Kids Corner | Rock on … with rock cakes, runes and castle ruins!
I was surprised to find the Puppet Festival from February 28 until March 3 is for adults only. That’s worth knowing! It’s certainly a bit cold for running about in your birthday suit like the puppet on the website. In fact it’s so cold right now that the ground is rock hard and that inspired the theme for this week … rocks.
I like rocks – probably because I grew up on the coast – so we often go for seaside scrambles. One day my partner and I took my boys to the Zealand Peninsula, told them to be careful and let them relatively loose. They found lots of lovely climbing rocks dotted along the sand and also spotted some chalk. How creative! It wasn’t a long walk, but I suddenly realised it was a quiet walk. And that spelled trouble. Looking a little closer, I was horrified to see a trail of naughty chalk drawings on rocks stretching back the way we’d come. The little tykes were teasing me! It took me half an hour to draw underpants on all the cheeky pictures. And when I finally straightened up, I saw three uniformed officers from the local radar station watching me with amusement from up on the cliff. Goodness knows what they thought! By then the guys were halfway back to the car … still giggling.
Rock ‘n’ roll castle ruin
Rock cakes are a tasty indoor treat. Building a castle out of milk cartons etc is great fun too. See how at helendyrbye.blogspot.com. When done, take a ‘rock’ ‘n’ roll it through the gates. The ‘rocks’ can be small balls of clay. Or we used marbles. We planned to stick stones on the castle walls to resemble rocks too, but as glass and stones don’t mix, we thought newspaper rocks were safer. Younger children will have more fun with a bigger box, bigger gateways and tennis balls. For older kids, maths comes into play. But as the boys were sticking the numbers above the gates, I slipped up and told them they’d be keeping score themselves. That’s why the last gateway has a 1.
Exploring the ruins
Christiansborg Palace, HC Andersens Boulevard 2, Cph V; open Oct-April, daily 10:00-17:00, closed Mon; tickets to ruins: over-14s 40kr, under-14s 20kr, tickets that also include stables and royal reception rooms: over-14s 110kr, under-14s 55kr; 3395 4200; www.christiansborg.dk
At Christiansborg Palace, the building that houses parliament, you can explore the underground ruins of earlier castles on the site.
Traversing the rock igloo
Stuehøj, Ahornvej 10, Ølstykke; www.ølstykke-stenløse.com
A 45-minute train ride away from Copenhagen, you’ll find Stuehøj, a 5,500-year-old ‘rock igloo’ passage grave topped with turf. Get off at Ølstykke S-train station, just before Frederikssund. Mind your heads! And take a torch (it’s dark) and some charcoal for the barbecue by the playground.
A mine of inspiration
Ny Vestergade 10, Cph K; open Tue-Sun 10:00-17:00, Mon closed, Children’s Museum closes at 16.30; 3313 4411; free adm; www.natmus.dk,
Nationalmuseet has a mini castle where kids of up to ten can help ‘build’ a castle wall, dress up and play at cooking a medieval meal. Turn right instead of left inside the front door and you’ll find rocks with Viking runes. Buy a rune alphabet postcard and have fun writing letters in code.
Join the fossil hunters
Geocenter Møns Klint, eastern coast of the island of Møn; opening times vary – check www.moensklint.dk; over-11s: 115kr, under-11s: 75kr, no additional charges for activities, which include treasure hunts at Easter and on other holidays; www.themoenexperience.dk
Hunt for fossils among the rocks at Møns Klint, which is roughly 90 minutes drive down from Copenhagen. Handrails flank the many steps down to the beach, but they can get slippery in bad weather. The Geocenter, at the top of the huge white chalk cliffs, is billed as northern Europe’s most modern science centre with prehistoric exhibits, a climbing cave, a 3D cinema and an interactive workshop where you can study fossils, make stone figurines, lucky charms or postcards from natural materials. Click the purple icon at www.themoenexperience.dk to find more information about Møns Klint, the Geocenter (far right) and many other attractions.