Visiting the northern part of Europe has always been a goal of mine. Finally in July I could visit Copenhagen and spend a day in Malmö (Sweden). It was incredibly hot during the first two days before it turned into winter over night so make sure you have clothes packed for both seasons even if you travel during summer. Copenhagen has a nice and huge airport, it takes you approximately 15 minutes to reach the baggage claim by feet and it offers you everything you need, from food to souvenirs and clothing.
The city can easily be reached by train or metro.
Sightseeing in Copenhagen
Copenhagen has a lot to offer when it comes to sightseeing – beautiful historic buildings mixed with modern architecture, castles and governmental buildings but also one of it’s harbors – Nyhavn – is well worth a visit. Some of the buildings are quite close to each other and when exploring the city by feet you can find several nice coffees and restaurants in between. If you’re sportive you should definitely rent a bicycle for a day or two, it’s perfect to get around and explore Copenhagens seaside, you can drive from Holmen to the other side until you reach the little mermaid or even further out of the city. The city has cycle paths everywhere so it’s really safe and super easy to get around.
The old exchange of Copenhagen – Børsen
It’s a beautiful renaissance building, built between 1619 and 1640. Today it is used as a normal office block but until 1974 it was home to Copenhagens exchange.
Finished in 1673 it was home to several taverns and until today it is one of Copenhagens most important harbors. You can find lots of restaurants, bars and clubs around. Located at the end of Nyhavn you can find the Charlottenborg palace. Go there for dinner and enjoy the music played by musicians, the relaxed atmosphere around this area during a walk or simply visit one of the bars around and enjoy the Danish nightlife.
Amalienborg & Amalienhaven
Amalienborg is the residence of the queen of Denmark – Margrethe II. Four equal buildings built in the 17th century are part of the castles complex and are one of Denmarks most beautiful rococo buildings. If the flag is hoisted up the queen is at home.
Amalienborg is also famous for its royal guards. You can watch the change of the guards which is quite impressive every day between 11.30am and 12.00am.
Amalienhaven is a small park right between Amalienborg and the waterside promenade. If you are on the way to see the little mermaid statue (which is not worth a visit from my point of view) you will pass the park automatically. It’s the queens garden and a beautiful place for a walk, a break or just to enjoy the nice view over the area.
Staying in front of Amalienborg you can see Frederik’s kirke, also named the Marbel Cathedral – another beautiful rococon building. Entry is free and on hot days its a nice place to cool down a few minutes and enjoy the silence.
One of the most famous theme parks and the second oldest in the world is definitely worth a visit. We went to Tivoli at night to have dinner and see the beautiful light show afterwards. The park is not only loved by kids but also by adults. When the sun sets it turns into a beautiful place full of lights and it has a lot to offer besides roller coasters and carousels. You can chose between a lot of different restaurants and enjoy a nice walk through the park. Every day at 10.45pm you can enjoy the lightshow accompanied by music. Check their website for special events such as concerts or fireworks around the year.
From a bird’s-eye view this fortress looks like a star, surrounded by a moat. It’s the only fortress in Copenhagen which is completely preserved. Beside the military facilities you can find a church, a prison and a beautiful windmill.
The military is still using the buildings but the area is open to the public daily from 6am until sunset.
Don’t miss the chance to go for a walk and enjoy the silence in the middle of the city.
Malmö – Sweden
Malmö is Swedens third biggest city, quite close to Copenhagen and can be reached by train within 40 minutes. You will cross the ocean via Øresundsbroen bridge – the longest combined road and railway bridge in Europe.
We went to Malmö for an afternoon and spent most of the time along the waterside promenade which is beautiful and invites you to linger and just enjoy the sea breeze.
On our way to the beach we visited the Malmöhus, an old castle building including the museum of art and the urban museum. Another beautiful is the St. Petri church and the Stortorget place which is an old market place surrounded by historical buildings.
Even if it was a normal Monday we experienced Malmö as a very quite city, despite some tourists at the main spots the streets were empty and most of the shops were closed. However, if you have an afternoon it’s nice to spend a few hours there, enjoy an ice cream and walk along the coast. Don’t forget to bring Swedish krona!
Shopping in Copenhagen
It’s quite likely that the weather changes rapidly over night and after a beautiful sunny day you will wake up in a cold and rainy Copehagen the other day. If so don’t worry, try one of the nice coffees the city offers. A very nice one is Café Norden in the middle of Copenhagens shopping street at the Amager square (Amagertorv) or, if you’re more looking for something sweet try Peter Beier Chokolade, next to Tivoli.
Shopping is super nice in Copenhagen, most of the shops are located at Strøget. Strøget is one of Europes longest pedestrian streets and offers any kind of stores – from souvenirs to luxury products and lots of nice restaurants and coffees. If the weather is really bad you might also visit Magasin du Nord, a big shopping mall at the Kongens Nytorv place at the end of Nyhavn.
You can also just walk through the city, there are many little shops all over the place and you can spot picturesque places around every corner.