Enjoying Copenhagen Like a Local

Other than the fact that I knew that Copenhagen had a sculpture of Hans Christian Andersen’s Little Mermaid, I didn’t know a lot about Denmark before I arrived in the capital.

But 5 minutes after arriving on the bus, I could see that Copenhagen would be a great city to explore.  Also I was aware that Denmark was again ranked no. 1 in The UN 2016 World Happiness Report, so I was keen to see what life was like for the world’s happiness peeps.

I had been previously warned and it was clear from the food and transport prices at the Central Station that for an Aussie, it would be expensive place to visit.  Still, I wasn’t going to let that stop me.

I find that staying Airbnb is usually the first way to save money on hotels, even hostels, and experience was life is like for the locals.  So with my accommodation sorted, I was keen to see what the locals do.

On Ya Bike

Copenhagen is mostly flat, which makes it ideal for cycling around the city.  Also the council is a big fan of cycling, as they have invested in making the city very bicycle-friendly! Lots of bike lanes, special traffic lights only for bikes, and bike stands everywhere!

I was lucky enough to be offered a spare bicycle with my stay (thank you so much Susan) so even though I am not at all sporty (I have never played or followed sports) I thought if you cannot beat them….

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Yes, I don’t think I’ve cycled for 20 years, so I was a bit rusty at first.  But then it turns out, it just like riding a bike!

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Superkilen Park

Only 8 minutes away via bicycle, I was seen to see the popular local, arty park called Superkilen Park.

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Superkilen is a kilometre-long park situated in the Nørrebro area just north of Copenhagen’s city centre. Superkilen is home to more than 60 nationalities, and is considered to be one of the most ethnically diverse and socially challenged neighbourhoods in the Danish capital.

Denmark.dk

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It was visually stunning, especially in the Summer sun, and it was relaxing and enjoyable to see so many nationalities and different types of people sharing the amazing common space.

I highly recommend a visit.

H22 Coffee

Lucky for me, the Danes like a good, fresh cup of coffee.  So a great way to live like a local, is to fine a local coffee spot with non-touristy prices and amazing beans.

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H22 in Superkilen park is one of these.  You can get a great cappuccino for only 25 DKK (AUD$5), which is a lot cheaper than the city centre.

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Just do it.

Local Supermarkets

Even the locals admin that eating out can get expensive in Copenhagen.  Most fast food like kebabs and sandwiches normally start from about 50DKK – 70DKK (AUD10 – 14).

So it simple to just do what the locals do, and go to the local supermarkets – Lidl, Irma, Netto or Fotex.

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There you can buy pre-packed fresh salads from 20DKK to 45DKK (AUD$4 – $9) and even grab some bread rolls, and some tomatoes and cheese for your own picnic.

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For dinner, it’s great to try fresh pasta or fish.  The local supermarket will cut the cost of your meals to really help keep the budget down.


Also published on Medium.

2 Comments
  1. Nørrebro was one of the neighbourhoods I was most looking forward to exploring, but unfortunately also one I never made it to (as it was probably the farthest one from where I was staying), it looks lovely there 🙂

    Yes I agree, if you’re staying somewhere longer than a few days an Airbnb is definitely the way to go. Like the title of your post suggests, you really get to explore the area like a local too 🙂

    • I have found that I normally struggle to find the BEST places in a city on my first, short visit. It’s normally after Day 5 that I stumble on my new favourite spot. 🙂

      I’m glad you liked Copenhagen as well…

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