- first – coffee. Then, pastries.
- then, a visit to the National Museum
- find our where Princess Mary lives
- climb the golden stairs of the spire of Our Saviour’s
- see the city from a different height at Tivoli Gardens
As the Danish say,
Laziness is the devil’s pillow
So let’s get started!
We begin our day with a fresh coffee from our hotel – the very centrally located First Hotel Kong Frederik. The coffee is from Nespresso coffee pods, and it completely free for guests – very helpful for our early morning start. Have a look below at our photo and check out all the celebrity guests who have stayed here, including John Malcovich, Sting, Dire Straits, and Robbie Williams. A definite celebrity tip.
Next, we head down cobblestone streets of the Strøget, purportedly the world’s oldest and largest pedestrian walking street. There’s a surfeit of excellent bakeries and patisseries here, and the variety will make your mouth water as your jeans already begin to feel a bit tighter.
Grab some breakfast, and march on down to the National Museum.
The national museum of Denmark, it contains from all the back in the Stone Age, through the Viking Age, the Middle Ages, the Renaissance and up into contemporary history.
There’s a wealth of treasure here, as one would expect from a Viking empire, including this incredible, 3,000 year old piece – the Sun Chariot.
We’re off to pay a visit to Princess Mary, who found her Prince Charming in a little pub in little old Sydney, Australia.
During the Sydney Olympics, Mary found herself chatting to a nice man who called himself “Fred”. Romance bloomed, and eventually, and we’re sure to her immense surprise, “Fred” revealed himself to be Prince Fred – specifically, Prince Frederik of Denmark, and heir to the throne.
Mary and Fred were engaged by 2003 and shortly after, in a story to warm everyone’s hearts, Frederik was lucky enough to marry the love of his life.
See – if you wish upon enough stars, dreams do come true – even for Prince Charming.
Mary now lives in Amalienborg Palace, and there are guided tours throughout the apartments. Make sure to try and spot the polar bear skin rug, and if you look close enough you might even seen the ghost that haunts these halls…
It’s lunchtime! We weren’t lucky enough to get a table at Noma, currently ranked as the world’s best restaurant, but there are plenty of foodie delights to be had in Copenhagen. Try some “smooji” – Danish tapas, or have dinner at one of Copenhagen’s many Michelin-starred restaurants.
Walk off lunch by heading down to Nyhavn, home to brightly-coloured heritage fishing buildings.
From here, we can take the long walk to see the tiny Little Mermaid statue that is both world-famous and rather a bit of a let down.
Although very famous, and an iconic representation of Copenhagen, the Little Mermaid statue is probably best viewed as an excuse for a nice walk, than an attraction in and of itself. In reality, it is quite small and, although pretty, on a tight timeframe does not really warrant the effort.
By all means, go if you must. But we’re taking a cruise.
After our cruise, we head towards the Church of Our Saviour. Ascending the steps up the spire, we’re soon out in the brisk Danish air and whirling around to catch 360° views of the city of Copenhagen. Be warned, for the vertiginous views and relatively tight climb may not be for those who struggle at height.
We are almost on top of the ‘grungy’ neighbourhood of Christiania. If you’re interested in counter-culture, natural practices, or street art, you may wish to visit but make sure you follow the rules. Locals will guide you around and you can see many of the original buildings, that were built by their residents, still standing today.
Finally, it’s time for the real treat.
Tivoli Gardens is the second oldest amusement park in the world, after the first oldest amusement park, also in Copenhagen! The park opened on August 15, 1843, and with 4.033 million visitors in 2012, ranks fourth in most-visited amusement parks in Europe.
We went to the Tivoli Gardens as an afterthought, thinking that this theme park could only really be suitable for kids.
We were wrong.
It was a blast, and we realised, high above Copenhagen, swinging around in the air with the city all around us, that there’s still a little kid inside all of us.
Don’t make our mistake of going only three hours before you leave Copenhagen, and in fact, you may want to spend the evening there when the neon lights come on and the park becomes a carnival.