US News "Cold Hawaii": in Denmark, surfing carried by the wave of Covid
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Sur the rugged west coast of Denmark, far from the paradisiacal rollers of the tropics, is the fashionable spot for coronavirus shipwrecked surfers: in "Cold Hawaii", as the name suggests, you shouldn't be afraid of being cold .
Here, near the village of Klitmøller, no Hawaiian palm trees, but a melancholy coast and waves colored by the ever-increasing number of surfboards, thanks to the sanitary situation.
Surfers from Denmark and neighboring countries, "used to travel the world and now they can't go anywhere, so we clearly have more customers than normal," says Mor Meluka, an Israeli 34 years who left their luggage in Klitmøller as a family 11 years ago.
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Combined with the growth of surfing in the region "which already brings more visitors every year (...), this has really created a big boom in this year of Covid", he rejoices.
With his wife, Vahine Itchner, Mor runs the "Cold Hawaii Surf Camp", a surf school which employs 15 instructors during the summer months and continues lessons daily in the low season.
For Vahine, who grew up in Denmark from the age of 10, it was the "raw", unpredictable aspect that made the difference.
"You can't really know what kind of waves you are going to have. They are always different. If you go to a + perfect + place to surf like Bali or Tahiti, you know exactly how the wave is going to be. Here, that changes everything. time, ”she explains.
Recently emerged on the map of world surfing, the place still makes it possible to avoid traffic jams on the water.
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With its 1,022 inhabitants, Klitmøller is an improbable destination for surfers, due to its geographical location but also to the lack of a winter sports tradition.
A fishing village like any other on the Jutland coast, initially frequented mainly by windsurfers, it has been welcoming surfers since the 90s, at first very sporadically and with skepticism.
"It was new for the locals and the fishermen, because they had to share the ocean (...) but a surfer doesn't take up much space", explains Vahine.
From now on, surfing is an integral part of the local culture and appears on the timetables of the schoolchildren who tame the waves in class.
Sjoerd Kok is one of the followers of the almost first hour.
This 42-year-old Dutchman, computer programmer, moved here 17 years ago "for surfing" and has kept his pioneering enthusiasm.
"A few years ago, I said to myself that we had reached the top of the surf expansion curve but, no, we are not there yet!", He rejoices.
Mor and Vahine also believe in a flourishing of surfing in Denmark, already famous for kitesurfing.
“It's going to become a famous spot!” Predicts the 39-year-old.
For her, in the realm of hygge - this art of living that emphasizes the search for well-being in everyday life - Klitmøller has achieved what no other place has been able to accomplish, however pleasant it may be.
"The right word is + cozy +: you go surfing, you go home, you make yourself a fire and you drink your hot chocolate", she concludes.
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