Copenhagen had been towards the top of my travel bucket list for a very long time, so when I saw cheap flights on SAS out of Manchester, I nabbed them without thinking twice. Has anyone else ever seen the movie musical “Hans Christian Anderson”? Well I loved it as a kid (I think it was all the ballet) and I was constantly singing one of it’s catchiest tunes “Copenhagen” during my entire weekend break. To myself though. I’m not that obnoxious.
So let’s get straight down to it!
A Guide to 24 Hours in Copenhagen
See / Do :
First things first, if it’s a nice day, I highly recommend taking one of the boat tours around all the canals and harbours. You get to see so much of the city and it’s glorious to be out on the water. Plus the weekend that I was there, all the locals were out on the water as well and there was a real camaraderie that was nice to see between the boats. I rode with Netto Badene and I have a whole post dedicated to it soon. Another great reason to take the boat tour is that you’ll pass by the Little Mermaid Statue, which is super far away from the centre of town, absolutely swarmed with tourists and quite small. I was satisfied with just seeing it from the boat instead.
Once you’ve finished your boat tour you have to explore Nyhavn, which is probably the most famous bit of Copenhagen – or at least the bit most likely to be featured on a postcard. I swooned for all the lovely, colourful burgher houses and shops.
You also should head over the see the city hall, which is an insane, impressively big building that just happens to be next door to Tivoli Gardens. Tivoli Gardens is most likely going to be on your Copenhagen bucket list with its vintage charm and the oldest wooden rollercoaster in the world.
There are so many castles and palaces inside Copenhagen that it’s hard to narrow down what to see, but I recommend Amalienborg Palace (where the Queen and her family currently live) and Rosenborg Castle. At Amalienborg, if you time it right you can see the changing of the guard, and Rosenborg has sumptuous gardens.
Last but certainly not least, I recommend visiting the Round Tower, a former astronomical tower famous for its curving, bricked ramp all the way to the top. I loved it and have a whole blog post dedicated to it further down the line.
If it’s a warm day and you’re wandering around Nyhavn, I can’t recommend Rajissimo more highly! The pistachio cone that I had was some of the finest ice-cream that I’ve ever eaten.
And if you’re looking for hip and delicious dinner spots, I recommend taking a peek at all restaurants within the Madklubben group. Madklubben Norrebro was a finalist for one of the best restaurants in town (serving a modern take on local classics). I was craving something slightly less upscale so I dined at their pizza restaurant Gran Torino and thought it was utterly delicious.
Finding somewhere to stay was the priciest part of my solo trip. Other travellers will back me up on this, but housing in Scandinavia is super expensive. Especially with no one to split it with. On my previous solo trips (such as to Dublin and Gdansk), I’ve sung the praises of getting a solo room in a hostel, but even that was out of my price range in Copenhagen. It actually ended up being much cheaper to turn to AirBnb and I found a super cute room, conveniently located with a very gracious and unobtrusive host.
I found Copenhagen ridiculously east to navigate, especially after the nightmare of a time that I had trying to get around Dublin. The bus and the metro are so convenient and well laid out that even someone with zero sense of direction, such as myself, will be absolutely fine. Using the metro, you can get from the city centre to the airport in around 15 minutes.
I really fell in deep love with Copenhagen and I can’t wait to go back with Sam one day!
Have you ever been? What do you recommend?