Tucked away below Søndermarken Park, The Cisterns is a unique exhibition space in a former underground reservoir which once held up to 16 million litres of Copenhagen’s drinking water.
A glass triangular entrance leads the way to the subterranean world below and with bright sunshine pouring through, it’s a world away from what awaits you a few feet away.
After paying the entrance fee (60 DKK) it’s a short staircase to the cool and dark atmosphere below. “Follow the light” and “let your eyes adjust” are the instructions you’re given to make the most of the experience. At first, it’s disorientating thanks to the presence of only a tiny bit of light but you soon become used to it.
Hearing the water around you as you gingerly wander down the wooden boardwalk (ropes on either side stop you from heading off in the wrong direction) is a surreal, disorientating and, at times, an otherworldly experience.
The current exhibition is by Japanese architect Hiroshi Sambuichi and features installations such as green moss growing in a transparent plastic box – in a space with limited natural light – and a bridge with lanterns underneath the steps.
The section that grabs the most attention is the aspect where you can see the faces of people in the park through something similar to a periscope. The out of focus view gives you the feeling that you’re seeing these faces through water.
It’s not an attraction that will enter you for hours and hours, but it’s a perfect stop off while visiting other local sights including Copenhagen Zoo and the Carlsberg Brewery, and is worth a visit for a unique experience that you won’t find anywhere other than the Danish capital.
The Cisterns x Sambuichi runs until February 2018.
The Cisterns (Cisternerne), Søndermarken, 2000 Frederiksberg – cisternerne.dk