Copenhagen has it going on. Unique culinary experiences, innovative outdoor spaces, the second oldest operating amusement park. It leaves nothing to be desired. Still, there are several amazing spots just a train ride away. If you have the time, Copenhagen is a great home base for several of Scandinavia's hidden gems.
This one is a must. It's a 30 minute train ride from Copenhagen but feels worlds away. It is another country after all. This was by far the easiest day trip to navigate. We bought our tickets at the train station, although you can buy them ahead of time here. Malmö is absolutely beautiful. It's modern and medieval at the same time. It has several modern sculptures but still has a castle from 1434. Be sure the visit St. Peter's Cathedral, dating back to the 14th century! Did I mention it has an iconic Swedish windmill?
2. Louisiana Museum of Modern Art
A 45 minute train ride away, this museum is more than your average art museum. The exhibits and art are really cutting edge. It's also a nice place to just hang out. It's got a highly rated restaurant with amazing views overlooking the canal between Copenhagen and Sweden. Also free with the Copenhagen card. Plus it's got an Alexander Caulder mobile.... need I say more.
3. Kronborg Castle
This castle is the famous setting of Shakespeare's play Hamlet and you can feel the drama when you walk in. The castle is set in the most dramatic landscape, just next to a sound that separates Denmark and Sweden. It is a fortress from the 1600s and has got a lot of charm, history, and story behind it. This is another site that is free with the Copenhagen card.
4. Viking Ship Museum in Roskilde
Into Vikings? Than this 30 minute train ride is a must. When planning this trip, I was trying to find sites that were uniquely Scandinavian. This was our first time in the area and I wanted to see something I couldn't find anywhere. This is definitely it! Their website has great resources on events and happenings. This is also a very kid friendly day trip as the museum has several activities for young audiences.
Not into Vikings? Roskilde also has a medieval cathedral that's a UNESCO world heritage site dating back to the 12th and 13th centuries.
5. Frederiksborg Castle
This castle was built in the early 17th century as a royal residence (like most castles) and suffered a major fire in 1859 (also like most castles) and was reconstructed slowly over a few decades. The 1617 chapel inside is the best preserved area since it was untouched by the fire and houses the oldest organ in Denmark. My favorite part of this castle were the private chambers the King built onto the chapel so he could watch services from above, in a private area where he wouldn't have to speak to the other attendees. Talk about antisocial!