Saturday, April 16, 2016

Tivoli Gardens in Copenhagen: The Happiest Place on Earth

Tivoli Gardens. Image from
In the 2015 World Happiness Report, Denmark, the gateway of Scandinavia  emerged as the happiest country in the world. This title is computed based on a host of several factors including per capita GDP, social support, healthy life expectancy and freedom to make choices among others.
This year, Denmark remained in the top three countries, suggesting an all around positivity from about the country and the people who live in it.
The Himmelskibet or The Star Flyer
A lot of this can be attributed to Denmark’s concept of the “hygge” (pronounced hooga). Simply put, the art of making hygge is to make something cozy or relaxing.  It’s actually a close relative of the ‘dolce far niente’ concept in Italy. Friends and family having dinner or simply hanging called can be considered hyggeligt. A cozy fellow or a hygge fyrcan be a friend who’s fun to be with.
The overall happiness of Copenhagen and the country as a while is also thanks to the existence of Tivoli Gardens, one of the most famous amusement parks in the world and one of the most visited pleasure centers in the whole of Europe.
Tivoli Gardens is also dubbed as “the happiest place on Earth’.
To better understand why Danish are such a happy people, I burned nearly P700 or about 100 krones to buy my way into the world famous Tivoli Gardens, dubbed as “the happiest place on Earth”.
Long before Walt Disney was born, The Tivoli Gardens located in Vesterbrogade street near Kobenhaven Hovedbanegarden), has been entertaining Copenhagen residents with its rides and fairgrounds.
image from
Established in 1843, it is the second oldest theme park in the world. It has about 25 rides including Himmelskibet, one of the highest chain carousels in the world, about 30 or so restaurants and about 100 or so events/concerts every year.
One of the most famous attractions in Tivoli Gardens is the Rutschebanen or what locals fondly call as Bjergbanen or the Mountain Coaster. It is one of the world’s oldest wooden roller coasters, which, surprisingly, is still in perfect condition nowdays.
Rutschebanen. Photo courtesy of
The Danes are also veryu proud of the The Demon or Daemonen, another roller coaster inside Tivoli Gardens which features an Immelmann loop and zero-G roll all within one minute and forty six seconds, which is the average time of the ride.
In 2009, the Tivoli launched the Vertigo, a looping plane ride which allows the riders to pilot the plane, and in 2013, the Aquila was inaugurated. The Aquila is a giant swing and spinner ride.
There is also the Odin Express, a super cool train ride for kids and kids at heart.
At the Tivoli, you can also fnd here traditional carnival games such as rifle games, that offer free baloons and toys.
It has a grand theater, an open air stage called The Plaenen, and several promenades where people can just sit down and take in the atmospher of sheer joy.
At night, Tivoli Gardens takes a different personality as thousands of lights illuminate the entire park.
The sea of colorful tulips glisten in the evening light and couples hang around the very romantic spot.
After spending four hours trying some of the rides, I joined some of the locals who were lying around the tulips garden, whiling away the time, savoring every happy moment with their friends and families.
I rested at one the benches near the gardens and under the waning sun, I suddenly had a glimpse of what makes the Tivoli, one of the most magical places in the heart.
And the smile pasted on my face, for hours, was a great affirmation that Tivoli Gardens is indeed the happiest place on the planet that night.
Rutchebanen. Photo courtesy of Tivoli Gardens website


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