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20 Best things to see and do in Copenhagen

Known as the happiest city in the world, Copenhagen offers a wide variety of things to see and do. You will enjoy a calm and relaxed atmosphere, a beautiful city with canals and colored houses, and impressive places to visit. Many travelers come to the country just to get to know Copenhagen, if you are thinking about it and have time I encourage you to visit some of the most beautiful places in the country. You will find many more articles about Denmark from this link!

In this post I tell you what to see and do in Copenhagen, essential places, free tours... So you don't miss anything essential!

Best things to see and do in Copenhagen


In Copenhagen you have the option of doing some free tours. This free tour in particular will allow you to visit the most emblematic places of the city with the help of a guide. The guided tour is in Spanish and you will visit the Town Hall Square, the Paseo Marítimo, the Christiansborg Palace...

And although this is the most classic and usual free tour, it is not the only option you have. There are several free tours to do in Copenhagen and I will tell you about all of them in this post.

2. Stroll along the Nyhavn Canal

Here you will find the typical image of Copenhagen, with beautiful colored houses, attached to each other, on the banks of the Nyhavn canal.

In the mid-17th century, King Christian V ordered the construction of the Nyhavn Canal as the main gateway from the sea to Copenhagen.

This area became very popular for its breweries and prostitution venues. Today it has changed radically, making this place a pleasant area for a walk, with bars, pubs and small restaurants with a very familiar atmosphere.

Near the canal, a few meters away, is one of the most significant sculptures in Copenhagen: the Anchor Memorial (Mindeankeret). This sculpture is a tribute to the fallen sailors in World War II defending Copenhagen from German attacks and bombardments.

At the Anchor Memorial you will always find flowers and candles in honor of the more than 1,700 Danish officers and soldiers who lost their lives in one of the worst episodes in the city's history.

Best things to see and do in Copenhagen

3. Boat trip through the canals of Copenhagen

One of the most dynamic things to do in the city is a boat ride through its canals. It is a way of seeing the city from a different perspective. The tour lasts about an hour and it is convenient to book in advance. Especially if you travel in high season.

4. Come and meet the Little Mermaid

The sculpture of the Little Mermaid is the most representative image of the city of Copenhagen. Made of bronze, it stands out on a rock in the port of the capital, on the shores of the Baltic.

The Little Mermaid was designed by Carl Jacobsen, the son of the founder of the well-known Danish beer brand Carsberg. It was a gift that he wanted to give to the city of Copenhagen, being a unique sculpture. The person in charge of making this work a reality was the sculptor Edvard Eriksen.

Jacobsen's main reason for commissioning this work was a tribute to the children's story writer Hans Christian Andersen and his best-known work: The Little Mermaid. It was built in 1913 of bronze, measures 125 centimeters and weighs 180 kilos.

Best things to see and do in Copenhagen

5. Visit the Christiania neighborhood

Christiania is an essential neighborhood to see in Copenhagen. It is a hippy neighborhood with a lifestyle different from what you can find anywhere in the world. In the early 1970s, part of the Christianshavn neighborhood was used for military purposes and was subsequently abandoned. Some families from Copenhagen, seeing that the costs of the city were increasing, decided to move to this area and establish a different lifestyle, with their own rules and without following the laws of the state. In a short time, more families, attracted by this lifestyle, moved to the neighborhood, creating an authentic community called Christiania.

Since the neighborhood was founded, it has been a place managed based on its basic principles that highlight outdoor art, collaboration with neighbors, recycling...

Visiting Christiania is one of the essential things to do in Copenhagen. You can not lose this! If you feel like it, you can take a free tour of Christianshavn, it is a free guided tour in Spanish and English that lasts approximately an hour and a half.

Best things to see and do in Copenhagen

6. Take a guided tour of Christiansborg Palace

The impressive Christiansborg Palace was the royal residence of the Danish monarchy until 1794, when a fire forced them to move to Amalienborg Palace.

In the 12th century, the warrior bishop Absalom, founder of the city of Copenhagen, ordered the construction of Christiansborg Palace.

In the Palace you can visit the ruins of the Palace; You will be able to visit the remains of the two previous constructions. The Palace of Absalom from the year 1167 and the Palace built after the terrible fire of the year 1794. There are also remains of the old moat and the wall.

On the visit there is also a stop at several of the royal rooms. The castle's hallways are decorated with portraits of the Danish royal family and each room serves a specific function. Some rooms stand out; the royal room, the royal library, the throne room, the tapestry room, the banquet room and the ballroom.

The royal stables house old carriages from the period. It is possible to see the crown horses, at the service of the Royal Guard.

An essential stop on your visit to the Palace is the Christiansborg tower, from where you will have spectacular views. The entrance to Christiansborg Tower remained a secret for almost a century, when only a few royals could access Copenhagen's tallest tower.

Today, the tower houses several rooms displaying sculptures and historical objects, a restaurant and a collection of photographs that tell the history of the Palace. Climbing the tower is free, you will not have to pay anything additional.

7. Enjoy like a dwarf in the Tivoli Gardens

At the end of the 19th century, Georg Carstensen, a Danish diplomat, asked King Christian VIII to build an amusement park in the city so that the inhabitants could have fun and not think about the political problems they were experiencing at that time.

Tivoli Amusement Park is the second oldest amusement park in the world, behind Dyrehavsbakken, also located in Denmark.

There are several attractions to enjoy to the fullest; Vertigo, Fatamorgana, Demon, Grand Prix, La Mina, The Star Flyer...

Best things to see and do in Copenhagen

8. Visit the Amalienborg Palace

Amalienborg Palace is another of the essential places to see in Copenhagen. The Palace has four buildings where the royal family still resides in winter. This complex is built around a square and right in the middle is the equestrian statue of monarch Frederick V, who ordered the construction of the Palace.

Chrisiansborg Palace suffered a fire, so the royal family had to take up residence in Amalienborg Palace.

The 4 buildings of the palace complex are in the Rococo style and were built in the 18th century.

  • Frederick VIII's Palace is the royal residence of the Crown Prince of Denmark, Frederick, and his family.

  • The Palace of Christian VII is the building intended for official events and the queen's guests of honor. It is not inhabited as such. This was the most expensive of the 4 Palaces to be built.

  • Christian VIII's Palace is the only palace open to the public and is home to the Amalienborg Museum. In it, you will find an exhibition where you will learn about the history of the Danish monarchy through stories, photographs and some royal stays.

  • The Palace of Christian IX is the building where Queen Margaret II of Denmark resides. If her flag is raised it means that the queen is in the Palace.

The Changing of the Guard in Copenhagen takes place when the Queen is in the Palace and is something to see. The royal soldiers begin their tour from Rosenborg Castle at 11:30 am and parade through the Latin Quarter, Ostergade, Kongens Nytorv and end the tour at Amalienborg Palace to change the guard.

Best things to see and do in Copenhagen

9. Climb the Round Tower, Rundetaarn

Climbing the Round Tower is an essential activity to do in Copenhagen. The tower, officially known as La Rundetaarn, houses the oldest active observatory in Europe and a telescope from 1929.

The tower was built in 1642 by order of King Christian IV, with the aim of creating the first astronomical observatory in Copenhagen.

For several centuries this tower was the epicenter of Danish astronomy. In it, in addition to the telescope, there are maps of constellations dating from that time.

Best things to see and do in Copenhagen

Best things to see and do in Copenhagen

10. Visit Rosenborg Castle

Rosenborg Castle is located in the heart of Copenhagen. It was the Danish King Christian IV who ordered the castle to be built in 1606 as a summer residence. Construction of the castle was not completed until 30 years later, in a Dutch Renaissance style, although over the years the castle has undergone several renovations.

This castle was a royal residence until 1710. From that moment on, the Castle housed the royal collection of jewels and other valuable objects, which are exhibited in some of its rooms and have remained intact since the 18th century.

To visit the Castle you must book a guided tour and during the tour you will be able to see the royal bedrooms decorated with furniture and decorative objects from the 18th century. The throne room, the tapestry room and a throne with a built-in toilet are some of the essential things to see in Rosenborg Castle.

Best things to see and do in Copenhagen

11. Don't miss the Marble Church of Copenhagen

In front of Amalienborg Palace is the Marble Church or Frederick's Church. Another essential thing to see in Copenhagen.

The Marble Church began to be built by order of King Frederick V in 1749, but the works were paralyzed due to lack of budget for 20 years.

The initial architect, Nicolai Eigtved, had designed a Rococo-style church, although it ended up being purely Baroque when it was completed 150 years later.

What draws the most attention is its green dome, 50 meters high and 31 meters in diameter.

Inside, the marble dome is decorated with paintings of the twelve apostles interspersed with medallions representing the sacraments of Catholicism. You can climb the dome for fantastic views of the city center and Amalienborg Palace.

Even if you are not a big fan of churches, this building is impressive and worth seeing.

The schedule to go up to the dome is in summer every day at 1:00 p.m. and in winter only on weekends at 1:00 p.m.

Best things to see and do in Copenhagen

12. Visit Frederiksborg Castle

Frederiksborg is the largest castle in Scandinavia and is currently home to the National History Museum.

King Christian IV, at the end of the 16th century, ordered the construction of this Renaissance-style Palace. It is located about 40km from Copenhagen and you can get there with an organized excursion or by renting a car.

It was used as a royal residence for a couple of centuries, until it suffered a fire in 1859 and the interior of the Castle had to be rebuilt.

Currently, the Castle houses the National History Museum and in its exhibitions you can also visit several rooms, among which the ceremonial room, the knights' room, the audience room, the chapel and the garden stand out. baroque.

You can arrive by Bus (line 301 and 302) you can arrive by train and from the train station to the castle there is a 15-minute walk. You can hire a rental car, and then visit the surroundings or you can also book an excursion to the castle.

13. Come to know the Church of San Salvador in Copenhagen

The Church of San Salvador with its spiral tower is one of the most popular buildings in the city.

The Church of San Salvador is located in the Christianshavn district and is the best example of Baroque architecture in Copenhagen.

Inside the church there is an organ that is more than 3 centuries old.

The highlight is its tower. It is possible to go up it to enjoy the views, yes, you will have to climb 400 steps.

Best things to see and do in Copenhagen

14. Take a trip to Kronborg Castle

Kronborg Castle is located on the shores of the Baltic Sea and was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2000.

At the beginning of the 15th century, King Eric of Pomerania decided to build a fortress in northern Denmark to collect tolls from all cargo ships that wanted to cross the Baltic Sea. A century later, a Renaissance Palace was built on top of that fortress. Krnoborg Castle has had several uses throughout history; It has been a military center, a prison and the temporary residence of the current king of Denmark. Currently, the Castle houses the headquarters of the Maritime and Trade Museum.

It is located 45 km from Copenhagen and the best way to get there is by renting a car or booking an excursion:

15. Torvehallerne

Located in the center of Copenhagen is Torvehallerne. Here you will find more than 50 food stalls and artisan, organic products...

You will be able to eat, have a drink and get lost between the stops. Plus, it's a covered market! So if it rains it's a great plan.

16. Don't miss the Grundtvig Church

Located in the Bispebjerg district of the city is the Grundtvig's Church. With a totally different architecture from what you will see in the city. The Church was built between 1921 and 1926.

The architect merged the modern and geometric shapes of brick expressionism with classical lines and certain gothic tendencies. The building is impressive. Don't miss it!

Best things to see and do in Copenhagen

17. Marvel at the Royal Library of Denmark

As a good book geek, I love libraries. And I always try to visit all the libraries of the destinations I travel to. This undoubtedly leaves you with your mouth open.

King Frederick III founded the first library in Denmark in 1648, with the purpose of bringing together his collection of works by European authors in the same place. Over time this collection of books grew and eventually the library became associated with the University of Copenhagen. Currently, the Royal Library has more than 30 million documents.

The new building that houses the Royal Library of Denmark was built in 1999. It is a spectacular building known as Black Diamond and is the largest library in all of Scandinavia.

18. Enjoy Islamic art at The David Collection

Very close to the castle gardens there is a very interesting and free museum.

It has one of the most important collections of Islamic art in Europe, as well as European handicrafts from the 18th century to modern art. It is a good option if it rains and you want to take refuge visiting some of the interesting and cultural places in the city.

19. Visit the NY Carlsberg Glyptotek

The NY Carlsberg Glyptoteca is a museum with a large collection. Here you will find Greek, Roman, Etruscan and Egyptian sculptures donated to the Danish government by the Carlsberg family, owners of the Carlsberg brewery. The Egyptian art exhibition is the one that attracts the most attention, it is very complete and interesting. There are also works by the most famous such as Van Gogh, Monet, Cézanne, Picasso...

20. Stroll through Kastellet

Kastellet is an excellent example of what the fortified city was like in the 17th century. Today, it is a very well-preserved historical monument with some buildings such as a church or a beautiful mill flanked by a canyon. It is a great public park to disconnect and walk without haste.


I hope you enjoy your trip to Denmark very much and that this article has been useful to you. You can continue reading many more related articles on the blog.

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A hug and see you soon!


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