Copenhagen is definitely a trip worth the while. In the summer of 2016, at age 21, I traveled to Copenhagen to meet up with my family. We spent the week exploring Copenhagen as a mismatched unit, our ages ranging from quite young to much older. Surprisingly, it was not difficult to find activities that the whole family could enjoy. Here’s my list of three family-friendly activities to do in Copenhagen, guaranteed to impress everyone.
For obvious reasons, Tivoli Gardens is #1 on my list. Tivoli Gardens is a place straight out of anyone’s strangest dreams. Everywhere you look, unique sculptures and decorations will catch your eye. Surrounding a beautiful lake, the entire grounds is a gorgeous garden and amusement park all in one. The park is 170 years old, yet manages to hold its magic despite the many years it’s been standing.
While stopping to smell the flowers is a daytime activity, the Tivoli Gardens hosts concerts on Friday nights and fireworks on Saturday nights. It’s a good idea to stay for the whole day and enjoy all the park has to offer.
Tivoli Gardens is an incredible experience even without rides, but the amusement park at the gardens bring fun to the next level, especially for the younger members of the family. The kids have dozens of opportunities to show us up with their bravery on any of the roller coasters!
Food Within the Gardens
The food here is not what you would typically find in theme parks across North America. The restaurants hold their own and stand out in the city as high-quality places to eat. There are many different locations to stop for food within the gardens. As this was my first lunch stop in Copenhagen, we went for smørrebrød, traditional Danish open-faced sandwiches. We stopped at a beautiful restaurant called Færgekroen Bryghus, situated on the lake within the gardens. It was designed as a replica of an old fishing house in southern Jutland and offers traditionally Danish dishes. Because of the family atmosphere, they do offer a kids menu that features easy meals like fish and chips and pasta bolognese. For this reason, even picky eaters can enjoy this spot.
For the over-18 members of the family, there is a brewery within the restaurant. It helps to have a Danish person in your party, as the conversion from the Danish kroner to dollars can be a bit confusing, especially after a few of their home-brewed lagers.
Rosenborg Castle Gardens
I visited the Rosenborg Castle on the first day of my trip with the whole family and ended up there every single day afterward to walk through the gardens on my own. Laying down in a sunny open space on the lawn, listening to music on my headphones and reading a good book, came as one of the most pleasant parts of my trip. It’s a great way to reflect on the day you’ve had and take in the natural beauty of Copenhagen.
The Rosenborg Castle was once home to Christian VII, a famous Scandinavian king. There are many things to do within the castle. You can walk through the Knight’s Hall which houses the coronation thrones, or through the former king’s quarters. The castle is also home to the crown jewels of Denmark, along with some beautiful historical art.
There is a small fee to tour the castle, but the gardens are free. The gardens feature large flower beds, a rose garden, lawns full of sunbathers, and a variety of sculptures. You can’t miss the famous statue of beloved Danish storyteller, Hans Christian Anderson. As a result, it’s easy to spend hours walking around the gardens, especially in the summer months.
Canal Tour of Copenhagen
The canal tour is something you absolutely cannot miss if you’re visiting Copenhagen for the first time. It is by far the coolest way to experience the city regardless of age. It also provides the excellent opportunity of seeing the Little Mermaid statue. The statue was inspired by the Hans Christian Anderson fairy tale. It was gifted to Copenhagen by Danish brewer Carl Jacobsen.
The boat tours run on environmentally friendly vessels. On the tour, learn about the history of Copenhagen while you sit back, relax, and feel the breeze coming off the water. They have boats that will take you and the family on the “Grand Tour of Copenhagen,” featuring the main attractions of the city. There are also hop-on-hop-off options if you would like to explore the streets within the city. However, since Denmark is a country full of islands and surrounded by water, there’s no better way to see it than by boat.