I failed at being a tourist in Copenhagen. Which, in other words, is my way of saying I didn’t see anything you’re “supposed” to see when you visit Denmark’s capital.
The little mermaid statue? Nope.
Christiania? That’s a negative.
Tivoli Gardens? Absolutely not.
So, what did you do in Copenhagen, you ask?
I ate a lot of really good food. I lingered over lengthy brunches. I sat in the sun by the harbourfront for an entire afternoon. I went to a painfully cool street food market… and ate some more fantastic food.
I normally skip touristy attractions in favour of off the beaten path and lesser-known spots when I travel, but I really went ham on avoiding “must-see” sights on this trip.
If you’re looking for tips on the top things to do in Copenhagen, I’m definitely not the person to ask. If you want to know where to get amazing brunch, feast on phenomenal street food, and sit with an Aperol Spritz by the harbour, I’m your girl.
Since I spent a few days in Copenhagen
doing a whole lot of nothing pretending to be a local, this post is essentially going to consist of photos — along with my favourite food finds (because I actually have a few recommendations on that front).
Here’s a little photo diary of my trip to Copenhagen (plus foodie tips at the end of the post).
Where to eat and drink in Copenhagen: my top picks
Mad & Kaffe
This is one of the city’s most popular breakfast hotspots — and after eating there, I can totally see why: Mad & Kaffe is basically brunch heaven. The food is downright delicious, and it’s served in a way that’s so aesthetically pleasing (or Instagrammable, as the kids would say).
You can choose three, five, or seven small dishes to make up your meal (definitely go for at least five), and my favourites were the smoked salmon, avocado with tarragon mayo and salted almonds, and the porridge topped with caramel sauce and rhubarb compote.
Møller Kaffe & Køkken
Møller Kaffe & Køkken wasn’t quite as good as Mad & Kaffe in my opinion, but it’s definitely still worth a visit if you have time. The food is simple but so, so good and made with top-quality ingredients.
The standouts here were the soft boiled egg with mushrooms and habanero tabasco and the steamed asparagus with truffle herb oil and caviar. Also, the buttermilk churned butter is to die for.
Street food markets
Bridge Street Kitchen
Street food, cocktails, live music, and lounge chairs with lovely harbour views — these are only a few of the reasons why Bridge Street Kitchen ended up being one of my favourite spots in the city.
Situated by the Inner Harbour Bridge between Christianshavn and Nyhavn, it features a mix of vendors doling out Danish and international favourites, from fish and chips to organic hot dogs, pizza and Southeast Asian street food.
This massive and ridiculously hip complex might just be the biggest street food market I’ve ever been to. Set in a former industrial area (think old warehouses converted into craft breweries and shipping containers turned food stalls), Reffen is packed with an overwhelming amount of street food options from every corner of the globe.
I tried a few dishes and snacks here, but my top pick was the grilled mackerel from Grillfisken, a stall that serves up local and ultra-fresh seafood.
Steps away from Nørreport Station in the heart of the city centre, this is a quintessential market featuring everything from traditional Danish dishes to international street food and fresh produce, meat, and seafood.
Torvehallerne was my first stop in the city, so naturally, I went straight for the smørrebrød stall and ordered their marinated salmon sandwich (with lemon marinated salmon, crème fraiche, fennel, and dill).
Located in a former paté factory in Copenhagen’s super-cool Meatpacking District, this wine and tapas bar features classic Spanish, French, and Middle Eastern-inspired food with a contemporary twist. The food was great but the atmosphere was even better.
Have you been to any of these spots? Tell me about a time you failed at tourism (I’m not the only one, right? Right?)
Like posts with more photos and less waffling? You might just like these, too:
Aight, there’s lots of things I wanna see when I finally go to Denmark, but food will probably be the only thing on my mind once I get there! 😀
Haha I hear you — that’s what happened to me when I arrived!