Recently named the world’s most liveable city and with local institution Noma being awarded the best restaurant in the world, Copenhagen has been getting all the headlines of late. With a stunning sea surrounding the city, remarkable architecture, and populated by an attractive people, visit Copenhagen and it won’t take you long to realise why it’s not just the critics that love it here. The laid back lifestyle doesn’t come cheaply though and visitors to Copenhagen should not pack their wallet lightly.
While food and drink prices aren’t the cheapest in the world, thankfully you can see many of Copenhagen's must see attractions for free. Once home to author Hans Christian Andersen, Nyhaven (New Harbor) is a lovely place for a stroll. From there you can continue on to the Langelinie promenade and see the iconic Little Mermaid statue or watch the changing of the guards take place at the Amalienborg Castle. Continue with you wallet closed and take in one of Copenhagen’s free museums. These include the National Museum, National Gallery and Danish Resistance Museum. Speaking of 'free', no visit to Copenhagen is complete without seeing the controversially declared 'free city' of Christiania.
Copenhagen restaurants have really taken the foodie spotlight in recent years. Advanced recommendations are essential for a meal at world-famous institution Noma, but if you miss a seat, Relae, Geist, and Paustian and Schonnemann are well-established competitors maintaining equally high culinary standards. Edible excellence extends right down the budget here and local favourite, Den Økologiske Pølsemand (the organic hotdog man) serves grilled beef and pork sausages with buns made from slow-fermented sourdough bread. Some other notable places to eat in Copenhagen are Nyhavns Faergekro in Nyhaven, which serves a large herring buffet, and Morgen Stedet, an organic vegetarian restaurant in, where else but Christiania?
Where to Stay
Deciding where to stay in Copenhagen will be much easier than deciding where to eat. Every area of the city is relatively safe and since getting between places is so easy it’s really just a matter of putting some preferences on what you want to do most of. København K offers plenty of shopping options and is close to all of the action. Visitors wanting to stay close to the beach (yes Copenhagen has one) should find accommodation in Amager or Østerbro. Party animals, you shouldn’t really consider staying anywhere other than Vesterbro if you want to be close to the action.
Denmark has a reputation for designer fashion and these days Copenhagen’s picturesque city centre is filled with a range of burgeoning labels offering shoppers much more than the sleek black, white or grey minimalism Scandinavian catwalks are known for. Kronprinsensgade is where to go if you want to get in on the hottest Danish designers. For mainstream buys, car-free Strøget is Denmark's premier shopping street and it’s where the likes of H&M and Gucci rub shoulders. Branching off to Amagertorv, Købmagergade has fewer crowds and is another good place to find independent shops. The Latin Quarter, west of Strøget, will appeal to younger shoppers. It's full of record stores and has hours of recycled fashion for you to trawl through.
Copenhagen Like a Local
With 9 in 10 Danish adults owning a bicycle, Copenhagen is amongst the most saddle-crazy cities on the planet. You don’t have to be the one out of ten that misses the two-wheeled fun just because you’re a tourist. Yes that’s right, Copenhagen has a free public bike scheme (in fact they were the first city to offer one). There are 110 bike racks to pick up or drop off at and the best thing with there being so many cyclists are that most of the city centre is for pedestrians and cyclists only. All of the above equals a stress free ride.