Haunts & Halloween in Copenhagen

Happy Halloween everybody!

Although I’m incredibly sad to be missing my yearly dose of pumpkin stew and watching Snoopy prowl around as the Red Baron in It’s the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown, it has been interesting to see how Halloween is handled in Denmark. Here are a few things I’ve noticed:

Danes aren’t very scary…

You may be asking yourself: what am I looking at and what does this have to do with Halloween? That, my friend, is a Danish cemetery and it’s about the least scary place I could possibly imagine. Each person gets their own little plot that is usually very landscaped and personalized. It’s so cute and kitchy–and a terrible setting for anything Halloween related.

…but they think Halloween has to be.

Last Friday my friend and I went to a Halloween party hosted by DIS (my study abroad program). She dressed up as a leek (porrer in Danish), because she always dresses up as food. While everybody loved her costume (she made a two-foot tall leek hat for goodness sake), all the Danes we encountered were confused how it was a Halloween costume. “What’s scary about porrer?” they asked us. “Are you an evil porrer?”

Try as they might, Danes can’t quite get Halloween right.

The one place in Copenhagen that did go all out for Halloween was Tivoli. I didn’t get to go myself, but according to a friend who went there were thousands of pumpkins all over the park, pumpkin lights strung in the trees, and renditions of “This is Halloweentown” from The Nightmare Before Christmas played.

Sounds pretty Halloween-y, but unfortunately Tivoli closed until the Christmas season on October 24–a week before Halloween. It was so strange to walk by that day and see them already taking down the decorations.




Their tricks may be lacking, but they’ve got the treats down.

Beyond the delicious pastries that I enjoy far too often (or not often enough?), Danes know how to enjoy their sweets. Keep an eye out for my next post, where I’ll tell you about my favorite Danish treat!


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