My May weekend in Copenhagen became part of my Sport Travel Portfolio by accident. When I booked it a few months earlier, the only plan was to get out of the UK the weekend of That Wedding.
Being a hardline republican, I find the sycophantic fawning on such occasions utterly nauseating. As an aside, a large chunk of the UK feels exactly as I do, another large chunk “couldn’t care less”, and it is just a minority which causes the problem. You would never know from the media, of course.
Anyway, getting back on message, I was looking for a place to spend the weekend which is just one relatively short flight away from Edinburgh. I know Copenhagen well, but hadn’t been there for a long time, so when it showed up as a possibility in terms of convenience and price (£107/€122 return) I was interested immediately.
When I started looking for a place to stay for 2 nights, I ran into problems. The city centre hotels were all full already, or coming up with silly prices. That was a surprise, trying to book 3 months ahead.
A quick look at the Visit Copenhagen site revealed that the IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship tournament was taking place in Denmark over May, with the semi finals in Copenhagen on the Saturday of my visit.
Well Airbnb solved the accommodation problem very quickly, and then it was a case of deciding which semifinal to buy a ticket for! Going to an top level ice hockey world championship had been on the “wish list” for a while, so I couldn’t believe my luck.
I got a ticket for the evening semi final for £119/136 – expensive but still. Of course I didn’t know who’d be playing until the Thursday night after the quarter finals. It turned out to be Canada (ranked 1) v Switzerland (8th).
In another positive aspect to the trip, when I made contact with a friend who lives in the city about meeting up during my time there, it turned out she’d never been to an ice hockey game and was keen to join me!
The whole evening turned into a wonderful occasion with beer, burgers, good company and a nailbiting game, won 3-2 by the Swiss.
The championships will be held in Slovakia in 2019. I know Bratislava well, but haven’t been there for a long time…
ⓒ iain taylor, 2018