Copenhagen is made for exploring on foot or bike. Bike paths and cobbled, no-vehicle walkways stretch from trendy Vesterbro in the west, across a series of canals, to the upscale Christianshavn district. In between is the pedestrian shopping street Strøget, where you can find a variety of high street and upmarket brands.

    Families get to enjoy hours of thrill rides at Europe’s oldest amusement park, while art lovers can enjoy a day of museum-hopping in the city’s cultural district. The capital of Denmark is also known for its diverse culinary scene, boasting over a dozen Michelin-starred restaurants and, of course, the iconic Carlsberg brewery. Check out our guide of things to do in Copenhagen.

    What are the best things to do in Copenhagen?


    Christiansborg Palace

    See over 1,000 years of Danish history depicted on tapestries in the Great Hall

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    • History

    Christiansborg Palace is an 18th-century government building that’s open to the public. Located on the Slotsholmen islet, the palace’s grand rooms often host royal banquets and political functions. When those are not happening, you can explore the Throne Room to see coronation thrones, marble pilasters, and the balcony where the Danish monarchs are proclaimed. Christiansborg Palace’s most impressive feature is the Great Hall, which has 17 tapestries depicting significant events of Denmark’s long history.

    Location: Christiansborg Palace, 1218 Copenhagen, Denmark

    Open: May–September: daily from 9 am to 7 pm. October–April: Tuesday – Sunday from 10 am to 5 pm (closed on Mondays)

    Phone: +45 3392 6492


    Nyhavn Waterfront

    Take photos of colourful houses by Nyhavn Harbour

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    The Nyharvn Waterfront is lined with pastel-coloured houses, making it one of the most photographed locations in central Copenhagen. Take your time strolling along the canal for Instagram-worthy shots of these buildings before retreating to a café for some Danish pastries and coffee. Thanks to its relaxed setting, Nyharvn is a popular spot for evening drinks by the harbour. 

    Location: K, 1051 Copenhagen, Denmark


    Tivoli Gardens

    Ride one of the world’s oldest running wooden rollercoasters

    • Families
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    • Group

    Tivoli Gardens Park, located in Vesterbrogade, is one of the oldest theme parks in Europe. Offering a variety of thrill rides, playhouses, and live shows, this Copenhagen landmark attracts visitors of all ages. A historical ride here is the Rutschebanen, a wooden rollercoaster dating back to 1914. Fatamorgana is a 45-metre-tall tower featuring mini bumper cars, fast-paced rides, and gondolas. Admission to Tivoli Gardens is priced at around 120 kr and 75 kr for children (3–7 years old). During the summer, tickets on Fridays after 7pm cost 175 kr and 100 kr, respectively.

    Location: Vesterbrogade 3, 1630 Copenhagen V, Denmark

    Open: Sunday–Thursday from 10 am to 11 pm, Friday–Saturday from 11 am to midnight

    Phone: +45 3315 1001



    Learn about the history of Denmark at the city’s many museums

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    Slotsholmen is the cultural district of Copenhagen, as this islet houses some of the city’s most important landmarks. You get to learn about over 1,000 years of Danish history by visiting the iconic Christiansborg Palace, as well as Royal Danish Library, Danish War Museum, and the Danish Jewish Museum. Another must-visit is Christian IV’s Brewhouse, a 400-year-old brewhouse that exhibits over 300 statues and sculptures that once decorated the royal gardens and palaces of Copenhagen.

    Location: Slotsholmen, Copenhagen K, Denmark


    National Museum of Denmark

    See a preserved bog girl at the Danish Prehistory gallery

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    • History

    The National Museum of Denmark displays thousands of artefacts dating back as far as the Ice Age. Its permanent and most prized exhibit is the embalmed body of the Bronze Age Egtved girl. Her 3,500-year-old preserved oak coffin has maintained her body, clothes, comb, bracelets and blonde hair eerily intact. You can also find weaponry used by the Vikings from 800 AD to 1050 AD, a sun chariot made in the Early Bronze Age, and a 19th century Danish home. 

    Location: Prince's Mansion, Ny Vestergade 10, 1471 Copenhagen K, Denmark

    Open: July–August: daily from 10 am to 5 pm (closed on Mondays from September to June)

    Phone: +45 3313 4411



    Find a variety of brands in this vibrant pedestrian street

    • Shoppers
    • Luxury

    Strøget is a shopping street about 500 metres northwest of Christiansborg Palace. Spanning just over 1 km in length, it’s one of the city’s longest pedestrian streets, with diverse shopping options available. Expect to find big brands such as Prada, Louis Vuitton, and Mulberry along the street leading towards Kongens Nytorv (King's New Square). For something more budget-friendly, fast fashion brands such as Zara and H&M are located towards the southwest end, closer to Rådhuspladsen (City Hall Square).

    Location: Strøget, Copenhagen, Denmark


    Rosenborg Castle

    See the Danish crown jewels

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    • History

    Rosenborg Castle was built during Christian IV’s reign in the early 17th century, and is where you can see the Danish crown jewels and royal regalia. One of Copenhagen’s grandest palaces, this Renaissance-style building features well-preserved stone corridors and rooms that are decorated with wax models of former royal members. One of its most impressive interiors is the Knight’s Hall, where you get to see 2 coronation thrones flanked by silver sculptures of lions, and tapestries showing the Scanian War.

    Location: Øster Voldgade 4A, 1350 Copenhagen, Denmark

    Open: Daily from 9 am to 5 pm in high (hours vary by season)

    Phone: +45 3315 3286


    The Little Mermaid

    Check out this bronze statue at the Langelinie promenade

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    • History

    The Little Mermaid statue, built by Edvard Eriksen in 1913, is arguably one of Copenhagen’s most photographed landmarks. Commissioned by Carl Jacobsen, the 175 kg bronze and granite sculpture is based on the fairy tale by Danish writer Hans Christian Andersen. Today, the Little Mermaid statue is located at the Langelinie promenade, overlooking Copenhagen harbour. Visit at dusk to enjoy beautiful sunset views of the figure.

    Location: Langelinie, 2100 Copenhagen Ø, Denmark



    Enjoy city views at Europe’s oldest observatory

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    Rundetårn (Round Tower) dates back to the early 17th century, making it the oldest functioning observatory in Europe. While the tower stands at just under 35 metres tall, the observatory is accessible via a spiral walkway that’s about 268.5 metres in length. After a rather lengthy walk to the outdoor platform, you’ll be greeted with expansive views of Copenhagen. If you need a break, check out interesting exhibits at Library Hall, located halfway up Rundetårn.

    Location: Købmagergade 52A, 1150 Copenhagen, Denmark

    Open: Summer: daily from 10 am to 8 pm (hours vary by season)

    Phone: +45 3373 0373


    photo by Tony Webster (CC BY-SA 2.0) modified



    Enjoy live indie rock music at Rust

    Located about 500 metres southwest of Copenhagen’s Zoological Museum, Nørrebro is what many locals call the city’s hipster district. During the day, you get to shop at vintage shops and hang out at cafés. In the evening, it offers a variety of nightlife venues, from cocktail bars and brew houses to nightclubs and live music venues. Rust is a live music venue that hosts indie rock performances from 8.30pm on Fridays and Saturdays. If you’re feeling experimental, check out Ølsnedkeren, a rustic-style bar that serves a variety of homebrewed beer.

    Location: Nørrebro, Copenhagen, Denmark

    Penny Wong | Compulsive Traveller

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