This is one of the guides probably easier to write, as I have been living for many years in the beautiful capital of Denmark; writing trip advises about Copenhagen gives me both a sense of pleasure and responsibility!
Copenhagen is a vivid melting pot of cultures and styles that will provide you a unique tourism experience. Let’s go through some opportunities:
The city center
Copenhagen city center (Indre by) includes a large amount of city landmarks and attractions, which are nicely close to each other. As a result, you will be able to group several activities at once. This is good, as there are many things you can do and see here:
- The Kastellet, old star-shaped defensive citadel, today very popular place for jogging and open air events;
- The iconic and Denmark’s most famous landmark, the Little Mermaid statue by danish sculptor Edvard Eriksen;
- The royal palace (Amalienborg Palace), where the Royal Danish family is currently living and it is possible to assist every day at noon at the royal guard shift change ceremony;
- The Marble Church (Marmorkirken)
- The iconic Nyhavn, originally a commercial port packed with sailors, brothels, tattoo shops and pubs, today populated with local restaurants
- The many theaters in the area, including the beautiful Royal Theater in King’s new square and the majestic modern Opera House.
It is really difficult to describe the “free town” of Christiania: developed in the 70s following the hippies movements, this community – where marijuana dealing is authorized – is characterized by homemade houses, workshops, restaurants, art galleries, concerts, and much more. Spoiler alert: it is not allowed to take pictures!
The Tivoli Gardens are one of the oldest amusement parks in the world (founded in 1843). They kept the typical retro style, although accommodating many modern attractions, beautiful gardens (differently decorated through the year. I personally appreciate very much the Christmas and Halloween installations), shops and recently a Food Court area (accessible without paying the entrance ticket) full of restaurants and bars
Food and drink experience
- Typical danish experience: many restaurants in the Nyhavn area, or the Reffen or Køkkegaden.
- Try the Smørrebrød (literally bread with butter): they are tasty open sandwiches nicely decorated. You can taste them at Schønnemann (I recommend to make a reservation). Try the Torvehallerne market, where you and all your five senses will be tempted by many food experiences. I personally like very much the seafood and fish takeaway. Buy and then eat the food in one of the free seats there, one of the old inns serving typical danish food, like the Flæskesteg (slowly roasted pig).
- Beer pubs: Taphouse (over 60 beers on tap, constantly changing), Mikkeller, Brus, Warpigs (in the iconic old meat packing district);
- Gourmet burgers: Haché, Cocks and Cows, Halifax
- Cocktail bars: The bird and the churck key (specialized in Gin Tonics), Lidkoeb in Vesterbrogade, Noho in Kødbyen
- I also recommend some of the street food places like the Broens Gadekøkken and Reffen.
The cultural path
If you are seeking a cultural experience, Copenhagen will not disappoint you. It is a capital of design and architecture, with many styles integrating also in modern construction, like the bike and walking bridges recently inaugurated. On that regard, the recommendation is the same as for Amsterdam: find time to live the city using alternative transportation, like renting a bike or experiencing a boat tour of the canals.
But there are many museums that will satisfy your demand for art: among many others I would like to mention the Gyploteket, the Statens Museum for Kunst and, for lovers of modern art, at 30 minutes distance by train, the beautiful Louisiana museum in Humlebæk.
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