Looking forward to visiting Copenhagen in the future? Here is our list of 10 top things to do and see in Copenhagen, Denmark.
Denmark is one-third of Scandinavia, the other two countries making up this Northern European region are Norway and Sweden. Copenhagen, Denmark’s capital was the first stop of our family’s Scandinavian tour.
The capital’s main international airport is formally known as Copenhagen Airport, Kastrup. Trains and buses are available for visitors to get into the city. Obviously, a train journey is quicker and takes only 15 minutes to get to Kongens Nytorv station in the heart of Copenhagen.
|Book your flights to Copenhagen via Cheapflights or Momondo or Skyscanner.|
|Non-European resident visitors in Europe may take the train to Copenhagen, book via Eurail.|
|European residents may take the train to Copenhagen, book via Interrail.|
|Book your hotels at Hotelscombined and your travel insurance at World Nomads.|
Highlights of our two-day sightseeing experience not too long ago in this city are as follows:
1) Buy a Copenhagen Card
The holder is entitled to free admission to 86 attractions and free use of public transport. Also, discounts on restaurants, attractions and entertainment. The Copenhagen Card is available as a 24-hour card, a 48-hour card, a 72-hour card and a 120-hour card.
2) The Latin Quarter
The Latin Quarter is an area where Latin was used to be widely spoken. It consists of 17th-century buildings including the University of Copenhagen. Other interesting sights include:
Strøget, at 1.1 km is one of the longest pedestrianised, car-free shopping streets in Europe. It stretches from Kongens Nytorv (King’s New Square) to Rådhuspladsen (The City Hall Square).
Church of Our Lady is a Roman Catholic Church constructed in 1187 in Romanesque style. Royal weddings and coronations have occurred here. A monument in memory of the Reformation of Denmark proudly stands across the road.
Marvel at the Statue of Absalon. Absalon was a Danish archbishop, statesman and founder of Copenhagen.
The Rundetaarn, or Rundetårn (Round Tower) is an observation tower, astronomical observatory and a historical monument. A Library Hall halfway up the tower houses art exhibitions and cultural events. The tower is 35 metres high and the only way up to the viewing platform is through a 210 metres long spiral ramp.
3) Kongens Have and Rosenborg Slot
Kongens Have (The King’s Garden) is a 12-hectare park which used to be the private gardens of Rosenborg Castle. It has a pavilion, a fountain, statues, a garden maze, tree-lined avenues, noteworthy buildings and other features.
Rosenborg Slot (Rosenborg Castle) was a former royal residence but now is a museum open to the public. Its top exhibits include the Royal Collections, Crown Jewels and the Danish Crown Regalia.
Copenhagen has its fair share of museums most of which can be accessed with a Copenhagen Card. Top museums worth visiting include:
Natural History Museum came into being as a result of merger of Copenhagen’s Zoological, Geological and Botanical museums. Its current botanical gardens contain more than 13,000 species.
Statens Museum for Kunst (National Gallery of Denmark) whose impressive collections include Danish and foreign paintings, sculptures, prints and drawings from the 14th century to the present.
Davids Samling (The David Collection) houses the private collection of a Danish barrister and art lover. The museum is particularly noted for its fine range of Islamic arts and artefacts from the 8th to the 19th century. It also holds a collection of European decorative arts from the 18th and 19th centuries.
5) Rådhuspladsen and Tivoli
Rådhuspladsen (The City Hall Square) is a public square in the centre of Copenhagen where the City Hall is located. Other areas of interest around the square include the following:
Industriens Hus is a modern building which is the headquarters of the Confederation of Danish Industries which was built in the 1870’s but has gone several transformations.
Dragon Fountain is a seven-metre fountain which features a dragon and a bull in battle.
Hans Christian Andersen Place is a museum where you have the choice of reading in one of several languages or listening to one of three languages about H. C. Andersen’s stories.
Tivoli is an amusement park and a pleasure garden which features various rides, pantomime shows, musical performances and concerts. It has an on-site hotel and several restaurants. A late-night illuminations show features fireworks, laser lights and waterjets.
Slotsholmen or The Castle Islet is an island in Copenhagen’s harbour connected to the city by nine bridges. Among the different structures in the island include:
Christianborg Palace is the only building in the world which houses the executive, legislative and judicial branches of government under one roof. The 106-metre high tower is the tallest in the city and access to the viewing platform is free.
Royal Library is the national library of Denmark which has five sites, the main one located at Slotsholmen.
Christianborg Palace Chapel is used for religious ceremonies for members of the Danish Royal Family. It is also used by the Danish Parliament for the church service during parliament’s opening.
Thorvaldsens Museum which includes most of Neo-Classical sculptor Bertel Thorvaldsen’s works.
7) Kongens Nytorv and Nyhavn
Kongens Nytorv (King’s New Square) is the largest public square in the city at the top of Nyhavn. Important buildings around the square include a theatre, former palaces, hotel and a department store.
Nyhavn is a canal flanked by colourful 18th-century merchants’ houses. Hans Christian Andersen once lived here. Nowadays, it is a popular waterside attraction with boats docked and lined with numerous cafes, restaurants and bars.
8) Frederiksstaden and the Golden Axis
Frederiksstaden is a district in Copenhagen where the royal family has lived ever since. Frederik’s Church and Amalienborg Palace lie on an axis known as the Golden Axis which extends up to the Opera House.
Frederik’s Church or The Marble Church (Marmorkirken) is an Evangelical Lutheran church whose 31 metres-diameter dome is the largest in Scandinavia. It was modelled after St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome.
Amalienborg Palace consists of four almost identical palaces around a courtyard. An equestrian statue of King Frederick V, Amalienborg’s founder stands in the square. Every day, guards from Rosenborg Castle swap places with Amalienborg Palace’s guards at noon.
Amaliehaven (The Amalie Garden) is a small park between Amalienborg Palace and the banks of the harbour. It features marble sculptures and a central fountain.
9) Harbour Sights
Opera House (Operaen) is the national opera house of Denmark. Completed in 2004, it is one of the most modern and most expensive opera houses in the world. It can seat 1,700 people.
Gefion Fountain is a fountain used as a wishing well and the largest monument in Copenhagen. It features the goddess Gefjon and inspired by a Scandinavian myth about the creation of Zealand upon which Copenhagen is located.
St. Alban’s Church is an Anglican church named after the first martyr of Great Britain. It was built in the 1880’s as a result of the growing English congregation in Copenhagen.
Langelinie is a pier, park and promenade whose most famous resident is the Little Mermaid statue.
The Little Mermaid is a bronze statue of a mermaid based on a fairy tale by Hans Christian Andersen. It is a major tourist attraction and Copenhagen’s most popular icon.
Kastellet is a fortress around a moat built in the shape of a star. A number of buildings including a church, barracks, prison, powder house as well as a windmill can be found on the grounds. Today, it serves as a park and a cultural-historical site.
10) Things to do in Copenhagen
Ride a Bike: Copenhagen is one of the most cycle-friendly cities in the world. It has wide lanes for cyclists on most major roads. Bikes are available for hire for a day or two.
Walking Tours: There are several tours on foot around Copenhagen taking in its most famous sights and landmarks. These tours are led by local expert guides with interesting stories and anecdotes to share about their city.
|You can book your Copenhagen tours (and others too) at GetYourGuide or Viator or Tour Radar.|
Canal Tours is another way of seeing Copenhagen from a different angle through a cruise of the city’s canals and harbours by boat.
Have you been to Copenhagen? Do you have anything to add to this list? If you have not been, would you like to visit?
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