Sejerø to Gilleleje
Our “sailing Denmark” month has now taken us to the charing port town of Lynaes, located on the northwest part of Sjaelland and at the entrance to the Issefjord. It’s an area characterised by low cliffs and extremely shallow waters. You really have to follow the leading marks to get to the marina.
These lush green cliffs are a stark contrast to those of Møns Klint on the opposite side of the island of Sjaelland in Denmark
Lynaes marina is still an active fishing harbour, and it’s full of fishing vessels in all shapes and sizes.
A fisherman in Lynaes has just completed a new paint job on his little vessel.
The marina seems to be the town center for Lynaes during the summer. When we arrived (on a Sunday afternoon) a demonstration of a sea rescue by helicopter was being carried out by the local coast guard. In addition, the local kayak club was giving free lessons and holding a kayak race. Even though it doesn’t have very many guest places (call ahead to reserve a place), it’s pleasant enough to spend a couple of days.
Freja taking up the largest guest berth at the marina. We had a lot of spectators and questions about the boat while we were there
Guest spaces in the marina are across the water from the fishing boats.
Because the water at the beach is so shallow, it may be the warmest in Denmark. The beach also attracts kite and windsurfers from all around, and we spent a lot of time there with Senna.
Senna loves the beach, but she needs a thorough shower before being allowed back on the boat!
You can rent windsurfing and kitesurfing equipment as well as kayaks here. Several footpaths lead to the cliffs for great views of the sea. You’ll find rental bikes at the marina office.
The beach is right next to the marina (you can see a mast in the photo)
We had dinner (fish, of course) at the marina restaurant — good food, excellent service. If you want fast food, there’s also a hamburger/fries place just in front of the marina. A sauna at the end of the pier is run by a local association. You can buy a token for use of the sauna at the marina office.
The sauna at the marina
The harbour also has a chandlery where we picked up a few things for the boat, as usual. Marine shops are like black holes sucking in your money, aren’t they? You always find some little thing that you’re sure you need — if not today, then tomorrow.
View of the guest harbour in Lynaes
It was so pleasant in this little harbour town that we spent 3 nights there!
This beautiful boardwalk was built to provide access to swimmers
Beautiful skies at sunset in Lynaes
A stairway leading down to the surprisingly warm waters around Lynaes
Another sauna at the pier (but this one is for private use only)
View towards the south end of the Isefjord.
Info on Lynaes marina:
Prices for all boats: 160 DKK including toilets, showers and electricity – a real bargain!
Contact: Harbour master Morten Fredriksen — Telephone: +46 47 93 9119, Email: email@example.com
We didn’t quite know what these interesting contraptions were — nets to trap fish? shrimp?
Or is it a way to prevent algae from getting into the marina? We couldn’t find anyone who could tell us.
Lynaes to Gilleleje
It’s not a very long sail to Gilleleje from the top of the Issefjord, but we wanted to arrive early to be able to get one of the few berths long enough for us.
View of the cliffs near the port of Gilleleje
Even during the off season, we’ve noticed that if you arrive any later than 14.00, there may not be any berths left for us. Often, the only places long enough are the along-side berths — the ones with buoys or booms are too short or too narrow or both. We do find it annoying that smaller boats that could easily fit into a Y-boom or buoy berth use the alongside spaces that are marked with signs saying “12 meters or longer”. When we ask to tie up alongside them, they always say no — which is understandable since our boat weighs around 27 tonnes fully tanked and loaded. Understandable but still annoying.
We arrived at Gilleleje at around 14.00, and after securely mooring the boat, set out to find the marina office and explore the large harbour area.
There seemed to be a major thunderstorm going on north of Gilleleje
We were pleasantly surprised to find several restaurants, cafés, and ice cream shop, two shops selling fish right off the boat, a marine store and several clothing shops. The only shopping that was missing was a supermarket.
View of the beach next to the marina
Gilleleje has a large refitting industry – specifically for older boats. We were fascinated by the way these older boats were built as we walked around the ship-rebuilding yards.
A large Swedish fishing boat being re-fittted
This sailing vessel is a beauty. You can see that the waterproofing used is still tar.
We did see a Netto shop not far from the marina, but after our previous visit to a Netto, we vowed to not shop there again. Thanks to to the Google app on the iPhone, we found a Superbrugsen within walking distance (open during the week from 8.00 to 20.00. and on weekends from 8.00 to 18.00). It has an amazing selection of wine (important!) and food, including lots of organic selections.
After a visit to Adams’s Fisk at the marina to stock up on some fresh “Skagen Mix” and fresh fish, we were good to go!
Gilleleje is not a very big town, so aside from some quaint restaurants and a lovely beach, there are just a few other interesting things to do. There’s a museum at the lighthouse called Nakkehoved Fyr, if you’re interested in the history of lighthouses.
View towards the lighthouse of Nakkehoved
The houses in the old town of Gillelje (just in front of the marina) have beautiful thatched roofs.
Info Gilleleje marina:
Prices 2016 (Width of boat):
Up to 2.45 m: 150 DKK
2.46 m – 3.45 m: 180 DKK
3.46 m – 4.45 m: 200 DKK
4.46 m and over: 300 DKK
Prices include toilets, water and electricity.
Showers are 10 DKK (you need to buy the tokens for the showers at the harbour office or the fish shop “Adamsens Fisk” or the marine shop “Speedy’s”.)
Telephone: +45 40 26 66 63.
Sailing Denmark, part two: Vejrø to Sejerø
We reluctantly left the island of Vejrø and set sail for Skaelskor, a town that lies at the end of a shallow fjord on the east side of the island of Sjaelland.
A view of the long fjord that leads to Skaelskør
It was really quite a shock to see people fishing almost right next to your boat as you negotiate the winding curves of the fjord! The fjord is really quite shallow, but a boating lane is dredged and marked with green and red navigational marks. If you stay within the marks, you won’t go aground.
People here fish just outside the shipping channel. Here you can see how shallow the fjord is outside the dredged channel.
The marina in Skaelskør is quite small and we were lucky to find a place large enough for our boat (probably because it was still quite early in the boating season). It’s a bit tricky to moor in the marina because there’s a current running from the lake into the fjord and vise-versa depending on the tides — just a little warning! It’s not very expensive — we paid just DKK 200. Electricity is not included, you have to use a chip card and the vending machine for the chip cards was out of order. As it was Sunday, there wasn’t much we could do about it, though a couple of members of the sailing club that runs the marina tried to help. The Danes really are lovely people.
The view towards the centre of town and the marina
The town itself is one of the those charming Danish small towns with small boutiques, restaurants and cafés. There’s also a large lake — had we had the time, we would have ridden our bikes around it as the weather was beautiful!
The charming town of Skaelskør
Nyborg stands at the western point of the Great Belt Bridge, the longest bridge in Denmark at almost 7 kilometers long. The suspension part of the bridge, officially called the East Bridge, is the longest suspension bridge outside of Asia (number 3 in the world).
When you arrive at Nyborg with your own boat, you have a choice of 2 marinas: the large marina on the west side or the slightly smaller one directly ahead towards the middle of town. The larger marina is perhaps the best choice if you have a boat that’s up to about 14 meters in length. It’s a cosy marina that uses the “red and green sign” system. A green sign means the berth is free to use. All services including a marine shop, engine service, and sail service are at hand here.
The marina on on the left side of the map is for boats less than around 45 feet or 14 meters; larger boats should proceed into the Vesterhavnen or Østerhavnen.
If your boat is over 14 meters long, or if you have a catamaran, it’s a better idea to choose one of the 2 small marinas that have been constructed at the new apartment building area. As we approacehed the marina, a boat came out telling us that our boat was too large for it.
In the Westerhavn, there’s really no limit to the length or width of your boat. It’s a bit farther away from all the services, but if you have a bicycle, that’s not problem. The Østerhavn is closer to town, but there is a certain length limit (perhaps up to 70 feet) We moored up in the Westerhavn.
The rolling landscape around Nyborg
View from the Østerhavn on the foggy morning of our departure
The prices in Nyborg include electricity and toilets, but strangely enough, not showers. Here are the prices as of 2016:
- Length 0–7 m: DKK 122 per night
- Length 7-11 m: DKK 143 per night
- Length 11–15 m (max. 10 people): DKK 168 per night
- Length 15–20 m (max. 10 people): DKK 194 per night
- Length above 20 m (max.10 people): DKK 301 per night
- More than 10 people on the boat – regardless of length: DKK 485 per night
E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Tel. +45 6333 7083 or +45 6333 7983
The old town of Nyborg is small and really quite charming with its 16th-17th century architecture. The city was actually founded at the beginning of the year 1200 with the construction of its castle (Nyborg Castle). We took out our Bromptons and explored quite a bit of Nyborg.
First stop, the marine shop, where we picked up some anti-slip tape, some leather cleaner for our saloon sofas, and some anti-chafe bands for our lines. We also needed a 16 amp adapter (not all 16 amp sockets are the same, some take three prongs, some take 5). The marina shop did not have one, but they directed us to the biggest electrician business in town. We bike there to get one, but when we didn’t have cash on hand (they didn’t have a credit card machine since their services are billed), the owner of the company said he would stop by our boat after work with the part. So lovely! We invited him to have a cup of coffee and chat. It turns out that he has a sailboat at the marina.
We stayed for one more day so that we could do some grocery shopping and find some good dog food for Senna (the grain-free “Paleo” kind). One word of advice for grocery shopping in Denmark. Stay away from the Netto stores if you are a foodie. Fortunately, we found a good fish shop in town, so that took care of a few more dinners.
View of the entrance to the marinas in Nyborg
On the morning we chose to leave Nyborg — surprise — we were suddenly enveloped in fog. The marina itself and the channel out were relatively sunny, and then we noticed the fog bank coming toward us from the north. Time to switch on the radar. And to use the fog horn built into our Icom VHF unit on the pedestal. The ColRegs say that we should give one prolonged blast on the horn at least every two minutes (for a power-driven vessel). We were under power since there was only about 2-3 knots of wind.
Foggy morning in the Great Belt of Denmark (between the islands of Fyn and Sjaelland).
It’s quite easy to use the radar on our Furuno TZ plotter since there is a chart overlay option. With the chart overlay, you have the vessels that use AIS identified on your radar image and you see coastal features identified with the radar.
Fog going towards the Great Belt bridge
We were not looking forward to going through the Great Belt in the fog! It’s a heavy-traffic area and you even have to call in your boat name, direction of travel, etc. to Belt Traffic Radio if your boat is over 15 meters long. We called them on the VHF, saying that we were northbound, going under the East bridge on the eastern side, but outside the TSS (shipping lane). Pleasure boats are forbidden to use the shipping lanes here.
About 10 minutes before we were to go under the bridge, the fog lifted
Fortunately, just as we were crossing the TSS from west to east (at a right angle following all the rules), the fog began to lift. What a relief! We started to get a look at this beautiful suspension bridge in the sunlight. We had crossed it on our motorcycles back in 2011, and had passed under it at night last year, so this was the first time we saw it in from the water during the day.
This is the longest suspension bridge in the world outside of Asia.
Northbound to Sejerø
Our next destination was the small island of Sejerø located northwest of the big island of Sjaelland. We read that 400 people inhabit the island permanently, which seems like a lot considering its size and location. There is a ferry that runs to Sjaelland every 2 hours or 3 hours, so people could in fact live here and work on the “mainland”.
The ferry that runs from the small island of Sejerø to the much larger island of Sjaelland.
The marina was almost deserted when we arrived at around 15.00. There were only 2 other boats moored. It was still May and the school holidays would not begin until around the end of June. We’ve seen photos of this marina taken in July packed to bursting — it’s that popular.
Diagram of the Sejerø marina and harbour
We’re off for a walk with Senna
Quiet evening on Sejerø. We were one of only 5 boats visiting the marina.
The first thing we did after paying for our berth at the pay station (the marina office was still closed for the season) was to take a walk to see if there was a seafood shop. We didn’t find a seafood shop but we found a fisherman that sold us some fish off his boat! Yay! Fresh fish! As fresh as you can get it without catching it yourself.
The fisherman who sold us some fresh Dover Sole is also the harbourmaster
Then we asked each other if we knew how to clean flat fish (these were Dover Sole). We phoned a friend who is a professional chef and restaurant owner to ask how one prepares them for cooking. It’s not easy without the three different knives you need to have to do a professional job, but we managed.
One of the picturesque beaches on Sejerø. Our dog Senna was in the water all the time.
One of the many Eider families we saw on Sejerø. It was hatching time.
We spent the next day relaxing on the beach with Senna and doing some cleaning and polishing in and on the boat.
Last evening on the island of Sejerø
Beautiful sunset on Sejerø
Sailing Denmark, part one
The sail from Copenhagen to Klintholm on the island of Møn took us about 5 hours – it’s not a long sail if the wind is reasonable.
Senna sleeps during the sail to Møn
Møn is famous for its white cliffs, named Møns Klint. They’re not as high and vast as the white cliffs of Dover, but are incredibly striking nonetheless. Møns Klint is about 7 km long and 100 meters high.
View of Møns Klint, Denmark
The chalky white cliffs are composed of billions of microscopic fossils of shelled sea creatures that lived about 70 million years ago. During the ice age, the sea bed was pushed up and compacted by glaciers, resulting in the cliffs and the hills of Møn.
The lighthouse at Møns Klint
You can explore the cliffs (stairs down to the beach make it easy) and visit the GeoCenter with its 3D theatre to find out more about the formation of the cliffs.
An example of the lush and gorgeous landscape on the island of Møn
The closest marina to Møns Klint is Klintholm Havn
Klintholm Havn is a large (for Denmark) modern marina with alongside places for larger boats and boxes for smaller ones. The mooring places are spread out over a holiday home area, so the atmosphere there is more “vacation” than “fisherman”. Just make sure you moor in the marina and not in the fishing boat harbour.
View of Klintholm marina
Doors for a fisherman’s storage shed in Klintholm
The beach on the western side of the marina
We did boat chores on this grey and foggy morning. The fog lifted after lunch.
Senna certainly loved the beach!
The most incredible thing happened while we at Klintholm! We came upon another Swiss-flagged Discovery 55. Since there are only 50 Discovery 55s in the world, and only three that are Swiss-flagged, this was really incredible, given that we were in a marina in a relatively remote area in Denmark. We invited the owners of “Blue Harmony” for a drink in our cockpit, and had such a great time and good conversation that we continued on for dinner at the Portofino restaurant until almost midnight.
Beautiful sunset at the marina
The lovely evening light on the island of Møn
The marina has all of the facilities you’d expect:
- Toilets and showers (in three difference buildings so you don’t have a long walk to either of them)
- Water and electricity (included in the price)
- Laundry facilities
- Free wifi
- Turist information at the marina office
- Small grocery store (sells the coins for the laundromat and rents bicycles)
- 3 different restaurants
- Sail repair and other boat repair shops
- Fuel station
- Grilling facilities
Prices per night: 9 -11.99 meters: 160 DKK; 12 – 14.99 meters: 200DKK; 15 – 17.99 meters: 250DKK; over 18 meters: 375 DKK. If you stay 4 nights in a row, the fifth night is free.
Since this is a marina that’s a convenient distance from the north of Germany, it gets full during the summer months of June, July and August. You may want to reserve a berth. Telephone: +45 24 42 21 82 or +45 21 36 35 77
These information signs were placed in various places throughout the marina in Klintholm
Discovering the island of Vejrø
Vejrø is a privately owned island in the region called Smålandsfarvandet, located between Sjaelland and Lolland. It’s quite small – only 2.5 km long and 700 meters wide – but still has a small airstrip. Most of the land on the island is used for ecological farming.
Ecological (organic) farming on Vejrø
This was actually our second choice harbour for “in case the wind changes direction”. Since the wind did indeed change direction, we ended up on Vejrø. Fortunately, it was still quite early in the season, and we didn’t need to a berth. The marina can accept up to 85 boats, and there were only 9-10 boats there when we arrived.
View of Vejrø marina
A luxury hotel provides gourmet eating at the restaurant “Skipperly” for those of you who appreciate fine food. The restaurant provided one gourmet tasting menu with matching wine for the evening. The atmosphere is cosy, relaxed, yet “nordic luxurious”. You can have a drink or coffee in the lounge with its soft jazz and comfortable sofas and armchairs. There’s also a bar and a small fram shop with products produced on Vejrø. For us, it was a nice break after days of cooking and eating dinner (and doing the dishes) on the boat.
The cosy atmosphere in the Skipperly restaurant
The restaurant serves a 3- course gourmet menu with wine to match
Enjoying the wine choices at Skipperly
The marina is a bit more expensive than most other marinas in Denmark, but then the facilities are more “luxuious” than in other marinas and are included in the price. The showers and toilets are impeccably clean and larger than in most marinas. Other facilities include:
- Picnic and grilling area (wood provided for the grilling)
- Huge playground for children, including a little “zoo” with rabbits and chickens
- Football (soccer field)
- Tennis court
- Bicycles in different sizes
Chickens are raised near the hotel/restaurant on Vejrø
Bicycles at the hotel, just two minutes’ walk from the marina, are free to use
This sailing ship is a playground for children
This is the building that houses the toilets and showers
Another view of the marina on Vejrø
…and yet another view of the marina
Prices in 2016:
- up to 15 meters: 350 DKK
- 15 – 20 meters: 450 DKK
- Over 20 meters: 550 DKK
If you like to walk and discover nature, the entire island is strewn with footpaths and there’s a lot of wildlife. We saw a number of rabbits and hares, pheasants and deer. The beaches are “wild” so you’ll lots of sea birds.
We loved our stay on Vejrø and regretted not being able to stay a couple more days!
The lighthouse is a five-minute walk from the marina
To reserve a berth (especially if your boat is over 15 meters) call +45 2027 2360. You can also send a mail at email@example.com. To reserve a table at Skipperly, the number is: +45 2067 0146.
Information panel at the marina
City Visit: Copenhagen
Many cruisers who visit Copenhagen only stay for a couple of days. We understand, they perhaps have only a month or two in their cruising schedule — perhaps much less. But Copenhagen deserves your time. We certainly had lots of time for Copenhagen.
It’s truly one of the most amazing cities in Europe (in our opinion, in the top 3). It’s charming without being cute. Friendly without the fake smiles. Stylish without the pretension. Historic, yet cutting-edge modern. Beautiful, yet humble. Sophisticated, yet down-to-earth.
Perhaps the best word to describe the vibe in delightful Copenhagen is cosy or confortable. You get the feeling that there is no stress going on here — not even during rush hour. We stayed in Copenhagen for a week and could have stayed for a month!
Our marina is a few metro stops from the center of town, but a 5-minute ride to the Amager Strand metro station. Copenhagen has a big bicycle culture, so we didn’t hesitate to unpack our folding bicycles and take them on the metro with us. Bicycles are allowed on the metro outside of rush hours (7.00-9.00 and 15.30-17.30). You need to purchase a ticket for your bicycle (DKK 13 in 2016). The walk to the metro station would have taken us around 15-20 minutes.
We explored the Christianshavn area on our bikes on the first day. It’s the part of Copenhagen that most resembles Amsterdam with it’s criss-crossing canal system. Some of the canals have guest harbours, but your boat needs to be less than about 45 feet to get a space. The cobblestone streets, cafés, canals and beautiful architecture made for an interesting morning of exploration.
A common site in Christianshavn, Copenhagen
Live-aboard boat in Christianshavn, Copenhagen
Seagull protecting its territory in Christianshavn, Copenhagen
One of the marinas in Christianshavn
Yet another marina in Christianshavn
Afterwards, we had lunch on the sunny terrace at Almanak, part of the restaurant group housed in “The Standard” building. The lunchtime smørrebrød is fantastic and we can recommend the superb dinner menu as well. We had dinner there last summer.
“The Standard” houses the restaurants “Almanak”, “Studio” and “Verandah”
Lunch at Almanak in Copenhagen
The next day, we did the shopping thing and hit the Strøget area. The Strøget is Copenhagen’s pedestrian shopping street and includes most of the major Danish brands and Design houses. Ilum, Illums Bolighus, Georg Jenssen and Royal Copenhagen are all here. We had lunch at Café Europa which turned out to be a nice surprise. We weren’t expecting the food to be so good as it’s located just at the Amagertorv square. Usually, restaurants that are well-located don’t have to try hard to get people in the door, so the food quality and the service suffers. Not in this case. We had a delicious 3-plate smørrebrød menu and the service was quick and friendly. Then it was back to the metro before the 15.30 “bicycle curfew” and back to the marina and our dog, Senna.
Luckily, she’s used to us leaving during the day (for work) so she usually sleeps while we’re away. We’ve been leaving her on the boat for about 4 hours with no problem at all, as long she gets a long walk before we leave. And of course a long walk when we get back to the boat. It hasn’t been very warm in Copenhagen, around 18 degrees, so if we leave all of the smaller windows open, it’s not hot in the boat. We leave a couple of fans running for Senna as well.
Day four was a rainy one, so we decided to walk to the National Aquarium, “Den Blå Planet” (the Blue Planet). It’s a large aquarium that’s a breath-taking architectural masterpiece in itself. Five different wings show five different water environments, such as the deep oceans, the amazon jungle, coral reefs, or the baltic sea. It’s well worth a visit on a rainy day.
We bicycled to Slottsholmen on day 5. The tiny island of Slottsholmen is home to the former royal residence of the kings and queens of Denmark, Christianborg palace. It’s quite a huge place to visit, so you can buy tickets for the entire palace, including the stables, or for just some of it. We opted for the royal kitchens and the ruins underneath the palace, this time around. The ruins are fascinating because the tour tells the history of the palace, from it’s humble beginnings in the 11th century, through to the 20th century. The palace was torn down and built up as a bigger and better version several times. It was also victim of fires three times in its more recent history and had to be built up again from its rubble.
We spent our last day just strolling through the streets of the city center and bicycling through Nyhavn, basking in it’s ambience, its cosiness. We had lunch at the fish restaurant on the top floor of the Illum department store — not bad but not the same standard as Almanak or Café Europa.
Charming little outdoor restaurant next to one of the canals
View of the architectural masterpiece the “Black Diamond” library and national photo museum.
It’s easy to see why Nyhavn is one of the most popular social spots of Copenhagen.
Former lighthouse boat, now moored in Nyhavn
Nyhavn on a bright and beautiful afternoon
One of the many renovated former harbour depots in Christianshavn
A beautiful morning in cosy Copenhagen
Panorama of Copenhagen’s inner city from the Christianshavn district
Tomorrow morning, we will set off for Møns Klint, one of the most famous Danish landmarks, and the marina Klintholm
Even though Copenhagen has a number of marinas, even a few in the center of town, we chose the one in Kastrup because it was the most dog-friendly.
Located near the National Aquarium and just a 12-minute metro ride into the center of Copenhagen, it provided us with the best of both worlds — the space for dog walking and playing and nearness to the city. In addition, it’s located next to Copenhagen’s most popular beach, Amager Strand.
It uses the system of green and red places — your can used any place marked green (meaning the owner will not be back for at least three days). When in doubt, you can ask at the marina office. We arrived early enough to get a place for our boat, which is no mean feat. There is only one place in the marina for a boat that’s 55 feet (17 meters) long. This is the biggest disadvantage of having a long boat. You can’t just fit in anywhere like a 36 or even 40 footer.
Here’s some basic information about Kastrup marina:
- Showers and toilets
- Laundry facilities
- Marine supplies/clothing shop
- Fuel station
- Environmental station for disposal of hazardous waste (used batteries, oil, etc.)
- Playground, beach and parks
- Free WiFi
- Telephone number for the marina office: 3250 2127
- Email for the harbour office: firstname.lastname@example.org