This is a truly wonderful city and I feel I could spend two weeks in Copenhagen, but if you only have 48 hours, worry not – you can pack it in!
You’re on vacation so no need to wake up early, catch breakfast before the buffet closes and if you are feeling particularly energetic rent a bike from the reception. I am not averse walking around to absorb more so turn left out of the hotel and a couple of doors down and you will find the most beautiful matcha tea bar. I recommend the cashew matcha latte and then wander down Vesterbro’s Main Street, Istedgade, popping into the gorgeous vintage and designer furniture stores.
About half way down you will see the old gates of the city, which protected the city from gunfire, and through them is a beautifully picturesque park with a cafe in it. Saunter down the main street until you’ve had enough, the funkier clothing boutiques are towards the far end, and then make your way to the old cattle market or Kødbyen.
This old moo-town has now been converted into a surreal oh so cool area, with bars and restaurants mostly but also a couple of galleries and shops. You must check out MaxJenny! at Høkerboderne 17, a fairly unknown Danish designer I have discovered who does slightly whacky digital prints. All her pieces are one offs and she prints on everything from gym bags to cocktail dresses! I love her take on ponchos and rainwear and with festival season coming up this is a great opportunity to upgrade your weather protection. The market often has a street food area within it but even when there isn’t, locals often gravitate to Mother at Høkerboderne 9-15 for its legendary brunch parties and all day pizza.
Alternatively try Warpigs, an industrial barbecue restaurant which has a microbrewery called Mikkeller in the back. It is at Flaesketorvet 25 just around the corner from another. The beers here are very creative so even if you veer away from beer normally taste their grapefruit or cookies and cream brews.
Now for more walking! Walk through the commercial part of the city past the town hall in Radhuspladen and once you are past the obligatory giant H&M and & Other Stories at Ostergade you can turn left at Pilestrade and right down Montegarde and keep on going. Here you will find yourself in a much more upscale neighbourhood with wonderful boutiques and bars and eventually you will reach the park that houses Rosenborg Castle which is so insta-worthy. Once through the park you will now be walking through an old part of the city with row after row of traditional two up two down houses. This is where the factory workers lived, sometimes in very poor conditions and with no electricity, but now living here is very desirable as it’s so close to the city centre.
I am leading you to a tremendous new restaurant called Veve at Dampfærgevej 7 but please note you will need a reservation. It’s in a recently funkified industrial area a little way down the highway. It opened five months ago, the chef Kiin Kiin has a Michelin star for his other restaurant and is clearly going after another with this place. I really hope he gets one and so will you! Here you can feast on a six course vegetarian meal that I’m sure even meat heads would love. I’m a fairly adventurous eater and have tried all sorts of molecular gastronomy but I loved eating here because the food, for once, challenged my palette in a positive way. Some of the presentation is downright batty but so fun and I really enjoyed the six (!) pre meal snacks. Opt for wine pairing or juice pairing depending on your mood, how cool is that?!
You’ll be so full following your meal you will probably want to crash but if you’re a night owl, head to Paper Island and party on!
Again no rush this morning but after breakfast turn left and left again out of the hotel and you will get to the main station. From here get the train to Humlebaek (40 mins), a magical journey through the countryside and you will end up at the famous Louisiana Museum of Modern art. From the garden of the museum you can roll down to the deepest blue sea. It’s only a ten minutes walk from the station and on arrival at the museum I encourage you to head straight to the sculpture gardens. The sea breeze and grassy knolls with their Henry Moore works are unforgettable. I much preferred the architecture of the museum and the way way the light floods in through the huge glass windows and corridors to the actual artworks. Grab some snacks perhaps and sit outside with a glass of wine before you head back to the capital.
Paper Island is an island connected by a walking bridge to the mainland. Find it at Trangravsvej 14, hal 7 & 8. It is where the giant printing presses for all the newspapers were housed. It is now full of amazing street food, bars and a centre for culture. Fuel up before heading to the place where Walt Disney got all his inspiration for Disneyland.
Tivoli (Vesterbrogade 3) is one of the oldest theme parks in the world but it’s also the most beautiful – and this is coming from someone who used to work for Disney. The gardens are stunning, the theatre and restaurants are absolutely beautiful and the rides are awesome! If you are a real daredevil, try the big red rollercoaster at the back whilst wearing virtual reality goggles, even more scary! There is no greasy junk food served here, I recommend eating in an intricate white palace called Nimb or if you fancy something more relaxed there is an excellent Italian restaurant at the bottom of the gardens called Mazzoli’s. Do stay for the spectacular laser show over the lake before the park closes.
If you have time before you leave saunter down to Nyhavn and go on an hour long canal boat tour to see the opera house, the little mermaid statue and other wonderful buildings of the city. It’s windy on the water though so wrap up warm. Grab some cake or a sandwich from the Royal Smushi Cafe at Amagertorv 6 by the epic furniture store Illum on your way back to the airport.
I’m pretty sure you will be coming back soon!
Ps. Did you know that Danish tap water is exceptionally pure and has been voted one of the tastiest in the world. Take your favourite bottle and keep filling up!