Cities in Six—Copenhagen, Denmark

Visual, virtual visiting—six photos at a time

Copenhagen, Denmark’s capital, is a bewitchingly beautiful city.  It is located on several islands in the east of Denmark, and faces Malmö, Sweden, across the Øresund strait.  Originally an 11th-century Viking village, Copenhagen later served as the seat of government for the 15th and 16th century-era Nordic union of Norway, Denmark, and Sweden.

In addition to its stunning architecture, Copenhagen is also home to Carlsberg Brewery, the Tivoli Gardens amusement park, Hans Christian Andersen’s Little Mermaid and a plethora of museums and gardens.  We visited in July 2011, while Denmark was experiencing its rainiest summer on record.

Amalienborg Palace.  The 18th-century royal residence complex consists of four identical buildings around a courtyard.  Long-serving and popular Queen Margrethe II abdicated earlier this year, at which time her son King Frederik X ascended the Danish throne.

Opera House.  Opened in 2000, the Copenhagen Opera House sits directly across the harbour from Amalienborg Palace and can be reached by road or Harbour Bus.  The roof of the Opera House has served as an occasional venue for Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series events.

Nyhavn.  The tourist district of Nyhavn (“New Harbour”) is lined with masts and 17th-century buildings housing restaurants and museums.  Canal boat tours departing from Nyhavn are a great way to see much of the city.

City of Spires.  One of the many towers or spires seen from a canal tour boat is that of Børsen, the 17th-century stock exchange.  Its 56-metre spire is topped by the intertwined tails of four dragons.

Christiansborg Palace.  Replacing two earlier palaces, both of which burned down, the current palace was built in the early 1900s.  Christiansborg Palace houses the Danish parliament and Supreme Court, as well as some royal reception rooms

Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek.  The Glyptotek is foremost a sculpture museum, from the private collection of Carl Jacobsen (son of the founder of Carlsberg Breweries) and also has extensive collections of French and Danish impressionist and post-impressionist paintings.  The building itself is noted for its sumptuous architecture and decoration, evident here on the ceiling and walls of a mere stairway.

Travel note:  the Copenhagen Airport at Kastrup is linked by train directly to downtown Copenhagen.  The nearly 8-kilometre Øresund Bridge, combined with the 4-kilometre Drogden Tunnel, provides direct rail and motorway links to Malmö, Sweden.  On arrival, we purchased a Copenhagen Card, which gave us access to public transit and many local attractions.