Copenhagen can be defined by its famous word ‘hygge’. Without a literal translation, it loosely means a comforting and warm atmosphere, which is exactly what you need for a break away in a cold country. From candles in every cafe and warming dishes with various coffees, there some things you just need to learn for yourself, and was how I spent my week in Copenhagen.
Copenhagen's architecture reminded me of a mix with Amsterdam and Greenwich village NYC. The structure and beauty of the big windowed and tall buildings, with the chilled biking locals milling around. I challenge you not to look up at the multicoloured and visually interesting buildings. One hot spot for tourists is Nyhavn, a long line of multicoloured buildings that line a river but personally it was my apartment goals all over the place.
The bike porn
For any keen cyclist, (and speaking as one who isn't) the sheer volume of bikes is amazing, as well as how beautiful they all are. With the cycle lanes nearly as wide as the roads, and more bikes than cars it seemed, you'll be wanting to invest in your own complete with a copper bell. Until you remember you live in London and don't have the chic style/safety measures of Copenhagen. Sadly the city stopped doing free bikes in 2014 but you can get reasonably well priced versions which come complete with a built in GPS.
There are a few things I discovered not worth your time but definitely a few to spend your time on. First is the Design Museum; free for all still under 26 years old, it has some great elements of the Nordic designs with funky chairs, modern light features and some history with the Japanese tea and fashion as well. Including a cute gift shop and cafe of course.
Then of course there is the Hans Christian Anderson grave. Maybe not fun for many but the cemetery itself is gorgeous with the tree lined walks and being the man I focused my dissertation on (as well as sharing a birthday with) in my opinion it's worth a walk out.
A few other places are definitely worth seeing such as the Superkilen park, with amazing striped streets and of course Christiania; a place outside of Danish laws and where hash is sold within what felt like a hippy commune. Walk through derelict buildings next to amazingly bright graffiti and artwork, you aren't allowed to take photos on pusher street where trolleys of hash are walked about and the stalls have army camp nets all over. But it's definitely one to experience if only to see such a different part of Copenhagen.
The brunching and shopping
I won't lie to you and say I experienced the number one cafe in the world, Noma, which is based in Copenhagen. Up to £500 for a meal and a 3 month waiting list, that was triple my budget. But brunch something to be embraced, with tasty lattes and Smørrebrød (open sandwiches) as well as many a porridge, coffee or avocado themed meal.
And with many of the brands that originated from the Scandinavian countries, such as H&M, Cos, & Other Stories and Monki, it would be hard to resist. Even I couldn't avoid some of the cute little boutiques that had copper homeware, candles galore and quirky pieces you just know you need (even if you don't know how to take it back with you).
Copenhagen is a place to be explored. Walk around, find a park (I recommend the Royal Park) and just embrace the beauty of the small Danish city. There are a few things I would say aren't worth your time; The Little Mermaid statue (tiny and touristy), Nyhavn (previously mentioned but touristy and overpriced) and Tivoli (a theme park that is again, a lot for what it is). Yet Copenhagen is cold, it's peaceful, and a place I definitely didn't want to leave. With cheap flights and a Christmas feel to the place, it's the perfect place for at least a long weekend during the winter.