Copenhagen Unveiled: A City Break to Remember

copenhagen city break

Nestled along the shores of the Baltic Sea, Copenhagen unfolds like a storybook where history and modernity dance together in perfect harmony. If you’re planning to spend a few days in Copenhagen, you’ve come to the right place. In this blog post, we talk about our Copenhagen city break.

We love travelling, and exploring new places and cultures. Whenever we have a bit of time, we plan short city breaks in Europe. Back in 2018, we spent a long weekend in Copenhagen, the capital city of Denmark. We found Copenhagen as a vibrant city that boasts not only cultural richness but also a unique quality of life. In every corner of this city, you’ll find a captivating narrative—whether it’s the iconic Little Mermaid overlooking the harbor or the vibrant colors of Nyhavn’s waterfront facades. So let’s dive right into it!

Copenhagen city break: The best things to do

Copenhagen offers a wide range of things to do to keep you entertained for a few days. The city is pedestrian and cyclist-friendly which makes it easy to get around. Whilst public transport is very efficient, we found it easy to get around on foot and cycle. In the next section, we’ll focus on the best things to do for a great Copenhagen city break based on our experience.

1. Stroll around Nyhavn

The name Copenhagen comes from the words for “Merchant Harbor” and Nyhavn used to be one of the hubs for the ship merchants. Stroll along the picturesque Nyhavn harbor with its colorful buildings, bustling atmosphere, and numerous restaurants and cafes. To get better insights into this vibrant district, join a free walking tour like we did!

Copenhagen city break

2. Pay a visit to Little Mermaid

Pay a visit to the iconic Little Mermaid statue, inspired by Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tale, located at Langelinie promenade. 

Copenhagen Denmark

3. Shop along Strøget

Copenhagen’s largest shopping area is centered around Strøget in the heart of the city. Find anything from luxurious brands to more budget chains.

4. Join a Bike Tour

If time is limited then you should consider joining a bike tour to soak in all the city’s highlights. Danes have a strong biking culture and joining one of these tours will allow you to live like a local for a day while having fun. Bike for over three hours and stop at the top attractions such as Rosenborg Castle, the Little Mermaid, Amalienborg, and Nyhavn.

2 days in Copenhagen

5. Experience the Magic of Tivoli Gardens

Tivoli Gardens is one of the world’s oldest amusement parks, featuring thrilling rides, beautiful gardens, and live entertainment. This playground inspired Walt Disney for his own Disney World and it is considered an international attraction. People of all ages can enjoy spooky rides, lush gardens, music events, and even dining experiences. Booking your Tivoli Gardens tickets in advance is recommended, especially in high season.


The Tivoli Gardens are included with the Copenhagen City Card. If you wish to enjoy free public transport and free entrance to 80+ museums and attractions including canal cruises, then this card could be for you.

6. Explore Rosenborg Castle

Explore the historic Rosenborg Castle, home to the Danish crown jewels and a fascinating glimpse into Denmark’s royal history. This beautiful castle is incredibly well preserved and it features 400 years of royal treasures, the Crown Jewels, and Royal Regalia. Find Knights’ Hall with the coronation thrones, decorated with narwhal tusks, with three life-size silver lions standing guard.

7. Visit the Christiansborg Palace

Christiansborg Palace is the only building in the world that houses all three branches of a nation’s government. It is home to the Prime Minister’s Office, the Supreme Court, and the Danish Parliament. Whilst certain private areas cannot be visited, visitors can explore the public areas of the Danish Parliament and ascend the tower to enjoy panoramic views of Copenhagen. In addition, beneath Christiansborg Palace lies a fascinating archaeological exhibition showcasing the ruins of previous castles and palaces that have stood on the same site over the centuries. The exhibition provides a glimpse into Denmark’s historical past.

Copenhagen city break

8. Experience the Hygge at Christianshavn

The concept of “hygge” is deeply ingrained in Danish culture, and Copenhagen epitomizes this cozy and content way of living. Hygge encompasses a sense of warmth, togetherness, and appreciation for life’s simple pleasures, contributing to the city’s inviting and comfortable atmosphere. The Freetown of Christianshavn boasts plenty of attractions for visitors, including tons of lively restaurants and cafes, and fascinating architecture. It really feels to be in a city within a city here!

9. Visit cultural institutions

Visit cultural institutions like the National Museum of Denmark, the Danish National Gallery, and the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art for art and history enthusiasts.

10. Drama time at Kronborg in Helsingør

If time allows, take a day tour in Helsingør to visit Kronborg castle. Better known as Hamlet’s Castle, this UNESCO Heritage Site is world-famous as the setting for Shakespeare’s play Hamlet. Kronborg Castle dates back to 1420 and played an important role in Elsinore for more than 400 years. A devastating fire destroyed it in 1629 and only left the chapel intact. It was subsequently restored and fortified as a fortress. Today, it stands as a beautiful example of a Renaissance castle overlooking Sweden.

Helsingør day trip


You can visit Kronborg Castle as part of an organized castle tour or on your own. Castle tours typically include pick up at your hotel, tourist guide, transport, and entrance fees to multiple castles in one day. It’s a great way to explore more with an expert guide. Planning a visit to Kronborg on your own will require a bit more planning. From Copenhagen Central Station get a train to Helsingør. Trains are frequent and cost approximately 19€ for two ways. Once in Helsingør, the Kronborg castle is within walking distance. Alternatively, if you have the Copenhagen City Card both trains and entrance fees to the castle are included.

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Where to stay in Copenhagen

We usually tend to stay in central places so that we can save time while doing the sightseeing. For your Copenhagen city break, we recommend the Steel House. This modern hostel is centrally located and offers dormitories and private rooms with bathrooms, as well as a café and an indoor pool. We liked the Steel House for its central location, cleanliness, and comfort. It is budget-friendly compared to similar accommodations around!


Must Know before going to Copenhagen

Danish Currency

The Danish Krone is stronger than most other currencies. We recommend paying with cards when possible and avoiding exchanging your cash for Krones. Cards are widely accepted in Copenhagen. 

We chose Revolut as our must-have travel card. Revolut is the most popular online bank and easy to use app. Revolut gives travellers several benefits such as:  

  • Use different currencies simultaneously.
  • Withdraw up 200 € / 200 $ a month from any ATM for free.
  • Free to open account & no maintenance costs.
  • Split bills and pay friends with ease.

Setting up a Revolut account is simple and free. If you want to, you can download it through our referral link.

Eating out

Food lovers will enjoy a wide choice of restaurants. Copenhagen boasts 14 Michelin-star restaurants and the city is widely popular for its diverse and innovative culinary scene, earning recognition on the global stage for its commitment to using fresh, local, and seasonal ingredients. Eating out can be quite expensive depending on the type of establishment.

Michelin-starred and high-end restaurants offer exquisite tasting menus and unique culinary experiences for premium prices. Restaurants following the New Nordic Cuisine movement, which focuses on using local and seasonal ingredients, tend also to have higher prices. On the other hand, cafes, and bistros offer a more affordable option for dining out. Finally, the growing street food scene, particularly in markets like Reffen and Papirøen, provides budget-friendly options for dining out.


Copenhagen experiences a temperate oceanic climate with cool summers and cold winters. Check the weather forecast before your trip and pack accordingly. To make things easier, we wrote a blog post on “what to pack for a winter trip”.

Cultural Etiquette

Danes are generally polite and reserved. It’s customary to greet people with a simple “Hej” (hello) and practice good manners in public spaces. Avoid loud conversations and adhere to common courtesy.


Denmark places a strong emphasis on sustainability and recycling. Familiarize yourself with local recycling practices to contribute to environmental conservation efforts.

Time for conclusions…

In this blog post, we talked about visiting Copenhagen based on our own experience. Copenhagen is perfect for a city break in Europe. We found the city to be easily walkable, very clean, and with plenty of tourist entertainment. Among the things to do, we highly recommend the Tivoli Gardens, a walking tour which includes the Little Mermaid and the Nyhavn, and a day tour to Kronborg Castle. For a good place to stay, we recommend the Steel House for its central location, cleanliness, and affordability. Overall Copenhagen is quite an expensive city. However, most attractions can be covered with the Copenhagen City Card and there are plenty of eatery options to suit all budgets.

As you explore this city where tradition meets innovation, take in the architectural marvels, revel in the cultural diversity, and embrace the sustainable lifestyle that defines Copenhagen. So what’s in for your city break to Copenhagen? Navigating the bike-friendly lanes? Savoring the flavors of New Nordic Cuisine? Let us know in the comments below.

Do you like city breaks? We wrote some interesting articles on AmsterdamDubrovnikLisbonNaplesRomeBudapestLondonEdinburgh, Vienna, and Barcelona !

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