I love Scandinavia; I really love Denmark and I adore Copenhagen. Not just the Danes’ sophisticated approach to social justice but their appreciation of the things that matter – cycling, for one!
It takes a highly evolved city to decide that stuffing it full of cars might not suit actual people. Cycling in Copenhagen (in fact in all of Scandinavia) is a way of life. Children can’t wait for their first bike; it is a privilege to experience their city “en plein air” and drivers are stunningly courteous.
One day, the increasing torrent of cyclists might persuade politicians here in Sydney that yes, people do want an alternative to cars; they do want to stay healthy and green by pedalling to work or for leisure and they want decent cycleways on which to do this. PLUS, and it’s a big plus, politicians need to lead by example, thus changing the mindset of drivers, many of whom react irrationally and furiously to cyclists. It is worrying to read that cycling deaths are dramatically increasing in NSW.
Please read my story in The Sydney Morning Herald/The Age Travellers on January 18, 2014 on cycling in Scandinavia and specifically on a novel way to appreciate a lovely city – Bike Mike’s Zen evening cycle. If you’re headed there, don’t miss it.
You can also read it online here: