An insider’s guide to Copenhagen

Everyone has a routine when they travel somewhere new. I like to go straight to my hotel and get rid of my bags. I then head down to reception and ask the receptionist for a large map and for all their recommendations on places to go, see, eat, drink and things to do. I then ask for their favourite bar or café nearby where I’ll go and sit for an hour and plot my adventures. I know I should probably do this before I arrive but it isn’t until you get there that you get a real feel for a city.

I always find that the hotel receptionist is the best person to ask for a mini guide to the city. They usually live locally and will often go for lunch and after-work drinks close to the hotel so they have loads of great eating and drinking suggestions. You’ll often find that the hotel receptionist isn’t local which I see as a good thing. They can see the city as both a local and tourist so they can give you a great insight into the city.

While I was in Copenhagen I stayed at the Kong Arthur Hotel where I was constantly asking the ladies behind the front desk for their local recommendations.

An insiders guide to Copenhagen

Name: Tatiana

Job: Receptionist at Kong Arthur Hotel

How long have you worked there: 6 years

Favourite place to eat in Copenhagen: Torvehallerne Market Hall

Torvehallerne is a high quality, organic food market around the corner from the hotel. There are 60 stands in this modern market serving Danish delicacies, international cuisine, coffee, cakes, drinks and fresh produce. This is a foodie paradise and not to be missed!


Best bar in Copenhagen: Ourselves Alone – A very small and cosy bar

Café Norden – This is a huge and old cafe in the center of the city where they make the best cocktails, coffee and open Danish sandwiches.

Mikkeller – An award winning brewery in the red light district where you’ll find 19 draught beers and a really relaxed vibe.

Best café near the hotel: Café Munk

This is an India/Danish café and the combination is incredible. It’s cosy and relaxing but still fun and energetic. It’s next to the hotel, reasonably priced, has a strong wifi connection and the food is delicious.

Best place in Copenhagen for shopping: Strøget

This is the longest shopping street in Europe with two huge shopping malls and it’s 1km long!

No.1 thing you can’t miss in Copenhagen: The Little Mermaid

This was said in unison with Tatiana’s colleague who was listening nearby. You really can’t miss the mermaid!

The Little Mermaid Copenhagen

Tradition Danish meal: For dinner, the tradition meal is meat and potatoes. It’s usually pork with brown sauce which is similar to a vegetable gravy. For lunch it’s open Danish sandwiches.

Why are the Danish people so happy?

The Danish are a little bit cold when you first meet them but then they are open and very kind. We have the best economical system in the world and we have a thing called ‘hygge’. Hygee is something we practice a lot in Denmark and it’s that warm, cosy feeling. We get the family together and we like to be together. Hygee is also about communication between our friends and family and talking together.

What’s your favourite thing about the hotel: The lounge and the breakfast. Our breakfast is organic and the whole hotel is as organic as possible. We are a green hotel. Our guests like our cosy hour where we have different drinks each night. We like to introduce guests to our Danish culture, especially hygee, and it’s nice in the summer. We have a summer garden where our guests like to sit and have drinks during cost hour. You have to come back in the summer!

kong arthur hotel CopenhagenSo there you have it, a mini guide to Copenhagen from Tatiana with some great places to eat, drink, sleep and be merry. If you have any more to add to the list, let us know in the comments below.



Monica is the founder and editor of The Travel Hack. She began the blog in 2009 when she left the UK to travel around Asia and Australia for two years. She's now a professional blogger and has travelled around the world in search of stylish adventure travel. Monica has recently had her second baby and is determined to prove that travelling with a baby is possible!

SHOWHIDE Comments (19)
  1. Great tips! I do exactly the same thing. I’m a big planner before I go on a trip, so I usually know the basics, but there’s nothing like a bit of insider knowledge to get the most up-to-date information and discover the lesser-well-known secrets.

  2. I love this idea, where better to get really great inside info than a local who works in the tourist industry. Copenhagen wasn’t on my radar at all until I saw your Instagram photos. It looks absolutely gorgeous and a real contender for a winter break.

  3. I am pinning this for my upcoming trip. I always plan everything ahead of time, but I am always open to changing things around when I get good tips from the locals who know far better than me and my guidebooks. I will be trying out that brewery for sure.

  4. Ohhhh! I’m a newbie fan of The Travel Hack. Copenhagen’s one of my favourite places and this post has made want to go back. I hope the festival was amazing. By coincidence I’ve just done a post on CPH too. looking forward to what’s next x

  5. This is a great way to get recommendations. I like to talk with hotel receptionists, store owners, taxi drivers, waiters and other about their favorite places in a city.

  6. I am basically a globetrotter who loves to travel and discover new places. I have covered almost entire Europe, but am yet to visit Denmark. It is most probably going to be my next destination. Your well versed guide should prove very helpful to me in planning my trip to Copenhagen Thanks!!!

  7. Love your blog – and I fell over this post from Copenhagen. My city <3 (even though I live in Norway now…)
    Hygge is the ultimate danish thing.
    Visit in july/august sometime. Enjoy a BBQ in Parken or picnic in The Kings Garden, next to Rosenborg castle (it is so beautiful!).

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The Travel Hack

The Travel Hack is a blog about stylish adventure travel and affordable luxury.

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