Copenhagen

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Vor Frelsers Kirke

By Andrew Stone, your Copenhagen expert

I write for Dorling Kindersley, Lonely .... Read more

Why go to Copenhagen?

For the food...

Copenhagen now lays claim to having the world's best restaurant in Noma, but there's breadth and depth here too. The Danes have long since appreciated classical French cooking and marry it well with some amazing Nordic seafood and produce, garnering a constellation of stars from Michelin. An ever more confident generation of young chefs are refining and improving on classic Scandinavian methods, flavours and dishes to produce some startlingly good food.

…and the drink

Pleasing your palate is not just about eating. The city's cafe culture, its wine bars, cocktail bars and the growing band of excellent microbreweries all add to the exciting mix. Serious wine lovers will find some world class sommeliers on hand to advise and, if you know where to look, some decent cellars.

It's a joy to explore

Copenhagen's compact dimensions and amazingly organised transport make it a city that will never overwhelm you. Biking around or just walking lend themselves to a relaxed pace that's refreshing if you're more used to the hustle and hassle of cities like London at their hurried worst. The car is very much held at bay - all but banned from the city centre, making it a city with a more human scale.

Its fairytale fame

The birthplace of many a Hans Christian Andersen fairytale, walking its cobbled streets, and admiring the copper spires and fairytale castle walls (not to mention visiting the harbour where the Little Mermaid awaits), you can just see how it might have inspired him. The fairytale fun continues in Tivoli, one of the world's oldest amusement parks with rides, puppet theatres, fireworks and fun.

Historic heritage

There's history here - 1,000 years of uninterrupted royal lineage for starters - and the city is bursting with interest from royal palaces to ancient fortifications. Its museums are packed with treasures from the past, from Viking rune stones to golden pagan chariots.

Modern design chic

This is a city that has harmoniously combined its heritage with sensible progress, most obviously in its buildings and interiors. Almost everywhere you look you'll see evidence of the Danes' mastery of the applied arts from the chair you're sitting on, the fork you're holding or the natty little one-off you bought from that cool little boutique around the corner.

Fashion one-offs

Packed with little independent design boutiques and designers collectives, Copenhagen is a cool place to pick up things you won't find anywhere else. You'll find several local designers with international credentials and Vogue approval, as well as a good mix of high-end brands and cheap H&M-type places to mix and match your shopping, all within a handbag's throw.

The simple things

Copenhagen is also about simple pleasures, which means you don't need deep pockets to enjoy it. Parkland strolls, summer picnics, many free museums and sights plus, believe it or not and weather permitting, a couple of decent beaches and some cool little open air harbour pools.

Eco chic

This is a city on an environmental mission so it's easy to visit and be good to the environment. Whether it's ethically sourced clothing, organic food or upcycled furniture - Copenhagen is a leader. With much of its power supplied by wind turbines and ultra-efficient power stations that also heat many of its buildings, this is a very green city.

Festival fever

In the summer months especially (but by no means exclusively) Copenhagen hosts some vibrant festivals for Jazz, good food, fashion, beer, dance music, design, film and blues. The festive atmosphere around mid summer is also infectious.

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Copenhagen Hotels

Price fromRating (out of 5)
1. Nimb Hotel
£203
4.6
2. Hotel Kong Arthur
£60
4.3
3. Axel Hotel Guldsmeden
£82
4.3
4. Hotel D'Angleterre
£112
4.0
5. Bertrams Hotel Guldsmeden
£55
4.0
See all expert-rated Hotels in Copenhagen

Copenhagen Restaurants

Price guideRating (out of 5)
1. Noma
Expensive
4.7
2. Restaurant AOC
Expensive
4.4
3. Restaurant Relæ
Mid-range
4.4
4. The Paul
Expensive
4.3
5. Alberto K
Expensive
4.2
See all expert-rated Restaurants in Copenhagen

Copenhagen Things to do

Price guideRating (out of 5)
1. Rosenborg Slot (Castle)
Mid-range
4.4
2. Tivoli
Mid-range
4.3
3. National Museet
Free
4.2
4. Davids Samling
Free
4.1
5. Louisiana Museum of Modern Art
Mid-range
4.0
See all expert-rated Things to do in Copenhagen