I’m frequently asked for shopping, food and coffee recommendations by those of you planning to visit Copenhagen. And, my gosh, the city is overflowing! Copenhagen really is a capital to be super proud of – it’s crammed full of art, culture, the best boutiques and incredibly good food.
The following is a collection of everything from my favourite coffee shops and pizza places to a few hotel and shopping suggestions! There’s something at every price level, and I stand by all of the places.
A quick tip – book tables. If you’re going out on weekends, it’s often crowded and thus necessary to make dinner reservations where possible. For breakfast as well as dinner.
This is definitely on the expensive side – book your nights at The Apartment. Run by Tina Seidenfaden, who was with Sotheby’s for over a decade, Copenhagen’s perhaps most exclusive boutique / gallery is full of activities and rarities. This place has without a doubt inspired a splash of colour in our interior design (to all of those who’ve got red book cases and blue walls – The Apartment started it). Tina has now taken it one step further and opened a small apartment that you can rent like a hotel room – in close proximity to the original The Apartment. Insta worthiness guaranteed!
If you want it small and sweet, go ahead and make a reservation at the smallest hotel in the world. In Tullinsgade, in my hood, you’ll find Central Hotel & Café. A tiny micro two-storey house, with a cafe that does good toasts and milkshakes on the ground floor and a small room to rent for the night upstairs. The area is delightful – check out my Værnedamsvej guide here.
If you need a room in central Copenhagen, with a true Nordic vibe, SP34 is a great choice. From here, you’ll be close to everything downtown. Plus they’ve got a wonderful restaurant on the ground floor; Vækst, which definitely is worth a visit for dinner.
H15 (Halmtorvet 15)
Copenhagen is expensive – with H15 as a rare exception. We spent less than DKK 150 on a meal with drinks for two people. Raw and unpolished, located in Kødbyen, its focus on simple and tasty dishes is a safe bet. It’s just so good!
Hotel Sanders (Tordenskjoldsgade 15) ^^^
A true insta spot! If you really want to get your insta game going, make sure to visit Sanders’ top floor atelier / terrace. They serve up a great breakfast (not always with the quickest service, though), good croissants and decent coffee. Do take a wander around the ground floor as well. It’s a quite beautiful hotel!
Apollo (Kongens Nytorv 1)
At Kunsthal Charlottenborg is a small semi-hidden pearl, Apollo Bar og Kantine, which acts as a canteen for the art school students as well as an eatery for visitors. The place does insta famous blueberry dishes as well as a really lovely lunch with small servings.
Sonny’s (Rådhusstræde 5) ^^^
Sonny’s is a popular downtown favourite – and there aren’t that many competitors for a good lunch. Strædet around the corner is full of crap cafes, if I’m honest. Sonny’s has a good bircher muesli, always a delicious homemade cake, a delicious, creative salad – but their biggest draw, in my opinion, is their homemade lattes, incl. yummy chai and golden varieties.
Hart Bageri (Gammel Kongevej 109)
One of the best bakeries in town, and they also have a few seatings for visitors. They make a great coffee, and then you can sit in the window and enjoy a good bread roll with whipped butter and cheese. Simple but good.
Lille Bakery (Refshalevej 213) ^^^
In the middle of nowhere, but definitely worth a visit. Rustic bakery with really good pastry and bread. They also do a really lovely breakfast serving; yoghurt with compote, bread with cheese and jam, etc. Again, on the simple side, but good! Their coffee is on the boring side, though; just filter, the last time I went. Don’t travel for that.
Banchina (Refshalevej 141A, below)
This is a really special spot. Facing the water and thus full of swimming guests in spring, summer and autumn. Banchina is a fun little place; pretty much just a shed and, like all other modern Copenhagen breakfast places – simple. Good croissants. Good bread roll with cheese. Good coffee. A really good place to hang out in the sun with a book – find your own spot on a jetty, on a flight of stairs or on the boardwalk.
Acacia (Gammel Kongevej 171) ^^^
Are you vegan – or a fan of breakfast full of (veggie) flavour, you have to check out Acacia. Heavenly organic breakfast. Their waffle (sides change according to season but are typically apple-based) is SO delicious. The coffee is made on beans from Coffee Collective and the chai latte is homemade. The service is among the best in town!
Les Trois Cochons (Værnedamsvej 10) ^^^
I’m a regular consumer of their avocado toast, reliable coffee and light citrus salad. It’s not that the food is out of this world, but the service is always delightful and the place beautiful with its green tiles and French rattan chairs outside.
Rist (Værnedamsvej 4) ^^^
This is my coffee shop. Simple, rustic, good. Their toast, should you like a bite to eat, is served on a small wooden cutting board with cornichons on the side. Simple, but really, really good! I’ll usually go for their flat white or matcha latte, which they do so well. Lovely spot for people watching on the always buzzing Værnedamsvej.
Prolog (Høkerboderne 16)
This is Adam’s go-to coffee shop, hehe… It is also good! Located in the Meatpacking District, and if you’re sick of H15’s pretty dull filter coffee, it makes sense to swing by Prolog on your way home. They are giant coffee geeks and have their own beans – and the boys, who brew the coffee, are incredibly nice.
Coffee Collective (various locations, such as Godthåbsvej 34B)
They’ve got outlets around town – the cosiest one is in Godthåbsvej, where they also serve up a simple breakfast. They’ve been instrumental in starting the third wave coffee trend in Copenhagen. They are passionate and know what they are doing.
The Corner (Strandgade 108)
If you find yourself downtown, around about Kgs. Nytorv, please do make sure to cross the bridge near The Royal Danish Playhouse and visit 108’s cafe, The Corner. They do decent donuts, cookies and, again, bread rolls with whipped butter. It’s apparently the thing.
Cub (two outlets, one of which is at Strandlodsvej 48)
They’ve got two coffee shops and sell their beans as well. Super delicious coffee and great croissants! One is in Strandlodsvej, which is convenient if for instance you’re going swimming at Helgoland.
Rapha (Kristen Bernikows Gade 7)
Bicycles and coffee? Why not combine your passions? I’ve seen it before – in Paris. A bike store with a built-in coffee corner. Adam is quite into their coffee!
Andersen & Maillard (Nørrebrogade 62)
Great coffee in Nørrebro? This is the place to go. The last time I was here, I had this feeling that their croissant game wasn’t as strong as it used to be, but it’s always worth a shot, right? The place is beautiful, near the Lakes and spacious enough for there to always be a spot for you and your newspaper – and your good coffee.
Restaurant Alouette (Sturlasgade 14)
Perhaps one of the best places to eat in town? Everything about it is a small surprise, and the entire experience was just so insanely good the last time we were there that we almost didn’t dare going back for fear of being disappointed. Most beautiful spaces, raw location, wonderful service, great wines. Altogether a plus, plus!
Hidden Dim Sum (Nytorv 19)
If you feel like Asian cuisine, this is one of the newest spots in Copenhagen, with a, yes, you guessed it, secret location. I haven’t been there myself, but Adam has, and he’s quite into it. If you’re up for a more festive night – head over to Magasasa, where you’ll find great cocktails as well.
Italo Disco (Oehlenschlægersgade 5) ^^^
A local favourite. Really good experience – every single time. No nonsense Italian food, great wine, cool spot that’s sort of off the grid in Øhlenschlägergade. The servers are always mega sweet, and the kitchen staff know what they are doing as well. The facade is rather iconic, what with the red chairs and white tiles.
Bæst (Guldbergsgade 29) ^^^
In the mood for pizza? You have to try their #1 with stracciatella. It doesn’t get any better than that! Bæst really is a lovely spot – despite its growing age, it keeps a high level. The kitchen is Italian, and if you’ve never been there before, you gotta go for their ‘Lille Bæst,’ which lets you get around on the menu (they’ve also got a ‘Store Bæst’ – but that’s almost too much). Besides the insanely good pizzas, they make delicious cocktails and store good wines.
Sanchez (Istedgade 60)
Best tacos in town – no doubt. If you just really feel like tacos as a simple lunch, head over to their small taco shop in the Meatpacking District. For dinner, go for their restaurant in Istedgade. It’s so wildly good! All of it! And they even do brunch on weekends.
Cichetti (Nørrebrogade 56)
Another food pearl in Nørrebro. A small place with small Italian dishes (hence the name). Super tasty and always down to earth. They’ve had these insanely good risotto balls on the menu several times. It’s totally relaxed and a great place to try ‘a glass of this and a glass of that.’
Pompette (Møllegade 3)
It is a pretty decent Bermuda Triangle with Bæst, Cichetti, Pompette and Andersen&Maillard. Things are happening on the gastronomic front in that area. Pompette is the coolest little wine bar with a few tables outside as well, in summer. They serve small delicious dishes and lots of good natural wines. Also for taking home!
Stilleben (Frederiksborggade 22)
Best decor boutique in town, IMO. The small outlet by Strøget has a particular focus on accessories (small bags, jewellery etc.), while the outlet by Nørreport is more spacious and focusses on interior design, and it’s also where you can see their beautiful kitchens.
Edition Copenhagen (Strandgade 66)
If you’re looking for art, Edition is a wonderful place to go. A small lithography workshop with proud traditions, which for decades has invited artists to use their machines to produce special prints. They’ve got SO many wonderful pieces – and they also do framing, if you’ve got the time to spare. Their prices range from DKK 500 and upwards, and you’ll find artists such as John Kørner, Eske Kath and Erik A Frandsen in house.
Etage Projects (Borgergade 15E)
Sort of related – please check out Etage Projects, if you’ve got the time and resources or just are a keen dreamer. A quite different gallery with lots of edge and incredibly beautiful pieces of furniture.
Holly Golightly (Borgergade 17B)
After moving to a bigger space it has just become the craziest store in town. But, my gosh, is it expensive! They’ve got gorgeous, gorgeous stuff – for the home and for the body. Creams, clothing, shoes. Enter with a loaded wallet and you won’t be disappointed.
Torvehallerne (Frederiksborggade 21)
This could be filed under eateries, coffee shops and shopping as well. Whether it’s a bit of tea for your suitcase, a special French pot or quality chocolate – Torvehallerne is the place to find it. No obligations, well-functioning, buzzing. Full of great places to eat, coffee, cakes, baked goods, butchers, fish stalls. They keep a high level, and the space between the two halls is the most wonderful area to find a spot on a bench in the sun.
Paustian (Niels Hemmingsens Gade 24)
Okay, second after Stilleben comes Paustian in terms of favourite interior haunt. They just opened the wildest, biggest and most beautiful store in a side street off Købmagergade. To me, it’s the space itself in particular that’s worth checking out. An old and really well-maintained bank, where they’ve made such good use of the old setting; from the safety-deposit box to the waiting area. A must-visit!
Arket (Købmagergade 33)
Maybe my favourite clothing store? The space is gorgeous, and Arket in itself is fantastic. And hard to find anywhere else. Part of the H&M family, they specialise in classic items with a good-quality twist. They look after gentlemen, women, children and interior.
Shop Dora (Værnedamsvej 6)
A true knick-knack gem! Super good and fun – vintage things in the overpriced department. If you’re a native, you’re likely to frown at the price point. But I love this place. Funny lamps, beautiful mirrors and always something new and shiny to behold.
Prik (Gammel Kongevej 127)
If you’re on the outlook for a shop with stuff for children – Prik! The funkiest, wonkiest toy store stuffed full of classics from our and our parents’ childhoods. It’s super far from Toys”R”Us or similar. Rarieties guaranteed. Delicate dolls, cute umbrellas, funny cars etc.
Helgoland (Øresundsstien 11) ^^^
If you’re in Copenhagen in summer, don’t miss a trip to Helgoland, the old public baths. Back in the day, public baths gave workers an opportunity to take a shower – small Copenhagen flats didn’t have showers back then. Helgoland is beautiful, its turquoise walls complementing the water nicely. And if you’re there in summer, it’s almost impossible to find your own towel spot. Beach as well as bath area are absolutely packed. But you’ll find this lovely free atmosphere (free to the extent that a part of the baths is full of nudists; quite lovely).
The Glyptotek (Dantes Plads 7)
FAVOURITE museum. They’ve got the most amazing palm garden, where you can enjoy your coffee with a view of the splendour of it all. You can spend hours here, exploring the art collections in the various spaces, but also just sitting in the palm garden reading a book. The Glyptotek has everything. Everything from sculptures to coffee and cake.
National Aquarium Denmark (Jacob Fortlingsvej 1)
Pretty amazing aquarium, which is right by the metro station. Very accessible! They’ve got some huge and beautiful pools, and it’s definitely for adults as well as kids.
Tivoli (Vesterbrogade 3)^^^
Included as well, unsurprisingly. Tivoli is a must. Always. And it works well for a short meander as well as for doing the rides. Such a beautiful amusement park, which always understands to keep up with the times and evolve year by year. It even boasts several decent eateries as well.
SMK (Sølvgade 48-50)
Another iconic museum, bathed in the most stunning daylight. Beautiful spaces, the wildest exhibitions, including the special, and a delicious cafe (run by Frederik Bille Brahe – the guy behind Apollo as well).
Frederiksberg Have (e.g. The Cisterns) ^^^
My favourite park in the city. What with the lakes, Frederiksberg Castle, the view of the zoo, the various winding paths and small bridges and secret benches. And if you continue into the bordering Søndermarken, you’ll get to experience a ‘forest’ rather than a ‘park’ vibe. This is where The Cisterns are located – the old underground water reservoirs, which are worth experiencing. They also often run special exhibitions.
Louisiana (Gl Strandvej 13)
If you’re up for a short northbound train ride, you’ll reach Humlebæk Station in about 45 minutes, which is walking distance from Louisiana. I know it doesn’t really count as Copenhagen, but it’s just the loveliest museum. They always have interesting, boundary-breaking exhibitions and a splendid Øresund panorama.