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Getting ready to make food at Karpenhøj Naturcenter. Photo: Lise Hannibal
Getting ready to make food at Karpenhøj Naturcenter. Photo: Lise Hannibal

Lifestyle

Experience the great outdoors on Djursland

Gourmet food cooked over a campfire with herbs you've gathered yourself, scalding-hot cowboy coffee and sleeping under the stars. In the Mols Bjerge National Park in Djursland, you can smell the wilderness and enjoy plenty of open-air experiences - less than 50km from downtown Aarhus.

The Mols Bjerge National Park is home to a unique natural environment. Forests, hills and lakes, ravines, gorges, boulders and kettle holes, which, like the coastal cliffs, were carved by the ice thousands of years ago. There are plenty of rare plants and insect species here and wild horses, cows and roe deer graze freely all year round, stopping the forest from taking over.

The national park and the rest of the Djursland countryside are perfect for the outdoor life. You can ride, cycle, hike and run, go kayaking, surfing or fishing or enjoy a nice dip. And if you join up with some of the area’s nature facilitators and open-air experts, you can be sure of the best outdoor experience.

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A wild meal being prepared. Photo: Lise Hannibal

Wild gourmet food at Karpenhøj Nature Center

At the southern end of Mols Bjerge is the Karpenhøj Nature Center, where they specialize in outdoor experiences. Karpenhøj's events and tours can take anywhere from one hour to a whole day and include sea kayaking lessons, tree climbing, a culinary cycle tour and a crash course in gourmet food from the wilderness. This experience involves a foraging trip for edible herbs, followed by cooking over a campfire, in an earth oven, wrapped in salt dough or directly in the embers. The cooking methods may be primitive, but the food lives up to its gourmet tag and thankfully you're not so far from civilization that you won't be offered something to wash it down with and a nice glass of the local brew along the way. If you're attending one of the events or courses, you can stay overnight in a Sami lavvu tent or a shelter on the Karpenhøj site.

Karpenhøj Naturcenter

Dragsmurvej 12, Knebel

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The Ice Age landscape at Mols Bjerge. Photo: Lise Hannibal

Ice Age route and mushroom hunting with The Mols Laboratory

The Mols Laboratory has played an important role in the nature management of the national park and has overseen the "rewilding" of Mols Bjerge by setting wild horses and cows free and letting them look after themselves. The aim is to establish a wild and rich natural habitat for lots of species and the Mols Laboratory organizes various tours that give you a sense of the diversity of nature. Reptile tours, mushroom hunting and wilderness trips are just some of those on offer, but you can also walk around the area yourself, following the marked trails on the laboratory site. The Mols Laboratory is also part of the Natural History Museum in Aarhus and has created an excellent Ice Age route showcasing landscape highlights, which you can download from the website.

The Mols Laboratory

Strandkærvej 6, Femmøller, Ebeltoft

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Photo: Kyst- og Fjordcentret

RIB tour in the fjords with Coast and Fjord Center

A Ghostbusters-esque boiler suit is mandatory when going full pelt in a RIB. These high-speed rubber boats can really move fast across the fjord and Carsten Enemærke of the Coast and Fjord Center isn't afraid of a little action. A trip in a RIB makes your stomach somersault, shakes up your kidneys and hits you in the face with sea spray, but it's just one of many ways to experience nature at Randers Fjord. And the guides to the outdoors at the Coast and Fjord Center are expert facilitators. They have activities for children and adults alike, ranging from RIB races to canoeing and fishing trips to cooking pancakes over a campfire, ancient crafts and raft-building. It all depends on the wind, the weather and the season, and how many of you there are. You can stay for several days and spend the night in a lavvu tent, shelter or indoors.

Kyst-og Fjordcentret

Voer Færgevej 123, Ørsted

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Last edited: March 7, 2018

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