January 11, 2019
10 important facts about Copenhagen
1. LET’S GET IT OUT OF THE WAY
Before we get the party started, let’s get the boring, but important things to get out the way.
Worried about our weird language? You don’t have to! The Danes start learning English at a young age, and most of us speak it fluently.
Yes, you can drink the tap water! It’s delicious and some of the cleanest in the world. Don’t hesitate to order it in restaurants, it is often a lot better than the bottled stuff.
No, you can’t use euros in most places. We have our own currency “kroner”. We know it is a little in convenient when travelling from the rest of Europe, but we love our currency so much that we were not willing to give it up when entering the EU.
Tipping is not customary, but mostly appreciated. Everybody in the restaurant business is payed a fair wage, so most locals tip if they have had great service.
2. I WANT TO RIDE MY BICYCLE
Welcome to one of the most bike friendly cities in the world! With almost 400 km of designated bike lanes, the infrastructure favors this sustainable way of transportation. If you are up for it, we highly recommend renting a bike and start exploring. In our opinion, biking is one of the easiest, fastest and safest ways to get around our beautiful city. The city bikes are easy to use and are all equipped with touch screen with a city map. If you would rather rent a bike elsewhere, we highly recommend using the app I Bike CPH to find the best way to your destination. If you don’t feel comfortable biking yourself, bike taxis is another fun way to get around.
3. PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION
If you don’t feel up for the bikes, don’t worry, we got you covered as well! In Copenhagen you can go almost anywhere with public transportation. The city is connected with busses, trains, metros and ferries and offers endless combinations and options for getting fast and comfortably while still taking care of the environment. Even if you decide to go to one of the public transportation dead spot of Copenhagen, there will be transportation within walking distance. How to use this fantastic system you might ask? Google Maps is a lifesaver in terms of finding the best and fastest way to go from A to B. It can also be useful to have the Copenhagen Card as it includes tickets to bus, metro and s-train.
4. I’M SINGING IN THE RAIN
Let’s be frank, the weather in Copenhagen in unpredictable. As your future host in Copenhagen, we would love for you to have the best conditions for enjoying the city including your food tour with us. Therefore, we recommend bringing layers. Despite of having the four seasons represented throughout the year, temperatures can change drastically within the same day and season, so it is good to be prepared for a little bit of everything. There are so many beautiful parks and cool areas with delicious threats to explore by foot, so we highly recommending packing for diverse weather, so your wardrobe is not what’s stopping you from making most of your time in Copenhagen. A good advice: Always bring and umbrella, just in case.
5. COFFEE BREAKS
We loooove our coffee! The Danes are some of the most coffee consuming nations in the world and coffee is closely connected to our food culture. As an old farming country small snacks in between meals to keep up energy used to be necessary. During these breaks, coffee and sweet baked goods would go hand in hand. Despite not working in the fields anymore, these coffee breaks are still an important tradition and cultural institution for us. It is a common way to socialize, which might explain the vast number of cafés, pastry shops and specialty coffee places in Copenhagen. Check out our Instagram for some of our favorite coffee spots in Copenhagen.
6. THE DANISH STYLE
Denmark is known worldwide for design, fashion and architecture. So if you are in need of something new for your wardrobe or kitchen, you might consider postponing the shopping trip until you have arrived. The city is full of small design shops and cool clothing boutiques. We definitely believe in adding value to your purchases by connecting them to memories of a great vacation. If you like to travel light (we totally respect that as well!) we recommend visiting the Designmuseum Danmark for a great introduction to Danish design, or taking a stroll along the harbors of Copenhagen to get a closer look at the many beautiful contemporary buildings and constructions. Some of our favorites are the Inner Harbor bridge (it connects Nyhavn with one of the best food markets, Broens Gadekøkken), the Royal Library called the Black Diamond or the Opera at Holmen.
7. CASTLE, QUEENS AND FAIRYTALES
When coming here you will most likely see and hear a lot about castles. It is not a coincidence; we have one of the world’s oldest monarchies! Pretty cool, right? Opinions are mixed, some love it, some feel it’s an outdated institution and some think tax money could be spend better. Despite of this, most Danes watch the Queens New Year’s speech and feel connected to the monarchy as part of their history. When the members of the Royal Family have their birthday, there are flags on the busses and the public go to the castle to cheer. It is very festive and tradition bound. We highly recommend trying to experience some of this for yourself, whether it is by visiting some of the castles, talking to locals about the monarchy or reading a HC Andersen fairytale.
8. JANTELOVEN – UNDERSTANDING THE DANISH MENTALITY
Getting to know the Law of Jante means getting to know the Danes. It is a code of conduct inspired by the Ten Commandments generally telling us: You are not to think you’re anyone special or that you’re better than us. This mentality is said to originate from an old Nordic caution and humility. It showcases the Danes ironic self-perception and explains why we often put society ahead of the individual. If you find it hard getting the Danes to talk about themselves or receive praise, this might be why. But that shouldn’t keep you from trying! Most of us want to break free from the Law of Jante and give others and ourselves an occasional pat on the back. We have so much to be proud of and we should be able to acknowledge that.
9. THE HAPPIEST PEOPLE IN THE WORLD
Maybe you have heard about this before? A few years back Denmark was appointed the happiest people in the world. We don’t hold the record anymore, but we continue to rank in the top 10 every year. Several attributes about the Danish way of life can shed light on this: due to high taxes we have a high level of social security! It might sound a little boring but it entails free healthcare, free education and financial security if you go unemployed, get sick or have children. Other factors that might contribute to the smile on our faces are no natural disasters, low crime, lot’s of fresh air, bike exercises and a good work/life balance (for most people). The last thing we personally want to point out, is how we prioritize “hygge”. We will tell you all about when introducing 5 good words to know before coming
10. THE NEW NORDIC CUISINE
Over the past 15 years, Copenhagen has turned into a gastronomic hotspot due to development of the New Nordic Cuisine. It started as an innovative approach to cooking in the Nordic region by focusing on only serving seasonal and local products. Today the food scene is about so much more, because of a steady influx of talented people from all over the world. The result is many different cuisines, concepts and approaches to food in the same city at so many different price ranges. We can’t wait to show and tell you all about it! Please remember that we offer to make you a personalized foodie guide prior to your arrival with the best tips on where you should dine based on your preferences.