Tourist in my own town

I live only a ten minute bicycle ride from this beautiful baroque building, Frederiksberg Slot. It is splendidly situated atop a hill, in what is our local city park today, but used to be peaceful countryside, in 1703, when it was established. It was built as a humble country getaway by the king Frederik IV, and has been extended from the original one wing (which used to be red!) to a much larger building with an inner courtyard, and even a small chapel. 

Ochre yellow and serene, it sits up there, as a powerful focal point in my local neighbourhood. We use the park a lot, for jogging, ice skating (there is a free skating rink at Frederiksberg Runddel from November to March) and of course for doing nothing at all. There is a cosy little playground as well.

There is an awful lot to say about this charming park, but I will share a little tip with you, that may not get into the official tourist guides. If you visit, you may bump into 'Hejremanden' - The Heron Man. He is there practically every day, all year round, talking to the many herons in the park and feeding them yummy fish snacks. He is a bit of a local legend, and we love to sit a little bit away (herons are very large and slightly nervous creatures!) and watch his quiet, patient interaction with the birds.

But back to Frederiksberg Slot: since 1869 it has housed the Danish Army Officers Academy, and every last Saturday each month, you can take a guided tour with one of the school cadets. Last week I, and two friends, finally got around to it, and it was a charming experience. 

The building itself is impressive, and once you get inside, it is a funny mix of modern (or, actually, not so modern!) school equipment, and priceless historical paintings, chandeliers and such. Parts of the palace is under restoration, so some of the rooms have fresh, gently restored colours and trompe l'oeil paintings, boldly paired with sci-fi style Luceplan lamps! The cadets who do the tours are far from being art historians, and they will give you a very personal and fun tour - and will do so in English, if you ask for it! The view from the roof balcony must be one of the most spectacular in all of Copenhagen, so if not for anything else, I will recommend it only for that!

Here are some of my snapshots.....

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