If you want to purchase some Danish souvenirs to your gourmets friends or family, or just bring home a little piece of Nykøbing, the shop Thea is THE place to go. This amazing boutique is located in the center, at Frisegade 4.
Thea is actually the little sister of Marius, the tobacco and alcool shop, an institution in Nykøbing since 1865 (which I’ll make you discover soon in a next blog article !).
At Thea, you’ll find amazing homemade tea blends, numerous variants of local candies, salted liquorice (another Danish specialty), chocolate, and many other sweet things to taste, drink or to decorate your home.
If I can give you a good tip, there are at least three products you should definitely bring back home. First, the “inevitable” flavoured lakrids (liquorice). You’ll find many different shapes and flavours, from the trendy passion fruit liquorice coated with white chocolate to the old traditional type of liquorice with ammonium salt.
For those who are not into liquorice, the handmade bolcher will without doubt be a hit. These hard candies are made in Denmark since a very long time, with boiled syrups, plant extracts, dye and flavourants. So many to chose from !
And if you really enjoyed your stay in Nykøbing, why not have a little piece of the town on your walls ? The local graphic designer Mette Glyholt makes and prints right here in town these very beautiful posters, about Nykøbing but also other cities from the Lolland-Falster region.
If you go to Løveapoteket (The Lion Pharmacy) at Langgade 5, in the center of Nykøbing, you can’t miss the cheeky wooden monkey hanging in the middle of the shop. This is the work of an iconic Danish designer called Kay Bojesen (1886-1958). His philosopy was “great design is something that everyone is entitled to”. Kay Bojesen actually considered himself a craftsman, not a designer. In 1952, he was appointed Purveyor to His Majesty the King of Denmark. He’s famous not only for his cutlery and tableware, but also his wooden menagerie.
If you’re interested in purchasing Kay Bojesens’s animals, you can go for instance to the shop Imerco, at Jernbanegade 6 (close to Flying Tiger), where you’ll find the whole zoo : monkeys, rabbits, elephants, sea parrots, bears, dogs, love birds… Be aware that they are quite expensive… but owning a piece of iconic Danish design is priceless ! The 20 cm monkey costs 899 DKK which is 120 € / 136 $.
The shop is located in the heart of the town, in the main pedestrian street, at Jernbanegade 6B. According to what they say on their website, Flying Tiger Copenhagen claims they have what you need (pencils, handcream, batteries, napkins…), what you dream of (design lamp, embroidered cushion, tea pot…) and things you didn’t know existed. In the last category, let’s say Flying Tiger is very creative ! Flying Tiger Copenhagen’s dedicated design team has won numerous international design awards for their imaginative work.
The shops are packed with 1500 items, with a new collection every second week. If you stroll down Jernbanegade, don’t miss a little tour in this unusual shop ! You’ll find colourful products, that are also quite cheap. Here are the latest Easter products from Flying Tiger you can find in Nykøbing.
Named after the Russian Tsar Peter the Great who visited Nykøbing Falster in July 1716, The Tsar’s House is the towns’s landmark.
The half-timbered house was built in the 1690′. Some archaeological researches suggested the place was already used in the 1200 to house merchants and servants. The first known owner was Ivar Rosenfeldt, who started the guest house in 1697, and was also the postmaster of Nykøbing. Actually, as the post was not delivered to the city, people came to collect it in this house.
In the beginning of the 18th century, Denmark’s King Frederik IV was allied with the Russian Tsar Peter the Great, and offered him to use his fleet in order to invade Scania, under the Great Nordic War. On his way to Copenhagen, where the fleet was at anchor, Peter the Great stopped at Nykøbing. According to the legend, he preferred to eat at the inn, rather than stay at the Castle in the company of the royal family… Some even say he also slept there, although there is no proof.
The inn, who is told to be the oldest in Denmark, added then a wooden plaque to commemorate the auspicious visitor, an item that is still visible today in the restaurant. Nowadays, the Tsar’s House is listed, and is owned by Lolland-Falster’s Museum.
Until recently, the restaurant was open and it was a must see for all visitors. Unfortunately, it closed permanently in September 2018… What a shame ! The restaurant was managed by Nelli Hjorth and Alen Music, but after a rough year, Lolland-Falster’s Museum, who owns the building, chose to terminate their agreement and asked them to leave. Luckily for me, I had the chance to eat there three times. One for a coffee, and twice for very memorable Sunday brunches. You can imagine how wonderful it was to eat in such a legendary place…
In front of Klosterkirken (The Abbey Church), you can’t miss the magnificent conker tree (or horse-chestnut tree, Aesculus hippocastanum). Every time I admire it, I wonder how many marriage proposals took place under this tree… You can see the tree through the seasons, from spring to winter. (Click to see the galleries).
I don’t know how old is this tree. But we have proof it was already there in the early 1900s !
And here are some details about the leaves and the bark, taken during a past spring. I love the light through the leaves, the scales on the trunk, the lichen on the bark…
A secret door, a hidden room… During renovation in 2017, the little Museum of Nykøbing Falster discovered in the building a hidden room, filled with old crates and various notes and drawings. It turned out to be the legacy of the former owner of the old house, Cornelius S. C. Rödder. Be sure to read this story until the end… some things might not be quite as they seem…
Born in 1821 in Nykøbing Falster, Rödder was the son of a rich upper-class family from a noble German lineage. He studied medicine in Copenhagen. In 1856, during a trip in Italy, he found some strange writings and very unusual specimens. He later met the famous Thomas Merrylin, a London-based crypto-naturalist and xeno-archaeologist. That’s when his focus turned towards the Dark World and the occult, leading to an incredible cryptozoology collection we can see today at the museum. Vampires, fairies, baby dragons, werewolf… Welcome to the Museum Obscurum !
We start our journey into the dark world by exploring various mysteries, from Harry Potter’s story to Mary Shelley’s quotes.
We then enter in Cornelius S. C. Rödder’ universe by arriving in his living room where there is a little spiritism alcove. Ouija boards were very popular around 1900, helping people to connect with their loved ones who died during wars.
In his study room, Cornelius gathered numerous strange findings, like odd stuffed animals, as well as prehistoric and medieval artefacts.
From there, we finally have access to the Dark Room, whose entrance is cleverly hidden behind the library. Here are some of the most interesting specimens found by Rödder.
Draco alatus, the Dragon
Most commonly known as “Dragon”, Draco alatus is a species of membranous winged theropod dinosaur. It is said it is the member of a theropod family that survived the extinction event 65 millions years ago.
Here you can see a specimen of a human infant skeleton, with a peculiar disformity on the skull, forming two large cranial horns. According to Merrylin’s diaries, this is the result of the mother’s abuse of narcotics.
The Forest Child
This tiny skeleton was found in 1891, in a tomb on the Peninsula of Osbora. It is supposed to be a creature that was worshipped.
Homo lupus, The Lycanthrope
Also know as “werewolf”, this specimen of Homo lupus belongs to a species of bipedal hominid, related to both Homo sapiens and Homo vampyrus (the vampire). The wolf-like characteristics might be the result of a genetic mutation caused by a virus. This very specimen is a 15 years old female, who probably died of starvation. She was the last piece collected by the anthropologist Edward Harrell who worked alongside Thomas Merrylin.
This Ichtyosapien is fish-like species, closely related to mudskippers (Periophthalmus).
The Ship Elf
Also called “Klabauter man”, the ship elf is a good spirit. He helps discovering weak spots on the ship by knocking the wood with his club. Cornelius S. C. Rödder found this one in Norway.
That’s not all…
Across the numerous rooms of the museum, you can encounter other disturbing sights, and discover some mysterious writings.
Could all that be true ?
Actually, the Museum exhibits some specimens from the well known Merrylin Cryptic Collection. His amazing collection is the work of a Londonian illustrator and sculptor, Alex CF. Few years ago, CF’s fictional work took internet by storm, after the publication of a viral story about “mysterious skeletons found in a basement under an old London orphanage”.
In 2017, the Nykøbing museum acquired some of his cryptid sculptures and imagined a fantastic and dark scenography, by Leif Plith Lauritsen and Erik Kristiansen as well as Museum Lolland-Falster’s employees. Their work won the Historic Day’s Renewal Award, a prize “to honor the innovative, surprising and different ways of conveying history and making history accessible to more people”, as the organization writes in their webpage.
At Dronningensgade 27A, there is this wonderful painting called Svanemor (“The Swan Mother”) by Henry Heerup, made in 1990. Everytime I walk by, I have to stop to admire it. I love the simplicity and the naive style. This motif with a swan mother, two chicks and an egg has been used many times by this painter. You can find Svanemor in several lithographies.
Henry Heerup (4 November 1907 – 30 May 1993) was a Danish painter and sculptor born in Frederiksberg. He studied painting under Axel Jørgensen and Einar Nielsen at the Royal Danish Academy of Art. He also studied sculpture there under Einar Utzon-Frank. His first oil painting was “The Old Oak in Wolfvalley” in 1924.
If you really like this mamma swan with her chicks, you can buy a poster here.
“Svanemor”, by Henry Heerup Dronningensgade 27A 4800 Nykøbing Falster GPS coordinates : 54.767684,11.870113
In the same building as Czarens Hus (The Tsar’s House) and Den Gamle Købmandshandel (The Old Grocer’s Shop) lies the little museum of Nykøbing, at Færgestræde 1A. Here are some pictures of their main exhibit that lasted several years, about all the memories of the town and the island of Falster : remains from old shops, costumes, various objects, furnitures, tools, toys… You can see how people lived in Nykøbing Falster in former times !