Ahhh Copenhagen! Such a compact city, yet enough to keep you entertained for a long weekend and beyond.
This was my first experience of Scandinavia, so was expecting expensive prices mixed with Ikea chic. Luckily, it wasn’t really either. Don’t get me wrong, Copenhagen isn’t the cheapest city I’ve visited, but it’s definitely not extortionate. Especially if you’re not looking to eat in all the trendy restaurants.
My word for Copenhagen is ‘cool’. It doesn’t try hard and is understated, yet manages to be effortlessly cool. Lots of white walls, minimalist yet rustic interiors… Not masses to do but enough to grab your attention… Lots of fashionable stores and restaurants but then a heap of independent shops and bakeries too.
The reason we visited the city was because I’d been inspired to go after reading several blog posts, and then finding return flights for £35! God bless Ryanair! Who cares if it’s an expensive city when the flights are dirt cheap!
We spent 3 nights in an Airbnb in Copenhagen. The apartment was amazing! It was so comfortable, clean and modern, and in the perfect location. Tivoli Gardens was a few minutes walk in one direction, and the city centre was a few minutes walk in the other! I plan on writing more about my Airbnb experiences at some point, but this was the nicest one yet!
After an early start, we arrived in Copenhagen and used public transport to reach our apartment. The woman who met us was so lovely. She chatted to us for ages and gave us loads of recommendations.
After we’d settled in and done a quick Google search of where to go, we wandered into the city centre. Our aim was to see a few sights and figure out where places are. We found the famous Nyhavn and marvelled at the colourful buildings. Between us, we had a list of places we wanted to see but the weather was pretty miserable. We ended up doing a canal tour of the city. These depart every hour from Nyhavn and last around 45 minutes. They’re undercover so a great way to see the city whilst staying warm and dry! We saw The Little Mermaid Statue, The Opera House, Christiansborg Palace and Amalienborg Palace amongst other sites.
Afterwards, we wandered around a bit more and started to realise how small the city is. We picked up some food from a bakery and a seven-eleven and headed back to our apartment before going out for dinner later on.
This was our first full day in Copenhagen but it started with a bit of a disaster! I always have issues with my feet and shoes hurting me. When I went to London last year, I took 2 pairs of shoes, both of which butchered my feet! I think it’s because I do so much more walking when I’m away that my shoes hurt my feet, plus I have super sensitive skin.
Anyway, we were leaving the apartment and I realised I’d forgotten something so turned round to go back. As I stepped through the big, heavy, wooden door of the building, it shut on my foot, which resulted in a chunk being taken out my heel! It was so painful! I was lay on the sofa for a while with my foot in the air, trying to get the bleeding to stop. It took ages! Eventually it stopped (or so I thought) and I piled on the plasters, before heading back outside. We walked about 5 minutes to our favourite shop, the Seven Eleven, when I saw that it was bleeding profusely again! I ended up sat on the fountain in the middle of the square, trying to stop the bleeding whilst my friends went searching for more plasters. It was during this time that I realised the Danes were incredibly friendly and helpful people as a lovely woman saw I was in a pickle and gave me plasters from her handbag. I was so grateful!
Once I’d sorted out my feet, we soldiered on with our sightseeing. The Lego store impressed us! We also enjoyed watching a street entertainer on Stroget. The first attraction we frequented was Rundetaarn. I was super excited to visit as I’d heard it was the place to get views of the city (and you know I like a view!) Another bonus was there were no stairs! Instead it is a wide, spiral path and it wasn’t very busy! It was originally built as an observatory in the 17th century and I read somewhere that it has a spiral path as the king at the time it was built wanted to ride his horse to the top. I don’t know if that’s true or not. There’s also an art gallery part way up which made a nice break.
After we’d taken in the views, we pottered about a bit and had some lunch. We walked around Nyhavn again and looked in a few shops. We then headed back to our apartment and picked up food from our favourite Seven Eleven before getting ready for food a drinks out. I can’t remember where we ended up but we definitely spent time in an Irish bar befriending some Danish men.
This was the day we walked for miles and it was possibly my favourite day. We decided we wanted to visit Christiania. At the time of visiting there was a bridge from the end of Nyhavn over the water to the other side but it wasn’t open yet. Instead, we had to walk along to the water to the next bridge, then around Christianshavn before we reached Christiania. It was actually a really nice walk and we saw lots of the city. Christianshavn is a really pretty area of the city. Lots of colourful houses and canals. We stopped at The Church of our Saviour and considered going up it but then decided against it. If I visit again, I will definitely visit. The staircase is on the outside and has over 400 steps!
We carried on walking until we found Christiania. This is a really interesting area of the city and very different to the rest of it. Christiania is a free town that was founded in 1971. It is inhabited by around 1000 people who have built their own houses and have set up a community. It is most famous for Pusher Street which is where you can buy weed from various stalls. There are signs up asking you not to take photos and the people in the stalls were all wearing scarves to cover their faces but the area had a very relaxed feel to it. It was quite busy when I visited and the stalls were popular. There’s a cafe and a few shops there and I would recommend a visit.
After that, we carried on along the street until we reached the street food market on Paper Island. OMG!! This place is amazing! I’ve said it before but this place was my faviourite thing that I did in Copenhagen. I fully recommend a visit. It has stalls for every single cuisine around the world and is very reasonably priced. I know Copenhagen is one of the best cities to eat in and for me, this place wins! I had the best Thai curry I’ve ever had and it was freshly prepared in front of me. One of my friends had something from South America but there were stalls with food from China, India, UK, Middle East… literally everywhere!
Once we had devoured our body weight in food, we had to walk alllll the way back, following the route that we came on. This was slightly annoying as the bridge I mentioned earlier, that wasn’t open yet, was literally next to the food market. Because it was closed we had to walk back through Christianshavn to the bridge and then back up through the city centre.
Our plan for that evening was to go out but we ended up sitting in drinking an entire bottle of gin between us! Good times!
For our final day, we only really had the morning. We had saved Tivoli Gardens for last. It was very close to our apartment which was good. Tivoli is probably the most famous attraction in Copenhagen besides Nyhavn. This theme park is said to have inspired Walt Disney! It’s such a kitsch place with lots of old wooden rollercoasters and arcade style games. It’s split into areas with different themes. For us though, the highlight was a rabbit show that was taking place. The rabbits had to go round some sort of agility course, similar to what horses do when showjumping and were scored. There were also rabbits on display for you to pet and fuss in case you wanted to join whatever group or association it was!
After a couple of hours, we picked up our luggage, stopped for lunch in probably the only proper restaurant of our trip, and then headed to the airport. We used the subway trains and the one to the airport was a driverless one! It initially freaked me out but I soon got used to it!