A Google Map showing where Copenhagen is.

Copenhagen is Where?

Last Updated on February 16, 2024 by Kathryn

Copenhagen is where?? We were asked this a few times after spending a fabulous week there last July. 

Copenhagen, the capital of Denmark, is on the east coast of the country. It’s a short train ride away from Malmo, a city on the southern coast of Sweden. 

It’s pretty far north in Europe – at a similar latitude as Edinburgh and Moscow. 

It’s the farthest north I’ve ever been, and that fact alone made me feel that I was in a far-away place.

Copenhagen had a distinct “feel” to me, so I’ve created a fun taste of the things that stood out to me during our time there. 

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Copenhagen is where the summer sun shines

The days are long in the summer, with the sun up before 5 am and not setting until close to 10 pm. 

We really felt like we could pack a lot into our days, and had to remember to get our kids to bet while the sun was still shining.

(If you have young kids like we do, make sure that your accommodations have blackout curtains.)

Copenhagen is where we can get everywhere without a car

People biking and walking on a busy street in Copenhagen.
Bikes on a busy street.

We generally spend a lot of time outside. At home, we bike, walk, or scooter to school and work. 

Unfortunately, the public transit options in our home city are pretty dismal, but Copenhagen is where our walkable city dreams came true. 

No car needed, and getting around is easy peasy, even with kids. 

The streets were full of both old and young biking in protected bike lanes.

The subway system was incredibly easy to navigate with stations close enough together that it didn’t ever feel like we had to walk far to get to one. 

And the subway came so often! In my hometown, I have to wait up to an hour for the train to come, but in Copenhagen, the trains often come every 2 minutes. The buses were super efficient as well.

Not only is the public transit efficient, it is impressively clean.

Copenhagen is where the magic is

A colorful photo of the swings at Tivoli Gardens with roses in the foreground, showcasing that Copenhagen is where the magic is!
Copenhagen is where the magic is! A lovely evening at Tivoli Gardens.

There’s a good reason Walt Disney got his inspiration from Copenhagen’s amusement park, Tivoli Gardens

With its lush gardens and gorgeous architecture, Tivoli is simply magical. 

Some go just to enjoy the gardens, but we also purchased a pass to go on the rides. 

Tivoli’s oldest rollercoaster – with a conductor on every car –  is over a century old. There are also more modern rides for thrill-seekers (my oldest kids).

Tivoli even offers live music every day. The day we visited, we were surprised to learn that Macklemore was performing that evening.

As if that weren’t enough, Copenhagen is dotted with castles! 

Rosenborg Castle, built in the 1600s, is located in the heart of the city. It overlooks the King’s Garden – a magical greenspace with a playground that we spent a ton of time in. 

There’s also Christiansborg Palace, Fredericksberg Palace, and others.

Finally there’s the iconic Little Mermaid statue which inspired Hans Christian Andersen. Fairytales come to life!

Copenhagen is where nature surrounds

Three kids look at flowers and other plants at a park in Copenhagen.
Gorgeous gardens all over the city.

As an outdoor-loving family, we were completely impressed with the abundance of urban nature. There are lots of parks in Copenhagen, Denmark, for the kids to enjoy.

Copenhagen is where green spaces abound – a must for our family! Fælledparken and Frederiksberg Gardens are two large parks with playgrounds and open spaces where kids can run, play, and explore nature. 

We enjoyed daily picnics in the parks while letting our kids run wild. Taking my kids to playgrounds in different countries is one of my favorite things to do. It’s a great way to meet locals.

In addition to the green space, I loved Copenhagen’s natural setting on the water with canals running throughout the city.

Copenhagen is where all my money went

As tourists, Copenhagen was an expensive destination for us. If we weren’t careful, it was easy to spend a lot.

For example, food prices were about 1.5 – 2 times what I’d pay at home in Utah. Souvenirs, lodging, and activities seemed to be on the higher end of what we saw in other big cities in Europe.

We found some ways to save some money.

First, we purchased Copenhagen Cards (free for kids!), giving us admission to dozens of attractions. We visited so many places that we got our money’s worth. Additionally, it covered public transit.

Second, we found a 2 bedroom Airbnb that cost less per night than the 2 hotel rooms we would have needed for our family.

Third, we ate a lot of grocery store meals and cheap street food.

However, overall keep in mind that Copenhagen is not a budget destination.

Copenhagen is where happy is found

Inside the post-it-note happy room at the Happiness Museum, one of the top tourist things to do in Copenhagen.
Sticky notes with what makes people happy.

I felt so happy wandering the streets of Copenhagen. The alleyways and streets going every which way are a great place to get lost.

The colorful Nyhavn waterfront is a joy to see. 

The view from the historic Round Tower was breathtaking. 

Breathing the ocean air from the roof of the Experimentarium Science Museum was refreshing.

Did you know that Denmark is consistently rated as one of the top happiest countries on earth

The Happiness Museum shed light on the policies and culture that contribute to that. (Definitely worth a visit.)

Copenhagen is where I ate…a lot

Yes, we did eat a lot of meals from grocery stores, but they were delicious! They had a lot of healthy prepared salads and soups, and of course croissants and other pastries. 

We also indulged in street food, cheaper fast-casual food (Strangas was a hit), and a couple of sit-down meals (Cafe Europa was another favorite).

The famous hot dogs were a miss for us. 

Also, beware that when you order churros, you will get a huge family-size portion!

If you get a chance, try the Ebelskivers (Danish pancakes). We love them so much that we now make them regularly at home.

And smørrebrød, open-faced sandwiches, are definitely worth a try.

Copenhagen is where it’s easy to be a kid

A friend asked me a couple of days ago which cities I thought were easiest to travel with kids and Copenhagen was top of my list.

There’s abundant green space (unlike say Amsterdam or Florence).

There are tons of kid-friendly attractions. Five days there and we barely scratched the surface.

The subways are stroller accessible (unlike Paris).

The summer temps are just right. After absolutely melting in Paris, the pants and sweatshirt weather felt amazing, and the heat-induced whining from the kids vanished!

Copenhagen is where we’ll be returning

We visited many amazing places on our month-long Europe trip, and Copenhagen took me by surprise! 

Copenhagen wasn’t one of the top destinations that I was looking forward to, but it was enchanting, memorable, and totally worth the money.

Have you ever been? 

Get out there, far and wide! 

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