21 reasons to travel to Copenhagen in 2021

The ultimate Copenhagen travel guide for 2021. 21 great reasons to come visit once the pandemic is under control.
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Planning a trip to Copenhagen? There is always a reason to travel to Copenhagen and here are a few more. While much of the city is more or less the same as it has been for hundreds of years, it’s never really the same. Let’s have a look at 21 things you should experience when traveling to Copenhagen in the wake of COVID-19.

World Pride 2021

As if the usual Copenhagen Pride, which takes place every year in August, wasn’t reason enough to visit Copenhagen! From August 13 to 21 the city will be buzzing with people of all genders, beliefs and colors, and we can expect parties, talks and events in all neighborhoods throughout the week of World Pride 2021. While the opening ceremony will take place in Malmö in Sweden, the closing parade on August 21 is taking place in the streets of Copenhagen. More than 60.000 people are expected to join the parade, so why not join in on the fun and travel to Copenhagen in August?

Travel to Copenhagen Pride 2021
Experience Copenhagen dressed in rainbows in 2021 Photo Ty Strange

Euro 2021 

Football enthusiasts will be happy to know, that Copenhagen will be hosting four games in the European Championships in 2021. The championships were supposed to take place in 2020 but due to the Covid-19 crisis the games have been postponed for June 2021.

Indulge in street food

10 years ago street food in Denmark could be narrowed down to the traditional Danish hotdogs. While you can still grab a hotdog on most corners around the city, the Copenhagen street food scene is booming with food markets and exotic dishes all over town. Try out Broens Gadekøkken in Christianshavn or Torvehallerne at Nørreport Station in Indre by if you want a roof over your head. Go to Reffen in Refshaleøen if you’re looking for the big street food adventure.

Broens street food
Broens Gadekøkken Photo iamcopenhagencom

Stay local when you travel to Copenhagen

If you want to have a taste of the real Copenhagen, stay in one of the city’s super cool neighborhoods and feel the happiness and good vibes. Check in to Nørrebro or Vesterbro if you want the busy neighborhood feel with great bars, coffee and restaurants. Go to Østerbro for a more quiet and family oriented neighborhood or Amager if you want to be near the beach and Refshaleøen.

To experience the best of local life in Copenhagen, we suggest you stay in an Airbnb. Check out our Airbnb guide and learn more about what you can expect when staying local in Copenhagen.

Beach vibes in the city

Should you travel to Copenhagen for a beach vacay? We think you should… In Copenhagen you don’t need to worry about sand when going for a dip. We do have great beaches at Amager Beach and Svanemøllen Beach. However, many locals prefer to stay in the city and cool off with a dip in one of the city’s harbor basins. The most popular chill out zones by the water are Islands Brygge, Fisketorvet, Christianshavn and Nordhavn but there are more. You will find plenty of great places along the water in Refshaleøen, Sluseholmen and Kalvebod Brygge – and not least the charming little bay at La Banchina. Looking for a real beach club? Check out Halvandet beach bar in Refshaleøen.

Copenhagen travel: Swimming in the canals
Beachy vibes in the middle of the city Photo iamcopenhagencom

Travel around Copenhagen on a bike

There are more bridges for bikes than for cars, and the bike lanes are wider than the actual street in some places. Copenhagen may very well be the most bike friendly city in the world – and it should be experienced on a bike. As long as you follow the simple bike etiquette and don’t piss off the Danes on the lanes you’ll be fine.

The celebration of food…

If you happen to be in Copenhagen in the last days of August you’re in luck. Especially if you’re the hungry type. Copenhagen Cooking is your chance to have a bite of culinary Copenhagen when well known as well as upcoming chefs prepare dishes of pure Nordic magic. Copenhagen Cooking is scheduled for August 20-29.

… and the celebration of beer

Carlsberg – probably the best beer in the world… or maybe you prefer a more edgy lager or a pint of something dark? Figure it out and find your favorite at the 2021 MBCC, Mikkeller Beer Celebration Copenhagen, which is scheduled for April 30– May 1.

Travel to Mikkeller Beer Festival
Explore the wonders of the Danish microbreweries Photo Camilla Stephan

Travel to Copenhagen in the search for HYGGE

Whether rain or shine – hygge is all around! If you haven’t experienced it yet, it’s about time! The concept of ‘hygge’ is as Danish as it can be and 2021 is the year to re-experience the cozy concept. Hygge is happiness and homeliness – candles, charm and coziness. Experience hygge on a cold day with a hot cup of something or play dice at a brown bar. Hang out by the water on a hot summer day or stroll through Tivoli Gardens’ winter wonderland. Hygge can’t be seen or bought. Hygge is a feeling that can only be explored in the right atmosphere and with the right mindset.

Check in to the Villa

Though it’s actually not a villa as much as it’s a beautiful old building with a successful facelift, we recommend you check into Villa new time you travel to Copenhagen! Villa Copenhagen is a luxury hotel but it’s first and foremost a social scene offering a rooftop bar and pool. If you can’t afford to stay at Villa, maybe you can afford a drink or two – or maybe even a bite to eat.

Stay at Villa on a trip to Copenhagen
The good life at Villa Copenhagen Photo Stine Christensen

40 years of carnival – a time travel to Copenhagen

It may not be Rio but Copenhagen Carnival is actually pretty fun when COVID-19 restrictions allow and 2021 may just be a little extra spicy as the carnival celebrates its 40 years anniversary. Unless a pandemic once again gets in the way, the carnival will take place on May 22-23 2021 in Fælledparken and the streets of Copenhagen.

Sail the canals in a hot tub

Wellness will never be the same after you’ve sailed the waters of Copenhagen in a hot tub. At CopenHot in Refshaleøen you can enjoy a canal cruise with four friends and a captain while soaking in 40℃/104℉ hot clean salt water. Possibly the most relaxing way to experience Copenhagen.

Experience Copenhagen on the water with Copenhot
Copenhot has cracked the code to unite wellness and sightseeing Photo Copenhot

Have a drink and ride the Copenhagen metro

Copenhagen may not have the same artistic metro system as Stockholm or the history of London or Paris but the Danes sure know how to make the most of a metro ride. Since the M3 line, which connects Indre By with Østerbro, Nørrebro, Frederiksberg and Vesterbro opened in 2019, locals have been riding the metro, making a stop at each station. For one simple reason: to go to the nearest bar for a drink or two. It’s easy, it’s fun and it involves absolutely no driving under the influence of alcohol.

Sustainable eating

Whether you are looking for vegan options, to minimize food waste or you want your food to be home grown and organic, Copenhagen has something for you. Head to Vesterbro and get takeout from Minimer, a café focusing on minimizing food waste. Or enjoy a night out at ØsterGRO – a shared dining experience based on urban farming on a green rooftop in Østerbro. The list of sustainable options is endless. Go nuts!

Eat at ØsterGro, Copenhagen
ØsterGRO a rooftop garden and a unique dining experience

Join the locals at Absalon on your solo trip to Copenhagen

The Vesterbro locals, solo travelers and basically everyone else who enjoy meeting new people will fall in love with Absalon located on Sønder Boulevard in Vesterbro. What was once a church is now a community house and hangout offering everything from dance and yoga to bingo and dining. Just looking for a spot to work for an afternoon? Absalon will welcome you with a cup of coffee and a couch! Book your food coupon in advance and show up for the dinner party at 6 pm.

Pimp your Copenhagen trip and treat yourself

After a day of walking or getting a sore butt on the bicycle, you might want to spoil yourself with a massage or a few hours of pure wellness. In the city center you will find several day spas. Check out Amazing Space located in the basement of Hotel D’Angleterre, Arndal Spa in Store Kongensgade and Ni’mat at Hotel Kong Arthur by The Lakes. Newest member of the wellness club is AIRE Ancient Baths in Carlsberg Byen, where you can expect true pampering in historical surroundings.

Pimp your trip to Copenhagen with AIRE Ancient Baths
Escape the city for a few hours and soak up in pure roman greek luxury at AIRE Ancient Baths in Carlsberg Byen

Island hopping

We are not talking island hopping in the traditional sense. The islands of Copenhagen are connected by bridges or even built together and you may not even notice crossing from one island to the next. Nevertheless there is always a reason to rent a boat. Explore the canals, dock in Christianshavn, jump in the water by Christiania or check out the new artificial islands south of Fisketorvet.

The treasure island of Copenhagen

Island hopping is great but this island deserves a bit more than just the regular pit stop. Refshaleøen may just be the coolest place in the city and is a must see if you travel to Copenhagen. 20 years ago this island was basically a leftover from an industrial era but today Refshaleøen is blooming. While the main attraction, the Copenhagen street food paradise Reffen, attracts a bunch of hungry locals as well as visitors, the island has much more to offer. This is where you can enjoy the food adventure of a lifetime at Alchemist. You can go climbing at Blocs & Walls or join the beach party at Halvandet. Explore the Danish furniture designs at B&W Market, hang out at La Banchina and even run into the occasional pop up party. Seriously just go!

La Banchina, Refshaleøen
The good life awaits in Refshaleøen

Explore motherhood at Louisiana

When you go to Copenhagen, don’t forget to get out of Copenhagen. Just for a day. In fact, do yourself a favor and go to Louisiana in Humlebæk. The S-train and a quick walk will get you there. Louisiana is a must visit for contemporary art lovers and 2021 is no exception. Actually, we can’t wait to check out the Mother! exhibition, which you can enjoy from January to May.

Go picnic

COVID-19 has taught us to keep our distance and with that in mind we suggest you grab a lunch to go and head to the parks when you travel to Copenhagen. Copenhagen may be known for castles, mermaids and other fairytalelike features but in between you’ll find a number of gorgeous parks. In fact, you will even find parks with castles! Check out the beautiful Ørstedsparken and Botanical Gardens and be enchanted by the natural beauty in the middle of the city. Head to the more hidden Østre Anlæg for a more local park experience or go to Frederiksberg Gardens and enjoy a bite and a sip in front of the majestic Frederiksberg Castle.

Tour de architecture

Copenhagen is not all towers and spiers. Modern and innovative architecture is popping up around the suburbs creating new landmarks that will be known for more than their great looks. Go skiing at CopenHill – a waste management center, which is also a ski slope and a hiking area. Enjoy the beach from the beautiful platform at Kastrup Sea Bath or check out the luxurious student housing at the container city on the water in Refshaleøen.

Kastrup Sea Bath
Enjoy a day at the beach surrounded by cool architecture Photo Thomas Høyrup Christensen

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