“I wish it could be Christmas every day,” sang Wizzard in more innocent times (see video below), but be careful what you wish for, because in Denmark that’s very nearly true.
Factor in the way J-dag kickstarts the festive season in early November, and hang around for Epiphany on January 6, and it’s pretty much Christmas every sixth day in this country.
And let’s not forget that pesky Santa Claus conference in July when sweaty men in itchy beards descend on Bakken and central Copenhagen to momentarily turn juli into jul.
A Branson pickle
So, it’s not really much of a surprise to learn that Copenhagen has just been named the second most festive city in the world, according to bigseventravel.com, a perennial publisher of mostly useless, unscientific studies (you might remember the guffaws after it named the Danes the second sexiest people in the world).
The ‘study’ would appear to be assessing the month of December – so no prizes for starting early, the Philippines! – and taking into account the number of traditional festive markets and festivals, light displays and overall Christmas cheer.
But while Copenhagen has topped the charts in Europe, it couldn’t compete with the overall winner: the city of Branson in the US state of Missouri. With 6.5 million lights at its Silver Dollar City themepark, and entire districts lit up by neighbours competing with one another to see who can leave the biggest carbon footprint, it was a worthy winner.
Completing the top ten were Medellin, Quebec City, Manila, Riverside (California), Colmar (France), Bernville (Pennsylvania), Christchurch and Adelaide.
Frosty but festive
Still, Copenhagen got a great write-up, with Tivoli particularly praised – even though its 1 million lights have been left in the shade by the best of Branson.
“What’s not festive about a frosty city full of lights and charming walkways to explore around the holidays?” it asked.
“Copenhagen is certainly full of Christmas cheer, but for the ultimate holiday experience, head to Tivoli Gardens. Follow in the footsteps of magic as you take a journey on an elf train and watch the sparkling fir trees light up the gardens. Grab a glass of gløgg (mulled wine) while you wander!”