Freetown Christiana is a car free and green neighbourhood in Copenhagen and is known for its autonomous inhabitants’ different way of living. It was established in 1971, a city within the city on the site of a military barracks by a group of hippies who had occupied some of the abandoned military barracks on the site and developed their own society rules and was completely independent of the Danish government.
For forty years, Christiania existed under special condition with constant conflicts as well as clashes between the local Christianity and the Danish states and with several years of uncertainty, they reached an agreement in 2011 and on July 1, 2012, a foundation Freetown Christiania was founded.
The foundation now owns the entire part of Christiania located beyond the protected ramparts, leasing buildings and land on the ramparts which continue to be owned by the state. Portion of the funds is raised by selling the symbolic Christiania shares. Besides, Freetown Christiania is a mixture of homemade houses, art galleries, workshops, music venues, with cheap and organic eateries accompanied with beautiful nature and one cannot buy a house in Christiania but will have to apply for it and if successful, one tends to get it. Moreover, the area is open to public with guided tours which are conducted by the local inhabitants.
Signs with `Do’s and Don’ts – Safety Purpose
For safety purpose, tourist are advised not to film or photograph inside this micronation especially in areas in and around Pusher Street due to the hash dealing which is illegal in Denmark. As one enters these areas, one will find signs with `do’s and don’ts’, advising visitors to take these instructions seriously for their own safety. Hundreds of buildings on Christiania are there, most of which are in all sorts of imaginative shapes, colours and sizes from old army building which dates back to the old barrack days and the best way to explore these areas is to stroll down and absorb the atmosphere.
All these buildings have their own unique story to relate. Fredens Ark is one interesting site which is not only the largest building on Christiania but also the largest half-timbered house in Northern Europe. Built in 1837, it was initially the main building of the barracks with sleeping as well as officers’ quarters. Presently around eighty people live in the protected building while the lower levels are home of the Rockmaskinen’ club.
Powerhouse of Cultural Activities
Vilhelms Bastion – Borneengen, Nordomradet is one of the old bastions of fornications where Christiania is built. It has a set of protected buildings while Kommandeorhuset is a yellow half-timbered housed utilised to serve as guard building and the eave towards the eastern area seems extended to permit the soldiers to stay dry during the rainy weather and the same was built and constructed by Italian architect.
Christiania is a powerhouse of cultural life in Copenhagen and one will always find some activity going on there in one of the several club and venues placed around the central area near Pusher Street or in the open air scene on Café Nemoland. Itis a destination worth visiting and exploring