Denmark may be a small country but it is filled with culture, history and attractive scenery. Denmark offers travelers experiences that covers its past history from its Viking heritage and Renaissance castles to its modern shopping streets and innovative food scene. Outside the cities, the country has lots of beautiful nature with miles of beaches, coastal cliffs and hiking trails that pass through ancient woodlands, alongside ruined castles and glassy lakes.

Copenhagen is more than just Denmark’s capital, it is the cultural heart of the country. Founded as a Viking fishing village in the 10th century, it is now a modern city that has merged a contemporary lifestyle with its extensive history.

Copenhagen has lots of historical site which include palaces, castles, colorful townhouses, quiet canals and its cobbled stone streets. It is easy to stay busy seeing the many sites but make sure to set aside some time to relax in the city’s beautiful parks and public gardens.

Copenhagen’s contemporary lifestyle is easily seen in its bicycle culture where there are more bicycles in Copenhagen than there are people. The city is designed for cyclist with bike pathways, car-free lanes and the bicycle takes has the right of way over the car.

Denmark has a broad variety of places to experience but experiencing the culture that makes Denmark known as one of the “happiest countries in the world” could be your most memorable experience.

The Danes call it “Hygge” which is having a feeling of coziness, contentment and well-being found through cherishing the little things in life.

Must See Attractions

My list of must see attractions in Denmark are a mix of historical sites and cultural activities. Denmark has a long history with palaces, castles and forts that represent different periods of the country’s history. Visiting Nyhavn historic waterfront and Tivoli Gardens combines historic places with cultural activities and being able to experience a little bit of the local lifestyle. For a better local experience go shopping on Stroget Pedestrian Street and try the street food at an outdoor biergarten.

Two of my favorite experiences in Denmark were visiting the Tivoli Gardens and seeing Frederiksonborg Castle. These two experiences were also my most memorable times of my trip but they could not have been more opposite.

Tivoli Gardens is a combination of a public gardens and a nostalgic amusement park. Beautiful flower displays are scattered throughout the entire park and the amusement park specializes in old fashion thrill rides. Some of the rides that are featured in the park are roller coasters, merry go round carousels, roundabouts that lift up into the air and spin like crazy, freefall towers, bumper cars and dragon boats are just a few of the rides in the park.

Tivoli Gardens was built in 1843 and the current park still has the atmosphere from a simpler time where all of you worries disappear when you enter the park. Walking through the park gave me the feeling that I had stepped back in time 100 years.

At night the park is lit with thousands of colored lights that creates a joyful atmosphere. On Saturday nights there is a fireworks show and during the summer months there is a free concert on Friday nights. During the Christmas season there is special seasonal lighting to celebrate the New Year.

Frederiksborg Castle is located in the town of Hillerod, about 35 miles outside of Copenhagen. It is built on a series of small islands in a small lake along the banks of the lake. The architecture of the castle reminds me more of a palace than a castle but regardless whether it is a palace or a castle, it is one of the most impressive facilities that I have visited in my travels.

Frederiksborg Castle was constructed in the 17th century as the home of King Christian IV and it was repurposed as the Museum of National History in 1878. The most impressive aspect of the castle is the interior furnishings. The castle is decorated to look as if it is still inhabited. The castle has dozens of rooms that are filled with portraits, historical paintings, period furniture and lots of statues. All of the rooms are packed from floor to ceiling with furnishings that were meant for kings and queens.

Tivoli Gardens and Frederiksborg Castle

The castle garden is a baroque style garden that was designed in 1725 and it is the same layout today as it was originally designed. The perimeter of the garden has flowering plants and boxwood bushes form the design of the royal monograms with three different colored rocks giving the boxwood design a pop of color. The castle grounds is a large wooded area with easy trails with some trails that border small lakes and ponds.

Denmark is small in size but it has a surprising amount of places to see and things to do. Chances are that you will leave Denmark wishing you had more time to experience places that you ran out of time to see.

Places to See

(Click on the photo below for more information on each topic.)

I will be making more posts on things to do in Denmark, so check back later to see my future posts on Denmark.