I am so happy to present this Eat+Stay+Play: Copenhagen travel guide for you guys! Copenhagen turned out to be one of our favorite cities from our Scandinavian trip, so I wanted to share everywhere to eat, where you should stay, and how to spend your time. If you’ve read my other Eat+Stay+Play travel guides, you know that play basically covers the sights and tours that are must dos. All of my travel guides are under the Travel menu above or you can click here. You can see more photos of our time in Copenhagen from my Scandinavia Itinerary and Photo Diary. Alright, let’s get to Copenhagen already!
Why go to Copenhagen?
I have to admit that when we first arrived, I wasn’t sure if Copenhagen was going to be a favorite. The city is going through quite a lot of construction right now, which unfortunately leaves a lot of areas along the canals pretty torn up. The weather was also a little touchy with rain, but once the clouds cleared and we explored a bit I knew we would enjoy this city. Copenhagen is full of amazing things to see and do and it has a culture that really embraces being outside. Everyone is biking or walking everywhere. And if they’re not doing that, they’re cruising around the canals in boats of all sizes just simply enjoying life. Copenhagen’s people are friendly and really helpful when it comes to everything from restaurant service to asking for directions. We will definitely return!
Where to Eat
Eating in Copenhagen was one of my favorite parts of our trip. We had the best cinnamon danishes from a few cafes and also enjoyed an afternoon sipping Carlsberg along the canal. As for restaurants, these places are definitely where to eat.
Hija de Sanchez in Kødbyen has some of the best tacos I’ve had outside of Texas. If the weather is nice you can grab a table outside. This taqueria is really casual and what I would call no frills. But it doesn’t need a lot of dressing. The food stands on its own. You can get a mole taco or pork carnitas but they also offer bit of local flavor with the “El Paul,” a crispy fish skin taco with gooseberry salsa.
Barr is located along Copenhagen’s waterfront and produces the best in Northern European favorites like Danish meatballs and traditional style beers. I had the best bone marrow I’ve ever tasted here. There are tables outside for water views and the casual cool vibe makes for a fun night out. You definitely want to eat here.
Broens Gadekøkken (Bridge Street Kitchens) is located along the water and offers a multitude of foods from around the globe. This is a great spot for a casual dinner, especially on a nice evening. Choose from a variety of food stalls and eat community style at picnic tables and then take your drinks to the canal’s edge to relax in the hammock-like chairs. We loved the asian style BBQ ribs and the burger from Gasoline Grill is a must. A DJ was spinning tunes and the atmosphere was lively yet laid back.
Adamsen’s Fisk, located in Gilleleje, is a quick day trip from Copenhagen and the perfect spot for cold beer and fresh seafood on the water. The food is fantastic – I mean, really good! Having grown up on the Gulf Coast, I really love having fresh seafood that you know was caught that morning. When you can practically still taste the sea water, you know it’s good. You’ll find lots of locals and families eating here.
Where to Stay
When planning your stay in Copenhagen, consider an apartment rental. We enjoy the extra space an apartment provides as well as the ability to cook and have access to outdoor space. This apartment was perfect with two balconies and is very close to canals. It’s an easy walking distance to the Bridge Street Kitchens, too.
Where to Play
Having fun in Copenhagen is not difficult. It’s a great city to enjoy the outdoors in the summertime. We found these to be particularly worthwhile.
Go Boat is a fun way to experience Copenhagen from the water. Go Boat rents boats by the hour and you don’t even need a license or experience to operate them. You’ll slowly cruise the canals following a suggested path depending on how long you rent the boat. You can arrange a basket of snacks and beer or wine, or bring your own. The boats are silent and solar cell powered and perfect for two people or a small group. We would definitely do this again.
Tivoli Gardens is possibly the prettiest amusement park I’ve ever been to. It’s extremely clean and feels like stepping back in time when amusement parks were still a new concept. We rode the classic ferris wheel and played carnival games. To be honest, I wasn’t real excited to check it out but once we were inside I didn’t want to leave.
The Little Mermaid is worth a quick visit. We actually saw her from a canal boat tour which was enough. There is usually a crowd around her, but at 105 years old she’s an icon. She’s actually been vandalized quite a bit, including decapitation and having paint poured on her. But the city always restores her back to her beautiful bronze self.
Fredericksborg Castle in Hillerød is an impressive site and the largest Renaissance castle in Scandinavia. There’s even a moat surrounding it. Get there in the morning when they open and you’ll have the grounds pretty much to yourself, making it a great place for photography.
Nyhavn is a beautiful 17th century canal lined with multi colored buildings. Restaurants now line the waterfront making it a great spot to end your day. Grab a drink and take in some live music or just enjoy the people watching.
Carlsberg Brewery (a.k.a. The Copenhagen ExBEERience) is a fun way to spend part of your afternoon. We chose to tour on our own but group tours are also offered. I was most impressed with our ability to walk through the stables and interact with the horses. Free carriage rides are offered through the surrounding neighborhood, and you can even bring your beer along. Carlsberg also boasts the largest collection of unopened beer bottles in the world – over 22,000!
The longer you spend in Copenhagen, the more you’ll want to just sit canalside while sipping something and watching boats pass leisurely by. I felt really relaxed in Copenhagen and was sad to leave. Have you been to Copenhagen? Tell me your favorite thing about the city.
Xo – Erin
Thank you so much for reading and sharing!
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