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Copenhagen, the capital of Denmark, is a city on a human scale, where the main attractions and the most famous tourist sites are easily accessible by bike or on foot. Read more in this article about what to do in Copenhagen and more precisely about 10 must-sees, including 1 bonus.
Discover here also my article on practical information to prepare your Copenhagen trip.
1. Nyhavn harbor
This is my favorite place in the capital. Nyhavn was originally a busy trading port. Today the beautiful old houses have been renovated and restaurants dominate the old harbor. Nyhavn is full of people enjoying the relaxed atmosphere along the canal.
Strøget is Copenhagen’s shopping street and one of the longest in Europe. This is the place to go for shopping.
3. Tivoli Garden
This is one of the oldest amusement parks in the world and the most visited seasonal park. Tivoli is open from April to September, but there are also special openings for Halloween and Christmas. Unfortunately, when we were there, the park was closed.
4. Amalienborg, the Queen’s Palace
Another must-see in the capital is to attend the changing of the guard. To attend, you must be at Amalienborg Palace at 12:00. It is the residence of Queen Margreth II.
Not far from Amalienborg Palace, at the end of the street from Amalienborg Square, is the marble church or Marmorkirken in Danish.
5. The little mermaid and its surroundings
It is undoubtedly the symbol of the city of Copenhagen. Since 1913, she has been welcoming travelers to the Copenhagen harbor. The bronze statue refers to the protagonist of the famous fairy tale, written in 1887, by the Danish writer Hans Christian Andersen: the story of the unhappy mermaid who dreams of being able to walk on dry land to join her lover, thus sacrificing her life in the sea.
Personally, you shouldn’t expect much of it, the statue is very small and quite sad. I did not find it the strong point of the city.
A little further away is the Gefion Fountain and St. Alban’s Church. It is the only Anglican church in Denmark.
Visiting a foreign city, means also discovering its gastronomy. So for us, visiting Copenhagen also means discovering the gastronomy aspect! Therefore, we went to the covered market of Torvehallerne. It is about two big glass halls which invite to the greediness. With more than 60 stands, you will find everything to eat a good breakfast or lunch.
This place is also one of my favorites. We went there twice because the food is so diversified and good.
7. Vor Frelsers Krike
It’s hard to miss this 17th-century church and its 95-meter-high spiral tower. For a breathtaking view of the city, make the dizzying 400-step climb to the top – the last 150 steps run along the outer edge of the tower, narrowing to the point where it literally disappears at the top. The price to get on top is 65 DKK.
8. Christiana, the free city of Copenhagen
Christiana is a free state in the heart of the Danish capital. Here you will find open soft drug shops, a hippie neighborhood with squatted buildings or self-built houses made of recycled materials. You’ll also see beautiful graffiti and other art made from recycled materials.
9. The distric of Nørrebro
This is the coolest neighborhood of 2021 in the world!
For the record, the Copenhagen city district, Nørrebro, has been elected as the coolest district in the world by Time Out magazine. It’s hard to define exactly what is meant by “cool” except that it’s an atmosphere, a feeling… But this year, in addition to bars and restaurants, nightlife and cultural life, the magazine has chosen as criteria for its ranking the good living together, the community spirit and sustainability.
Nørrebro is the most populated neighborhood in Copenhagen and by far the most diverse and multicultural. There are many restaurants offering Arabic, Mexican, classic French, etc. Nørrebrogade, the main street, is home to a handful of what are arguably the best shawarma stores in the city. Shawarma is the popular dish of slow-roasted or braised meat, eaten as a sandwich in pita bread, but also eaten by the plate, which is also called kebab.
Another nice place is the Green Path bicycle path, from Nørrebroparken to Superkilen. It’s pleasant to walk or cycle along it.
10. Taste a smorrebrod
You can’t leave the country without tasting the famous smorrebrod. It’s a kind of bread with a lot of good things on it. We tasted it with salmon, herring and turkey. All were delicious! You can find the smorrebrod of Hallernes smorrebrod in the market of Torvehallerne.
11. Copenhagen’s Christmas markets (Bonus)
Visiting Copenhagen at Christmastime is to find all the magic of the end of the year celebrations as we imagine it. Christmas markets are scattered all over the city: in Nyhavn, on the Amagertorv square, etc… They are set up from mid-November until Christmas Eve. Don’t miss the famous gløgg, their mulled wine, which is very good and different at each stand.
We were lucky, because the weekend we were there, it had just opened. 🤗
What to do outside Copenhagen?
Dyrehaven, which literally means “the deer park,” is a natural resort filled with lush forests, small lakes and vast open landscapes. This park is famous for the more than 2,000 free-roaming deer that inhabit the park. You will surely encounter a herd of deer on your way.
Unfortunately, we didn’t have time to visit this place.
I hope you enjoyed this article about what to do in Copenhagen, and has helped you. Don’t hesitate to leave a comment. 🤗
Here are some other travel guides for a city trip in Europe!
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