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The 5 top attractions in Copenhagen

Like any capital city, Copenhagen has many amazing attractions. But which are the ones that are synonymous with the Danish capital? What are the 5 tourist attractions that cannot be missed on a visit to Copenhagen?

Tivoli garden and ridesTivoli

There is no denying it, Tivoli is one of Copenhagen’s most popular attractions. No matter what time of year you visit, there are always people here. And no wonder! The park has something for everyone, from beautiful gardens to music and rides. The rides are all designed to match the architecture and gardens of the park, with some being wonderfully nostalgic and others utterly thrilling.

Tivoli is the second oldest amusement park in the world, dating back all the way to 1843. Over the years it inspired fairy tale writer Hans Christian Andersen, who was a frequent visitor, and Walt Disney. Once upon a time Tivoli was on the outskirts of the city, but Copenhagen grew so much that today the park stands in the city centre.

SMK – the National Gallery of Denmark

The Statens Museum for Kunst features world class Danish and international art from the past seven centuries. It is Denmark’s largest art gallery, with approximately 260,000 works of art. The original collection was the private property of the Danish royal family up till the mid-19th century when the collection was given to the people.

No other museum in Denmark shows such a rich and varied selection of art – from the European classics of the Renaissance to the overwhelming diversity of modern and contemporary art. The museum is especially famous for its beautiful collection of Danish Golden Age art, and it has the country’s most comprehensive collection of Danish contemporary art.

Rosenborg CastleRosenborg Castle and The King’s Garden

This castle in the Copenhagen city centre was built by one of the most famous Danish kings, Christian IV, in the 17th century. It started as a small summer palace but over the course of 28 years it went through four stages of development to become the castle it still is today. Some of the main sights of Rosenborg Castle include the crown jewels and regalia, the coronation thrones, life-size silver lions and beautiful tapestries commemorating the battles between Denmark and Sweden.

The King’s Garden, also known as Rosenborg Garden, is the oldest and most visited park in central Copenhagen, though it wasn't always open to the public. To visit the garden, take your pick from one of three entrances and wander along tree-lined paths, under rose-bound arches and to the Hercules Pavilion, the statue of Hans Christian Andersen and a multitude of other sculptures. The Kings Gardens also includes herbaceous borders, a rose garden and several fountains. 

Den Blå Planet, National Aquarium

At Den Blå Planet (The Blue Planet) you can dive beneath the surface and explore seven million litres of water and its inhabitants. Northern Europe’s largest aquarium is home to majestic hammerhead sharks, secretive octopi, graceful rays and over 400 other species.

The whirlpool inspired building has five different section, each for a different array of species and habitats. Visit the bird colonies on the steep fells of the Faroe Islands, the playful sea otters from Alaska, and the elusive Giant Pacific octopus. In warmer waters, you can visit the colorful fish of the coral reef, the curious creatures of the lakes and rivers in Africa, and the crown jewel of the aquarium: the beautiful Ocean Tank with an underwater tunnel.

Round TowerThe Round Tower

If you want to escape the busy streets of the city, the Round Tower is the perfect place to go. The tower was built in the 17th century when Denmark was famous for its astronomical achievements, and today actually stands on a busy shopping street. Inside, instead of stairs, there is a wide spiral path that leads to the top of the tower.

Today the observatory at the top of the tower is still used by amateur astronomers. The tower is also home to a grand library hall which holds exhibitions. And the observatory is surrounded by a platform, which many visit for magnificent panoramic views of old Copenhagen. A must-see sight when you visit Copenhagen.