12hrs in Copenhagen

Fashion, food, and the happiest people on earth.

12hrs in Copenhagen 2017-05-22T21:36:32+00:00

Project Description

Fashion, food, and the happiest people on earth. Welcome to Copenhagen!

Danes are the happiest people on earth. That’s a fact! At least according to countless studies conducted on the subject. Take a stroll through the beautiful Danish capital on a summer’s day, and you understand why. Beautiful architecture, lots of water and friendly, good looking people on bikes everywhere. To be fair, in winter it is a bit tougher to fall in love with Denmark and Copenhagen at first sight. But of course, the inventive Danes found a way to tackle that problem, too.

They actually even invented a word for that: “Hygge”! Ranked third place in a survey conducted about the world’s most loveable words that cannot be translated, it roughly translated to something like “the complete lack and absence of anything annoying” and means cozy apartments, candlelight, and good people and food around. You see, Denmark ranks up there in about every study there is. Time to find out why. Let’s spend 12hrs in Copenhagen!

Copenhagen is the capital of Denmark. Renowned for its laid-back approach to design, architecture, food, and fashion, it consistently ranks as one of the most liveable cities on earth.

Population Copenhagen (metro area): 2 million
Currency: Danish Krone (DKK)
Language: Danish

GETTING AROUND
Public transport in Copenhagen is quite expensive, but that doesn’t matter at all: this is a city made for bikes. Rent one from your hotel or from one of the many bike rentals in town and get pedalling.

10am – Grød

A healthy start to the day

Basic sentences:
Hello // Hej
Thank you // Tak
Yes // Ja
No // Nej
Maybe // Måske

Do & Dont’s
Do: Buy a marvelous piece of pastry from one of the great bakeries in town (try the Lagkagehuset bakeries).
Don’t: No need to exchange any cash. You can pay even the smallest amounts with your credit card.

We are starting our day in Nørrebro, an area that remains high up on the cities’ hipster index for years. It’s here you’ll find vegan snack bars, tiny vintage shops, and on the weekends, most of the cool kids.

Copenhageners like it healthy, lots of restaurants and grocery shops offer a large variety of organic options. Obviously, these healthy treats often come with a rather hefty price tag attached to them. Our breakfast destination is a wonderful exception from that rule. ‘Grød’ means ‘porridge’, and that is exactly what Martin Daniali and Lasse Skjønning Andersen serve in their shop and café. Breakfast bowls start at only 35 DKK, and with options like spelt porridge with chestnut purée, apple and toasted almonds, you’ll have plenty of energy for the long 12 hours ahead of you.

Grød // Jægersborgggade 50 // Mon-Fri 7.30am-9pm, Sat/Sun 10am-9pm // website

10.30am – Superkilen

A short, ten-minute detour that is so worth it!

Built by Superflex and the famous BIG architects, Superkilen is an urban park divided in three areas, red, green, and black. We’ll have a look at the most impressive one of them all, the Red Square. This is a playground for adults, with giant souvenirs from all over the world. Everything here is covered in red paint. Take a look around at some of the weird artifacts. People from more than 50 different countries are living in Nørrebro, and some of them got the chance to pick out items for the park. You’ll see a Donut sign from Tennessee, the famous Osborne bull from the south of Spain, and benches from Brazil. Superkilen also gives you a good idea why architecture from Denmark is so famous.

Superkilen // Nørrebrogade 210 // website

11am – Assistens Kirkegård

Taking a stroll through history

On your way back, take a stroll through the famous Assistens cemetery. No matter how busy the city around you might get, between the tall trees it’s always peaceful and quiet. Several famous people are buried here, among them Danish national hero Hans Christian Andersen, Søren Kirkegård and several American jazz musicians who lived in Copenhagen during the Fifties and Sixties, such as Ben Webster and Kenny Drew. It’s easy to spend a whole afternoon here, but don’t get lost! Our day has just begun.

Assistens Kirkegård, Kapelvej 4, website

11.30am – Adelié

A small shop with a big sense of fashion

DRESSING THE PART
Danes are a stylish bunch and they are perhaps the most laid-back dressers in Scandinavia. Colorful sneakers are the way to go for both women and men, the rest of your outfit can be black as night.

WHAT TO ORDER
Food: Smørrebrød, the famous open-faced sandwiches that come in many varieties.
Drinks: Denmark is a country of beer drinkers Try one of the many local brews.

Walk all the way back towards Guldbergsgade, back to the worldly pleasures of fashionable small shops of the area. Among them is Adelié. Tikkie Oestrich alias Adelié is one of Denmark’s most beloved fashion bloggers. For a few years, she brought her impeccable style to her favorite area of Copenhagen to sell items from her most beloved (and mostly Danish) designers, such as Stine Goya, Peter Jensen, and Libertine-Libertine. Tikkie has sold her store by now to focus on new projects, but with a new owner, this tiny shop on Guldbergsgade is still going strong.

After paying it a visit, continue down the street. You’ll pass more small shops, nice cafés, and probably run into some good looking Danes dressed all in black. At the end of the street, you’ll reach Sankt Hans Torv, a popular hangout and meeting point.

Adelié // Guldbergsgade 20 // Tue-Fri 11am-6pm, Sat 11am-4pm // website

11.40am – Acne Archive

Bargain hunting, deluxe edition

Pass the square, and turn right into Elmegade. Right at the beginning of the street is the Acne Archive. The Swedish brand has a stylish flagship store in the city center that we’ll visit later, but the new Archive is definitely worth a visit, as well.

Here, you’ll find show pieces and clothes from previous collections for a fraction of their original price. The stylish outlet carries items for both women and men, although the selection for the girls is much bigger. Good luck hunting for that dreamy leather jacket at 80% off!

Acne Archive // Elmegade 21 // Mon-Fri 11am-6.30pm, Sat 10am-5pm // website

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

11.45am – Kaffebar

A quick caffeine kick

Pass the square, and turn right into Elmegade. Right at the beginning of the street is the very popular Kaffebar Vinbar. If you feel for a little caffeinated pick-me-up, do it here. The coffee is great, and the baristas know what they’re doing. They’re also handsome. All of them.

Once you’re done, turn left on Nørrebrogade and walk straight. The street leads you over Dronning Louises Bro, a bridge over the Sortedams. Once the sun comes out, this is where everybody sits in the sun. It’s a beautiful walk, so take your time. Take in the scenery, and continue down until you spot two big halls on your right.

Kaffebar Vinbar // Elmegade 4 // Mon-Sun 8am-6pm

12.15pm – WoodWood Museum

Outlet shopping for fashion fans

THREE SONGS
Lukas Graham – Happy Home
Scarlet Pleasure – Windy
Oh Land – White Nights

THREE MOVIES
Land of Mine
Festen
Kollektivet

Before you enter these, cross the street to your left for a last bit of bargain hunting.

Somehow, Scandinavians know how to run an outlet store so much better than the rest of us. No messy piles of clothes, no ugly leftovers and not only items in XXS or XXL. WoodWood Museum is a great example for that.

The outlet of the popular Danish brand (we’ll take a look in their regular store a bit later) carries their own designs plus a big selection of brands that they sell in their shop for women and men. If you look around a bit, you can find tons of Kenzo, Gitman and Opening Ceremony pieces at up to 70% off.

Inside, the shop is nice and the staff friendly – yet another thing that makes the Museum stand out from regular outlet stores. Now, head over again to enter Torvehallerne.

WoodWood Museum // Frederiksborggade 54 // Mo-Fri 12pm-6pm, sat 10.30am-3pm // website

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

12.30pm – Torvehallerne

A taste of Denmark

Food heaven! Torvehallerne is a covered market, similar to those you might find in Spain, Italy, or even London. But since this is Scandinavia, everything here seems a bit more organized – and well designed. More than 80 vendors sell their goods inside, so the selection is breathtaking. There is fresh fish from the Baltic Sea, tiny cupcakes from famous bakery Agnes, and tons of specialty items from different Danish regions, such as ox-meat sausages or rhubarb juice from Bornholm. A lot of the booths sell snacks and warm meals, too. But hold your appetite, we’re having lunch in the city!

Torvehallerne // Frederiksborggade 21 // Mon-Thu 10am-7pm, Fri 10am-8pm, Sat 10am-6pm, Sun 11am-5pm // website

1pm – Henrik Vibskov

Danish design star

Head into the city, it’s time for some serious shopping. Danish fashion is world renowned for its simplicity, impeccable taste, and general style. One of the biggest names in that business is no doubt Henrik Vibskov. The Danish artist and designer is known for keeping his Avant Garde-vibe alive, while still pleasing the masses. His colorful knits and outlandish cuts are on display in his flagship store, as are affordable accessories such as his famous laptop sleeves or colorful socks. Also sold here: the dreamy shoes by Issey-Miyake designer Marni and some items from Vibskov’s ex-partner, Danish fashion super star Stine Goya.

Henrik Vibskov Boutique Copenhagen // Krystalgade 6 // Mon-Thu 11am-6pm, Fri 11am-7pm, Sat 11am-5pm // website

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1.20pm – Atelier September

Lunch with an attitude

In the past years, Copenhagen has developed quite a reputation as a foodie destination. Restaurants like Relæ, Kadeau and Noma are on the forefront of a new Nordic eating trend, promoting locally sourced, traditionally Danish produce. For many critics, Noma is actually the best restaurant in the world right now. Although we would love to either confirm or deny this today, chances are you a) haven’t made a reservation there months ago, or b) Michelin star food and the hefty price tag that entails aren’t exactly in your travel budget.

No worries, there is another way! We’ll have fantastic Danish food for dinner, and will go a bit outside the (Danish) box for lunch. At Atelier September, you’ll get served light lunch fare in a great location. This used to be an antiques shop, and you can still see vintage details everywhere in the small room. Big windows let in a lot of light, the atmosphere is friendly and relaxed. Atelier September has developed into a hang out for hip locals and members of the fashion crowd, a fact that maybe explains why their signature dish, toasted rye bread with sliced avocado, chives and chili, comes with a rather hefty price tag attached to it. This small splurge is definitely worth it, though, so dive right in.

Atelier September // Gothersgade 30 // Mon-Fri 7am-7pm, Sat 10am-4pm // website

2.15pm – Shopping

Exploring Copenhagen’s best shops

Content, relaxed, and ready to go after lunch, we hit the streets of the city center for some serious shopping. Instead of giving you a route, we’ll just tell you the must-sees, and you conquer them in whatever order you feel best with. These stores are all in walking distance to each other, and each of them brings is worth a visit.

THREE SOUVENIRS
Wooden animals designed by Kay Bojesen.
A pair of colorful knitted socks by Henrik Vibskov.
Licorice made in Denmark (try ‘Lakrids by Johan Bülow’).

GOOD TO KNOW
The Danish language has no word for “please”.
The Danish flag is the oldest state flag in the world still in use by an independent nation. It was first acknowledged in 1219.
To be or not to be: Hamlet’s castle is called Kronborg Castle and still standing today.

WoodWood has become somewhat of symbol for fashion made in Denmark. The label started out as strictly streetwear, and has gotten more sophisticated over the years. You’ll still find plenty of hoodies, caps and backpacks in their shiny new flagship store, but you’ll also be able to buy items from more exclusive brands like Band of Outsiders or Barbour. Recently, they added their own line of women’s footwear to their portfolio.

Storm is going down that concept store road, too, with a stronger focus on high-end designer brands and big labels. Their book collection is great!

The label Han Copenhagen became famous for their spectacle frames, and have since extended their range to beautiful menswear pieces. They offer classic cuts and shapes, and just the interior of the store is worth the visit.

Swedish mega-brand Acne has not one but three stores in Copenhagen. And judging by the amount of Pistol Boots and Rita leather jackets that you encounter on any regular day in the streets of Copenhagen, that is warranted. In their biggest store, they sell both their women’s and men’s collections.

Stine Goya is the darling of the Danish fashion scene. In her tiny, brand new flagship store in Gothersgade she sells her current collection and a few accessories from her line. The former model designs clothes for women that she herself would love to wear. Stine Goya trademarks are pastel colors, vibrant prints and relaxed cuts.

Lastly, and right next door, there’s Norse Projects. This one is strictly for the boys as well. The little brand has seen some crazy hype around their baseball caps and shirts lately, and is sold in hip boutiques from Paris to New York. Their Copenhagen flagship store features all of their collection, plus some hard to find designer collaborations.

Lastly, and right next door, there’s Norse Projects. This one is strictly for the boys as well. The little brand has seen some crazy hype around their baseball caps and shirts lately, and is sold in hip boutiques from Paris to New York. Their Copenhagen flagship store features all of their collection, plus some hard to find designer collaborations.

Wood Wood // Grønnegade 1 // Mon-Thu 10.30am-6pm, Fri 10.30am-7pm, Sat 10.30am-5pm // website

Storm CPH // Store Regnegade 1 // Mon-Thu 11am-5.30pm, Fri 11am-7pm, Sat 10am-4pm // website

Han Copenhagen // Vognmagergade 7// Mon-Thu 11am-6pm, Fri 11am-7pm, Sat 10am-5pm // website

Acne // Pilestræde 40 // Mon-Fri 11am-7pm, Sat 10am-5pm // website

Stine Goya // Gothersgade 58 // Mon & Tue 12pm-6pm, Wed-Fri 11am-6pm, Sat 11am-4pm // website

Norse Projects // Pilestræde 41 // Mon-Thu 10am-6pm, Fr 10am-7pm, Sat 10am-4pm // website

4.20pm – Sightseeing

Checking out the scenery.

You’ll notice that we’re a bit away from the hustle and bustle of the main shopping streets now. This is the representative part of Copenhagen, the area with the Royal Palaces, churches, and the old harbour. Although our 12hrs guides tend to stay far away from the tourist-y parts of town, today we’ll make an exception.

From B56, we can already see the Marmorkirken church. Turning right, we are approaching the Royal palace now. From here, we can access the waterfront and take a long stroll, soaking in some Scandinavian sun and sights, including the spectacular new opera house, the National theater and finally Nyhavn. This old part of the harbour is a magnet for tourist, but it’s also mighty pretty. Take a look at the Lego-like colored buildings, but don’t be tempted to enter any of the restaurants around here. Instead, walk back to you hotel to rest those tired legs a bit and get ready for the night.

6.15pm – Hotel SP34

A beautifully designed home away from home

Hotel SP34 opened not too long ago (previously this place was called Hotel Fox) and this place gets so many things right. The design inside is distinctively Scandinavian, the rooms are airy and bright, and its location close to the city center is unbeatable. Add a daily ‘wine hour’ in the afternoon, free and fast wi-fi and organic breakfast to the mix, and you understand why this is our pick.

Hotel SP34 // Jarmers Plads 3 // website

8pm – Höst

New Nordic cuisine for beginners

After a hot shower and some rests, we’re ready to jump start our night in Copenhagen with a great dinner. Höst is a newly opened restaurant from the owners of super popular food destination Madklubben and eight other restaurants in the city. The interior looks as if it was taken straight out of an catalog for Scandinavian minimalist furniture, the walls are washed white, and the tableware rustic. All this is supposed to make you feel as if you were at a Scandinavian farmyard that somehow has been transported into the city environment. And it works! The food goes with this theme, focussing again on local ingredients and simple preparations. Go for the affordable three-course menu, which costs 375 DKK (36 €/47 USD) and showcases what’s fresh on the market that day. Höst is the hottest dinner ticket in town right now, so to be sure to get a table, reserve one online on their website. Watch out: They close early on Sundays!

Höst // Nørre Farimagsgade 41 // Mon-Wed 10am-9.15pm, Thu/Fri 10am-9.30pm, Sat 11am-9.30pm, Sun 3.30pm-8.30pm // website

9pm – Meatpacking District

Dancing the night away

Take a bus or taxi to Vesterbro and head into the Meatpacking District. This is the former red light district of Copenhagen, that has slowly been claimed by the hipsters as their nightlife Mekka. You might still see the occasional prostitute pass by, but behind the run-down facades, there are lofts and office spaces of media companies and fashion labels. This mix makes the Meatpacking district the most coveted nightlife area of Copenhagen, with tons of cool bars right next to each other in the old market buildings.

Pick one of the many bars or clubs. We suggest Jolene, Bakken or Kødbodderne 18, all very close to each other. Spotting which party looks like the most fun tonight should be easy, people tend to hang out outside. If you want to prepare, check the club’s websites before you leave the hotel. Skål!

Jolene // Flæsketorvet 81 // Sun-Thu 5pm-2am, Fri-Sat 5pm-3am // website
Bakken // Flæsketorvet 19 // Thu 9pm-3am, Fri-Sat 11pm-5am // website
Kødbodderne 18 // Kødbodderne 18 // see website for opening hours // website
Pictures: Polina Vinogradova

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