things to do in copenhagen

Last Updated on: 31st May 2024, 08:05 am

Welcome to Copenhagen, Denmark! If you’re searching for an exciting travel destination, look no further than this vibrant city. With so many top things to do in Copenhagen, you are bound to have a fantastic time. From exploring historic sites to immersing yourself in Danish culture, and taking canal tours to indulging in delicious food and drinks, there is something to suit every taste. In this article, I’ll share with you my insider tips for the best things to do in Copenhagen so that you can make the most of your trip. So, let’s start this amazing journey together!

Things to Do in Copenhagen

1. Explore the Historic Sites

As I mentioned before, historic sites are a must-visit when in Copenhagen. It’s impossible to fully appreciate the city’s culture and beauty without exploring its past. Rosenborg Castle, located in the heart of the city, is a stunning example of Renaissance architecture and will take you back in time to Denmark’s Golden Age. The castle contains a wealth of treasures, including the Danish Crown Jewels.

Christiansborg Palace is another impressive landmark that’s worth adding to your itinerary. The palace is located on the picturesque island of Slotsholmen and is home to the Danish Parliament, Supreme Court, and Ministry of State. You can take a guided tour to discover the palace’s extensive art collection and learn more about Denmark’s political history.

Pro tip: For an unforgettable experience, book a visit to the Round Tower, one of Copenhagen’s most iconic landmarks. The tower was built in the 17th century and provides unparalleled views of the city. You can even try your hand at the tower’s famous Whispering Gallery.

The beauty of Copenhagen is that history is everywhere you look.

– Rane Willerslev

2. Immerse Yourself in Danish Culture

To truly experience Copenhagen, you must immerse yourself in Danish culture. This can be easily achieved by visiting one of the city’s many cultural hotspots. For instance, head over to the vibrant Nyhavn district, located on the waterfront, and marvel at its colorful buildings and waterfront cafes. This is a popular spot for both locals and tourists and offers a lively atmosphere that must be experienced when in Copenhagen.

The charming Latin Quarter is another area where you can get a taste of Danish culture. Its narrow streets are filled with cozy cafes and boutique shops, each with its unique charm that is bound to captivate you. Besides, it is an excellent place to explore and learn about Danish architecture.

No cultural immersion is complete without trying out local dishes. Danish cuisine is world-renowned, and Copenhagen is no exception. To indulge in traditional Danish food, try the open-faced sandwich, smørrebrød, which is served in most restaurants across the city. Danish pastries are also a must-try, and you can find them in bakeries all over Copenhagen. Your taste buds will not be disappointed.

Danish culture in Copenhagen

Cultural Experience Table

Experience Location
Explore historic Viking sites The Museum of National History at Frederiksborg Castle
Visit the Royal Danish Opera Ekvipagemestervej 10, 1438 Copenhagen K
Explore Street Food Copenhagen Papirøen – Trangravsvej 14, 1436 Copenhagen K
Visit the Danish National Museum Ny Vestergade 10, 1471 Copenhagen K

The table above shows some of the cultural experiences that Copenhagen has to offer. You can explore historic Viking sites by visiting The Museum of National History at Frederiksborg Castle or immerse yourself in Danish opera at the Royal Danish Opera. For a more modern experience, visit the Street Food Copenhagen market on the waterfront or delve into Danish history at the Danish National Museum.

3. Discover the Modern Attractions

If you’re looking for contemporary sights in Copenhagen, you won’t be disappointed. First among these is the iconic Little Mermaid statue, a must-visit attraction for any traveler to this fine city. Lovers of green tech will want to visit Copenhill, an artificial ski slope that was creatively built on top of a waste-to-energy plant. Another modern work of Danish design is the Tivoli Gardens, the world’s oldest amusement park containing modern rides and activities.

Experience the fusion of avant-garde technology and art at every corner of Copenhagen, where just a few steps take you from the historic ages to the imagination of the future.

4. Explore the Art and Design Scene

Copenhagen is a hub for art and design, making it a must-visit destination for art enthusiasts. There are numerous museums and galleries to explore, each with its unique offerings.

National Gallery of Denmark

The National Gallery of Denmark is the largest art museum in Denmark and is home to a wide range of works by renowned artists. It has an extensive collection of Danish art, including pieces by famous artists like Jens Juel and Christoffer Wilhelm Eckersberg. The museum also features art from the Renaissance era, as well as works by international artists such as Picasso and Matisse.

Art and Design in Copenhagen

Designmuseum Danmark

If you’re interested in Danish design history, head to the Designmuseum Danmark. The museum showcases a vast collection of furniture, ceramics, and textile design, dating back to the 16th century. You’ll get an in-depth understanding of Danish design and how it has evolved over the years.

Vesterbro Street Art

For a taste of the modern art scene, check out the vibrant street art in the trendy Vesterbro neighborhood. It’s a great place to see colorful murals and graffiti art, which have become an integral part of Copenhagen’s urban landscape.

5. Take a Canal Tour

Being in Copenhagen, it’s hard not to notice the network of canals that run through the city, making it a perfect destination to explore by boat. One of the best ways to see the city is by taking a canal tour. Besides the pleasure of cruising along the picturesque canals, you can also enjoy panoramic views of the city’s stunning landmarks from a unique perspective.

Guided tours are available for those who want to know more about the city’s history and architecture. It’s an excellent opportunity to see and learn about the city.

Why Take a Canal Tour?

The canal tour is an unforgettable experience that offers the following benefits:

Benefits of Canal Tours in Copenhagen Reasons to Take a Canal Tour
Unique perspective Explore the city’s landmarks from an unusual point of view
Guided tours Learn about Copenhagen’s history and architecture from expert guides
Panoramic views Experience the stunning views of the cityscape
Sightseeing made easy Explore Copenhagen’s many sites in a convenient and comfortable way

Hop on a boat and get ready to see Copenhagen from a new angle. You won’t be disappointed!

6. Visit the Beautiful Parks and Gardens

One of the best ways to experience Copenhagen’s beauty is to visit its parks and gardens. Known for its scenic landscapes and green spaces, Copenhagen offers a peaceful setting perfect for a leisurely stroll or picnic.

Kongens Have, the oldest royal garden in Denmark located in the heart of the city, is an ideal spot to escape the hustle and bustle of city life and unwind in nature. The garden showcases stunning architecture and is adorned with colorful flowers.

Another park that’s worth a visit is the Tivoli Gardens, which marries the charm of a historical amusement park with stunning green spaces. While the park offers fantastic rides, it’s also an excellent spot to stroll around, have a picnic, or experience a live concert in spacious green surroundings.

7. Experience the Vibrant Nightlife

If you’re looking to experience Copenhagen like a local, then you must explore the city’s vibrant nightlife. From trendy cocktail bars to lively nightclubs, there’s something for every taste. One of my favorite neighborhoods for a night out is the Meatpacking District, located in Vesterbro.

It’s home to a variety of bars and clubs, all within walking distance of each other. You can start your evening at Jolene Bar, where you can enjoy a delicious cocktail in a laid-back atmosphere. Then, head over to Bakken, a popular nightclub known for its great music and lively crowds. If you’re a fan of techno, you cannot miss the famous Culture Box, an underground club hosting some of the best DJs in the world.

If you’re looking for a more eclectic and diverse nightlife scene, then Nørrebro is your go-to neighborhood. Located just north of the city center, it’s known for its vibrant and alternative atmosphere. Start your evening at the trendy bar and restaurant, Manfreds, where you can enjoy delicious natural wines and Nordic-inspired cuisine. Then, head over to the intimate bar, Gilt, for some craft cocktails and live music. If you’re in the mood for dancing, check out Rust, a legendary nightclub hosting everything from reggae to hip hop nights.

8. Shop in Style

If you’re a shopaholic like me, Copenhagen is the perfect destination for you. From luxury boutiques to independent stores, the city has a unique shopping experience waiting for you. If you’re searching for a great shopping district in Copenhagen, look no further than Strøget. This famous pedestrian shopping street is one of the longest in Europe and offers everything from high-end designer labels to affordable fashion brands.

If you want an upscale shopping experience, head over to Østerbro. This district boasts the best department stores and designer shops in Copenhagen. You’ll find a range of high-end brands such as Prada, Gucci, and Louis Vuitton.

Tip: Don’t miss out on the Danish design stores in Copenhagen. You’ll find unique and stylish home decor, furniture, and clothing items that you won’t find anywhere else.

For a more unique shopping experience, visit the trendy streets of Vesterbro. Here, you’ll find vintage shops, independent boutiques, and one-of-a-kind stores that cater to all tastes.

Shopping Districts Comparison

Shopping District Stores Style
Strøget High-end fashion brands, affordable fashion brands, souvenir shops, Danish design stores Modern, trendy
Østerbro High-end designer stores and department stores Luxury
Vesterbro Independent boutiques, vintage shops, one-of-a-kind stores Eccentric, unique

Shopping in Copenhagen

Whether you’re looking for luxury labels or unique souvenirs, Copenhagen has something to cater to all your shopping needs. With its mix of high-end boutiques, independent stores, and design shops, you’re sure to find the perfect items to add to your wardrobe or home decor. Just don’t forget to bring an extra suitcase to bring back all your fabulous finds!

9. Explore the Surrounding Areas

If you want to take a break from the bustling city, there are many fantastic day trips from Copenhagen that you can take. One of the most popular destinations is the charming town of Helsingør, which is just a short train ride away. Here, you can explore the iconic Kronborg Castle – the setting of Shakespeare’s famous play, Hamlet.

Another great day trip option is the picturesque coastal town of Dragør. Located just 12 km from Copenhagen, it is known for its quaint charm and scenic views. Take a walk around the picturesque harbour, stroll through the cobbled streets, or sunbathe on the beach.

With so many nearby attractions from Copenhagen, it is worth allocating some time during your trip to discover the beautiful surroundings.

10. Indulge in Delicious Food and Drinks

As a food lover, Copenhagen is a dream destination for me. With a wide range of restaurants and cafes, there is something to satisfy everyone’s appetite. Not only can you enjoy traditional Danish cuisine such as smørrebrød (open-faced sandwiches) and Danish pastries, but you can also find international flavours that will please your palate.

If you’re looking for a fine dining experience, there are several Michelin-starred restaurants in Copenhagen that are worth checking out, including Noma and Geranium. For a more casual meal, head to one of the trendy food markets, such as Torvehallerne, where you can sample a variety of cuisines from all around the world.

Restaurant/Cafe Specialty
Noma New Nordic Cuisine
Geranium Contemporary Danish Cuisine
The Coffee Collective Speciality Coffee
Aamanns Smørrebrød (Open-faced Sandwiches)

Speaking of smørrebrød, it is a must-try traditional Danish dish consisting of rye bread, butter, and various toppings such as pickled herring, smoked salmon, or roast beef. Pair it with a refreshing Danish beer, such as a Carlsberg or a Tuborg, and you have yourself a meal fit for a king (or queen!).

food and drinks in Copenhagen

“Copenhagen is a food lover’s paradise, with a variety of flavours to please every palate.”

Don’t forget to save room for dessert and try a Danish pastry, such as a cinnamon roll (kanelsnegl) or a custard-filled pastry (spandauer). You can find these treats at any bakery in Copenhagen, but some of the best ones are at Lagkagehuset or Det Rene Brød.

Overall, Copenhagen is a must-visit destination for anyone who loves food and drinks. With a vibrant culinary scene and a wide range of flavours to explore, you’re sure to have a deliciously memorable experience.

Conclusion

As someone who has explored Copenhagen, I can assure you that this city is a top destination with something for everyone. From historic landmarks to modern attractions, there’s always something to do and see. I highly recommend immersing yourself in Danish culture, trying the delicious local cuisine, and exploring the vibrant nightlife.

Don’t forget to take a canal tour for a unique perspective of the city and to visit the beautiful parks and gardens for a relaxing break from the bustle. Additionally, if you have time, consider taking a day trip to the surrounding areas for even more adventure.

Copenhagen truly is a gem and with these top tips for a memorable Danish adventure, you’re sure to have a fantastic time in this wonderful city.

FAQ

What are some must-visit historic sites in Copenhagen?

Some must-visit historic sites in Copenhagen include Rosenborg Castle, Christiansborg Palace, and the Round Tower for an unforgettable experience.

How can I immerse myself in Danish culture while visiting Copenhagen?

To immerse yourself in Danish culture, explore areas like Nyhavn and the Latin Quarter, try traditional Danish dishes like smørrebrød and Danish pastries, and visit cultural hotspots such as the Royal Danish Opera and the Danish National Museum.

Are there any modern attractions worth visiting in Copenhagen?

Yes, Copenhagen offers modern attractions like the Little Mermaid statue, Copenhill (an artificial ski slope), and the Tivoli Gardens – the world’s oldest amusement park.

Which art and design venues should art enthusiasts explore in Copenhagen?

Art enthusiasts should visit the National Gallery of Denmark for a wide range of works by renowned artists, Designmuseum Danmark for Danish design history, and Vesterbro Street Art for a taste of the modern art scene.

Why is taking a canal tour recommended for visitors to Copenhagen?

A canal tour offers a unique perspective of the city’s landmarks, guided tours for learning about Copenhagen’s history and architecture, panoramic views of the cityscape, and a convenient way to explore the city’s many sites.

Where can visitors experience Copenhagen’s vibrant nightlife?

Visitors can experience Copenhagen’s vibrant nightlife in neighborhoods like the Meatpacking District and Nørrebro, offering trendy cocktail bars, lively nightclubs, and diverse music scenes.

Which shopping districts in Copenhagen cater to different styles of shoppers?

Shopping districts like Strøget offer high-end fashion brands and Danish design stores, Østerbro boasts luxury designer stores, and Vesterbro features independent boutiques and unique stores for eclectic tastes.

Are there any nearby day trip destinations from Copenhagen worth exploring?

Some nearby day trip destinations from Copenhagen include Helsingør to explore Kronborg Castle and Dragør for picturesque coastal views and charming streets.