Bronze dragon statue at Copenhagen City Hall

Denmark, The Happiest Country in the World - in a Nutshell

Author: Sue
Date: 25th March 2018
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Denmark - Geography

  • Denmark consists of the Jutland Peninsula and 443 named islands. About 70 of these are inhabited,
  • The Kingdom of Denmark also includes the self-governing territories of the Faroe Islands and Greenland.
  • This is a relatively flat country with the highest natural point, Møllehøj, rising to just 170.86m and the country's average height above sea level is only 31 m.
  • Denmark is part of the European Union, but the country has retained its own currency - the Danish krone.

History of Denmark

This is the oldest monarchy in the world. The kingdom of Denmark emerged, as a nation, in the eighth century, a maritime power winning the struggle for control of the Baltic Sea. In 1397, it joined Norway and Sweden to form the Kalmar Union, which continued until Sweden left the union in 1523. The remaining Kingdom of Denmark-Norway then entered into a series of wars in the 17th century, which resulted in further loss of territory to the Swedes.

Following the Napoleonic Wars, Norway was absorbed into Sweden, leaving Denmark with the former Norwegian territories of the Faroe Islands, Greenland, and Iceland. In 1849 a parliamentary democracy was introduced, ending the absolute monarchy.

Facts and Factoids

  • According to medieval legend, Denmark is named after the mythological King Dan.
  • First acknowledged in 1219, the Danish flag is the oldest state flag in the world. It's is called the Dannebrog ("Danish cloth” or “well made material". Legend has it that the Dannebrog fell from the sky, in Estonia.
  • International surveys often rank Denmark as one of the happiest places in the world based on standards of health, welfare, and education, maybe because the Danes have a special word "hygge" for that cosy feeling of togetherness. It means relaxing in great company
  • LEGO was invented in Denmark. Legoland and the company headquarters are located in Billund, on the Jutland peninsula
  • As well as Copenhagen, I've visited the Renaissance Kronberg Castle in the town of Helsingør, on the extreme northeastern tip of the island of Zealand. Shakespeare immortalized it as Elsinore Hamlet. It was strategically important, as the Sound, between Denmark and Sweden is only two and half miles wide here.

Is Denmark Expensive to Visit?

 Denmark  has high wages and high taxes, so is definitely more expensive than many southern European countries, but it is also less expensive than its northern Scandinavian neighbours, Norway and Sweden.

Is Denmark a Safe Country?

Denmark is generally considered an extremely safe country to visit. It is a country with almost no risk of natural disasters and with average crime rates. Nevertheless, my purse was stolen in Copenhagen!

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