08:00 Get up lazy bones! There’s lots to see and do. Hopefully you’ve had a restful night at the centrally located Dan Hostel (danhostel.dk/copenhagencity), which comes off more like a designer hotel. Their buffet breakfast is pretty good too and will set you up for the morning.
09:00 Head for the picturesque Amalienborg Slot (slotte.dk). Made up of four 18th-century palaces surrounding a large cobbled square, it has been home to the Danish royal family since 1794. The changing of the guard takes place here every day at noon. Also well worth a look is the Amalienborg Museum (dkks.dk), which recreates various royal rooms through the ages.
11:30 Head north along the waterfront to see the Little Mermaid. A gift from Carl Jacobsen (founder of Carlsberg Breweries) to Copenhagen in 1913, the bronze beauty has been decapitated twice, blasted with dynamite, draped in burqas, had bras drawn on her – but she’s still here!
12.00 Take a stroll to the nearby Kastellet (kastellet.info). The star-shaped fortress dates back to1662 and is one of the best preserved citadels in all of Northern Europe. It’s now a scenic public park where the Royal Ballet performs for free every summer.
13:00 Stop off for lunch at Bistroen KBH (bistroen-kbh.dk) for some tasty yet affordable French/Scandinavian fusion food (quite a common mash-up in Copenhagen).
14.30 Work off lunch with a 105m climb up the Jens Olsen’s Clock on top of City Hall. Designed by Danish astromechanic Jens Olsen, it displays not only the local time, but also solar time, sidereal time (astronomers use it to keep track of the direction to point their telescopes), sunrises and sunsets, planet revolutions and the Gregorian calendar.
16:00 Take a walk through the beautiful Botanical Gardens (botanik.snm.ku.dk), the largest collection of living plants in Denmark.
18:00 Treat yourself to dinner at on-trend basement restaurant Numero 64 (cofoco.dk/numero64_restauranten.php), offering locally sourced dishes such as smoked eel, lobsters with gooseberries and pike perch with rye bread. The award-winning restaurant also aims to serve ambitious cuisine at affordable prices. Win win.
20:00 Catch the tube to Tivoli (tivoli.dk). More than just an amusement park, this world-famous tourist trap comes alive after dark with ballet at the historic Pantomime Theatre, classical concerts in the Concert Hall, and rock concerts most Friday nights. Even if you aren’t planning a cultural excursion it’s lovely just to walk through and soak up the romantic fairytale atmosphere.
22:00 When Tivoli turns off its lights head out to one of Copenhagen’s stylish bars in the meat-packing district. Designed by local and international artists including Olafur Eliasson, Karriere (karrierebar.com) easily fits the bill. Its menu of bespoke cocktails, including the Alice in Wonderland-themed Follow That Black Rabbit, is legendary.
09:00 After a boozy night you’ll be wanting a healthy breakfast at antipodean-run Bio Mio (biomio.dk), serving organic, free-range produce.
10:00 Talk about hair of the dog – beer lovers will enjoy a visit to Carlsberg Brewery (visitcarlsberg.dk), founded by Carl Jacobsen in 1801. The visitor centre offers an entertaining journey through the beer-making process.
11:00 Head back to central Copenhagen to see Danish design showcased at the inspiring, eclectic Kunstindustrimuseet (designmuseum.dk).
13:00 Stop for lunch at Nyhavns Færgekro (nyhavnsfaergekro.dk). This popular spot has an all-you-can-eat buffet with 10 different kinds of herring, condiments and boiled potatoes for 89Kr (about £10).
14:00 Cross Torvegade Bridge on foot to visit the charming canal quarter of Christianshavn. Established by Christian IV in the early 17th century, it was modelled on Holland’s waterways. These days the area is infamous as the home of the ‘free state’ of Christiania, a hippy commune established in the Seventies. The neighbourhood attracts an interesting mix of artists, yuppies, and anarchist dropouts, and has a boho vibe. If you’re feeling particularly energetic consider a guided kayak tour of Christianhavn’s canals and Copenhagen Harbour with KajakOle (kajakole.com).
They can also tailor individual trips.
17:00 Stop off at hipster cafe Sweet Treat (Sankt Annæ Gade 3A) for expertly brewed coffee, fruit smoothies and a selection of smørrebrød (open sandwiches) to say your final farewell to the city.
– Alison grinter