Ever visited a city and after touring the crowded attractions, you feel you deserve some r&r? From the long list of possibilities in Copenhagen, here are 10 places where you can relax and recover from the busy sightseeing tours and attractions.
Start from a familiar spot, Copenhagen Central Station. Walk from the station’s main entrance towards the street, Vesterbrogade, which will be in front of you. The bus stop is across the street from the Grand Hotel. Take bus 26 heading towards Frederiksberg. Ask the driver to drop you at Frederiksberg Runddel – about six stops away. Walk back a few steps from the bus and you will be at the main entrance to the first stop, Copenhagen’s most popular garden.
Frederiksberg Gardens, a wonderland with trees, birds, moat, lakes, fish and a lovely Chinese pavilion, is a must see. To the left of the main gate, you will find the Royal Danish Horticultural Society’s Garden, a beautifully designed area, with a wide variety of flowers, plants and water features. The rest of the garden stretches all the way to Frederiksberg Palace, and Copenhagen Zoo, where you can catch a glimpse of some of the animals. To the right of the main gate is the other end of the garden. A lane leads through the garden out to the street, Smallegade, where you can take bus 9A or 31 to the Main Station or Vesterport Station. Remember to bring a blanket, picnic basket or something to eat in your backpack. If you visit the park on a hot day, be prepared to see Danes – especially women – baring their ivory skin to the sun.
The Copenhagen Lakes, located about a km from Frederiksberg Gardens, has its most southerly point near the Planetarium on the street, Gammelkongevej. There are three artificial lakes, namely (Saint George’s Lake (Sankt Jørgens Sø), Student Lake (Peblinge Sø) and Black Pond Lake (Sortedams Sø) which stretch north to Østerbro. Take a trip on the 6.5 km long path or sit on a bench and watch the birds, joggers, dog walkers and others go by. If you prefer, you can walk over to the water’s edge to see the fish and observe the swans, usually with their cygnets behind them. That might tempt you to rent a row boat or a swan-shaped pedal boat and go for a sail. Enjoy the views and wonderful atmosphere from one of the many cafes along the lakes, some with decks which stretch into the water.
This next spot might seem a bit spooky but try it. It is possibly the last place you would think of as a place to relax. You might even think only a person that is touched, or one who watches too many horror movies would recommend this. However, this place will render you speechless. Do you remember the expression, “as silent as the grave?” Well, prepare yourself for something out of the ordinary. A park-like graveyard! And guess what? There are many in Copenhagen and the rest of Denmark! One of the most popular graveyards, Assistens Cemetery, is on Nørrebrogade. Amongst the plots, you will find perfectly manicured gardens with trees, a variety of flowers and places to sit and contemplate the future. Have a snack – if your stomach allows. You will live to tell the tale. Assistens Cemetery is where famous Danes such as Søren Kirkegaard and Hans Christian Andersen are buried.
After recovering, head towards Nørreport Station and make a right turn at the store, Elgiganten, to see this next spot. Ørstedsparken is a delightful area surrounded by beautiful trees where you can hear the birds sing on a glorious day. The grassy incline slopes down to a lake which reflects the trees in the clear water. This is the perfect spot to take pictures on the grass or benches. If you forgot to bring your lunch, Torvehallerne, located just a few minutes away on Nørrebrogade, sells a variety of meals, drinks and snacks, so grab a bite to eat, or enjoy it in the park.
Walk back to Nørreport Station and look for the grocery store, Netto. Make a right on the street, Gothersgade, look to your left and you will see a royal spot. It is the King’s Garden with its best feature – Rosenborg Castle. Tour the Castle for a fee, but enjoy the garden at no cost. The lovely surroundings will beckon you to sit, people watch and soak up the sun on a hot day. Don’t be surprised at the number of sunbathers religiously getting tanned in the garden.
If you leave the King’s Garden from Gothersgade, the Botanical Gardens will be to your right – just across the street from Nørreport Station. It is a pleasant surprise right in the middle of busy Nørreport, so if you blink you will miss it. Go through the gate and be wowed by the variety of plants, trees and flowers. Check out the glasshouses – especially the large Palm House – which have a variety of plants and trees. If you get thirsty, there is a café on site which serves drinks and refreshments. You can also buy a few souvenirs if you wish.
From the Botanical Gardens’ entrance, go left towards the National Gallery and take bus 26 – across the street – which will bring you to this next oasis. Many people go to Langelinie to see one of Denmark’s most visited attractions, the Little Mermaid, but not all are aware of the fantastic natural surroundings close by at the Citadel (Kastellet). Located near the main street, which leads to Østerport Station, this is the place to be during the pleasant months from spring to autumn. The marvellous views include a windmill, moat, a church and the enchanting Gefion Fountain (Gefionspringvandet). The fountain is a popular stop for tourists from all over the world who come on foot or via tour buses. Legend has it that Gefion Fountain was formed by the goddess, Gefjun and her four sons whom she turned into oxen. But that is just part of the story. Get the rest here.
A 15-minute walk or a 7-minute bike ride from Østerport Station will take you to one of Copenhagen’s largest parks. Fælledparken has, among other things, a dance pavilion, barbecue areas, outdoor chess and ball games. This is the ideal spot for running, walking, playing games and skating. There are flower gardens and plenty of green areas, especially by the lake, where you can claim a spot for you and your friends and family with your blankets and picnic baskets. This is Copenhagen’s most visited park, so expect to find locals and visitors taking advantage of all the facilities/amenities on offer. Fælledparken also hosts concerts and carnival and is next door to Parken, the national stadium.
Take a short trip to the Deer Park (Dyrehaven), located near Denmark’s oldest amusement park, Bakken. It is only 10 minutes north of Copenhagen and the S-train drops you within walking distance. You will feel just like Elizabeth Bennett in “Pride and Prejudice” as you stroll through the woods and experience fabulous surroundings, peace and tranquillity. You might also be moved to say as she did, “Beautiful!” Sit on the grass or bench and enjoy views of the woods, birds, deer, horse drawn carriages and the ocean. A few minutes into your walk, you will chance upon Hermitage Hunting Lodge once used by Danish King, Christian V, to host his royal banquets. Get a history lesson about the location here before your trip.
Head back to Nørreport via the S-train. Take the Metro heading for West Amager and stop at Ørestad Station. Our next stop is within walking distance of the station. It is Amager Common (Amagerfælled), a wonderful paradise with a “filthy” history. While it is close to rapid urban development, trains, Metro and buses, this is an oasis in Ørestad. It is a flat area with wetlands which welcomes joggers, sunbathers, anglers, cyclists, bikers, dog walkers, hikers and picnic lovers. When in season, enjoy a variety of fruits and berries, or fill your bags and use them to make jam and tarts. Plans are in the works to develop the area and provide more trails and additional recreation.
Enjoy your tour of 10 of Copenhagen’s relaxing spots. The tour can be done in a day or two depending on how early you decide to start or where you stay. We offer three city hostels which are close to the locations above.
Danhostel Copenhagen City is centrally located just a few minutes from the Main Station.
Danhostel Copenhagen Bellahøj lies in quiet surroundings just 15 minutes from the city.
Danhostel Copenhagen Amager is next to Amagerfælled in the area known as Ørestad.
Have fun on your trip in Wonderful Copenhagen!