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The BEST Things to Do in Copenhagen | 48-Hour Travel Guide

Copenhagen, the capital city of Denmark, is known for its beautiful architecture, historic landmarks, and a vibrant food scene. It is a city that combines old-world charm with modern design, making it an ideal destination to visit during your travels. While it may seem challenging to cover all the city's highlights in just 48 hours, a well-planned itinerary can help you make the most of your visit.

In this 48-hour travel guide to Copenhagen, I will take you through some of the city's best attractions, neighbourhoods, and culinary delights to help you make the absolute most of your time!

Young blonde girl in front of canals of Nyhavn in Copenhagen, Denmark. She is wearing a pastel knit sweater, white linen pants and a pink headband.
Nyhavn in beautiful Copenhagen

Day 1

Start your day with a visit to Nyhavn

Nyhavn is one of Copenhagen's most iconic landmarks, making it a great place to start your day. This picturesque harbour is lined with colourful buildings and is a hub of activity all year round. You can take a leisurely stroll along the harbour, take in the views of the boats and yachts, and stop by one of the cafes for a cup of coffee or a quick breakfast.

Believe me when I say this is the best spot in all of Copenhagen for photos! We loved it so much, in fact, we went back a second time during out stay...

Beautiful and brightly coloured buildings along the canals of Nyhavn, Copenhagen in Denmark
Colourful canals of Nyhavn, Copenhagen

Young blonde girl in front of colourful buildings along the canals in Nyhavn, Copenhagen, Denmark. She is a wearing a teal polkadot dress and long cream coloured trench coat with white sneakers.
The most picturesque area of Copenhagen!

Explore the Frederiksstaden neighbourhood

From Nyhavn, you can walk to the Frederiksstaden neighbourhood, which is home to some of Copenhagen's most impressive landmarks. Start with the Amalienborg Palace, the official residence of the Danish royal family, and watch the changing of the guards at noon. Next, head to the Marble Church, a stunning 18th-century church with a dome that offers panoramic views of the city.

Alternatively, you can head to The Round Tower, the oldest observatory in Europe that is still functioning. This site will also provide amazing 360-degree views of the city below.

Aerial view of Copenhagen from The Round Tower.
View from The Round Tower

Lunch at Torvehallerne

After a morning of sightseeing, head to Torvehallerne, an indoor market with over 60 food stalls and shops. This is a great place to try some Danish specialties such as smørrebrød (open-faced sandwiches), flæskesteg (roast pork), and frikadeller (meatballs). You can also pick up some fresh produce, cheese, and pastries to enjoy later in the day.

Tivoli Gardens in Copenhagen. You can see a pond with a fountain surrounded by garden flowers with a carousel in the background and a line of Danish flags
Tivoli Gardens, Copenhagen

Visit the Tivoli Gardens

Tivoli Gardens is one of Copenhagen's most popular attractions and a must-visit for any traveller. This amusement park dates back to 1843 and has rides, games, and attractions for visitors of all ages. Take a ride on the famous wooden rollercoaster, enjoy a performance at the open-air theatre, or simply stroll through the beautifully landscaped gardens.

Wander Rosenborg Castle

This famous Dutch residence was built in 1606-36 by King Christian IV and is one of the most well preserved Renaissance castles in the world. The castle is now open to visitors, operating as a museum, holding 400 years of royal treasures, including the Crown Jewels and Royal Regalia.

Parked bicycles line the edge of cobblestone streets in Copenhagen.
Copenhagen, Denmark

Dinner at Maple Casual Dining

A family-owned restaurant, Maple provides homemade cooking in a trendy and cozy environment. The menu, though small, is absolutely delicious!

A bowl of seasoned mussels with fresh bread plated beside.
Mouthwatering mussels at Maple Casual Dining

Tip: a 48 hour Copenhagen Card for €88 will cover public transport and entry to all major attractions in the city.

A single red bicycle is parked in front of a yellow wall with a window and ivy climbing up the wall
Details in colourful Copenhagen

Day 2

Visit the Christianshavn neighbourhood

Start your second day in Copenhagen with a visit to the Christianshavn neighbourhood, located just across the harbour from Nyhavn. This area is known for its canals, historic buildings, and the iconic Church of Our Saviour. Climb the church's spire for panoramic views of the city or take a boat tour along the canals to see the area from a different perspective.

Three young girls sitting together in a boat, enjoying a tour of Copenhagen with cold beer in hand
The girls taking a boat tour in Copenhagen

View of Copenhagen's Little Mermaid statue from the water. The statue is surrounded by tourists waiting their turn to take photos.
A boat tour is a great way to see the iconic Little Mermaid statue without having to venture outside the main areas of the city and navigate the crowds that surround it.

We found a boat tour to be an excellent way to experience the city while learning about its history and culture from a knowledgable guide. You can even enjoy a beer onboard as you sail the harbour and canals.

A wooden entrance with "Christiania" on it, representing the entrance to Copenhagen's Freetown
Entrance to Christiania: No pictures are allowed inside

Be sure to also step inside the borders of Freetown Christiania. This unique area of the city is a self-proclaimed autonomous district of around 1,000 people with their own set of rules outside of Danish law. Note that no cars or photos are allowed inside Christiania.

Lunch at The Bridge Street Kitchen

Also known as Broens Gadekøkken, this food market is a melting pot of street food kitchens and bars serving food and beverages from all over the world. On certain Fridays, you may even get to experience Bar & Bøolger, an event where the market is focused on serving up unique drinks and free samples.

Explore the Botanical Gardens

Denmark's largest collection of living plants, the botanical gardens are a beautiful green space in the city where you can find locals and tourists alike taking advantage of a beautiful day. Onsite, you will also find a flower shop, cafe and butterfly house.

A white spiral staircase is surrounded by a variety of plants inside of Copenhagen's Botanical Gardens.
Inside the greenhouse of Copenhagen's Botanical Gardens

Shopping on Strøget

One of Europe's longest pedestrian streets, it is also one of Copenhagen's main shopping areas. Window shop or take the opportunity to pick up a souvenir to remember your time in Copenhagen.

Dinner at Pizzeria MaMeMi & Wine Bar

This cozy restaurant serves amazing wood-fire oven pizzas for only $25 CAD. The vibes are also welcoming and intimate, making for a perfect evening experience before heading out on the town.

A fresh wood-fire oven pizza
Delicious wood-fire oven pizza at Pizzeria MaMeMi & Wine Bar

Where to go out (bars and clubs)

Kødbyen (Meatpacking District)

Once a working-class area, it has now been converted into a popular destination for locals to enjoy restaurants, bars and art galleries. A hot spot in the evenings with a wide range of bars and clubs, you're sure to find somewhere that peaks your interest.

Jolene Bar

Located within the Meatpacking District, Jolene is low-key space with electric music and an LGBTQI+ friendly crowd.

Cobblestone streets of Copenhagen with a restaurant patio filled with tables, chairs, and umbrellas for covered seating.
Charming streets of Copenhagen, Denmark


This club is the perfect spot to dance the night away. It is located in the basement of a space that operates as a quirky and creative co-working space during the day.

Gothersgade (in the København K district)

Recommended to us by the friendly and helpful concierge of our hotel, this street is another bustling place in Copenhagen to find any bar to suit your vibe.

In conclusion...

Copenhagen is a beautiful city with so much to offer. I hope this 48 hour guide will help you to make the very most of your time in this charming destination, leaving you with memories (and photos) to last a lifetime!

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