Ærø (pronounced “air-rue”) is the most beautiful of the Danish islands (pictures here and here), and part of what the Danes call the “South Funen Archipelago”. It is quiet and uncommercialised, with gentle rolling farmland and sleepy little villages. Nearly every corner has views of the sea, many of them breathtaking – especially across to the other tiny islands like Birkholm and Drejoe. Danish Island Weddings is in the old town of Ærøskøbing which, with its cobbled streets and wonky old houses, is like something from a Hans Christian Andersen tale. The biggest town on the island is Marstal (2400 people), famous as the setting for Carsten Jensen’s wonderful bestseller, “We the Drowned”, and once second only to Copenhagen as a Danish port. Regular ferries link the island to the real world.
Why choose Ærø to get married?
Couples choose Denmark because it is one of the simplest places in the world to get married. The Danes are sensible people and don’t like to see the course of true love stopped by endless bureaucracy. At the same time Denmark is a respected and trusted country, which means there are no doubts about the legality or international acceptability of the marriage. There are many places in Denmark to get married, but Ærø is special; there is the old town of Ærøskøbing – award-winning and historic; there is the island, with its lovely countryside, beautiful beaches and wonderful sea views; and not least, the friendliness of the local people. Ærø is also special for wedding couples because our local authorities work hard to be as helpful as possible, and special because of the reputation of Danish Island Weddings. Denmark is great if you want to avoid stress and bureaucracy when you get married – but on Ærø you can have all that and a romantic and enjoyable Scandinavian experience as well.
Things to do
Many couples stay a few days to enjoy the island – and many more come back on holiday to “their” island. One couple loved it so much they just moved here..! If you do have some time to spend here then here a few suggestions:
- Walking. Ærø is an outdoor island – if you can, bring walking shoes and do part (or all) of the øhavsstien (“Archipelago Way”). The Ærø section is beautiful, fairly easy walking, and by using the free buses it is a doddle to plan an easy section. My favourite is Bregninge to Aeroeskoebing; get off the free bus at Bregninge’s lovely church.
- Cycling. The island also has some excellent cycle routes (90, 91, & 92) which go right around the island. Maps can be found at the tourist office by the harbour, and bikes can be hired at Pilebaekken petrol station, opposite the tennis courts.
- Golf. We also have one of the most beautiful golf courses in Europe, with the sea on 3 sides and the lighthouse (which we also use sometimes for weddings) as the clubhouse.
- Museums. There are several small museums in Aeroeskoebing but the best is a free bus ride away in Marstal. The Maritime Museum is excellent and reflects the town’s extraordinary seafaring history – it still supplies many of Denmark’s Navy and merchant fleet officers. Surprisingly good for children too, with a playground and other activities.
- Cinema. We love our cinema, Andelen – it is the smallest in Denmark and has a unique character. But it gets the latest international films which it shows in the original language.
- Bowling. We have a modern bowling alley, with a good cafe. Could be an option for a wet evening…
- Fishing. Aeroe is known for its sea trout. You’ll need a licence (not expensive) from the tourist office who will also give advice about where to go.
- Boat trips. There are several options for boat trips – best bet is to ask at the tourist office
- Brewery visit. We have our own award-winning brewery on the island – Rise Bryggeri. You’ll find the beer in most of the cafes on the island, and you can visit the brewery for a tour and have lunch there.
- Voderup Klint. A beautiful, quiet spot, with unusual “stepped” cliffs. It’s on the cycle route.
And finally, here are a few relevant links:
- http://www.aeroeisland.com – English travel website about Ærø.
- http://www.ricksteves.com/plan/destinations/scan/aero.htm – US travel writer Rick Steves loves Aeroeskoebing
- http://www.aeroe-turguide.dk – tour guide for Aeroeskoebing
- http://aeroeveteranbiludlejning.dk – rent an MG or Beetle for your stay!
- Rise Brewery
- The Archipelago Way (øhavsstien)
- Voderup Klint
- Picture from Marstal Maritime Museum