Exploring Denmark is a great way to take a deep dive into Danish culture and history. Despite the country’s smaller size, there is so much to see and do that you’ll never find yourself without a new adventure!
We’ve created a list of essential places to see that are easily accessible while you’re in Denmark:
The Six Forgotten Giants
Created by Danish artist Thomas Dambo, The Six Forgotten Giants of Copenhagen are part open air museum, part treasure hunt. Spread throughout the municipalities of Rødovre, Hvidovre, Vallensbæk, Ishøj, Albertslund, and Høje Taastrup, you can bike your way to find the Giants in their natural habits. The Giants give you the chance to explore lesser known parks throughout the Greater Copenhagen Area.
Skovtårnet, or The Forest Tower, is a unique way to experience the beauty of Southern Zealand. Created by Danish visionary architects from EFFEKT, the tower is in the midst of a beech forest and gives visitors a 360-degree view around the landscape. The spectacular hike up and down the tower is about 3 kilometers long, so wear appropriate footwear!
Dyrehaven, or The Deer Park, is a nature retreat just a short train ride from Copenhagen. You can enjoy a day away and relax, take a stroll, and have a picnic in the expansive woodland area where around 2,000 deer roam free.
Lejre Land of Legends
For those who love Viking history, Lejre Land of Legends is a real gem. The history re-enactment park is less than an hour by public transport from Copenhagen, and is located just next to the original spot where the poem Beowulf was set. There are re-creations of an Iron Age village, a Viking stone burial monument, a sacrificial bog, and a full-scale Viking Royal Hall. The landscape surrounding the park is also stunning and unique to Denmark.
Roskilde is the perfect place for a day trip from Copenhagen. It’s a small, cozy city located in a large national park, so you get the best of nature and a city center all in one. It’s also a town steeped in history, which you can see at the Gothic-style Roskilde Cathedral, which holds the tombs of many Danish kings and queens, or the Viking Ship Museum.
Dragør is a picture-perfect little town situated on the island of Amager. The town is perfect for a biking adventure south of Copenhagen where you can visit the quaint little boutiques, cafes, and restaurants, and eat loads of ice cream (in warmer weather). During the end of November and in December, it also has one of the most charming Christmas markets in the area.
Step back in time 500 years with a visit to Frederiksborg Castle. An easy S-tog ride from Copenhagen, in the town of Hillerød, is The Museum of National History at Frederiksborg features Danish art and history exhibitions. You can also stroll the stunning Baroque gardens, ride on the Castle Lake ferry, and take in the gorgeous architecture.
Immortalized as Elsinore, the location of Shakespeare’s play Hamlet, this town is home to the Kronborg Castle, also known as “Hamlet’s Castle,” which is a fantastic renaissance palace that is also designated as a UNESCO Heritage Site. The town itself has plenty of charm and a great museum that features Danish seafaring history called the M/S Museet for Søfart, or the M/S Maritime Museum. On a good day, you can also catch a glimpse over to Sweden.
If you’re looking for hiking spots just outside of the city, Kongelunden and Kalvebod Fælled are both around the perimeter of Amager. Both spots have great views and are perfect for biking too. If you’d like to go a little farther out of town, there are some fantastic hiking trails around Furesøen, which is the deepest lake in Denmark.
Ærø is a magical little island in Southern Funen. The charming, brightly colored houses and independent shops of Ærøskobing are a must see and exploration of the beautiful landscape is easily accessible by bike.
Svendborg is half-timbered house and cobblestone street paradise – a great center for exploring Southern Funen. You can easily walk or bike the city, which has many culinary and historic gems. If you’re looking for outdoor activities, you can kayak, hike the Øhavsstien, or go diving around the South Funen archipelago.
The town of Ribe on the West coast of Denmark is one of the most enchanting places. As the oldest town in Denmark, you’ll find remnants of Viking and medieval history while strolling the streets with some of the best ice cream the country has to offer. Its coastal location also means you can easily visit UNESCO Heritage Site, Wadden Sea National Park.
If you’re looking for a classic beach holiday weekend, Fanø is the perfect spot. Located on the West Coast in Wadden Sea National Park, there is so much beauty to take in on this island. The main town, Sønderho, has been voted Denmark’s most beautiful village, and the expansive beach offers many activities, such as beach sailing, bird watching, and amber hunting. You’ll probably spot quite a few seals as well!
The “Sunshine Island” is a favorite location for Danes in the summer. Charming little towns and beautiful coast lines make the island a peaceful escape from bustling city life. Take a bus or bike around to the different towns to see medieval castle ruins, visit a local brewery, try the famous smoked herring, and live your best life on Bornholm.
Denmark’s northernmost town is a wonderful mix of culture, art, and phenomenal nature. The landscape has a unique terrain of long, white sand beaches, some with massive dunes, and if you go to Grenen, the Northern most tip of Denmark just North of Skagen, you’ll see a unique spot where the Skagerrak and the Kattegat sea unite. There’s music, art, beach bonfires, seafood feasts, and horseback riding adventures to make your visit to this little corner of the world even more fulfilling.
As the second largest city in Denmark, Aarhus is a fascinating mix of old and new. You can explore the history of the area at sites like the Aarhus Cathedral, the cobble-stoned streets of the Latin Quarter, and Den Gamle By, or The Old Town, an open-air museum inside the Botanical Gardens. If you’re looking for something a little more modern, visiting the wonderful museums in the area will satisfy any visitor. One of the most famous spots in Aarhus is the color panorama at the top of the ARoS Museum, and don’t miss the Moesgaard Museum, which is in a beautifully designed building dedicated to archaeology and ethnography. It’s located in next to the land and the sea just outside of the city center and has exhibitions on the origins of the human species. Between these attractions and the amazing places to eat and shop, Aarhus is not to be missed!
Odense is not only the third largest city in Denmark – it’s also Hans Christian Andersen’s home town. You can follow along in the writer’s footsteps to find spots that illuminate some of his most famous fairy tales, such as his childhood home. Stroll through Møntergården, an authentic urban environment from the 19th century, visit Brandts, Denmark’s first museum of art and visual culture, and explore Den Fynske Landsby, or The Funen Village open air museum. The street food culture in the city also makes it fun to have delicious food on the go.
How to Get Around Denmark
• Learn about DIS Transportation Coverage for students. You will find more details about your transportation coverage in the days leading up to your arrival in Scandinavia.
• Traveling around the greater Copenhagen area? Visit our resources on our website for tips on using Copenhagen’s well-networked public transportation.
• Planning your journey? We recommend using Journey Planner (Rejseplanen in Danish), a website and app designed to show you the easiest route from A to B using all forms of public transportation in Denmark. Find the Journey Planner website here.