Last weekend I was in Copenhagen – the city of The Little Mermaid, Danish pastries, modern buildings and castles. Copenhagen is environmentally proactive, sustainable and gastronomically diverse with the world’s best restaurant Noma. It’s boasts a mix of immigrant influenced boroughs and neighbourhoods that surround the historical medieval centre, home to the world’s oldest monarchy. It’s home to huge brands like Bodum, Lego, George Jenson, Bang & Olufsen, Carlsberg Beer and Arla, and the Danes are the most satisfied citizens in the world. The city sits on the Danish island of Sealand, on the cusp of the Baltic Sea.
Copenhagen is sprinkled in stardust – Hans Christian Andersen, the master of fairytales: The Princess And The Pea, The Ugly Duckling and The Emperor’s New Clothes who loved it so much. Copenhagen’s main attraction is The Little Mermaid. In 1909 Carl Jacobsen, founder of Carlsberg Breweries, attended Royal Theatre to see The Little Mermaid. Moved by the performance, he commissioned Edvard Eriksen to create a statue of the mermaid – The Little Mermaid was presented at Langelinie waterfront in 1913.
Nyhavn meaning New Haven, was originally a busy commercial port where ships from all over the world dock. It’s the picture postcard of Copenhagen with long-standing colourful houses and lively restaurants stacked together in front of canal pathways.
Palaces and castles: Christiansborg/Slotsholmen is an artificial island and the site of the first fortification. It’s home to Christiansborg, the Danish Parliament building built using neo-baroque architecture. Denmark’s monarch, King Christian IV, had Rosenborg Castle built as a summer home closer to Copenhagen for the royals in the early 1600s. Amalienborg Palace is the winter home of the Danish royal family. The roundtower features amazing 360 degree views of Copenhagen, including the Malmö bridge connecting Denmark with Sweden.
Christianshavn is Copenhagen’s enchanting canal quarter on the eastern side of Copenhagen. It was established as a commercial centre and also a military buffer for the expanding city. It’s a copy of Amsterdam famous as home of the ‘free state’ of Christiania.
Tivoli Gardens is an enchanted world of beautiful tree-lined pathways, theatres, open air stages, restaurants, café, monstrous rides and children’s rides. The gardens display a wealth of flowers and at night thousands of lights sparkle from the trees.
There’s a vibrant coffee culture throughout to ensure caffeine levels never falter with bread and pastry being a top accompaniment. Lagkagehuset, the best bakery in Copenhagen is famous for serving one of the most popular types of Danish pastry: snegl, spiral cake packed full of cinnamon and butter topped with icing sugar. It’s not the easiest place to find food for vegetarians but there was an plethora of falafel places and sandwich shops. Sourdough Pizza was a must-try at Mother in the meat-packing area.
All in all a great city to see and walk around, not sure I’d go back but was amazing but the clean cut design of the buildings and home-ware goods. I came back with several Bodum style accessories for my kitchen from Strøget, the longest shopping strip at 3.2 km in Europe.