In this article of our winter travel series, we invited our fellow blogger Danny Grainger of Danny Explores to present the Cool Things to do in Copenhagen in Winter. We are completely convinced, what about you?
Copenhagen has been known for many years as the happiest city in the world. The Danish Capital comes to life in winter, and if you really want to experience the City’s true beauty, then the colder months are the best time to visit! There’s something for everyone to do, from world-famous theme parks to some mesmerizing history and culture – the perfect mix for a winter getaway.
Why should you visit in winter?
In Copenhagen, there’s an abundance of things to do during the winter months. You can eat and drink at the Christmas markets, relax in the beautiful gardens and green spaces of the city, or even get involved with festivals and music concerts. If you’re an explorer and love visiting less crowded places, then Winter is a great time to visit Copenhagen. Colder weather brings smaller crowds and cheaper accommodation! You’ll also find the queues to attractions reduced, and the city will be quieter on the whole.
Where should you stay in Copenhagen?
One of the most important parts of visiting somewhere new is deciding where to stay. In order to get the most out of your stay in Copenhagen, it’s important to make sure you stay fairly central. If you’re visiting for the first time, then the best place to stay is in Indre By, which is the old town. This is the most central location and is close to all the main attractions. Check in the map below some of the best accommodations in Indre By.
So, without further ado, let’s get into the best things to do in Copenhagen in Winter…
10 things to do in Copenhagen in winter
Take a canal tour in the Nyhavn District
Have you ever seen photos of the beautiful colored houses that line the canals of Copenhagen? Welcome to the Nyhavn district, where the city comes to life! The buildings here will catch your gaze by day, and then as night falls, the district will come to life in a new way. The Bars and restaurants will soon fill up, and you’ll be able to sample some fine late-night Danish dining with a beer.
Freetown Christiana is one of the strangest places in all of Copenhagen. If visiting, you must make sure to stay alert and also not take photos of locals, or they may challenge you and become aggressive. This part of the city is free for all to visit, but there is a lot of organized crime. For years the area operated under its own laws and was independent of the City of Copenhagen until local authorities took back control in 2004.
Hippies set the town up in the early ’70s, and it’s well known for its cannabis trade. There are still around 850 residents living here to this day. You’ll find some amazing street art, sculptures, shacks, and of course many stalls selling marijuana. It’s highly advised that you do not buy drugs from here as people can be dangerous.
The Little Mermaid
The small bronze statue of the little mermaid is located on the Langelinie Promenade. The statue is just over a meter tall and is often referred to as the symbol of Copenhagen. Hans Christian Andersen of Denmark wrote the original Little Mermaid story, which later became a Disney hit. The statue represents the history of Hans and his popular story of the mermaid who wished to give up her life in the sea to be with the man she loved on land.
This is another one of Copenhagen’s free attractions, which can get very busy in the summer months, so visiting in the winter will mean fewer crowds and more selfies.
Tivoli Gardens is the second oldest theme park in the whole world. The park, which is tucked in the center of the bustling city, is yet another park of Denmark that inspired Walt Disney. You’ll see snowmen, stunning Christmas lights, and plenty to keep the kids entertained too. Inside Tivoli, you’ll have the chance to experience the world’s oldest wooden roller-coaster, among many other rides. If adrenaline isn’t your thing, then you’ll probably be more suited to the ice rink or some of the amazing light displays on a show! Take a quick walk around Tivoli’s own lake, grab a bite to eat, and let the whole family enjoy the winter wonderland.
Copenhagen has a host of palaces to choose from, all of which have their own individual history and tales to tell. Rosenborg is the home of the Danish crown jewels and one of the world’s most renowned collections of Venetian glass. The palace is perfect for looking around on a dull day or if you’re interested in the Monarchy. If that’s not your thing, you’ll also find some beautiful gardens which are free to stroll around.
If you plan on visiting the highly popular museum there, it’s advised you to book your tickets in advance to avoid disappointment. Oh, and make sure you don’t touch anything.
Lunch in the Latin quarter
If you’re looking for more colorful houses, then head over to the Latin quarter. This area of Copenhagen is littered with hip cafes serving traditional Danish food and some of the City’s most beautiful architecture. The area gets its name from when the university was situated in the city area; the language spoken at that time was Latin.
If you want to check out some history, then the women’s museum will give you a great insight into gender equality and how women’s rights have changed over the years. If you’d rather do something a bit more exciting the area is still known for its lively atmosphere and has a few nightclubs.
Climb the Rundertaarn (Round tower)
Also found in the Latin Quarter you’ll find the round tower. The tower was built as an observatory in the 17th century. It’s also part of the Trinitatis Church which was used by the university as a chapel and library. As you climb the tower, you’ll ascend a moderate spiral ramp that leads all the way to the top of the structure. The old library room is only accessible via the ramp and is now host to art exhibitions and concerts.
The Round Tower has a large telescope at the top, which you will be able to see for yourself; it’s the largest operating observatory in the whole of Europe.
Copenhagen Christmas markets
Looking to do some last-minute Christmas shopping? Or maybe you want to enjoy some street food and a beer? The Christmas markets in Copenhagen have got you covered. Check out the markets in Nytorv square (H. C. Anderson markets), which are always decorated with thousands of Christmas lights. You’ll be able to shop to your heart’s content for gifts, decorations and let the kids meet Santa Claus.
Take some time out and have a hot chocolate or something a little stronger after a long day exploring the city.
Copenhagen Botanical Gardens
If the cold is getting a little bit too much, then maybe you need to go check out Copenhagen’s beautiful Botanical gardens. The gardens are located in the center, so if you want some time out from the cold or you simply love being surrounded by palm trees, this is the place for you!
The gardens are open all year round, and there’s a small fee to enter, but with over 13,000 species of plants and flowers from all around the world (including many from Denmark), you’ll have plenty to see and learn.
CopenHill Ski Slope
If you’re looking for a ski holiday this winter, then Copenhagen probably isn’t the top destination on your list. But maybe it should be! If you love to ski and want to experience it in a whole new way, then a trip to Copenhill might be perfect for you. The amazing waste to energy power plant in the heart of the city was built in 2017. The plant aims to help Copenhagen to become a green city, using the city’s waste and turning it into useable energy for Copenhagen’s people.
On top of the plant is where you’ll find the real fun, though. The 85m sloped artificial ski slope roof is a year-round attraction to both locals and tourists. It might not be the cheapest attraction in Copenhagen, but there are very few places in the world where you can ski and take in a stunning cityscape!
About the author
Danny is a travel blogger from the UK with a passion for travel and adventure. In his spare time, he loves to get outdoors and explore new and exciting locations. You can check out his latest adventures at
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