Nyhavn at night

Things To Do in Copenhagen: 2024 Guide


Then you’ve come to the right place!

Copenhagen is a great city for short stays and can be easily explored in just a few. There are lots of things to do in Copenhagen including exploring royal palaces, visiting cultural landmarks and indulging in fine dining. 

While it isn’t the cheapest of cities, budget travellers can certainly navigate the city at a lower cost if they search for good deals.

Accommodation options in Copenhagen are pretty much endless, and the Copenhagen Card opens so many doors by allowing holders access to free public transport and to many attractions on this list. 

This article will sum up the top 10 things to do in the city and give you lots of money-saving tips and tricks too! 

10 Things To Do in Copenhagen

The capital of Denmark bursts with pride over its royal family, so their royal palaces feature a few times throughout this list. The city is also known for its impressive spires and towers, giving some great viewpoints over all of Copenhagen and beyond.

This list features 10 of the best things to do in the city and would fit perfectly into a short weekend trip.

1. Round Tower

While Copenhagen is known to be a city of many towers and spires, I think the Round Tower is the most impressive building in the city – and it certainly gives the best view. 

The Round Tower can be found right in the heart of Copenhagen’s commercial district and is unique in its design, hosting Europe’s oldest functioning observatory. 

Rather than the expected spiral staircase to the top of the tower, instead, there is a winding slope up several floors of the building. Before reaching the top, you’ll have a short trip up a flight of stairs and will then be greeted with Copenhagen’s greatest view, extending for miles on end.

The Round Tower gives a 360-degree view of the city so you can take excellent pictures in all directions – and even see as far as Malmö!

 2. Rosenborg Castle to Ammelianborg Palace

Rosenborg Castle has some great exhibits and rooms to explore, including its treasury. The crowns and grand royal jewels are very interesting to look at while the gardens are a great escape from the bustling city. Similarly, Ammelianborg Palace gives some great insight into the Royal Family’s lineage and their more current affairs. 

The best way to see both of these royal buildings is to march between them, following the Royal Guards during their changing ceremony.

The Changing of the Guard Ceremony occurs outside of Ammelianborg every day at 12 pm sharp. The best way to see the ceremony in its entirety is to book a slot to explore Rosenborg Castle at around 10 am, then depart from the gardens at 11.30 behind the guards as they march in time to their fabulous music. 

By noon, you’ll be standing in the square at Ammelianborg Palace, watching the ceremony take place with dozens of other bystanders wanting to catch a glimpse of the performance. 

Soldiers march through the city centre of Copenhagen as a part of their 'changing of the guard' ceremony.

Then, when the ceremony has finished (at around 12.10 pm), you can head to the Ammelianborg Palace museum, to tour the royal reception rooms that are open to the public.

Ticket prices for both Rosenborg and Ammelianborg are quite reasonable, but if you have a Copenhagen Card, then definitely use it to save yourself some money. Booking is recommended to ensure that you get into the slots that you need to be ready to follow the guards on their march. 

3. Freetown Christiania

Freetown Christiania is an interesting stop to make when on a trip to Copenhagen. As a partially autonomous district, Freetown Christiania has become known for dealing cannabis and its relaxed atmosphere.

While you most certainly should not buy any weed (the locals have said on many occasions that they want to end the trade and transform Christiania), you can certainly stroll through the area and take note of how the locals are interacting.

The area does appear to look almost abandoned in many spots with litter and graffiti all over the place, but it does have a certain charm to it, knowing that the people run the neighbourhood rather than a government.

While you might be inclined to take photos, it’s strongly advised that you don’t, particularly if there are locals in them. Cannabis trade is still illegal even if it is not largely policed, but the authorities are becoming more stringent on their monitoring due to increased gang violence.

If you see a “no photos” sign on the wall, then make sure to be respectful and put the camera away.

4. The Church of Our Saviour

The Chruch of Our Saviour is another impressive viewpoint in the city of Copenhagen. It is perhaps the prettiest of all the spires across the city and offers an excellent vantage point for seeing across the south of Copenhagen and Christiania in particular.

Infamous for its outdoor spiral staircase, the climb to the top is not for the faint of heart, with advice for those with vertigo to avoid the ascend. But the view from the top is more than worth it.

Entry to the tower is very reasonable and you can book in advance online, however, you may need to be flexible and book at the last minute as rain and wind mean the tower often has to close in the winter months. 

5. Toverhallerne

Toverhallerne is a fab stop for some food on the go or to stock up on some luxury pieces to take home with you.

Located just a short walk from Norreport metro station, the food hall is very easy to access and is open throughout the week, being particularly popular in the evenings. The very central location of the food hall makes it an excellent stop to stroll through, even if you’ve no intention of purchasing anything.

Toverhallerne is known for providing a huge range of sustainable and organic foods including cheeses, seafood and a range of vegan dishes. With high-quality food at every stall, you’re guaranteed to find something delicious!

6. City Canal Tour

Like Amsterdam, Copenhagen is built to be viewed from the water and so some of the best views of the city are found along the canals. 

A canal tour allows visitors the chance to see some city highlights that they might have otherwise missed such as the Opera House and industrial district and learn some interesting facts that they might not otherwise have known. 

View from the canal tour in Copenhagen.

The canal tour that is included in the Copenhagen Card is really good and the tour guides are very enthusiastic. With two separate stops for boarding, the tour is also quite flexible. 

7. Nyhavn

No one visits Copenhagen and misses out on the infamous Nyhavn, even if you haven’t heard of it or seen it before, you’re bound to stumble across it on a stroll around the city. 

Nyhavn is a very beautiful section of the canal with colourfully painted houses and traditional boats. You’ll see plenty of tourists lining the walkways getting photos of the wonderful scene.

With many cool bars and restaurants along the canal, Nyhavn is the perfect area to stop for an evening meal and enjoy the city lights as the sun sets.

8. Copenhagen Zoo

Copenhagen Zoo has been ranked as one of the best in Europe on many lists, and for good reason! While some travellers can feel a bit uneasy at the thought of zoos, Copenhagen Zoo can be great to settle your thoughts as the care of the animals is incredible.

The conservation efforts that the zoo is carrying out are very ethical and are tried and tested to make a huge difference. The enclosures of all of the animals are large and reflective of their natural habitats, with plenty of recreational spaces and enrichment activities.

The range of animals at the zoo is also quite impressive hosting two pandas and a number of polar bears. The zoo’s efforts to ensure that the animals are happy and healthy could not be more clear. All of the animals genuinely appear to be enjoying themselves and are highly interactive with the public. 

9. Tivoli Gardens

Tivoli Gardens is a must in Copenhagen and it is pretty hard to miss when leaving the central station. Tivoli Gardens is a huge amusement park with plenty of rides, stalls, restaurants and entertainment hubs.

Known to be particularly popular at Christmas time, Tivoli Gardens is a wonderfully exciting place to visit on your trip. An evening adventure is recommended to admire all of the wonderful lights and to enjoy the cosy atmosphere, but a visit during the day is just as impressive.

Girl faces away from the camera, looking on at the lights in Tivoli Gardens.

With focuses on several cultures across the park, you may feel more like you’re wandering through a distant nation than the centre of Denmark’s capital city.

One of the highlights of the park is the many rides – suitable for multiple age ranges and with different ticket options available for different categories, Tivoli Gardens can be enjoyed by every family member for an affordable price.

10. Botanic Gardens and Palm House

The Botanic Gardens and Palm House located close to Rosenborg Castle are the perfect spot for a relaxing stroll. Accessible for free the Botanic Gardens is very enchanting with its winding paths and beautiful greenery, while the Copenhagen Card or small fee will allow you entrance to the beautiful Palm House to explore several native and exotic species.

Botanic gardens in Copenhagen with towering leaves and bushes over a girl taking photographs.

The Palm House highlight is most definitely the winding staircase which takes you to a hovering platform at the top of the structure to view the amazing plants from above.

With temperature and water controls specific to each room, the Palm House does an amazing job at housing even the most temperamental of plants and the range is very impressive.

Things To Do in Copenhagen: Conclusion

And there you have it, 10 things to do and see while in Copenhagen!

There are lots of things to enjoy about Copenhagen and you’ll likely stumble across some hidden gems on your trip along with all of the top-recommended spots.

Whatever you choose to spend your time doing in the city, it’s sure to be a fun and memorable experience!

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