Upon leaving the Central Station we headed towards the waterfront. Apart from a white lighthouse with two distinctive red bands, and two couples engaged in a mini photoshoot, there was nothing that stood out and no one around. We walked past glass and steel fronted buildings towards the city centre; it wasn’t surprising that the offices were closed but where were all the cafés? Where was everyone? It wasn’t the most promising start to the day.
This changed quickly. As we approached the city centre, the streets began to fill with people. Clearly, everyone was out shopping or having a coffee in the centre of town. We walked through a small park and then stumbled onto a cemetery unlike any other. This was completely open to the public and the planting of trees and flowers had transformed this space into a green oasis of peace and beauty. The broad avenue through the cemetery was lined with tall trees, and locals chattered away seated on the many benches dispersed through the area. A grassy patch was almost completely covered with tiny purple flowers and bright yellow dandelions jostled for space. As a dog came bounding over the flowers the scene was straight out of a family movie.
Just beyond the bend of the canal, a glimpse of the museum could be seen. We paused to take in the green banks, blue sky and gently rippling water. It was soon discovered that this was a casino and not a museum. It was hard to believe that this understated building was a casino – where were the flashing lights and bright colours?! Next to the casino was another park (Kungsparken). We saw a man selling coffee out of a small white truck. Within minutes of the three of us holding coffee cups a long queue had formed – we seemed to be his lucky charm (more realistically, subliminal advertising works.) Express Caffe has excellent coffee and also serves croissants.
There is a lovely restaurant next to the flower gardens but it was unfortunately too full for us to get lunch there. We continued walking along the bank and saw a striking building; burnt red walls with a pastel green roof. This turned out to be part of Malmöhus Castle. The café inside had more surprises for us. There was a wonderful seating area at the back where everyone was enjoying lunch and the unbelievably warm weather. Lunch was delicious, filling and good value. I really enjoyed my Swedish meatballs and the deep, creamy sauce that accompanied them as well as the acidity of the lingonberry accompaniment. The pickled herring and battered cod were also delicious.
We then took the bus to the modern art museum Moderna Museet. The red-brick building has mini turrets and windows that resembles a castle’s. The green iron frames stand out against the red walls, and bright red shutters have been added to the ground floor windows. At the time of visiting there was an Andy Warhol exhibition which included his iconic print of Marilyn Monroe as well as pieces from his previous exhibit in Stockholm in 1968. There were further exhibits upstairs which were interesting, but to be honest, I didn’t understand what the artist was trying to convey. Fans of Orange is the New Black should check out the museum’s café. The Turning Torso, which I caught a glimpse of earlier, is a life-sized work of modern art; this building has a 90 degree twist and is Scandinavia’s tallest building.
The train from Copenhagen takes around 35 minutes (slightly longer on the way to Malmö because of passport checks) and costs 146 kroner for a double return or 182 for a single return. You travel across the Öresund Bridge.