Copenhagen

COPENHAGEN

I spent two and a half days exploring Copenhagen.  Not really knowing much about the city, I decided a great place to start would be a walking tour.  If you’re looking for an all-inclusive introduction to Copenhagen, you can’t go wrong with Sandeman’s.  They offer daily tours of the city, regardless of the weather!  Tipping your guide is highly encouraged.

Ask anyone who has been to Copenhagen what they remember most, and they will probably conjure up images of the iconic Nyhavn harbour.  Originally built in the 1600s, it quickly became known as a haven for drinking and prostitution, thanks to the many sailors who disembarked along the canal.

Nyhavn Canal Boats

Nowadays, it is a picturesque entertainment district in Copenhagen, full of restaurants and other tourist attractions.  In the 1970s, wooden ships were brought back into the canal for a temporary exhibit.  The exhibit was so well received, that the ships ended up staying permanently.  Today, Nyhavn is not only an entertainment destination, it is also a floating museum.

Nyhavn Harbour

 A trip to Copenhagen isn’t complete without a visit to Tivoli.  Tivoli is actually the third oldest amusement park in the world.  Unfortunately, I had to look from a distance as it was closed for the off-season during my stay.

Tivoli Main Gate

They say that it was while walking through Tivoli Gardens, that Walt Disney received the inspiration for Mickey Mouse.  Apparently, Copenhagen spurs imagination in many great authors.  Perhaps the most well-known person to come out of Copenhagen, is Hans Christian Andersen, whose statue sits outside the gates to Tivoli.

Hans Christian Anderson Statue

There are many vantage points to get a bird’s eye view of Copenhagen.  I chose the Round Tower, or Rundetaarn, for mine.  Rundetaarn is built on the geographical zero point of the kingdom of Denmark.  Here, in the late 1700s, was the starting point for measuring the kingdom.

Clear skies gave me sweeping views of the city, including the Old Stock Exchange, or Børsen, famous for having three crowns atop its roof.  Each crown represents the original Scandinavian empire: Denmark, Sweden & Norway.

Copenhagen Old Stock Exchange

In the distance, you can also see the Øresund Bridge spanning the strait, connecting Sweden to Denmark and the rest of Europe.

Øresund Bridge from Round Tower

After my Sandeman’s tour, I continued my own self-guided tour of the city in search of the infamous Rosenborg Castle.  If you live in Copenhagen and own a dog, clearly this is the place to be.  While walking through the gardens, everywhere you looked, dogs were running around playing.

Rosenborg Castle – Gardens

Eventually, I made my way to the castle.  I was there too early for a tour, but was able to see the impressive building from outside, a great example of classic Dutch architecture.

Rosenborg Castle – Gardens

No trip to Copenhagen is complete without a walk to see The Little Mermaid.  Be warned, it is a bit of a hike to get to.  Plan on a 15 minute walk from Amalienborg Palace.  The statue is now over 100 years old, inspired by the H.C. Andersen.  The statue stays true to its name… it is little, barely over 4 feet tall.

Little Mermaid – Copenhagen

If you find yourself in Copenhagen and are looking to save money, the Copenhagen Card is the best deal in town.  Included with my pass, I was able to visit Rosenborg Castle, Round Tower,  City Hall Tower, Kronborg Castle and take public transportation all the way to Elsinore and the airport (twice!).  Canal tours by boat are also included.  More information can be found here.

My trip to Copenhagen was part of my larger trip to Scandinavia.  See the rest of the trip here:

Chasing Lights

Kronborg Castle

Malmö

Tromsø