Travel guide. The Armchair Sailor’s favourite museum is the National Maritime Museum of Denmark (MS Museet for Søfart) in Elsinore / Helsingør, just a 60-minute train ride away from Copenhagen and just a 20-minute ferry ride away from Helsinborg (Sweden).
The main attraction of Helsingør is Kronborg Castle – a beautiful Renaissance palace where you can step back into the world of Shakespeare’s Hamlet.
Since the building of the new maritime museum was not allowed to impact on the view of this fairy tale castle, a stunning architectural solution was found: In 2013, the Maritime Museum of Denmark moved underground, into the premises of a former dry dock. To enter, you walk down a stylish staircase into what looks like the belly of a ship.
What unfolds beneath the ground is a modern, inventive and interactive exhibition. It explores the cultural mystique of the sailor and introduces you to the different aspects of the seafaring life (including a tattoo studio).
You can explore the history of Danish overseas shipping and trade and learn about the now taken-for-granted luxury goods that were brought to Denmark (tea, tobacco, cotton), but also about the human costs of the middle passage.
The Armchair Sailor simply loved the aesthetic beauty of the navigational instruments displayed!
But the lovers of warfare will also find enough eye candy in exhibitions dedicated to the Napoleonic Wars and Second World War. And the child builders among you will probably stand in awe of the world’s biggest LEGO ship – where else than in Denmark!