The Ultimate Guide to the Beautiful Danish Spring
Photo: Ingmar Wesemann / GettyImages
Hello and welcome to this month's edition of our newsletter. Spring marks the transition from winter to summer and for many Danes this season is associated with sun, light, and warmth. Although the warmer and sunnier weather might not have hit you yet, you will surely see brighter eyes and broader smiles on your colleagues or people you pass on the street. The Danes long for opportunities to enjoy the vast amounts of leisure opportunities that the cities and landscapes of Denmark have to offer. The season of spring gives us all the opportunity to enjoy the beautiful and now colorful nature of Denmark.
This guide to the Danish spring will take you through the ins and outs of this wonderful season. From all of us at Expat in Denmark to all of you, our readers; We wish you a lovely spring and påske.
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Danish Spring Traditions
Photo: Christof
When the longer and warmer days arrive, it opens up new opportunities, and thus traditions spring to life. The biggest, and the most official one is -> Påske.
Easter - Påske
When you say spring in Denmark, you automatically say "påske".
Although the holiday is celebrated ubiquitously throughout the world, the Danes have (of course) created their own specific traditions during easter.

Gækkebrevet - the easter letter
A specifically Danish easter tradition is the "gækkebrev". The custom, which has its roots all the way back in the 17th century, entails sending an anonymous letter to someone you know, and the idea is that the recipient has to guess who the sender is. Sending a "gækkebrev" is a popular easter activity for children in Denmark. The letter will be designed in different easter-shapes with a scissor and instead of signing with your name, you sign with one dot for each letter of your name accompanied with a rhyming riddle.

Påskefrokost - the easter lunch
As if the Danes were in dire need of occasions to eat and toast, the "påskefrokost" has become a nationwide tradition during easter. Just like the traditional "julefrokost" there will be "sild" (herring) and "snaps" on the table, which is typically dressed in a yellow tablecloth, daffodils and coloured eggs. Another similarity between the celebrations of easter and Christmas is the production of a holiday-specific beer. Strolling through the supermarket you might have encountered many different types of "påskebryg". Usually ornamented with a yellow sticker, the "påskebryg" is only sold during easter and has become a stalwart part of the menu of the "påskefrokost".

Påskehare - the easter hare
The easter hare is a relatively new addition to Danish easter. Originally from Germany it has been popular in Denmark since the start of the 1900's. The tradition consists of the "påskehare" laying eggs in the garden during the night, and children going egghunting the following morning. Usually, the eggs will be made of chocolate and the children will enjoy the eggs till the brink of nausea. The earliest mention of the easter hare is in 1682, but why a rabbit, hare or bunny wanders around peoples' gardens and lays chocolate eggs is still clouded in mystery.
A secular Holiday
Generally, the Danish Easter is, in accordance with the country, a less secular holiday than it used to be. These days, Easter is mostly associated with taking a long holiday, as the long Easter weekend offers many people up to 5 full days off from work. Traditionally schools, high-schools and some universities give their students the whole week off. Danes will typically fill this time with summer house visits, hikes or bike rides and the beforementioned Easter lunch and egg hunts.
Although some remain, many religious Danish traditions and holidays have been lost to time.
Store Bededag - Great Prayer Day
On the 4th Friday after easter every year, Store Bededag comes around. This year the date will be the 26th of April. The day was first introduced in Denmark way back in 1686 by King Christian V as a more efficient alternative to individually celebrating several holidays honoring various minor saints in the spring. In the evening before the holiday it is customary to eat varme hveder, directly translated to hot wheats. They are white bread buns, and you might see them in your local bakery or supermarket in the time leading up to the holiday.

In recent times the holiday has been the subject of debate, when Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen proposed abolishing the holiday, effective in 2024. The Danish Parliament agreed in majority with the proposal and the 5th of May 2023 became the last day that Store Bededag was officially observed as a holiday in Denmark. Interestingly the holiday is still observed in both the Danish autonomous territories, Faroe Islands and Greenland.
Konfirmation is an affirmation or as the name says, confirmation of faith in the Christian God. Traditionally you will get confirmed in 7th or 8th grade, and you can only get confirmed if you have been baptized in the Christian faith. Almost 70% of the Danish schoolkids choose to confirm their faith in God. This might seem to be a rather large number, considering the otherwise secular tendencies in the Danish society. However, the explanation of the continuing popularity of the confirmation isn't fixed in religious sentiment. The tradition of confirmation continues to be of importance to young people and their families because of it being a transition ritual from being a child to becoming an adult. Although the official ceremony takes place in a church with religious rites being uttered in confirmation of Christ, the biggest draw will undoubtedly be the party that follows, where gifts like tributes to a future driver's license will be presented to the lucky teenager. Tradition decrees that the young people dress up in the most fashionable part of their wardrobe, so if you should encounter an assemblage of young people departing a church during spring, you are not witnessing a large gathering of youths getting married in unison, you are however witnessing a lot of happy children turning a significant corner of growth.
Denmark in Bloom
Photo: Phong Nguyen
These are some of the beautiful signs that spring has arrived in Denmark - Some are already here and some you will have to look for in the coming weeks. You definitely should create space in your calendar to discover the Danish nature and all it has to offer. Although winter has just passed, the cold and wet weather might have left a mark on your appetite for the outside. However, this next fact might chase the winter shadows away. According to DMI (the Danish Meteorological Institute) spring is the driest season in Denmark. With milder temperatures also soon to arrive, you can be sure to have plenty of opportunities to enjoy the spring phenomena that we have listed below.
Flowers in Bloom
When spring arrives, it means that the natural ecosystem will transform itself from being brown and dark to bright and colorful. A proliferation of flowers will ascend from the ground. In flora, the earliest sign of the coming of spring, is the blossoming of Vintergækker (Snowdrop) and Erantis. The name Erantis comes from Greek and means "springflower". These two perennial flowers are the most common in Denmark, and you won't have to look for long to find a forest bed of either white or yellow buds during spring time.
The Påskelilje (daffodil), directly translated as Easter Lilly, is a mainstay on tables of Danish living rooms. As the name suggests it is a symbol of Easter and hereby spring. You can get a bundle of these tall and yellow flowers in almost every supermarket. When April comes around you can also find white Anemones if you take a walk in the woods.
Trees and Bushes
The heat of spring makes plants grow. New leaves unfold and the forest starts to become green again. Bøgetræet, the beech tree is a common sign of spring, and for many, spring hasn't begun until the beech is in bloom. The beech needs heat and sun to prosper and usually it blossoms towards the end of March or the start of April. The cherry tree is another tree that you will be able to see bloom in the season of spring. The beautiful white or light-red flowers are an intriguing sight, and you will be able to experience the short bloom of these trees at select places throughout Denmark.
The Birds and the Bees
The coming of spring will entice and excite your senses. These stimuli do not however only happen on the ground, if you look and listen to the above, you will find a whole new world that the coming of spring compels. Butterflies, although traditionally connected to summer, will start to appear and if you are lucky and attentive you might encounter the bright yellow Lemon Butterfly dancing in the winds of a flowery garden. Another spring linked winged creature is the bumblebee. When spring comes, the queen of the bumblebees begins her search for a place to create a nest to foster a strong and prosperous hive for her colony.

Above these smaller creatures, bigger wings begin to beat. In the beginning of April, the swallows return from their winter in Africa. A journey of 10.000 kilometers comes to an end in Denmark and their characteristic song will sound through the open plains of Denmark. The birds in Denmark begin to nest in spring and gardens throughout the country will be filled with chirps and whines from the song larks, blackbirds and the chaffinch begin to echo through the land.
Spring in the Kitchen
The spring in Denmark offers numerous opportunities to culinarily engage in your immediate nature. Many different plants will bloom in spring and some of these are a gift to work with in your kitchen. In Denmark there is a strong tradition of using seasonal ingredients and although this tradition is mostly associated with fine dining, you can engage in the countryside as well without much skill or effort.
Most violets are eatable, but there is one type that sets itself apart from the rest in taste. The March violet is a little green plant with heart-shaped purple flowers, which have given name to the color, violet. It grows in moist and nutritious soil through plains of grass or forests and has a delicate and fragrant sweetness with a twist of acidity. If you succeed in finding these beautiful flowers you can place them in a flask and douse them with white wine vinegar. Let it sit for about a month and when it is done you will have a wonderfully flavored vinegar for a salad or condiment.
Ramsløg - Wild garlic
When spring arrives, the forest floor will be covered by beautiful and long leaves of ramsløg. The plant is incredibly versatile and the whole plant can be used in cooking. They bloom through March and April and will be usable for about 5 to 7 days after being plucked. However, they can be chopped and frozen for later use! Remember to rinse them before use and chop them like you would other herbs.
Be careful that you don't confuse them with the lily of the valley, which is poisonous. The biggest difference indicator is the distinct smell of garlic that the ramsløg has. As mentioned, the plant is incredibly versatile and you can use it in a variety of dishes. Click the green button below to visit a website dedicated to the culinary use of the ramsløg.
When life gives you spring, make Pesto
Among the things that Ramsløg is usable for, is pesto. But ramsløg isn't the only plant that spring offers to your homemade pesto-production. The skvalderkål or ground elder is generally seen as an annoying weed, which takes space in your garden from all the beautiful plants. However, instead of simply throwing them out after you have removed them from the ground, use them for a homemade aromatic paste. Skvalderkål has a light bitterness and a lovely juicyness. With notes of carrot, parsley, and celery it has the potential to create a lovely pesto if mixed with pine nuts, parmesan cheese, lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper. The same ingredients can be mixed with brændenælder (nettles) but remember to boil the first so as to not get burnt when eating.
The Season of Pollen
When the trees, flowers and bushes are a blooming everything seems a beautiful bliss. However, for almost a million Danes the season of spring forebodes itchiness and runny eyes. Hay fever constitutes the other side of the coin for unlucky Danes that are allergic to the rising amounts of pollen in the air. The hazel bush with its long and yellow catkins sprinkles yellow dust when they blossom. The dust is carried by the wind straight into the eyes and noses of the unsuspecting humans, and along with the ubiquitous birch trees, they are the biggest sinners when it comes to hay fever. If you are one of the troubled allergy sufferers, you can stay up to date with the pollen numbers by clicking the yellow button bellow to go to the website of Asthma-Allergy Denmark.
So where do you go?
Photo: Tim Wildsmith
As explained the spring in Denmark presents a multitude of opportunities. But where do you go if you want to indulge in these wonderful opportunities? Many of them will present themselves to you not far from your doorstep, but some experiences are more unique. Below will be an assortment of region-specific places that each represents a unique part of Danish nature. Do yourself a favor and try visiting one or more of these places before the season of spring has passed by.
When spring has announced itself, Sjælland becomes a whole new island. From the gardens of Copenhagen to the scenic bicycle routes of the north, Sjælland offers something for everyone.
The Routes of Nordsjælland
The best way to experience what nature in spring has to offer is by going through it and being in it. Whether you like biking or walking, Nordsjælland will cater to it.
If you choose the bike, there are both off- and on-road paths that you can take through the landscape with beautiful beaches, charming castles and much more. One option is Dronningerunden, the Queen Round, where you bike for 40 breathtaking kilometers from the magnificent Øresund to the beautiful Fredensborg Castle.
Click here to read more about this and other bike-routes in Nordsjælland.

Hiking paths are also available to you in abundance and if you want a slower and calmer journey these are for you. Nordsjælland has everything a hiker needs, so pack your backpack, tie your shoes, and experience some of the most beautiful nature Denmark has to offer. One option is the Halsnino, a name that plays on the Camino in Spain, the route takes you through 52 kilometers of scenic landscapes from the coast of Hundested to Strø mountains.
Click here to read more about this and other hiking routes in Nordsjælland.
Greater Copenhagen
When spring comes around the city streets of Denmark become filled with newfound energy. The Danish winter dwellers escape their hibernation and celebrate the bright season with street parties, garden picnics and visits to sidewalk cafes and flea markets. However, the enjoyments that Copenhagen has to offer are not exclusively urban.
Bispebjerg Cemetery
At Bispebjerg Cemetery you will find one of the most beautiful and picturesque pathways in Denmark. In the northwest of Copenhagen on top of Bispebjerg Hill and in direct alignment with the Grundtvig Church lies this scenic place. A perfect place for a tranquil walk, there is room for everyone in this 43 acre garden. In the middle of April, when the cherry blossoms bloom in a light-red explosion of color, people will flock to Bispebjerg to enjoy the amazing sight. If you choose to go, the beforementioned Grundtvig Church and the surrounding area is also a monumental sight to behold.
Alternatives to the immensely popular Bispebjerg cemetery in Copenhagen include:
  • Hostrups Have, Frederiksberg
  • Langelinieparken, Copenhagen
  • Byparken, Tårnby
  • Botanical Garden, Copenhagen
Visit Copenhagen have made a guide to Copenhagen in the spring, check it out by clicking the button below!
The lovely, wavy, and rugged nature of Fyn brightens up when spring comes around. With nature experiences coming in all shapes and sizes you can satisfy your senses, take a deep breath, and feel the calmness wash over you on this beautiful island.

Explore the trails
Just like Sjælland, Fyn has a lot to offer when it comes to trails and routes. Venture out on trails for both beginners and experienced people.
Fyn is not called the Bike Island for nothing and there are 1.800 kilometers of cycle routes to explore throughout the 96 different islands in the area. A very thorough description of these bike-routes has been made by Visit Fyn, and you can access it by clicking here.

Hiking is also an option, and you can experience the unique ice age landscape, lush forests and many islands on foot as well. One option is the Archipelago trail, which is one of the longest hiking trails in Denmark, stretching the southern part of Fyn and Langeland as well. Hiking through the forests of Fyn, don't forget to use your sense of smell and experience the smell of garlic coming from Ramsløg
Visit Fyn have also made a thorough guide on the hiking trails available to you, access it by clicking here.

Overlooked Nature Gems
You might have heard of Fyns Hoved or Svanninge Bakker. We have written about the latter in an earlier version of the newsletter. However, Fyn offers plenty of nature experiences that aren't as popular, but just as beautiful. Take a look at Visit Fyn's guide to the overlooked nature gems of Fyn, by clicking here.
Spring in Jylland offers unique experiences that you cannot get anywhere else. The nature of Jylland is something that everyone living in or visiting Denmark should experience.
Mols Bjerge
When the sun begins to show in the early spring, the lark takes off and begins to sing above the dry and winter bleached hills of Mols mountains. It will soon be accompanied by many others. The migratory birds arrive and add their voice to the choir that reaches its peak in the middle of May. Here you can listen to the cuckoo and the nightingale sing in an acapella orchestra of the sky.

In the hills there will be lamb, and the hugorm (european viper) starts emerging from its hibernation. In the last part of spring almost all of the animals in Mols Bjerge have had youngs.
If you want a complete experience of the Danish spring, go to this enthralling place.
Hanstholm Wild Reserve
One of the wildest nature experiences you can have in Jylland is standing on top of the Hanstholm Wild Reserve an early morning. The highest point is situated 56 meters above sea-level with the name of Isbjerg. Here you will get an amazing view of the protected 3.500 acres of meadow. If you bring binoculars on an early spring morning you could be lucky to catch a glimpse of cranes strolling through the landscape.
Grenen, Skagen
On the northernmost tip of Jylland the oceans of Kattegat and Skagerrak meet. Here you can get a unique experience every time you visit as the wild nature of the ocean shapes the nature around it. Dipping your feet in the water of two oceans at the same time is a unique experience in itself whenever you go to Grenen. However, if you go there in spring, you can kill two birds with one stone (not literally). Here you can experience the biggest bird migration in northern Europe, where more than 20 different birds of prey. A truly unique experience.
The Danish Tax System
Is opening your tax assessment notice a nail-biting experience? It doesn't have to be! Join our free Danish tax system online Q&A and get familiar with the Danish tax system.

Your tax assessment notice is now available to you and with it comes the information of whether you’re in for a nice surprise or not. We are here to help you out and answer the questions you may have about the tax assessment or just in general about taxes. From this year on, the tax assessment notice will be available in English.

The Danish tax system online Q&A will be held live on April 3 where you'll be able to ask the Danish Tax Agency your tax questions.
Prepare for the live Q&A by watching a prerecorded video on the Danish tax system made by the Confederation of Danish Industry, International House Copenhagen and the Danish Tax Agency. Here, the Danish Tax Agency gives you an introduction to the Danish tax system including what your tax money is spent on and how you pay the right amount of tax.
The Q&A will not be recorded and send afterwards. You must log in live if you want to watch it.

This seminar is tailored for internationals who are living and working in Denmark.
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Compelling Cover Letter
Deliver your documents in an attention-getting package - and get yourself invited for the job interview!
This webinar will cover 3 main areas;
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The webinar is online and will be held on the 10th of April, from 13:00 to 14:30. It is hosted by the City of Aarhus
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Welcome to Denmark - Networking
This networking event is for you who are interested in a place for informal talk and experience exchange for not only internationals in Denmark, but for everyone!

There will also be free courses in English on various topics. The event is hosted by the municipality of Copenhagen and will take place on the 11th of April, from 18:00 at Copenhagen main library, Krystalgade 15, 1172 Copenhagen C.
Career Fair at the LOOP Forum
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Join the fair to engage with the exhibitors and witness dynamic presentations from several companies. Beyond this you can explore the LOOP Forum Fair in its much larger entirety.
The event is hosted by a State of Denmark in collaboration with Copenhagen Capacity and Clean. It will take place on the 24th of April, from 10:30 to 13:00 at Lokomotivværkstedet, 2450, Copenhagen. The event is free of charge, but there is a registration deadline on the 15th of April.
Newcomers' Info Evening
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Get these and many more questions answered by joining this info evening specially tailored to all international professionals and accompanying partners new to Aarhus.

The event is hosted by The City of Aarhus and International Community and takes place on the 24th of April, from 17:00 to 19:00, both online and at Blixens, Karen Blixens Blvd. 7, 8220 Brabrand.

International LinkedIn Meetup Odense
Its time for another evening of knowledge sharing, networking, and hygge! There will be a short presentation to start the event and then you'll dive into the theme icebreaker for the evening: Diversity Talks.

The event is hosted by International Community Odense and will take place on the 4th of April, from 19:00 to 21:00 at Albanigade 20, 5000 Odense.

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