Copenhagen is effortlessly cool – the buildings, the fashion, the people, everything. Small cobblestone streets weave through colourful old buildings with stylish interiors. Looking into any window seems to be a lesson in interior design.
The minute you set foot in the capital of Denmark you will realise how truly unique it is. Thousands of bicycles fill the streets replacing cars, the public can walk right up and around the royal palace, and eating delicious raw fish is acceptable at any time of the day.
If you are planning a visit, you will need to know where to start. So what are the best things to do in Copenhagen? Let me tell you.
The rainbow colours of the 17th and 18th century buildings make Nyhavn so special. The harbour is lined with wooden boats, a nod to the prowess of Danish seafaring. The boats no longer sail down the harbour because the bridges are permanently down but they make a lovely addition to the scenery. Nyhavn is lined with cafés, restaurants and bars to help you pass the time. Not only can you sip a cocktail and people watch, but you can admire the house of Hans Christian Andersen as well.
Christiania (or Freetown Christiania) is an autonomous neighbourhood in Copenhagen which doesn’t follow the rules of the rest of Danish society. With its own flag and set of rules, visiting Christiania is like visiting a new country. With an abundance of graffiti, no cars allowed, and cannabis freely sold in the streets, exploring Christiania can be a surreal experience. If you are in Copenhagen it is worth coming to this neighbourhood and seeing how amazingly this outpocket of society functions.
For more on the history and society of Christiania, check out the Wikipedia page.
The Little Mermaid
The Little Mermaid statue in Copenhagen was inspired by the tale by Hans Christian Andersen and is truly iconic. The statue looks dainty however it has survived many attacks including being blown off the base with explosives, decapitated several times and being covered in paint. The fact that it still exists is a miracle!
There is something romantically peaceful about The Little Mermaid statue and it is lovely to just sit and enjoy the craftsmanship. It is only a gentle 20min walk from Nyhavn and definitely worthwhile.
Christiansborg Palace is situated on an islet in the city and contains the parliament, supreme court and some royal rooms. It is a very impressive building from the outside although more impressive on the inside with decadent rooms and tapestry collections. Admission prices and opening hours can be found on Visit Copenhagen page.
This is a royal residence worth seeing! The fantastic part about Amalienborg Palace is that you can walk all around the centre of it because there is a cobbled round-about in the middle of it. At Amalienborg Palace you can see the impeccable horse statue, gaze at the Marble Church, or watch the changing of the guards. If you’re lucky you will see one of the members of the royal family (it is reported that Princess Mary often casually rides her bike out of the Palace and through Copenhagen).
Carlsberg is world-famous and in Copenhagen you can visit the brewery. The brewery is only 2.5kms from Copenhagen Central Station and the tours cost 100DKK for adults. Many things can be experienced at Carlsberg Brewery: the world’s largest bottle collection, beer tastings, and a lesson in brewing history. You can book your tickets online and find out more on the Carlsberg Brewery website.
Tivoli Gardens is a jaw-dropping amusement park and is known worldwide. This is a famous Copenhagen icon which attracts 5 million visitors per year – and you should definitely be one of them! The most well-known ride is a wooden rollercoaster and there is also the world’s second tallest carousel to experience. But alongside this there are theatre shows, bars, food and more. To see what is happening when you’re in Copenhagen, check the Tivoli website.