Amongst the three places I have lived, Kuwait has literally no cycle culture. In India cycles are driven on the roads along with the other vehicles. When I came to United Kingdom, I found it very interesting that there are special marking on the roads which are meant for cyclists, the lane can mostly accommodate one cycle.
But Denmark just won it all. I walked out of the airport into the metros to find a special compartment in the metro for the cycles. Even the station had allocated rooms for leaving the cycle behind if people wished to. There were lifts suited for the cyclists to get from the underground to the road level.
I was absolutely excited. As I got out of the station, I experienced things I had not seen before.
There was not just one lane dedicated for cyclists, but this lane was wide enough to accommodate more than one cycle. The cyclists definitely dominated the roads unlike the other places I have been to. The clear demarcation for pedestrian to cyclist to vehicles was incredible. Even the signals had three varied signs. One for the pedestrian, another for vehicles and the most incredible one for me, was the one for the cycles.
Every age group owns a cycle in Copehagen. I was most fascinated when I saw the cycle stands populated instead of parking spaces for the cars.
As designers, we learn to design as per the hierarchy, starting from the pedestrian , then cyclist and finally vehicles ( public transport first, then private vehicles) for a better and healthy living style. It was indeed a pleasure to witness how this would look in reality.
There were indeed a variety of cycles I had ever witnessed.
During one of our discussions, someone pointed out saying, how in most places, the aim is to get people off the car and onto the cycles, whereas in Copenhagen, they are way ahead of time. In fact they are finding ways to get people off the cycles and onto the roads for walking through the city.
Though there was one thing that intimidated me as a pedestrian, lack of control over cyclists speed.