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Christiania

April 12, 2010

christiania-mural

Christiania is Copenhagen’s infamous, self-governed squat community. It was described to me as a magical town where cannabis is sold freely in the streets and hot, girly-looking boys frolic about giving people blowbacks. So like obvs when I was in Denmark last week I HAD to go. Also, being a squatter, I feel a strange affinity with other squatters the world over. I wanted to be close to my people.

christiania-street

Freetown Christiania is a self-proclaimed independent state of about 850 people, spanning 85 acres. It was founded in 1971 by a group of hippies, anarchists, and idealists after they squatted an abandoned military barracks in Copenhagen. One of the perks of the town’s special set of laws is their ability to legally trade cannabis. The authorities tolerated this for over 30 years, but since 2004 there have been constant efforts to try and normalise the legal status of the community.

christiania-drug-stall

The main cannabis trade in Christiania takes place on the centrally located Pusher Street (yes, really). I had to steal this picture off the internet because whenever I got my camera out around any drug paraphernalia everyone within ten metres shot me evil “NO PHOTO” glances, and snarled at me with their unbrushed teeth.

no-hard-drugs

Though there’s a lot of pot, in 1979 the town administrated a “no hard drugs” policy which remains in effect today.

christiania-built-house

Many of the houses in Christiania were built by the inhabitants themselves. Some fail to meet health and safety standards, lacking things like water and electricity, but whatever. This is yet another reason why the government wants to put an end to this hippie/loser paradise.

spaceship-house

I couldn’t help but think this weird spaceship house was an idea someone had when they were way too stoned, and yet which they somehow managed to follow though.

commune

I’d like to live here.

entering-eu

To leave Christiania you have to pass under this sign that reads, “You are now entering the EU.” I thought that was really cute.

spunk-bar

Later that evening we went to a place called Spunk Bar. Apparently “spunk” in Danish means sweets, but I couldn’t help finding the name really funny. Apparently, I have a very stunted sense of humor.

red-nose-guys

Inside, we made friends with some locals. They weren’t exactly the hot Danish girly-boys I was looking for, but I liked their style. This is basically how all the cool kids dress in Copenhagen.

needles

I don’t know if there’s more heroin in Copenhagen than in other major cities, but it’s definitely more out in the open. Walking through the city’s more sketchy areas I saw at least three different people smoking up in the middle of the street, in full view of everyone. I took this photo of a drain outside Spunk Bar. Yum.

blood2

This was only a few footsteps away. All the hard drugs and violence made me wish I was back inside the peaceful, loving walls of Christiania.

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11 Comments

  • Reply dumpsterdoodlez April 12, 2010 at 10:36 pm

    holy shit! when I see ONE needle on the street in california i am creeped out.. WHATTTTT

  • Reply xo April 13, 2010 at 12:59 am

    ahah I was in CPH as well for a month until 2 week ago, I had to leave because just everyone had scabies… just open a mansion in Amsterdam now it's way much better.

  • Reply Just Elisa April 13, 2010 at 4:06 am

    I lived in Copenhagen for a year and Christiania was certainly a sanctuary for me. My mates and I were there almost every weekend. The whole no hard drugs thing and the fact that everyone respects the rule placed my respect for the human race a little higher. I'm surprised at your photo of the needles. I never saw anything like that when I was there. Weird. And I'm pretty sure spunk does not mean sweets in Danish… Did someone tell you that?

  • Reply shebeen April 13, 2010 at 7:31 am

    I looove Christiania!the first time I had shrooms, was at a rave there… it was fucked up beyond belief….

  • Reply sophie April 18, 2010 at 10:56 am

    The red nose guy on the right is hot!

  • Reply sarah April 18, 2010 at 12:13 pm

    It's a slightly retro type of candy: http://www.toms.dk/Default.aspx?ID=1238

  • Reply Mtti April 25, 2010 at 5:03 pm

    When I paid a visit to my Cuz he stayed two houses away form the free needle clinic..was wierd seeing people shoot up in the morning…Christiania coffee taste like crap, but great place!

  • Reply Malou April 27, 2010 at 3:53 pm

    Oh my god. Copenhagen is fab, and I can't believe you went to Copenhagen and I didn't bump into you..

  • Reply Laura April 28, 2010 at 2:14 pm

    Spunk is a liquorice brand, so it's not just sweets in generel.. :) And to you who havn't been in Copenhagen and is chocked by the pictures.. it's just a few areas that looks that that.. There are also really, really snobby, rich places there.

  • Reply Emilie Marie Andersen. May 9, 2010 at 6:23 pm

    christiania for the win!i live in copenhagen, and its the most awesome place you'll ever see. btw. they sell drugs to under aged? fuck yeah.

  • Reply JGW May 9, 2010 at 6:50 pm

    Hello. Nice blog. I live in Christiania myself, and have been doing that my whole life. And I want to making something clear: Selling cannabis legally isn't a part of the law at Christiania. It is something that, most people who lives there, accept, but not a part of the 'law'. Also, now I'm already writing this, I want to add that a lot of normal people lives in Christiania (which you probably know, though you describe it as a place with only hippies/losers :). Anyhow, I hope you enjoyed Christiania. I can see that you walked further out on "Dyssen" (the long, long road when you cross the lake by the bridge) – that not normal that people go 'all the way out there'. You were almost at my little house! Regards from Christiania, Julie G. Wester

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