Copenhagen: My New Favourite Place on the Planet

Anyone who follows my Instagram feed will be well aware Craig and I spent a beautiful few days last week in Copenhagen.

I’ve returned so completely enchanted with this corner of Scandinavia, its laid back atmosphere, paintbox buildings and sparkling late-summer sunlight that I quite fancy becoming Danish, if anyone knows where to apply!

Craig spends a fair bit of time working up in Glasgow, the upside of which is he collects masses of hotel points for us to use as and where we see fit.  Our hotel was a little way out of the city, perhaps not ideal in terms of location, though the metro station was only 5 minutes away, and the view from our room on the 22nd floor was pretty spectacular.

If you've not had enough of me banging on about my holiday, here are a few of my favourite Copenhagen things.


Fairytale Architecture

Nyhavn, with its picture perfect canal, lined with a paintbox of town houses is the classic Copenhagen image. I’m sure you’ll have seen it; just as perfect at dusk as it is in sparkling Scandinavian sunshine. My favourite thing though, might just be all the spires: dotted throughout the city, topping fairytale castles, red brick churches and stock exchange with gilt and verdigris. (The stock exchange spire is a particularly whimsical creation twisted from four dragon’s tails!)


Street Food Markets

In fact all the food is amazing. New Nordic cuisine has led to an emphasis on the local and seasonal which sparked some real creativity. Creativity refreshingly extended to veggie dishes too! I’m sure there must be some sub-standard places catering solely to tourists, but we never came across one, even along Nyhavn. Perhaps the Danes are just above that; I got the distinct impression they value quality above all else.  A word of caution though - as with all things, beautiful quality and creativity don’t come cheaply.

We found two brilliant street food markets which hurt the wallet a little less and offer a plethora of mouthwatering options.
If you pick the right exit from Norreport metro station you pop up right in front of Torvehallerne KBH.  A pair of glass buildings full of culinary delights, divided by a veg and flower market and surrounded by seating. Options range from traditional smorrebrod and herring dishes to tapas and sushi. Bakeries piled high with Danish pastries are perfect for a coffee stop.
Cross the bridge over the canal from Nyhavn to Christianshavn, and follow the stream of people to Copenhagen Street Food. A disused warehouse crammed full of little independent stalls house in a variety of caravans and sheds.  On a Friday evening it can only be described as a food night-club: long tables full of people up for a good night, dimly lit, and the Hot 8 Brass Bandpouring out from a stack of speakers at the entrance. Totally joyous and easily my favourite place we ate the whole time.


Green Spaces

Every city needs little oases to retreat to on a sunny afternoon, and Copenhagen is studded with little gems, often where you least expect them.  My absolute favourite is just one of these - tucked away right in the centre of things, close to the parliament building, is the Library Garden: a pretty little oasis reached through an archway and bordered by historic buildings. Shady trees to stretch out under, listening to the sound of fountains, watching flowers dancing in the breeze. Bliss.
Tivoli Gardens is a bit of an institution and perfect in the early evening as its twinkling lights start to appear. Lovely for a wander (or a ride on a vintage roller-coaster anyone?), if you time it right you might catch Harlequin and Pierrot in the pantomime theatre. Tivoli really comes into its own though after dark.