Admire the sunset from Cirkelbroen, a bicycle and pedestrian bridge that resembles ship masts. Credit: Shutterstock

Top Things To Do in Copenhagen

From design to sustainability, this Scandinavian city is a hotbed of cool
Published 01/22/2022 by Shandana A Durrani

Like other Scandinavian cities, Copenhagen, Denmark, is stylish to the extreme. Thanks to a design culture that dates back to the 1950s—think Verner Panton and Finn Juhl—and a comely population that takes fashion to heart, the Danish capital will make your head turn with its sleek furniture and pretty populace.  

Unlike its Swedish neighbor to the north, Copenhagen is smaller in population but no less worthy of a city break. Danes are known for their cheerfulness in the face of cold winters and that cozy hygge feeling can be felt year round. Spring and summer are the best time to explore Copenhagen but the city is no less interesting during the winter.

If you travel to Copenhagen, you can get around and see it all in a few days. So, grab your bicycle—the Danes are only second to the Amsterdammers in bicycles per capita—and dash around the Danish capital, discovering what to see and do in Copenhagen. 

Eat

Copenhagen is a city built on innovative cuisine using sustainable and locally sourced ingredients. Grød is a collection of porridge bars scattered throughout the city that offers a seasonal menu of bowls featuring ingredients like quinoa and oat milk. It’s the perfect place to start any trip to Copenhagen.

If heartier cuisine is more your bag, head to Høst, a minimalist bar-cum-restaurant where seasonal ingredients meld seamlessly with local seafood and fish. Beast is another spot in Norrebro that serves melt-in-your-mouth burrata as well as authentic pizza and antipasti.

Coffee and Copenhagen go hand in hand and a bevy of bars can help you jumpstart your morning or just fuel you throughout the day. Conviviality is key at Bevars, a coffee bar with freshly baked bread and communal tables to meet other tourists and stylish locals. If you like a dose of altruism with your coffee head to Impact Roasters. This cozy shop prides itself on only serving the freshest coffee from small farms in Ethiopia and gives back to that community!

If wine is more your style, Bibendum features small bites such as grilled sardines and a fanciful list of wine from smaller, boutique wineries throughout Europe and California. We are partial to the Sicilian Vino Lauria Ragusa and French Saint-Cyr Chénas.

Play

Copenhagen is a design mecca and there’s tons of places to admire the works of Peter Alsing Nielsen and Gunnar Aagaard Andersen. Designed by Jørgen Bo and Vilhelm Wohlert, the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art boasts 4,000 international works including a bountiful sculpture park that you could get lost in for hours. If you’d rather admire more modern works or take one home, Flæsketorvet Square is home to a host of galleries and shops that personify Danish modern style.

While away the hours at Rosenborg Castle, a Renaissance masterpiece that was the royal residence until 1710. The interiors are somewhat somber in comparison with other schlosses but you can still take a peek at the lavish Danish crown jewels.

History takes the front seat at the star-shaped Kastellet, a military fort built in the 1800s that features a windmill and former prison on premises. If the weather is good, take a walk in the green spaces that surround the site and admire the ducks, swans and cherry trees.  

For the adventurous at heart, Copenhagen has plenty of outdoor places to get your adrenaline pumping. CopenHill, a year-round outdoor recreation site, is popular with skiers and snowboarders of all levels and is open in the spring and summer, too. If you’d rather not risk it going downhill on this manmade structure, you can always grab a coffee and admire the views of the Baltic Sea from top. 

Stay

Hotel Alexandra

Situated near the Latin Quarter, the stylish and chic Hotel Alexandra boasts 61 rooms and suites that embody Danish mid-century modern design. Look for curved Papa Bear chairs and wooden shelves that hark back to the 1950s and ’60s. Upgrade to the Q Suite, featuring a Trinidad chair by Nanna Ditzel, one of the most iconic female furniture designers in the world. 

Coco Hotel

Awash in sustainable features, the Coco Hotel is a new hotspot in Vesterbro. The 88-room boutique hotel melds vintage and modern Danish furniture with aplomb. Expect solar-powered outlets, organic cotton bed sheets and wooden furnishings. For every hotel guest, the owner’s plant a tree in their name.