Proving you don’t need to be a tourist to enjoy a good tour – The Post

Proving you don’t need to be a tourist to enjoy a good tour

International House Copenhagen tailor-making days out for the city’s expat community

Families really enjoyed getting in touch with nature
June 7th, 2015 6:55 pm| by Dave Smith
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It’s no coincidence that the word tour and tourist are so similar, as visitors to this city tend to love the full-days outings to the likes of Odense, with the coach trip, lunch and entry to HC Andersen’s childhood home thrown into the package.

But for expats, the tour might not seem like such an obvious idea, even though it makes perfect sense – particularly if you don’t have a car or an inclination to make packed lunches.

With this in mind, International House Copenhagen has launched Family Tours, an initiative tailor-made for expats in Denmark.

A tour that they digged
On Sunday May 10, a group of international families living in Copenhagen took part in the first of this year’s family tours.

Focusing on urban gardening, the tour provided an opportunity for all family members – young and old alike – to literally dig into the world of inner city agriculture.

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Exploring urban oases
A group of international families from all corners of the world showed up at the International House, waiting to explore the green oases of Copenhagen.

Following a visit to Østergro, a 600 sqm rooftop farm located five floors above the ground, the bus took off to the second stop: a newly-established urban garden at the World Culture Center located in the very heart of Nørrebro. The families were met by the passionate urban farmer Signe Voltelen, who ran a fun and educational workshop for participants of all ages.

Dirt under the fingernails
Though the clouds were dark and the weather chilly, it did not stop the families from digging into the raised beds present in the roof farm and urban garden. Herbs and flowers were planted with great excitement by the young ones, who seemed to enjoy themselves among chicken, bees and organic vegetables.

The day ended with dirt-filled nails and mud-smudged clothes. As one of the parents expressed: “We live in an apartment here, and it’s the first time we haven’t had a garden of our own. It was an opportunity for the kids to get in with the plants. It sounded like it would be hands-on, so I thought it would be a really nice thing for them to do – get a bit dirty hands. We miss the garden, so this is
nice.”

Plenty more to come
The family tours are a series of events organised by International House Copenhagen and funded by the Danish Agency for Labour Market and Recruitment with the objective of ensuring the retention of highly-qualified labour in Denmark.

The tours take place at different locations around Copenhagen in June and August in order to introduce newcomers to the city’s diverse cultural and leisure scene and help them expand their network. More information about the tours can be found at ihcph.dk.

Culture & Leisure guidance

Bojana Tomic from Serbia attended the tour after ending out about it at International House Copenhagen’s last Culture & Leisure Guidance meeting – regular events held at the house that enlighten attendees about the endless
choice of activities at their disposal in the Danish capital.

“We took part in the Culture & Leisure Guidance, and it was very helpful. We
didn’t know that there were so many things that you can do here. I used it to explore the libraries, and I learned that I can  nd  lms in my own language. Now we are just exploring, but we may want to join a running club soon,” enthused Tomic.

“But the guidance was very useful. For example, what kinds of events take place at the culture houses, and that we can initiate some of the events ourselves if we
are interested in anything. We  find it very helpful and that’s why we come back and attend the events at the International House.”

The next Culture & Leisure Guidance is on June 11. Be warned that there are a limited number of spaces and demand is high. Find out more at ihcph.dk.

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Future Family tours


• June 14: Amager’s nature centre offers an immense area of meadows and watering holes to explore, along with plenty of sheep and ponies to pet! Tickets (adults: 75kr, kids: 25kr) include lunch and a visit to a library that o ers so much more than books!

• Aug 9:  The IH leisure guides will ensure you miss nothing at the Copenhagen
Harbour Festival. Jump aboard the harbour bus and try your hand at di erent sports and dancing activities, and don’t miss the performances after lunch. Tickets (adults: 75kr, kids: 25kr) include lunch.

• Aug 22: At the Children Special, the whole family is invited to explore Amager Culture House, attend several of its creative workshops and learn about its many activities and events aimed at children. Tickets (adults: 75kr, kids: 25kr) include lunch.

• Sep 7-13: Don’t miss Family Days 2015, a series of events featuring  activities for the entire family.  The week follows on from the Expat Fair.