Cruising around the Danish capital of Copenhagen for 4 nights recently really made me think “Are there any ugly people in Scandanavia?”. That Viking blood really does make a difference up there but despite my self esteem issues I was still focused on meeting the Danish capital.
Copenhagen, or Kobenhavn to the locals has a population of just under 2 million so while not being one of Europe’s big cities it makes up for it’s small size with character in abundance. I stayed at the Sleep In Heaven hostel located in trendy Norrebro, around a 20 minute walk west of the City centre and a good base to see the city. If you don’t like walking you can rent a bike from almost anywhere and make use of the city’s designated bike lanes and traffic signals. It’s a great way to get around but be alert as the ever friendly locals turn into boy/girl racers out on the roads!
You can’t come here and not “Visit Carlsberg” at the old brewing site south west of the city centre. For 80 Kroner you can do a self guided tour of the old brewery, see an impressive bottle collection of over 20,000 bottles, meet the lovely Jutland horses which still live in the stables and at the end of the tour you can enjoy 2 beers fully inclusive.
Some other attractions and places that need to be seen here include Nyhavn which is the port area and littered with restaurants, brightly coloured buildings and ferry tours. The image of Nyhavn is used on most postcards you see of Copenhagen! From Nyhavn I took the Netto Boat for a water tour of the city for 40 Kroner – a bargain.
If bargains are your thing, you can also “climb” the Round Tower in the centre of town. When I say climb you only have to take around 30 stairs at the top – the rest is a ramp – all for the modest price of 25 Kroner. If views are your thing then do the tower, a great vantage point for the city and surrounds.
The Tivoli Gardens is an amusement park and garden located in central Copenhagen between City Hall and Central Station. Opened in 1843, it’s the second oldest amusement park in the world. Rides include the oldest operating rollercoaster, called “Rutschebanen”, which began life in 1915 and the oldest ferris wheel still in use, opened in 1943.
Another attraction that draws many is the bronzed Little Mermaid statue inspired by the story by legendary Dane, Hans Christian Andersen, of the same name. Beware though, it is very little – 4 feet tall approximately! A few of the ferry tours that depart from Nyhavn will actually stop here on their tour which is convenient.
You may have heard of a place called Christiania, which is also located in Copenhagen. It’s a Freetown/shanty type of town, and not regarded as part of the EU. You can walk around freely inside but the locals aren’t overly fond of picture taking tourists, so be warned. You can’t help but notice the distinct waft of marijuana filling the air as you walk through. Definitely an interesting look.
When arriving to the city you’ll find yourself only 10km from the city centre, making Copenhagen airport the closest airport to it’s serving city anywhere in Europe. There is a very new and efficient Metro system too, and you can get a pass to downtown/accommodation for 36 Kroner from the Airport. Copenhagen is conveniently located too, with Sweden around 30km away and ferry services to Norway and Germany. Because Scandinavia aren’t on the Euro, Copenhagen can be expensive so a budget will come in handy.
So, there you have it. Copenhagen has plenty to offer from Art, culture, museums, cuisine, alternative sightseeing and great architecture. Skål!
– Roaming Kangaroo