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Denmark 2007

One of my earliest roadtrips after getting my driver's license back in 2006, was driving up north to Denmark.
I've visited Denmark before when I was a young kid, but I can't really remember too much of it. Some people say Denmark is quite similar to the Netherlands, but I'm not sure about that. I booked a cottage near Ejby, on the island of Fyn. This roadtrip was to take one week in late september.

day 1 day 2, day 3, day 4, day 5, day 6, day 7

The first day involved driving from Zwolle to Ejby. I took a fairly regular route, with no detours. Just getting onto A28, A37 and then into Germany, using B233 towards Cloppenburg. I could have traveled via A7 and German A28, but that is a longer distance, and there isn't much traffic on B233 on a Saturday. However, A1 was another issue. Back in 2007, the A1 was a six-lane motorway around Bremen, but the rest of the route towards Hamburg is a four-lane motorway. During work days, this road sees incredible truck counts, as it is the major motorway from Scandinavia and the ports towards the Baltics to the Ruhr area, the Netherlands and points further south.

Traffic was busy, although it was late September, there was still a lot of recreational traffic since the weather was quite
right. I didn't encounter real congestion, but it was not possible to go faster
than 90 - 120 km/h. Most
Germans wanted to go
than that though, accelerating to 150 + km/h
every clear stretch, but overall aren't much faster.

Driving via Hamburg was quite impressive, the last time I was in this
area was in 2002, en-route to
However, this time, I would take A7 north. A7 runs through the middle of the port of Hamburg, and containers are stacked high, almost
on the shoulder, just a fence between the shoulder and the containers. Of course,
the view on the Kohlbrand Bridge is impressive as well, as it is quite tall to have a significant clearance for shipping. After that, you descent into the Elbe tunnel, locally known as the Elbtunnel. This tunnel has 4 tubes, with 8 lanes, although only 3 seems to be
in operation. After the tunnel, you drive through the suburban areas of Hamburg. Hamburg is a very large city, it is the largest city in the EU that is not a capital, with a city proper of 1.8 million people, and an even larger urban area. It is also a city-state within Germany, similar to Berlin and Bremen. License plate abbreviations are "HH", that means "Hansestadt Hamburg". H means Hannover, a city 150 kilometers to the south, to confuse things up.

North of Hamburg, the rural areas tend to be boring, there isn't much to see up north, mostly pastures and grain fields. You generously bypass the city of Kiel, and the trip towards the last city in Germany, Flensburg, seems to last forever. Crossing into Denmark, I went to the rest area at the border, to see if I could find an ATM to get some Danish Crones. However, the area wasn't really attractive, and everything was abandoned, so I got the hell out of there. Further north, E45 is more attractive than A7, the area is somewhat wooded here and there, and more hilly than most of northern Germany. Then you bypass around the city of Kolding, taking E20 eastbound, across the Little Belt Bridge. Although it carries the name "little", this is a massive suspension bridge with six lanes that go like 40 - 50 meters above the Little Belt Strait that separates the island of Fyn from mainland Denmark. Exit Ejby follows soon, and I had to get the keys to my cottage at a local gas station. Most of the recreational park was empty, as summer season ended 3 weeks ago. The trip to Ejby was approximately 620 kilometers long.
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