by Danielle Robles
I knew nothing about Denmark before traveling there. Like literally nothing. It's a pretty crazy thing for someone who calls themselves a traveler to admit, I know. But after speaking to all the friends that had been before, the consensus remained the same: Go to Christiana.
Over 40 years ago a slew of squatters set up shop inside an old military base -- creating a self-proclaimed autonomous neighborhood of about 850 residents, covering 84 acres of land inside Copenhagen. A "free zone" if you will. A place I now refer to as Wonderland. It was founded in 1971 by a group of hippies, artists, and idealists, and said to be “beyond the reach of Danish law” by its founders. Stroll past "Pusher Street" where locals openly slang copious amounts of weed and hashish, and you'll find quaint bars, cafes, shops, art galleries, performance venues, and impressive handcrafted abodes.
One spot you must not miss is the cozy little vegetarian cafe called Morgenstedet. It was here I experienced the best meal of my entire trip. For just 100 krona you can get a "Hot Plate" which consists of the fresh-cooked dish of the day, accompanied by two veggie sides. On this particular visit I noshed down on the potato and mushroom gratin with curried cauliflower and quinoa salad--all fresh from their little garden. Honestly, if this is what hippie heaven feels like, sign me the hell up.
After our nice hearty meal, my friend and I decided to explore a bit more, and popped into Nemoland for a few brews. We sat on the patio with a few spliffs and soaked up the scene. It was about the time I swear I spotted the youngest Skarsgård that I lost my shit. How could a world like this possibly exist?
In all honesty, the town inhabitants appear to have it all "figured out" sure, but that doesn't mean that problems cease to exist. Though authorities tend to look the other way when it comes to marijuana, hard drugs still lurk in the shadows and many self-crafted homes still sit without electricity and water. Perhaps it's just the price you pay for living in a little slice of utopia. I don't know. What I do know for sure, is that Christiana (the Wonderland to my Alice) is the perfect little place to trek to when looking to escape reality.