Explore History in Arhus, Denmark

Subscribe to my newsletter

In the middle of the busy port city of Arhus, Denmark, there is a quiet entrance to another world. Den Gamle By is a living history museum, showcasing the Denmark of Hans Christian Andersen’s day.

I’ve been on a writing assignment here in Denmark, but this morning, my editor, Heather, and I took a brain break and got to play tourist for a couple of hours. As soon as we stepped through the gates, the pavement gave way to cobblestones, traffic noise disappeared and we’d traveled back in time.

Most of the buildings in the town are not reproductions; they are historic buildings that were moved to this location. Some dated all the way back to the 1500s. With the advances in modern medicine and nutrition today, people are obviously taller, since even I had to duck through doorways. (Which, given my five-foot height, almost never happens!)

Horse-drawn carriages clopped over the cobblestones, children bowled with wooden pins, and a gardener pruned his flowers in the greenhouse. We munched on vanilla ring cookies from the bakery and gaped at the brightly painted murals in the Mintmaster’s Mansion.

In the newer 1927 section, we leaned close and whispered as the telephone operator showed us how she eavesdropped on conversations.

As we wandered through The Plakat (Poster) Museum in the 1970’s section, the colorful artwork reminded me of the wild exuberance of that era. We stopped at Poul’s Radio Shop and he almost persuaded us to buy a new color television to replace our old black and white one.

Too soon, it was time to return to the present day and my unfinished article.

But if you’re ever in Arhus, Denmark, be sure to stop by Den Gamle By. For more info, visit



Get in on the conversation

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    The Conversation

  1. Jan Jackson says:

    Wow, Connie. Did Hobbits live in there? LOL! I never have to duck either. So funny. Glad you’re having a good time. How is the chocolate there? Sample and report back.

    • Connie Mann says:

      Hi Jan, I can safely report that the chocolate is fabulous, since it seems to be it’s own food group here. Danes even put it on whole grain bread for breakfast! My kind of place! Love it here!

      • Jan Jackson says:

        Wow! That’s awesome. So happy for you, Connie. I know you will be inspired to write yet another keeper for my shelf!

  2. Leslie Santamaria says:

    What a treat to see some of your adventures on your writing assignment! This is the fruit of a long labor of love and some big dreaming! Go, Connie, go! Love you!