City Travel Europe

51 Unique + Fun Things to do in Copenhagen | Denmark

Fun Things to do in Copenhagen - Exploring Freetown Christiania

Why is it that Denmark consistently ranks amongst the happiest countries in the world? Perhaps it’s hyggelige evenings with friends and cozy blankets or the high standard of living or the well-funded social programs. But if you ask me, it’s more likely a hard-to-pinpoint cultural trait keeps the Danes cheery even when the winter darkness drags on. Speaking as someone who visited in the throes December, that kind of resilience in spite of wind and rain and 40° weather does NOT come naturally.

Copenhagen might summon to mind Hans Christian Andersen fairytales and Vikings and perhaps 17th-century waterfront houses. It also might have you picturing blonde babes on bicycles, and hot dogs, and minimalist design. And while I can agree that Copenhagen is all those things, it’s also so much more. The city has a thriving alternative scene with community centers and urban communes and dive bar institutions scattered throughout the city. There are running routes and inventive food festivals and incredible displays of public art that will keep you busy at any time of year. Long after you’ve seen the Little Mermaid statue and wandered Nyhavn, the list of unique things to do in Copenhagen carries on. The city is genuinely awesome.

Ready to explore one of the prettiest little cities on the Baltic Sea? Here’s a glimpse at some of the coolest things to do in Copenhagen.

Very Copenhagen Experiences

1. Head to Folkehuset Absalon, a community house in Vesterbro offering everything from yoga classes to backgammon nightsFun Things to do in Copenhagen - Folkehuset Absalon2. Wander the canals and English-style gardens of Frederiksberg Park

3. Have a seat on some funky French antique furniture and catch a film at the indie cinema Vester Vov Vov

4. Spend an evening at Bolsjefabrikken, a cultural institution with board games, live music, and art workshops

5. Explore the Red Square, Black Market, and Green Park sidewalk murals at Superkilen ParkFun Things to do in Copenhagen - Red Square at Superkilen Park

Fun Things to do in Copenhagen - Black Market at Superkilen Park
Fun Things to do in Copenhagen - Green Park at Superkilen Park

6. Dip into the world of Danish design when you admire the highly functional collection at Designmuseum Danmark

7. Rent a bike from Bycyklen and find out why Copenhagen is regarded as the world’s best cyclist city

8. Bring a picnic to the surprisingly un-somber cemetery, Assistens Kirkegård

9. Enjoy the quieter alternative to Nyhavn canal on a stroll in Christiania

Fun Things to do in Copenhagen - Alternative to Nyhavn

10. Pop into Cafe Nemoland where you can light a joint without being sneaky

11. Sweat it out at Badehuset, a no-frills public sauna in Christiana

12. Head to Jazzklubben on a Sunday for freestyle jazz and a beer

13. Experience the best alternative hangouts in Vesterbro on a walking tour of the neighborhood (€69)

14. Ride your bike above the harbor on Copenhagen’s iconic “Bicycle Snake” cycle bridge

15. Hop on the blue or yellow Harbor Bus for a cheaper alternative to the usual tourist cruise

16. Catch an indie rock or electronic show at the coolest concert venue, Rust

17. Explore the city’s best murals and paste-ups on a street art tour of Copenhagen

Murals in Copenhagen

18. Wander the art galleries like V1 Gallery and Galleri Bo Bjerggaard scattered around the Meatpacking District

19. Go for an early 6km run along Copenhagen’s Inner Lakes

20. Experience one of the most essential things to do in Copenhagen when you go flower shopping on the trendy Værnedamsvej

Fun Things to do in Copenhagen - Flower Shopping in Værnedamsvej

Eating Copenhagen

21. Go to Royal Smushi Café for a sushi-style take on the Danish classic smørrebrød

22. Wander the more than 60+ stands selling cheese, meat, spices, and more at Torvehallerne

Fun Things to do in Copenhagen - Smørrebrød in Torvellarne

23. Experience the best cheeses, toffees, mustards, flødebolle and more on a Copenhagen food tour (€114)

24. Head toNørrebro’s no-frills sandwich shop, Depanneur, which doubles as a local hangout

25. Grab a cheap and tasty pork sandwich from The Husker in the Meatpacking District

26. Get your fill of fish with a fish burger from the waterfront Hooked seafood kitchen

27. Enjoy perhaps the only truly cheap food in Copenhagen when you order a hot dog at Johns Hotdog Deli or døp – Den Økologiske Pølsemand

28. Go for the Grød, a restaurant where porridge is actually excitingFun Things to do in Copenhagen- Grød Porridge Restaurant

29. Sit down for a basket of dumplings at Gao Dumpling Bar in Nørrebro

30. Mix your own brunch from their menu of 21 small plates at Wulff and Konstali

31. Or grab a table at Folkets Hus, a volunteer-run brunch spot that’s only open from 10:00 – 13:00 on Sundays

Drinking Copenhagen

32. Grab a glass of wine at the trendy Pate Pate

33. Head to Huset-KBH cultural center for one of their monthly Movie Drink-Alongs where they screen a cult classic and serve… you guessed it! Drinks.

34. Get a craft beer at Mikkeller, a craft beer bar serving a mix of in-house brews and imports.

Fun Things to do in Copenhagen- Mikkeller Bar
Fun Things to do in Copenhagen- Mikkeller Bar

35. Attend a Science & Cocktails public lecture to learn about black holes, consciousness, and the multiverse with a similarly mindblowing cocktail in hand

36. Go for a round at the punk hangout, dive bar, and local institution, Floss

Events + Festivals in Copenhagen

37. Join some 32,000 other people at Roskilde, one of Europe’s biggest music fests

38. Get in the Christmas spirit when you visit one of the many Christmas Markets in Copenhagen

Fun Things to do in Copenhagen - Christmas Markets

39. Eat with strangers at communal tables at the annual Copenhagen Cooking & Food Festival

Copenhagen + Beyond

40. Venture out to the manmade, beach on the Baltic Sea at Amager Strandvej

41. Go on a driving treasure hunt to spot The Six Forgotten Giants – the wooden art installations you’ll find hidden around the suburbs of Copenhagen

42. Venture to the rocky shores of Bornholm on a short day trip from Copenhagen

43. Head to the Rågeleje Beach where you’ll find the retro, striped beach houses

44. See where the royals used to hunt on a day trip to UNESCO-recognized Deer Park

45. Dip into Sweden for the day on a trip to the very pretty Malmö

Keeping Copenhagen Weird

46. Explore the eclectic urban commune, Freetown Christiania, and other alternative spots in Copenhagen (€21)

Fun Things to do in Copenhagen - Exploring Freetown Christiania

Fun Things to do in Copenhagen - Exploring Freetown Christiania
Fun Things to do in Copenhagen - Exploring Freetown Christiania

47. Make an appointment at The Barbie Museum to explore a collection of 4,000+ Mattel’s most iconic toy

48. Browse all the sculpted schnozzes, big and small, at the Nasothek Nose Collection at the Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek Art Museum

49. Get a little nauseous Tivoli Gardens, the world’s second-oldest amusement park (€16.50)

50. Stay in the Central Hotel & Café, the tiny spot that might actually be the world’s smallest hotel

Fun Things to do in Copenhagen- Central Hotel & Café

51. Sit for a coffee at Kulturtårnet På Knippelsbro – the little-known café in the tower of Knippelsbro Bridge

Unique Places to Stay in Copenhagen

Looking to stay strange during your trip? Check out these quirky hotels in Copenhagen:

Central Hotel & Café | Perched above its namesake café, the Central Hotel & Café is a seriously-tiny-but-luxurious room on the edge of Vesterbro. The hotel claims to be one of the smallest in the world as it’s just the one room, but it’s more than just kitsch. The vintage decor and excellent location make it worth a splurge. Starts from 245€.

The Hotel Alexandra | The Hotel Alexandra is more like a museum of Danish design than a hotel. Almost everything in the hotel was handpicked to fit the 1950’s-1960’s retro-aesthetic, meaning you can expect plush upholstery, wallpaper, minimalist wooden furniture, and modern art in every room. Double rooms start from 170€.

Steel House Copenhagen | Leave it to Denmark to create a hostel that’s truly luxurious. The Copenhagen hostel self describes as “industrial chic with raw elements, soft textures, and rustic interiors” and I’d have to agree. It’s like the hostel for people who think they’re over hostels. Dorms from 29€.

Airbnb | Copenhagen is full of hygge-inspired places to stay. Forget the big hotels, and get a local experience in Copenhagen by searching Airbnb for unusual homes in neighborhoods where you’d like to stay. You can find everything from boathouses to tiny apartments. New to Airbnb? Get $40 off your first stay or explore other properties from €30.

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Looking for some unique, fun, non-touristy things to do in Copenhagen? From the best gin and tonic spot at TorvehallerneKBH to fun festivals to the best bike rides in Copenhagen, here are 51!

1 Comment

  • Reply
    Kerri guisness
    December 16, 2018 at 10:19 pm

    One notable observation….count the countless prams that are plentiful in the evident baby boom of pram age! Never have I ever ..seen so many in 4 days time frame !

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