrival at the hotel, those of you who wish to attend the World Rose Convention will need to make yourself known at the Tivoli Congress Centre for registration for A Fairytale of Roses – the 18th World Rose Convention. The impressive 19th century Copenhagen City Hall in the very heart of Copenhagen will house the informal meet and greet. The Danish Rose Society has obtained exclusive use of the beautiful hall for exhibitions during the Convention. The winning entries in the photo contest will be displayed on the movable exhibition walls as well as unique artwork in patch-work, all set in an ambience of roses and fairy tales. The meet and greet is a great opportunity to enjoy the exhibition. The very next afternoon, the Danish florists will fill the City Hall. The Danish Floral Art Championship sponsored by Interflora with the theme “Roses and Fairytales” will take place Saturday and Sunday. The flower decorations will subsequently be exhibited in the City Hall, and you can visit and see them also on the following days.
Friday 29 June
World Rose Convention: opens at 10am with an Opening Ceremony in Copenhagen City Hall. The Lord Mayor of Copenhagen will greet and welcome you and after the official Ceremony, the City of Copenhagen will host a light buffet lunch of the renowned traditional City Hall Pancakes with wine and refreshments. The afternoon’s activities will be at Rosenborg Castle and Garden. There will be a shuttle bus if needed, but if you can walk, don’t miss this stroll with guides through the old city. This easy 1.1 km walk at a relaxed pace on pedestrian streets through the lively centre of Copenhagen will take you to The King’s Garden, where you will find the 16th century Rosenborg Castle at the end of a narrow bridge over the moat to the island. On the lawns in front of Rosenborg Castle the North European world famous rose breeders, Danish Poulsen Roses, English Austin Roses, and North German Kordes Roses and Tantau Roses will create a display with their most fragrant roses, just as at famous flower shows. Participants are invited to vote for the most beautiful rose and for the most fragrant rose. The winners will be announced at the celebration the following day in Valby Park. At 14.00, Her Royal Highness Crown Princess Mary will baptise the convention rose, bred by Poulsen Roses. You will also have the opportunity to take a walk in the King’s Garden and visit the Renaissance Rose Garden as well as exploring the castle and the exhibition of the Crown Jewels. The Queen’s Guard close the gates at 5pm. Make your way at leisure back to the hotel.
Saturday 30 June
World Rose Convention: lectures are on all morning in the Tivoli Congress Centre (your choice to attend). From midday until 5pm, shuttle buses will take you to Valby Park, the biggest park in Copenhagen and home to 12,000 roses in the newly laid-out Nordic rose bed. There will be guided tours of the themed gardens and a catwalk of dresses with Roses and Fairytales. Enjoy dinner at your leisure – in lively and cozy Nyhavn, the restaurants along the pier have indoor and outdoor serving of Danish seafood and traditional Danish cuisine.
Sunday 1 July
World Rose Convention: A full day tour to the royal palace of Fredensborg, the Queen’s summer residence. Here we will visit the beautiful park and the rose garden, and a rose chosen by His Royal Highness Prince Henrik will be baptised in his honour. Next stop will be at the impressive baroque park at Frederiksborg Castle, then we will continue to Gerlev Parken – an arboretum – with two important rose collections. Later, back in Copenhagen we will visit one of the most modern garden centres in Denmark, Plantorama Hillerød. Here we will enjoy a light supper before returning to Copenhagen.
Monday 2 July
World Rose Convention: a morning of inspiring lectures will take place in the Tivoli Congress, followed by visits to private rose gardens in the afternoon. Or enjoy a day to explore Copenhagen at your leisure (or with me!)
Tuesday 3 July
World Rose Convention: lectures in the morning, followed by more visits to private rose gardens in the afternoon. Or enjoy a day to explore Copenhagen at your leisure (or with me!)
Wednesday 4 July
World Rose Convention: lectures in the morning, followed by more visits to private rose gardens in the afternoon. The Farewell Dinner and Closing Ceremony will take place at the Langelinie Pavillion that evening. At 6pm, canal Boats will take you through Copenhagen Harbour along the narrow canals passing houseboats and low bridges as they built them in the 16th century. Or enjoy a day to explore Copenhagen at your leisure (or with me!)
Wednesday 5 July
Today, we head to Sweden. After breakfast in our hotel, the journey time is just short of 3 hours to Ronneby, during which we will travel over the Oeresund Bridge which connects Denmark and Sweden. After checking in to our hotel, we’ll visit the Ronneby Brunnspark and Rose Garden, famous for its many fragrant heritage roses.
Friday 6 July
After breakfast, we’ll begin our journey to Huskvarna which is situated on Lake Vanern, with a stop en-route in Jonkoping to visit the Rosarium Beautiful and well maintained park with about 500 varieties of roses.
Saturday 7 July
After breakfast, we’ll depart for our two-night stay in Stockholm, one of the world’s most beautiful cities. After our coach journey, we’ll stretch our legs with a walking tour of Gamla Stan – the medieval old town of Stockholm, dating back to the 13th century.
Sunday 8 July
We have a wonderful day ahead with a full day of sightseeing in Stockholm, including Rosendals’ Garden, the Vasa Museum and Drottningholm Castle. For more than thirty years, the biodynamic Rosendals’ Garden Foundation has promoted biodynamic farming practices and the garden exemplifies the farm-to-fork concept producing vegetables, herbs, flowers and fruit for greenhouse café and woodfired bakery.
The Vasa Museum is a maritime museum located on the island of Djurgården, with the only almost fully intact 17th century ship that has ever been salvaged, the 64-gun warship Vasa that sank on her maiden voyage in 1628.
The Drottningholm Palace is the private residence of the Swedish royal family, on the island of Lovön. It was originally built in the late 16th century. It served as a regular summer residence of the Swedish royal court for most of the 18th century.
Monday 9 July
Today we depart Sweden for Norway. We drive to Oslo, where we’ll stay two nights. Note: this is a long day on the road (8 hours) but we’ll have plenty of comfort stops, as well as a break in Karlstad for lunch.
Tuesday 10 July
We’ll have a fantastic day in Oslo with guided visits to the world’s largest sculpture park by a single artist, Gustav Vigeland, at Vigeland Park, Frogner Park and the Viking Ship Museum. Vigeland Park is one of Norway’s most popular attractions, while Frogner Park has the largest rose collection in the country.
Wednesday 11 July
Oh my goodness! Today was worth waiting our whole trip for. We drive to Flam and board the train for the return trip to Myrdal, described as “the world’s most beautiful train journey”. Over the course of the journey we’ll see lush fjord landscapes, steep mountains, spectacular waterfalls and snow covered mountains. It’s one of those once-in-a-lifetime experiences. Back in Flam, we drive to gorgeous Gudvangen for an overnight stay.
Thursday 12 July
After breakfast, we’ll take a Fjord Cruise from Gudvangen to Flam. The narrow and spectacular Nærøyfjord is surrounded by steep valley sides and snow-covered peaks that rise 1,800 metres above sea level, with thundering waterfalls and picturesque villages along the fjord. This area has been judged one of the most beautiful fjord landscapes in the world and is on the UNESCO World Heritage List. n arrival in Flam, we drive back to to Oslo.
Friday 13 July
Sadly, time to go home! We fly from Oslo to Copenhagen then home via Singapore, arriving back in Auckland on Saturday night.
Here’s a link to download the official Email Itinerary – Rose Tour as a PDF.
How much, you ask?
It’s $12,960 pp (twin share), with a single room supplement of $3,100. For all the logistical details and a full itinerary, contact Jacqui Currall from Hello World Travel in Te Rapa, Hamilton. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, or phone 027 548 2090 or 07 849 0449