Experience the heart and soul of Denmark in beautiful and exciting Copenhagen: the place where Hans Christian Andersen penned his tales and the foundation of modern astronomy was laid by the stargazer Tycho Brahe. From its location on the eastern coast of the island of Zealand, this picturesque city lies mid-way between the Baltic and North Seas, making it not only an important commercial hub, but a cultural center as well. Filled with historic sites, museums, and activities, its diverse history stretching back to the Vikings is on display everywhere, from Langelinie Pier where the Little Mermaid lives to the ruins under the 12th century Christiansborg Palace. Easy to access by sea, land, or air, Copenhagen’s bus, railway, and road system makes getting around simple as well. So come savor good food, good times, and say “skål” in this wonderful city by Øresund Sound.
Location: Baltic Pearly by the Øresund
Located on the eastern shore of the island Zealand in the Øresund Sound, busy Copenhagen is strategically positioned between the Baltic and the North Sea. The city enjoys a temperate climate with cool winters and mild summers. Buffeted by west winds, the change between seasons is distinct. Copenhagen Airport is a major European hub. It’s also accessible by ferry from Oslo. One can get around easily by train or car on the sophisticated network of roads and rail lines.
Business: Medicon Valley and Economic Bonanza
While most of Copenhagen’s residents are employed in the service sector, it’s also the political and financial center of Denmark, the flow of wealth filtered through the Copenhagen Stock Exchange. Tourism plays a big role in the economy, with a record number of room nights – 8.1 million – reached in 2012. The shipping giant Maersk has its world headquarters here, and global companies like Carlsberg and Novo Nordisk call the city their home. Major research centers in bio and information technology are also located here, which resulted in the metro area’s nickname “Medicon Valley”. The Øresund Sound Bridge has expanded trade across the strait to the Swedish city of Malmo.
Culture: From Vikings to Royalty of Literature
With a heritage dating back to the Vikings in the 11th century, Copenhagen’s role as a major cultural and commercial center has changed little over time. While rising to prominence through the Middle Ages as major fishing center, it fell prey in the 16th century to the same religious schism that roiled most of Europe. Fortifications like the Kastellet (“Citadel”) reflect the struggle for political and religious dominance. Feel astronomer Tycho Brahe’s spirit at his observatory, The Round Tower. Or, pay homage to Hans Christian Andersen with a visit to the statue of the Little Mermaid. Modern-day Copenhagen lives and breathes arts, music, and history—so make sure to experience it all!
Activities: Roller Coasters, Galleries, and Waterfront Fun
Take the kids over to Tivoli Gardens where they ride can ride the iconic wooden roller coaster in this, the world’s second oldest amusement park. History lives in the city’s numerous landmark buildings, such as Rosenborg Castle or Amalienborg Palace, or its many museums like the Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek and National Gallery, where you can view traditional works. Modern pieces are skilfully displayed at the ARKEN. Stroll along the picturesque Nyhavn waterfront, where you can shop, savor a local brew, or enjoy meal at one of the many eateries.