Thousand-year-old Aalborg, Denmark, set in the northern part of Jutland (140 mi/220 km northwest of Copenhagen, and a seven-hour drive), has excellent shopping and several attractions: the Kunsten Museum of Modern Art Aalborg, the nearby Limfjord, the Monastery of the Holy Ghost, Aalborghus Castle, the house of Jens Bang (a great example of Nordic Renaissance style) and Budolfi Cathedral. The Zoo of Aalborg is one of the largest in Northern Europe.

Don't miss Lindholm Hoje, Denmark's largest Viking burial ground. Some of the 682 graves, which date from the ninth century, are marked by stones arranged in the shape of ships. The history of this burial site is recorded in an archaeology museum.

Aalborg is a nice, fairly relaxed place to spend a couple of days enjoying the nightlife (there are more than 200 pubs in this small city, although several maintain a reputation of late-night rowdiness), with sand dunes and beaches only an hour's drive away. Nearby, too, is Rebild National Park, 20 mi/30 km south of Aalborg, which hosts the largest Fourth of July celebration in the world outside of the U.S.

Do not miss Ornerreservatet, 43 mi/70 km north of Aalborg in Bindslev, where you can admire the flying skills of ospreys and royal eagles in the wild.

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