Take the time to explore this smaller Scandinavian full of life and culture
- + 6
Europe8 days / June 2015
Highs & Lows
See the Little Mermaid statue inspired by Hans Christian Andersen’s fairytale.
Not the cheapest place to visit.
Copenhagen is the lovely capital city of Denmark, the smallest of the Scandinavian countries. It’s easily reachable by planes and also trains from other European locations, making the capital itself the perfect weekend getaway. The city center is lively and full of history and character. Palaces and gardens fill the city, so come in the summer to take advantage of the sun kissed weather! Public transportation is readily available, but walking is easy as well, so bring some good shoes!
When we arrived to Copenhagen by train via Hamburg, we decided to see some of the major tourist attractions. For us, this included:
- Tivoli Gardens: the second oldest amusement park in the world
- Strøget Street: the city’s main shopping area, where you can buy a variety of goods
- Little Mermaid Statue: inspired by the Danish author Hans Christian Andersen’s fairytale, this status is a top tourist attraction. You decide whether it’s overrated or not!
Besides those, there’s plenty of squares, gardens, and palaces to visit. Copenhagen is a very safe city, so pick any street to walk down and explore!
We had family living in Esbjerg so they came by car to pick us up from Copenhagen. Esbjerg is a seaport town on the east coast of Denmark and is the 5th largest city in Denmark…which only means a population of about 70,000 people! Although it’s considered a large city, it still has a small town local feel. I would highly recommend going to these places outside of the capital city in order to get a feel for daily Danish life!
For us, a lot of the time spent in Esbjerg was centered around family, which we were meeting for the first time! But some of the things we did together included:
- “Man Meets the Sea” Sculpture: standing at 9 meters tall, these sculptures take on a mystical quality, looking out onto the city.
- Walden Sea National Park: the largest national park in all of Denmark, with beautiful beaches and wetlands
- ARoS Art Museum: this museum was inspired by Dante’s philosophical concepts, so you know it’s going to be interesting!
To round off our trip, we visited the second largest city of Denmark: Aarhuas. Aarhaus is similar to other Danish cities with its gardens and squares. Since we had no itinerary here and didn’t know much of what was there, we simply explored some popular areas and tried the local delicacies with the time we had!
Places we visited included:
- Den Gamle By: a large open air museum that shows how people lived in the past
- Aarhaus Botanical Gardens: a lovely garden to explore, particularly the greenhouse exhibit!
- Viking Museum: located underground, it gives great insight into the early history of this area
What we ate:
- Smørrebrød: this literally means any open-faced sandwich on a piece of rye bread. The toppings can vary, but it’s always delicious!
- the Danish hot dog: we were skeptical to try this, as hotdogs feel very American, but it came highly recommended. It’s very much an on the go type of food, but delicious for a quick bite.
After Aarhaus, we returned to Copenhagen for our flight home. A week in a lovely European country!
Q & A
What would you have changed?
Some of the main attractions were a bit crowded - we would have gone earlier in the morning!
Anything go wrong during the trip?
Our phone data was super slow - get a SIM card next time!
How was the food?
NOMA - world famous!
What tips would you give a friend?
Travel slowly to absorb the local atmosphere
It’s mostly sunny, but pack a light jacket just in case!
Great public transportation
The hot dogs!