Where to stay in Copenhagen, a local’s guide to the best areas

If you are traveling to Europe, I highly recommend visiting Copenhagen at least once. Copenhagen is the capital of Denmark and the place where I have lived for almost 10 years of my life. 

I am Danish. I was born and raised in Denmark and lived there until I had just turned 29 years old. Copenhagen is not a very big city. In fact, there is just under 800,000 citizens. Despite that, there are a lot of different areas/neighborhoods in Copenhagen. They are all quite different and unique in their own way. 

Below I will outline a guide to the most popular areas to stay in Copenhagen. 

This is a guest post by Sanne Grothe of The San Sanity

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Wondering where to stay in Copenhagen? Check here for a guide to where to stay in Copenhagen, the best areas, and neighborhoods to stay recommended by a local.

Where to stay in Copenhagen: The 6 best areas to stay

1. The best areas to stay in Copenhagen: City Centre

Nyhavn Harbour Copenhagen Denmark
Nyhavn Harbour

Brief: In the heart of Copenhagen you will find a lot of historical landmarks for the city. Furthermore, you will find some of the city’s most famous sights, which are all within walking or cycling distance. 

Some of the main attractions include Town Hall Square, Amalienborg Palace, King’s Garden,, The main pedestrian shopping street: Strøge, Rosenborg Castle, Nyhavn Harbour, Christiansborg Palace, Botanical Garden, and Torvehallerne. 

Bars and Restaurants: One of the places to go for a drink or some food would definitely be Torvehallerne, which is one of Copenhagen’s most popular marketplaces. Here you find local vegetables, Danish delicacies, and food and drink shops. Everything you need in one place.

Kings Garden and Rosenborg Castle in Copenhagen, Denmark

Transport: All Metro lines. All S-train lines except line F. Many buses will get you everywhere. You can also rent a bike, as Copenhagen is famous for the city’s many optimized bike lanes. Be aware that it is not easy to park a car in Copenhagen. This is due to the fact, that there are not a lot of parking spaces, and the ones you find, are very expensive. 

Note, they are currently working on a new metro line in Copenhagen called “Cityringen”. It is due to open in July 2019. By then it will be possible to use the Metro from Østerbro and Nørrebro as well. 

Why stay here: This is the perfect location if you want to stay in the very heart of Copenhagen and be close to all the major attractions.

Who should stay here: The City Centre is really a place for everyone. Young and old, as it can fulfill all needs.

Where to stay: Some of the best boutique hotels in this area include Hotel SKT. Annæ a 4-star hotel near Nyhavn Harbour close to all main attractions and Hotel SP34 which is located in Copenhagen’s Latin Quarter and includes two restaurants, a rooftop terrace, 4 bars, and a private cinema. It is only 100 meters from the City Hall Square, so the location is also great. 

2. The best areas to stay in Copenhagen: Østerbro

The best areas to stay in Copenhagen: Østerbro

Brief: This area is known for its broad boulevards and more exclusive designer shops. You will find a lot of green oases in this neighborhood.

Some of the main attractions include The Little Mermaid, the Copenhagen Lakes, the national stadium Parken, Fælledparken, Kastellet (The Citadel), and Svanemølle Beach.

Bars and Restaurants: Dag H is a highly popular place for all kinds of social gatherings. They serve both breakfast and brunch on a daily basis. For lunch, you have the opportunity to try the traditional Danish “smørrebrød” and other classic dishes. The coffee here is great and the outdoor tables are quickly full on a sunny day.

Kastellet Copenhagen

Transport: All S-train lines. Lots of buses around Østerbrogade and Østerport Station.

Why stay here: This is a really nice, family-friendly area with many shops and some of Copenhagen’s best cafes. It is very close to the lakes and green oases. At the same time, it is easy to get to the city center.

Who should stay here: This is one of the best places for people with kids. Compared to some of the other areas in Copenhagen this is more family-centered and in general a bit more quiet. 

Where to stay: If you are looking for a cozy family-driven boutique hotel, Rye115 is the place for you. There are only 20 rooms, and the bathrooms are shared with other guests. There is a high focus on sustainability including the organic food which is served at this place.

3. The best areas to stay in Copenhagen: Nørrebro

The best areas to stay in Copenhagen: Nørrebro

Brief: This area has grown over the past decade, to become one of the most popular neighborhoods in Copenhagen. This district includes a rich culture and is one of the most multicultural parts of Copenhagen. 

Some of the main attractions include The Copenhagen lakes and Dronning Louises Bro, Assistens Cemetery (H.C. Andersen), Sankt Hans Torv Square, and Superkilen. 

Bars and Restaurants:

Kiin Kiin is the world’s only Michelin-starred restaurant, and you will find it in Nørrebro. I have only heard great things about this place! Another top-level restaurant in Nørrebro is called Relæ. Here you will enjoy an incredible gastronomic experience. The restaurant has even received one star in Guide Michelin Nordic Cities 2019.

If you want to check out one of the cafes in this area I recommend Mirabella. Here the food is organic and all Italian-inspired.

Superkilen Park Norrebro

Transport: S-train line F. There are also a number of buses around Nørrebrogade.

Why stay here:  At Nørrebro, you find a lot of small green oases and vibrant urban outdoor spaces. Furthermore, great restaurants from all over the world and small design and vintage shops.

Who should stay here: The open-minded people as you will find a great diversity among the people. Everybody from families, students, immigrants, and hipsters.

Where to stay: Hotel Nora Copenhagen is centrally located in Nørrebro. Here you will find brightly decorated rooms and some rooms come with a balcony as well. The hotel has 42 rooms with a homely atmosphere and serves a nice breakfast buffet. 

4. The best areas to stay in Copenhagen: Frederiksberg

Frederiksberg Palace

Brief: Frederiksberg is a nice, residential area. Here you will find both apartment complexes and bigger villas, all close to parks and green areas. It is a more fashionable part of Copenhagen with good shopping opportunities.

Some of the main attractions include Frederiksberg Garden, Copenhagen Zoo, Royal Copenhagen factory, Frederiksberg Palace, Frederiksberg Centeret (shopping center), and Forum (large, multi-purpose, indoor arena). 

Bars and Restaurants: If you are looking for something to eat or drink at night, the food street Værnedamsvej is a great location. Here you will find a lot of gourmet shops including cheese, wine, chocolate, and fish. However, there are also cafes, restaurants, and bars. The street has great charm and a relaxed atmosphere. 

Another suggestion would be Gensyn Bar. Here you will be served quality cocktails at fair prices within l a nice relaxed atmosphere.

Frederiksberg Garden

Transport: All Metro lines. S-train lines C, F, H. Many buses around Gammel Kongevej and Falkoner Allé.

Why stay here: Really beautiful, family-friendly area with lots of parks, green oases, and shopping opportunities. The architecture around Frederiksberg Allé is beautiful and worth checking out.

Who should stay here: Frederiksberg is a more posh district compared to Nørrebro and Vesterbro. The people living here are usually older and more established. You will also find families here, however not to the same extent as in Østerbro.

Where to stay: If you’re looking for something a bit different, I would suggest “Central Hotel og Café” as a place to stay. It has a great location between shopping and eating places. Here you can get a double room, however, note that the room is not suitable for families due to the limited space. A stay at this hotel includes delicious breakfast from Café Granola, which is just half a block away. 

5. The best areas to stay in Copenhagen: Vesterbro

Tivoli Gardens in Copenhagen Denmark

Brief: Vesterbro was previously a working-class district known for its red lights. However, today it is one of the hottest neighborhoods in Copenhagen including everything from cafes, bars, restaurants, nightclubs, and shops.

Some of the main attractions include Tivoli Gardens, Tycho Brahe Planetarium, Istedgade, Kødbyen, Vega, and Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek.

Bars and Restaurants: Recently, The Meatpacking District in Copenhagen has gone through a lot of changes. It used to be the place for Copenhagen’s meat industry businesses. Yet, today you will find a great selection of high-end restaurants and trendy nightlife. So whether you are looking for something to eat or a place to get a drink and show some moves on the dancefloor, The Meatpacking District is definitely the place to go.

Transport: All S-train lines except the F line. Many buses around Central Station.

Vesterbro - where to saty in Copenhagen
Carlsberg Glyptotek

Why stay here: You have the city center within walking distance from this area. In addition, it is a nice area to enjoy urban city life and get involved with everything that happens on the cultural scene. 

Who should stay here: Vesterbro is a very diverse district where you will find all kinds of people hanging out here. Everybody from students, hipsters, families with children, etc. However, it is a place with a lot of action and not one of the most quiet areas.

Where to stay:

One of the best recommendations for this area would be Andersen Boutique Hotel. It has a great location, just 200 meters from the Central Station. There are 69 rooms which suit everyone from cool couples to families with kids. 

6. The best areas to stay in Copenhagen: Christians Havn 

The best areas to stay in Copenhagen: Christians Havn 

Brief: This is an artificial island that was founded in the early 17th century. All with inspiration from Dutch canal cities. Today you will find a wide range of cultural experiences within a bohemian atmosphere.

Some of the main attractions include Christiania, Canal Cruise, Church of Our Saviours, The Opera House, and Restaurant Noma. 

Bars and Restaurants: I highly recommend visiting the world-famous restaurant; Noma. They serve gourmet gastronomy and has four times been named the world’s best restaurant. But make sure to book in advance, as they are always busy. 

Another option would be Restaurant Nærvær where you will find both fine dining combined with a wine bar. The food is creative and contemporary and you will definitely remember your visit to this place.

Church of Our Saviour Copenhagen

Transport: All Metro lines. Many buses around Christianshavns Torv.

Why stay here: Christianshavn is an area filled with beautiful, historical houses and beautiful canals. It is a nice place to hang out and just take in the atmosphere. Furthermore, you are really close to the city center. 

Who should stay here: This is a classic Copenhagen district with a variety of people. You will find everything from trendy students, and retired workers to hippies. 

Where to stay: In order to get the full experience and really breathe in the atmosphere I recommend Hotel CPH Living. It is a floating hotel, right in the center of the city. Here you will be close to the city while at the same time having the opportunity to relax by the water. There are 12 rooms with panoramic views of the harbor. It is a boutique hotel, with Danish classic furniture and specially designed furniture. 

Now you know a bit more about the different neighborhoods in Copenhagen. The only thing left is for you to decide which area is most suitable for you and your travel companion(s). It really is a lovely and beautiful city! So pack your bags and book your stay. Go traveling!

Planning a trip to Copenhagen? You might be interested in:

The best time to visit Copenhagen

How to spend one day in Copenhagen

What to do in Copenhagen with kids.

What to do in Copenhagen in winter.


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