Last weekend I went to the beautiful city of Copenhagen for a long weekend with my boyfriend. The little weekend getaway happened to coincide with Valentines Day and our 'anniversary' so it was the perfect excuse for a romantic trip together in this stunning city.
I have wanted to go to one of the Scandinavian countries for a while and Denmark was the closest, easiest and cheapest place to get to at this time of year so we booked the flights and started planning! We managed to get the flights and accommodation pretty reasonably- staying in a lovely Air BnB place right near the city centre. We arrived in the city on Friday morning after a very early start and got straight into exploring the wonderful city. We started off the trip with a 'Free Walking Tour' to get a feel for the city and find out where everything is. I have done a number of free walking tours in various European cities and always been so impressed with them. They normally last about 3 hours and the guides are always so fun and full of life. We managed to see most of the main attractions all in one go- allowing us to decide which to revisit and get a feel for where everything was.
After the tour we headed to Torvehallerne- a funky little food market selling all the most amazing food you could think of. After drooling around all the stalls we settled on a traditional Danish cafe/stall called Hallernes Smorrebrod selling the Copenhagen speciality- Smorrebrod- which is a kind of open sandwich. These were literally incredible and an absolute treat for our tastebuds after all the walking. All washed down with a pint (or half pint in my case) or Danish beer!
We spent the rest of the day exploring the the city centre- walking around the canals and to The Little Mermaid Statue- which has been voted the second most disappointing statue in Europe. It certainly lives up to its title- definitely not worth the walk out of town for...but I'm still glad we ticked it off our list.
We then headed over to the Meatpacking District- which was a really cool place full of quirky eateries, bars and galleries. We explored a few shops and galleries before deciding it would be more fun and happening at night time so headed back to check in to our room.
After freshening up and unpacking we headed out in the Vesterbro neighbourhood on the search for some food. We came across a cool restaurant called Neighbourhood which was full of beautiful and quirky looking people. The pizzas here were amazing and bigger than anything I had ever seen and the atmosphere was really nice and chilled. The area felt like the 'Shoreditch' of Copenhagen and there were loads of cool bars around which we headed to after dinner. One we visited was called Mikeller which sold over 60 different types of beer and was hidden just under the pavements- which is apparently where all the best bars are in Copenhagen!
The next day we woke up and exchanged our valentines day presents to one another before heading out for brunch. I had some great restaurant and bar recommendations from a couple of friends who had been to Copenhagen recently so we decided to try out one of the places on the list. We went to a really cool place called Cafe Dyrehaven for the yummiest Eggs Benedict and coffee in a really cool surrounding.
After brunch we headed back to the centre where we waited for another of the walking tours. This time it was an 'alternative' walking tour of the district across the river called Christianshavn. We had heard a lot about Christianshavn and were keen to check it out and understand what it was like. To give a brief history- Christiania is a town in itself within Christianshavn, known as a 'free town'. The town was created in the 1970's when squatters moved in to redundant military buildings there and eventually built a community. Nowadays- there are about 850 residents living there completely separate to society- pretty much just a load of hippies! It is known for its cannabis trade and residents openly sell and smoke cannabis even though it is still very much illegal and there are often police raids on the town but the government seem to tolerate it. It was so interesting to hear all about the history of the place and it is impossible to describe unless you see it for yourself. As it is a living community, the residents get very funny if you take any photos inside, so I only managed to get one sneaky snap- but you have to see it to believe it. It very much felt like you were stepping back in time and almost felt like you were on a film set... it just didn't feel real. I would 100% recommend exploring it and seeing for yourself - plus there is a beautiful walk around the lakes on the outskirts of the town.
We then headed back to our apartment to get ready for our early dinner reservations. We had booked to go to a place called Pate Pate in the Meatpacking District which we had been recommended. The food was absolutely sensational and one of the best meals I have had in a long time! It was a little on the pricey side (as all things in Copenhagen are) but it was our Valentines Day meal so decided to treat ourselves.
When we were out for our meal we heard about the terrorist attack that had taken place that day! It was pretty scary to hear what had gone on and to learn that the guy was still on the lose! It did put us a little bit on edge and saddened to hear what had happened just a couple of miles from where we were!
The next day we headed to the northern neighbourhoods of Fredericksberg and Norrebro where we had heard there were some great vintage and antique shops and great cafes. However, due to the terrorist attack, many of the shops and cafes were closed as a mark of respect and the whole area felt a bit like a ghost town. On the way there we walked along the lakes and Ben decided to test out his new camera lens and did a bit of a photo shoot- much to my dismay as I was freezing cold and just wanted some breakfast!
We managed to try some of the famous Danish porridge in a tiny little home-run cafe called Grod which was known for its amazing recipes. We had a delicious dulce de leche porridge filled with seeds, nuts and fruits and some yummy granola and berries with mint tea. We then headed to Coffee Collective which is known to do the best coffee in Copenhagen! And it certainly lived up to its reputation!
We then headed back to the city centre on the search for a Danish pastry (we literally spent the whole day eating!) We headed for another cafe which I had heard did the best pastries in Copenhagen! However, we got there and realised it was the scene of the second shooting that day outside the Jewish temple! The road was filled with police and news reporters and people laying down flowers outside the temple. It was quite shocking to see and to think that the terrible act happened only a few hours before. The whole city felt very quiet that day and there was definitely a strange atmosphere.
After one last tour round the beautiful harbour we headed back to the Meatpacking District where we spent our last few hours eating a delicious burger at a tiny restaurant called Tommies Burger Joint. The food was insane here and there was such a cool atmosphere. We spent a couple of hours just hanging out and playing cards before heading over to the airport for our late night flight home.All in all, we had such an amazing weekend in Copenhagen and managed to cram so much in to the three days. There were so many great things to see and do (and eat and drink) and I would 100% recommend a visit to anyone. If anyone is heading there soon let me know- I have some great recommendations to share with you!