Words: @oliverinstead • Photos: David & myself • Location: Museum of Contemporary Art, Copenhagen Street Food, iBagel
Scandinavia is somewhere I had always wanted to explore more of, which explains why I’ve been there twice already this year. Earlier this year I took a sort of impromptu trip to the Norwegian capital (cue my Oslo ‘Five things’ post here) and ended up having the best time so with this Copenhagen trip, the mentality was very much “let’s do it all over again!!”
Now that I’ve been there and done that, here are five things I learned that I would love to share with everyone planning a trip to Copenhagen, specifically during wintertime…
one Don’t let the cold put you off
Throughout the entire trip, the temperature never quite peaked beyond the 0 °C mark but you do need to realise that there are pros and cons to travelling in the winter here in Europe – Pro; the flights are generally cheaper. Con; in most cases, the destination is freezing. Pro; the Crimbo vibe is strong, which is always appreciated. Con; having to pack heavier layers and that translates into extra weight, which then translates to extra baggage fees.
So, how much are you willing to compromise?
two See Copenhagen from the waters
Copenhagen is an old harbour and maritime city so naturally, the best way to see it is via the waterways and the local businesses ain’t missing that trick as there are ample amount of boat tour operators!
Quick tip : I would advice taking a boat ride the first thing you do in Copenhagen if possible because this can help cementing your understanding of the city’s geography and all major sights’ whereabouts. It certainly helped me.
three Tivoli Gardens is an experience
The Christmas market in Tivoli Gardens is a tradition among the Copenhageners, or so I read, so if you only go to one Christmas market here, make sure it’s Tivoli. Without a doubt, it was one of the highlights on this trip for me personally. It’s difficult to describe the atmosphere in a blog entry… not to mention it just wouldn’t do it any justice. As cheesy as it may sound, it really is a see-it-to-believe-it kind of experience.
four No shortage of pigging-out places
If you’re after delicious yet exotic treats that will keep you and your bank balance healthy, take note of this Danish word – “Papirøen” even if it’s the only local lingo you know. A popular hangout spot for the locals and visitors alike – under this one roof housed a range of cuisines from Korean to Colombian. Pictured above is the flavoursome vegan “meat” burger with plantain chips from Latienda (website).
Apart from Copenhagen Street Food on Papirøen, you can find good lunchtime snacks in all corners of Copenhagen. For the best bagel, I recommend iBagel (website) outside Copenhagen Central Station / not far from Tivoli Gardens. If you seek somewhere truly unique, you need to check out MORMORS (website) – it’s very much an institution with a one-of-a-kind vibe you can’t find anywhere else.
five Venture beyond Copenhagen
Everywhere I go, I try to get my hands on one of the city passes because, I cannot stress this enough, they do pay for all the attractions worth seeing and then some.
Albeit a little pricey to a point where it’d make most budget travellers cringe if not cry, the Copenhagen Card (website) does cover not only the sights but also all the city transportation, including the buses, harbour buses, Metro and trains. We took advantage of this and hopped on a train headed to a city west of Copenhagen called Roskilde where we visited the Museum of Contemporary Art, the beautiful Roskilde Cathedral… and I also petted a reindeer for the first time. I wouldn’t classify that a day trip per se, but it would be totally doable if you were to spend a whole day out in a nearby town / city outside the capital.
I hope you’ve found this enjoyable / informative because I do have so much more travelling planned for the months ahead… yes, I did just say “months” because I’m going back to Southeast Asia soon and you can bet your sweet plantain chips that I’ll be documenting the adventure on the blog, social media and maybe a couple of extra channels (?) so follow me on Instagram and Twitter so you don’t miss any exciting moment. 😀
Have you ever been to Copenhagen? When was the last time you took a Christmassy trip, and what did you learn from it? Let me know in the comments down below and I will see you in the next post!