Copenhagen is the capital of Denmark, and it is a wonderful city to visit. From incredible palaces to beautiful churches and colourful buildings, there is something for everyone in this walkable city. Keep reading for my two-day Copenhagen itinerary! I have also included a custom Google map at the end of this post to help you plan your visit.
Two-Day Copenhagen Itinerary
Kastellet (citadel in English) is a fortress in Copenhagen that was built in the 1600s. Labeled one of the best preserved fortresses in Northern Europe, it is now a public park, with several military buildings and a windmill.
Note, we somehow missed the sign that said no walking on the grass, and a pair of friendly soldiers informed us of the rules…woops!
Hours: Seven days a week, from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.
The Little Mermaid
The Little Mermaid statue is one of the most iconic images of Copenhagen. It sits on a rock at the Langelinie Pier. Hans Christian Andersen’s fairytale of the same name inspired this bronze and granite statue.
Since the Little Mermaid is so famous, that the small area in front of the statue can be very crowded. We happened to arrive just as a tour bus got there (yikes), but we were still able to get a good view of the statue. It just took a bit of patience and willingness to push through.
Gefion Fountain is a large fountain just outside Kastellet, near the Little Mermaid. It features the goddess Gefion driving four oxen. Anders Bundegaard created these statues, and the fountain was unveiled in 1908.
The legend says the Swedish king Gylfe offered Gefion as much land as she was able to plow in one day and night. Gefion turned her four sons into oxen, and together they created the island of Zealand, where Copenhagn is located. This apparently left a hole in Sweden, in the form of Lake Vänern, which is the same shape as Zealand.
St. Alban’s Church
St. Alban’s Church is a small Anglican church in Copenhagen, next to the Gefion Fountain. It is actually the only Anglican church in Denmark. It was built from 1885 to 1887.
Hours: St. Alban’s Church is open to visitors in the summer from Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Church services are held Sundays and Wednesdays at 10:30 a.m.
Frederik’s Church/The Marble Church
Frederik’s Church is an impressive church with a large copper green dome, the largest church dome in Northern Europe. The church was built in the 1700s under the rule of King Frederik V. When both the architect and the king died, construction on the church stopped for 100 years. It was finally completed in 1894.
Frederik’s Church is part of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Denmark, of which the majority of Danes are members.
Hours: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Friday, Sunday from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Amalienborg Palace is the current residence of the Danish royal family. It actually consists of four palaces, two of which are open to the public: the Christian VII palace and the Christian VIII palace.
The other two palaces are the Christian IX palace, which is the official residence of Queen Margrethe II, and the Frederik VIII palace, the official residence of Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary.
This museum is inside the Christian VIII palace. It covers the history of the last 150 years of the monarchy. It also includes visits to the private chambers of former kings and queens.
Hours: Daily from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. (the palace is closed most Mondays from November to April, so be sure to check ahead of time)
Cost: $18.50 CAD (95 DKK) for adults, $12.50 CAD ( 65 DKK) for students, free for children under 18. There are also combination tickets available if visiting Rosenborg Palace or the Christian VII Palace.
Christian VII Palace
This palace is used as the guest palace, where the Danish royal family has welcomed guests for 250 years.
Hours: This palace may only be visited on a guided tour. English tours are held on Saturday and Sunday at 1:10 p.m. The website advises that reservations are essential.
Cost: $20 CAD (105 DKK)
Palace Square: Changing of the Royal Guard
The reason we visited Amalienborg Palace was to witness the changing of the guards ceremony in the palace square. At 11:30 a.m. daily, the Danish Royal Guard marches from Rosenborg Palace, arriving at Amalienborg at noon.
Depending on which royal family members are at the palace at the time, there are different types of ceremonies: the King’s watch, the Lieutenant’s watch and the Palace watch. (The royal family resides at Amalienborg from September to April)
King’s watch: This type of ceremony comes with the most pomp and circumstance, as it occurs when the Queen is in residence at Amalienborg Palace. Sixty guards, along with 36 musicians and 16 drummers march to the palace.
Lieutenant’s watch: This type of ceremony occurs if either Crown Prince Frederik or Prince Joachim are in residence. It also includes music, but with fewer guards.
Palace watch: This type of ceremony occurs when none of the royal family is in residence. Only 18 guards are present, and there is no music. This is the ceremony we witnessed in the summer, and while it was neat to see the guards marching, I did not think it was that exciting.
The bubble waffles at Munchies are to die for! If you’ve never had a bubble waffle filled with ice cream….you must get one! It’s the perfect snack for a pick-me-up during a busy day exploring Copenhagen.
Church of Our Saviour
Church of Our Saviour is one of the most famous churches in Copenhagen, marked by a large helix spire atop the church. The Baroque-style Lutheran church was consecrated in 1696, and the spire was added in 1752.
For an amazing view over Copenhagen, you can climb the 400 steps to the top of the tower, the last 150 of which are on the outside of the spire. We are not really ones to climb hundreds of steps for a view, let alone on a narrow, busy staircase…so we just went inside the church and skipped the tower climb.
Hours: The church is open daily from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Between May and September, the tower is open Monday to Saturday from 9:30 a.m. to 7 p.m., and on Sunday from 10:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.
From February to April and October to December, the tower is open Monday to Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and on Sunday from 10:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
The tower is only open on select days in December, and is closed in January and most of February.
Cost: Entrance to the church is free.
Between May and September, entrance to the tower is $10 CAD (50 DKK) for adults, $8 CAD (40 DKK) for seniors and free for children 14 and under. All other times of the year, tickets are $7 CAD (35 DKK) for adults and $5 CAD (25 DKK) for seniors.
Christiania is a controversial, autonomous area within Copenhagen, also frequently referred to as a hippie commune.
About 850 to 1,000 people live within the gates of Christiania, which was established in 1971 when squatters took over the abandoned military base. Cannabis is illegal in Denmark, but it is openly sold in Christiania. Police raids do happen frequently apparently.
Christiania is a strange place to walk around. I did not feel unsafe, but I did feel uncomfortable at times and did not want to stay too long.
Note, do not take photos inside Christiania. We took the following two photos outside the gates.
Hot dogs are the most popular street food in Denmark, so of course we had to stop for a bite! Hanegal is a hot dog stand next to the Round Tower. The hot dogs were $7 CAD (37 DKK) each, and they were delicious!
The Round Tower
The Round Tower is a large, 34.8 metre-tall tower in the heart of Copenhagen. The majority of the climb to the top is on a ramp that takes 7.5 turns around the tower. At the end, there are 59 steps to reach the viewing platform via a wide wooden staircase and a narrow stone staircase.
Hours: Daily from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. (Tuesdays and Wednesdays the tower is open until 9 p.m.)
Cost: $5 CAD (25 DKK) for adults, $1 CAD (5 DKK) for children between 5 and 15.
Rosenborg Castle is a 400-year-old Renaissance castle in Copenhagen. Surrounding the castle is the King’s Garden, which is Denmark’s oldest royal garden. We did not go into the castle, but we enjoyed walking around the garden.
Hours: The castle is open daily between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. or 4 p.m., depending on the time of year.
Cost: $22.50 CAD (115 DKK) for adults, $15 CAD (15 DKK) for students and free for children under 17. The garden is free to enter.
Nyhavn is a bustling area along a canal in Copenhagen. The canal is lined with colourful buildings and lots of restaurants. We actually visited Nyhavn twice during our visit: once in the evening and once in the morning. For me, the morning was more enjoyable because it wasn’t as busy.
Christianshavn is a quieter, less busy Nyhavn. The canals are also lined with really cute buildings and restaurants, and it’s a nice area to wander around.
Christiansborg Palace is a gorgeous palace in Copenhagen. I was blown away by how beautiful the inside of the palace is and how much there is to see.
There are five attractions within Christiansborg Palace: the royal reception rooms, the royal stables, the royal kitchen, the chapel and the ruins under the palace. We visited the royal reception rooms, which I highly recommend.
Hours: Each of the attractions within the palace has different hours, depending on the day and the time of the year.
Cost: There are tickets available for the royal reception rooms, the royal stables, the royal kitchen and the ruins. Entrance to the chapel is free.
Tours: Guided tours are free.
Royal reception rooms: Tours are offered daily in July and August at noon and 3 p.m., and from September to June at 3 p.m.
Royal stables: Tours are offered on Saturdays at 2 p.m.
Ruins: Tours are offered on Saturdays at 12 p.m.
Audio Guide: Free audio guides are available on the Useeum app for the royal reception rooms and the tapestries. Although we took the tour of the reception rooms with a guide, we went back to the tapestry room and listened to the audio guides. Learning about the tapestries was actually one of my favourite parts, because it taught me a lot about Danish history.
The World of Hans Christian Andersen
Hans Christian Andersen is a famous Danish author, known for writing fairytales such as The Little Mermaid, Thumbelina and The Princess and the Pea.
The H.C. Andersen Eventyrhuset (AKA The World of Hans Christian Andersen) is a museum/shrine to some of Andersen’s most famous fairytales. Each of the stories has its own large display with characters, lights and moving parts. I thought it was pretty cheesy and seemed very outdated. If you have young children they may enjoy it.
Hours: From June 15 to August 31, it is open daily from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. The rest of the year it is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday to Thursday, and from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Friday and Saturday.
Cost: $10.50 CAD (54 DKK) for adults and $7 CAD for children ages 7 to 14. Combination tickets are also available for the Ripley’s Believe It or Not museum, which is in the same building.
Other Copenhagen Activities
The following activities are a two popular attractions in Copenhagen that I did not get to on my trip.
Tivoli Gardens is an amusement park in Copenhagen.
Hours: Check the website, as hours depend on the time of year.
Cost: $25 CAD (130 DKK) on Monday to Friday, $27 CAD (140 DKK) on Saturday and Sunday, and $12 CAD for children ages 3 to 7 daily.
National Museum of Denmark
The National Museum of Denmark has exhibits from the Stone Age, the Viking Age, the Middle Ages, the Renaissance and modern Danish history.
Hours: From June to September, the museum is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The rest of the year, the museum is closed on Mondays.
Cost: $19 CAD (95 DKK) for adults, free for children under 18.
Thank you for reading this two-day Copenhagen itinerary! Have you ever been to Copenhagen? What was your favourite thing you did?
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