20 Jan A Weekend In Copenhagen: The Ultimate City Guide
Copenhagen, the capital of Denmark has recently taken a high position on my list of favourite cities. Enriched with beautiful Scandinavian design everywhere you turn, effortless fashion flooding the cobblestones and a culinary experience that just can’t compare to any other small city, Copenhagen really does have it all.
Our trip was organised specifically to coincide with the Christmas festivities, so we jetted out in early December. While it was absolutely freezing and the weather was a little unpredictable, the Christmas spirit was the perfect backdrop for our Copenhagen adventure.
Getting There & Around
We flew Ryanair to reach the elusive capital, taking an evening flight that arrived at about 10pm local time. While this wasn’t intentional (our flight was re-scheduled to later in the evening) it meant that we got there, rested, and were able to get up early the following morning.
From the airport, follow signs to the metro. We purchased a City Pass which you can get for 24, 48, 72 or 120 hours. This provides you unlimited access to buses, trains, metro and harbour buses in zones 1 – 4, which includes the centre of Copenhagen and to and from the airport. In my opinion it was super handy as it meant we didn’t need to worry about tickets/transport for the rest of the trip. We only really used the metro to get from and to the airport, but we definitely took advantage of it on the local buses.
The Hotel Kong Arthur was our hotel of choice. We booked our room on hotels.com, as we tend to get special offers on rooms there for using it so much! While the hotel was stunning, our room was a little on the cramped side. However, we were running around so much all day that we only seemed to be there to get ready and to sleep, so it didn’t really bother us too much.
The hotel itself has some great facilities, including a beautiful spa and bar. Each evening from 5-6pm the hotel offers all guests a free glass of wine, or beer during happy hour. Safe to say we took full advantage of this bonus!
Location wise, the Hotel Kong Arthur was pretty good. It was a short walk into the city centre and not far to travel to the popular surrounding neighbourhoods by bus.
Things To Do
Check Out Danish Design Shops
Copenhagen is every designers dream. From fashion to interiors, Copenhagen really is at the heart of the high quality, Scandinavian design scene. We visited the following spots which I would recommend:
- Illums Bolighus
- Stilleben No 22
Unfortunately we didn’t make it to the Copenhagen design museum, but I believe it is definitely worth a visit.
Nyhavn, or new harbour, is one of the most recognisable images from Copenhagen in my opinion. Although it is definitely one of the tourist traps, (escalated prices, tourist memorabilia), I can’t deny how beautiful it is to stroll along the harbour front and take in the views.
Get out of the city to explore
While the hustle and bustle of the city is lovely, especially during the Christmas season, it was nice to head out for the day. We took a bus to Superkilen park which is located in one of the most ethnically diverse and socially challenged neighbourhoods in Denmark. The park itself combines objects from over 60 different nationalities, shining a light on the diversity of the neighbourhood.
Visit Tivoli Gardens
Tivoli Gardens is an amusement park with rides and games, set upon beautiful gardens. At Christmas, it is transformed into a winter wonderland filled with Christmas markets, vendors selling mulled wine and roasted almonds and festive performances. A variety of things take place at Tivoli throughout the year so be sure to check their website before you visit.
The circle bridge that connects the Cirkelbroen (The Circle Bridge) connects the areas around Copenhagen Harbour is a must see. Designed by Olafur Eliasson, the bridge consists of five circular platforms supported by masts, playing homage to Copenhagen’s shipping history.
Christiania is one of the most unique places I have ever been. Located in the centre of Copenhagen, this area is a free town independent from the capital. It has its own laws and taxes and essentially is a way of life. Definitely worth a visit.
If you’re visiting at Christmas time, then it will almost impossible to avoid the Christmas markets. They are such a nice way to get into the festive spirit and who doesn’t love the smell of mulled wine and almonds roasting? Our favourites had to be the market at Freetown Christiania, Nyhavn harbour and the Hans Christian Andersen Christmas Market.
Places to Eat & Drink
When we travel, myself and Andrew tend to spend a lot of time researching the best places to eat and the different cuisines we should try. We love to try new things and this trip was no exception. With plenty of Michelin star restaurants scattered around Copenhagen, and a new age of culinary start ups, we knew food was going to become a prominent part of our trip, and we were not complaining one bit!
A porridge stall in Torvehallerne Market, was the perfect start to our day. Pick your porridge base and all of your toppings. Delish
Smørrebrød is one of the most popular danish cuisines. It consists of bread, spread and layers of toppings that you eat with a knife and fork. Smørrebrød is found all over Copenhagen, but we treated ourselves to one of the best at Aamaaans.
While it may just look like your average hotdog stand. Don’t be fooled. Try one and you’ll thank me later.
Located a little further out of the city, in Vesterbro, this restaurant was one of our favourites. One of Andrew’s friends recommend to us that we visit here – and we were not disappointed. Order the tuna tostada and the lamb barbacoa – delish.
The coffee scene is really good in Copenhagen – here are some of the places that we visited on our trip:
The Coffee Collective
We visited two of their venues. One is located at the famous Torvehallerne Market. We went here for breakfast and picked up porridge at Grø to accompany our coffee.
The other is a short walk from Superkiln park if you are venturing out of the city for a few hours. I got a latte and a cinnamon swirl that was bigger than my face. It was amazing.
At the Corner of 108
One of the fanciest coffee shops I have ever been to.
A beautiful little shop with a stunning menu of light bites for breakfast and lunch. I loved the interiors and just overall vibe of this spot.
While we didn’t head to many bars on this trip, we did go to following spots for some beer and wine which I would definitely recommend:
- Ved Stranden Wine Bar
If you are heading to Copenhagen and have any other questions that I didn’t answer in this post, just give me a shout. I am more than happy to help!