14 Best Things to Do in Copenhagen, Denmark

In my last blog post, I gave you some ideas on the best things to do in Budapest, Hungary. It makes perfect sense that the next city on the list should be Copenhagen, the second happiest and one of the most colorful cities in the world.

Copenhagen is known for its warm, joyous atmosphere; it’s a city that’s full to the brim with culture and history, backed up by some of the best coffee and craft beer on the planet. It’s also a city that has bustling and trendy nightlife; in short… there is no shortage of entertainment here.

Copenhagen’s cuisine and panoramic natural scenes are also not to be missed. Simply put, it’s a place where you can never run out of things to do. Whether you want to spend all day outside, or cozy up indoors, read on for here the 10 top things to do while you’re on a visit to Copenhagen, Denmark.

Everybody, strap yourselves in because Giorgy aka G-Extreme is about to reveal the very Best Things To Do in Copenhagen! Check out and judge yourself whether it’s the second happiest city in the world.

NOTICE: The information here is updated as best we can in light of COVID-19. Please check before you go anywhere what modifications have taken place to avoid any inconvenience!

1. Visit the Colorful Houses at the Iconic Nyhavn

What is it?
If you google Copenhagen, the first picture that comes up will probably be of Nyhavn; it’s easily one of the most iconic landmarks in the city. 
Nyhavn originally built as a 17th-century canal, Nyhavn or “New Harbour” is now a vibrant landmark lined with beautiful multicolored townhouses, cafes, and seafood restaurants.

Why go?
Yes, it’s a tourist trap where you can revel in the picture-perfect scene or relax and enjoy a drink or a meal on the canal.

If you’re a history buff, you should definitely know that the famous Danish fairytale writer, Hans Christian Andersen lived in three of the Nyhavn houses, including house number 20 in which he wrote fairy tales like ‘Little Claus and Big Claus’, and ‘The Princess and the Pea’.

2. Snack around Copenhagen

What is it?
One of the greatest ways to get to know a city is through its cuisine. From pastries to fish to open-face sandwiches, you’ll be blown away by the delicious food in Copenhagen.

Why go?
In the past decade, Denmark has been associated with the rise of the New Nordic Cuisine which emphasizes the use of local and seasonal ingredients, and it’s described as delicious by the testimony of both locals and tourists alike.

One of the classic dishes that are a must-try is Smørrebrød, or open-faced sandwiches, which are made of small half-pieces of rye bread and topped with fried fish, eggs, potatoes, and other different ingredients. Denmark is also known for its delicious bread, and you’ll find numerous incredible bakeries to try like Mirabelle and Meyers Bageri. 

Hey Goofball! Wander around Jægersborggade which offers excellent places to eat and drink! Nearby you can find Inge Vincent‘s ceramics workshop, craft store Vanishing Point and jewelry designers Ladyfingers. Do not forget to check the Toverhallerne, a gourmet food market, and Refshaleøen, a creative quarter with a growing food scene, that is a must-visit on anyone’s Copenhagen culinary trail!

3. Travel Back to Your Childhood at the Tivoli Gardens Amusement Park

What is it?
Tivoli Gardens is both an amusement park and a pleasure garden that draws families year-round, and it’s also the second-oldest operating amusement park in the world (attracting visitors since the 19th century) in central Copenhagen.

Why go?
This is the perfect place to have some fun family time where you enjoy the adrenaline of the exciting rides or the beautiful decorations, fountains, and the array of gorgeous flower and plant arrangements.

At night, the park twinkles with thousands of magical lights, making it nothing short of a fairytale! It’s no wonder that this place was a major inspiration for Walt Disney.

Hey Goofball! Do not forget to get your admission ticket & also experience Tivoli at the fullest by purchasing the Unlimited ride ticket Plus!

4. Botanical Garden

What is it?
This is Copenhagen’s green oasis in the middle of Denmark’s capital: Copenhagen Botanical Garden is part of the Natural History Museum of Denmark; it was established in 1600 but given its current and final location in the city center in 1870.

Why go?
This is the perfect spot if you’re looking for a place you can unwind and relax away from the hustle and bustle of the city. The garden has the biggest collection of Danish plants with over 13000 different species. The garden is known for its 27 historical glasshouses dating from 1874. It also includes a rhododendron garden, rock gardens featuring plants native to Europe’s mountainous regions, and a butterfly house you can enjoy during the summer.

5. National Museum of Denmark

What is it?
Pay a visit to Denmark’s largest and most diverse museum of cultural history which combines the history of Denmark and foreign cultures as well.

Why go?
The museum is situated in the 18th-century Prince’s Palace in Copenhagen, just a short distance from Strøget. The exhibitions in the museum cover 14,000 years of Danish history, from the reindeer-hunters of the Ice Age, Vikings, and works of religious art from the Middle Ages. It also includes different artifacts from ancient Greece and Egypt.

Hey Goofball! Try to get there early as the museum is usually crowded because people from all over the world tend to visit it, especially during peak season. Or get your Copenhagen City Card in order to save money and additional time while visiting, this card included 80+ Museum entrances such as Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek, Statens Museum for Kunst, and Louisiana Museum of Modern Art. All worth seeing!

6. Live Freely in Freetown Christiania

What is it?
Freetown Christiania is one of the most interesting places in Copenhagen; it used to be a military base and in 1971, a group of hippies broke down the barricades and began squatting there.

Why go?
An anarchist community of around 900 people lives there now with their own rules and regulations, totally independent from Denmark’s government. Christiania is located in the Christianshavn area and cars are not allowed there so you can go by bus, metro, or bike.

The town is full of uniquely decorated houses and venues and the atmosphere is really friendly and welcoming. While you’re there, pay a visit to ALIS Wonderland, Denmark’s most famous state park and a meeting point for the town’s skaters, photographers, and street artists!

7. Rosenborg Castle

What is it?
This marvelous renaissance fairytale Castle was originally built as a royal summer house in 1606 for king Christian IV.

Why go?
The castle is built in the Danish renaissance style and is located in the country’s oldest royal garden, Kongens Have (“The King’s Garden”), also known as “Rosenborg Castle Garden”. Rosenborg is not only a marvel to look at, but it’s home to treasures and works of art from Denmark’s royal history.

Some of the many interesting things you’ll find there include the Crown Jewels and the coronation chair. Kill two birds with one stone and have a relaxed picnic or a coffee in the Rosenborg Castle Garden after your tour!

8. Superkilen

What is it?
Thanks to the help of the surrounding community, Superkilen a 55’000-square-foot urban park has been born.

Why go?
Built-in 2012, from swing benches from Iraq, a boxing ring from Thailand, and rubbish bins from Blackpool, as you could read this area contains more than 60 objects that reflect each of the cultures that inhabit the area. Because of it, the award-winning Superkilen celebrates the multicultural melting pot of surrounding Norrebrø and exemplifies the power of inclusive design.

9. CopenHill

What is it?
It’s a fusion of an urban sports area (ski slope included on top) and the city’s newest waste management center.

Why go?
The main attraction is its ski slope atop a tall waste-recycling plant. It offers several inner-city hiking and it’s one of the best ways for exploring and experiencing the city. If you are not an extreme into adventure sports, you can walk up and stop for views of the Øresund strait as you go.

Hey Goofball! Ready to make a G-Extreme Adventure at CopenHill?

10. Bike around the city 

What is it?
If you truly want to make the best of your Copenhagen experience and feel like a local, you should rent a bike and ride it around the city, or at least book a bike tourwhy not combine it with a culinary tour too?
Copenhagen also built up a world-class cycling infrastructure which makes biking around the Danish capital a piece of cake!

Why go?
Biking is the best way to get around Copenhagen; there are tons of bike paths all over the city and you’ll find that more people travel on bikes than by cars. This will also give you a chance to take in the city’s wonderful landmarks and scenic views.

Hey Goofball! You can even jump on a boat which is one of the most enjoyable ways to see Copenhagen, spending a couple of hours skippering a solar-powered GoBoat around the city’s harbor.

11. Take a Peek at the Little Mermaid Statue

What it is?
The Little Mermaid Statue might be the smallest landmark in Copenhagen, but it’s very popular among tourists.

Why go?
The Little Mermaid is to Copenhagen what the Statue of Liberty is to New York. This beautiful statue is based on the fairytale ‘The Little Mermaid’ by Danish author Hans Christian Andersen. It was commissioned by Carl Jacobsen, son of the founder of Carlsberg because he was fascinated by a ballet about the fairytale in Copenhagen’s Royal Theatre.

The statue is situated on a rock by the waterside at the Langelinie promenade in Copenhagen, Denmark and it’s definitely worth a peek! 

Advice: Use the following self-guided audio walking tour while experiencing Copenhagen, as you step into the story of The Little Mermaid.

12. Carlsberg Brewery

What is it?
We have all heard of the Carlsberg beer, so why not stop at its birthplace and enjoy a couple of beers while still learning about the history of the brewery and how it became a global power brand.

Why go?
The Carlsberg Brewery offers a fantastic tour of its very first brewery which will give you a peek of the original machines they used as well as the world’s largest collection of unopened beer bottles.

13. Amager Strandpark

What is it?
Located south of the city center, there is a clean, sandy beach of five kilometers offering a speechless view of the Øresund Bridge.

Why go?
Who said that you have to just stay in the city center when you can easily chill on a beach on a sunny day nearby Copenhagen? To be honest, it’s not exactly a beach destination, but Amager Strandpark easily reachable by metro or bike has a soft, sandy beach that also attracts kayakers for its well-known lagoon. Because of the path winding through the dunes draws joggers and rollerblades (like Giorgy) all year long!

14. Værnedamsvej

What is it?
Named after “Little Paris”, it’s a shopping street where you can enjoy wandering around the shops.

Why go?
There is a taste for every kind: from independent bookshops to exotic florists! Indeed Værnedamsvej has a waste array of bars, cafes, and delicatessens that transport you into a vibe and a presence of French lycée.

Overall

Here I am sharing some useful tips for getting around the city:

  • Getting Around: The metro system is extremely easy to get around, but exploring the city by bike is much more fun and easier! Most of the hostels offer a cost-effective bicycle;
  • Understand the Money: being part of the European Union doesn’t mean using the Euro. Indeed Denmark is still using Danish Krone (DKK) which ~6.66 is equivalent to 1 USD. The conversion is not easy to figure out, so bear in mind when you’re getting money! Also, carry some cash on you because some places do not accept cards.
  • Tipping is Uncommon: unlike other places in Europe, it is not necessary to tip the service at restaurants and bars in Denmark. However, if you feel like showing your appreciation with a tip, do it! Kindness is always appreciated!

Do you understand why Copenhagen is the second happiest city in Europe? Whether you’re a solo traveler, traveling with your partner, or your family, this is a wonderful city to visit; the food, the friendly laid back atmosphere, the colorful vistas, the rich history, and finally the lively nightlife!

As I said, it’s a city where you can never run out of things to do, so if you plan on visiting, these are my top ten recommendations for you for things to do while you’re in Copenhagen. 

 

Read More: 10 Best Things to do in Budapest