Photograph by Michal Krakowiak, Photolibrary / Getty Images

 

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Locals pass by Stork Fountain in Copenhagen.

Photograph by Michal Krakowiak, Photolibrary / Getty Images

 

Discover the Best of Copenhagen

Here are 10 can't-miss picks for your next trip to Copenhagen.

Natural Wonder

Whether you have always dreamt of finding ancient fossils or you just fancy a hike in the forest followed by a dip in the Baltic Sea, Mønsklint offers it all. The six-kilometer chalk cliffs spanning 128 meters above the sea are the perfect place for both mountain and beach fans. It's a two-hour drive from Copenhagen and if you'd rather not go back and forth in one day you can always set up camp at the local campground. The scenery is breathtaking.

National Park

Denmark's newest National Park, Skjoldungernes Land, is just a 30 minute train ride from Copenhagen and borders Roskilde Fjord. Explorable by foot, bike or horseback the park includes stunning fjord landscapes, forests and even Viking burial mounds. Combine a trip to the National Park with a visit to the world famous Viking Ship Museum in Roskilde and learn more about Nordic maritime adventures during the Viking Age.

UNESCO Site

Did Shakespeare ever visit the castle himself? This is one of the many mysteries surrounding Kronborg Castle in Helsingør, just an hour north of Copenhagen. What is known is that it is the actual castle that Shakespeare set Hamlet in. The castle was originally built in 1420 but has been burned to the ground and rebuilt since. During the summer months you can experience live performances of Shakespeare's greatest plays from both Danish and international theatre companies. The castle was added to UNESCO's World Heritage List in 2000.

Best Day Trip

Immerse yourself in a fairytale setting by venturing out of Copenhagen and to Odense. This pretty little city may be the country's third largest but still only has around 175,000 inhabitants. It's most famously known for being the birthplace of Hans Andersen, one of the world's most-loved authors of fairy tales such as The Little Mermaid, The Ugly Duckling and The Princess and the Pea. The cobbled streets lined with pastel-colored houses make Odense the perfect place to wander around, giving you a feel of what Denmark was like a few hundred years ago.

Off the Beaten Path

Eat your way around the world in a day in Nørrebro. This neighborhood has the greatest multicultural mix and influx of young locals, making it one of the hottest spots of the city. Here you will find everything from trendy bars and Michelin restaurants to cheap coffee and kebabs. Nørrebro is also home to Denmark's best known cemetery, Assistens Cemetary. It is the final resting place of famous Danes, such as fairy tale writer Hans Christian Andersen and philosopher Søren Kierkegaard, and a great oasis for peace and quiet in this otherwise bustling neighborhood.

Most Iconic Experience

A traditional canal boat tour will help you check most of the city's typical and iconic places off your checklist. Sit back and relax while the skipper guides you past The Copenhagen Opera House, Amalienborg Palace, Christiansborg Palace, The Black Diamond Library and, last but not least, The Little Mermaid. And yes, she is very little indeed.

Late Night

The Meatpacking District in Vesterbro is the coolest area to go out at night. Once home to Copenhagen's meat industry,it still consists of three separate areas referred to as the White, Grey or Brown "Meat City" because of the color of its buildings. Over the past decade, it has changed into a new creative cluster with a trendy nightlife and a broad range of restaurants to suit every budget.

Historic Site

Rundetårn (Round Tower), conveniently located on Købmagergade, dates back to 1642 and is the oldest functioning observatory in Europe. It has a spiral walkway to the top and not only does it offer great views of the city at daytime, but it's also a great venue for stargazing in the winter months.This lack of stairs provides the backdrop for many great stories. In 1716, Catherine the Great was said to have been carried to the top of the tower in a horse-drawn carriage with her husband leading on horseback. It's an interesting thought once you've experienced the venue by foot.

Neighborhood to Explore

A society within a society, Freetown Christiania is a green and car-free neighborhood in Copenhagen, best known for its autonomous inhabitants' different way of life. Founded in 1971 by a group of hippies who occupied abandoned military barracks and developed their own set of society rules, completely independent of the Danish government. Take a walk through Christiania and enjoy a mix of homemade houses (thanks to lots of recycling and upcycling), workshops, galleries, music venues, cheap meals and beautiful nature. The area is open to the public with guided tours run by the local Christianites. Remember not to film or take photos on Pusher Street and keep in mind that it's always nice to ask for permission if you would like to take photos elsewhere.

People-Watching Spot

In summer, Rosenborg Castle Gardens, are the perfect spot to relax and people-watch. Bring a picnic basket or just grab a coffee at one of the surrounding cafés and enjoy the most-visited park in central Copenhagen. Make sure not to miss the flower lawn if you're there in spring.