Hvidstengruppen | Photo: Lars Høgsted

Copenhagen at war

The German occupation of Denmark during World War 2 lasted from 9 April 1940 to 5 May 1945. Despite that official Denmark practiced no military resistance, but instead cooperated with the German occupiers, the Danish resistance movement fought with their lives at stake for Denmark's freedom. Recently, the activities of the resistance movement, who received British weapons, were depicted in the film The Hvidsten Group. Eight of the group members sat in Vestre Prison in Copenhagen, where they were sentenced to death 26 June 1944. Three days later they were executed in what is now Ryvangen Memorial Park.

Many ordinary Danes also helped to smuggle Jews from Denmark to Sweden in the fishing vessel Elisabeth, which you can see at Dragør Museum. Copenhagen also honours Danes at war in modern times. Visit the Citadel in Copenhagen where the Monument for Denmark’s International Effort since 1948 was inaugurated on Flag Day 5 September 2011.

We also recommend our guides to Top 10 history museums and Copenhagen underground.

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