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Been looking at a European city break recently? We bet you have. It’s the done thing at the moment. Nobody’s going for two weeks in Egypt, or a week in Florida anymore. Everybody’s off for a four day trip to Europe, which is just about far away from home, but also fits around our busy lives. So what have you considered already?

Have you pictured yourself punting a boat down the watery streets of Venice? Have you imagined donning lederhosen and spending the weekend at a German beer festival? Or how about Paris? Go and see the Arc de Triumph and the Eiffel Tower? Everybody loves Paris. In fact, everybody loves all three of those places.

That’s the problem with city breaks in Europe. You don’t know where to go, and you worry that anywhere you decide to visit will be full of thousands of people who all had the same idea. So you either don’t go anywhere, or you choose somewhere at random. You might as well visit online slots websites assign a random city to each symbol, wait to get a winning line and go wherever the machine takes you.

Let us help you out and direct you somewhere new, instead. Specifically, let’s talk about Copenhagen, the friendliest city in the world. Here are five excellent reasons you should put the travel guides down and start planning for Denmark.

1. Tivoli Gardens

You’ve been to amusement parks before. You’ve never been to anywhere like Tivoli Gardens. When you think ‘theme park’, you’re probably thinking of something gaudy, with roller coasters and candy floss. You’re imagining somewhere that’s at least an hour’s drive away from any major city, and a nightmare to get to and from. Put simply, you’re picturing anything but Tivoli.

Tivoli does have roller coasters; no self respecting theme park would operate without one. They have rides of all kinds, and food, and drink, but not the type you’re imagining. This is a park you can visit and enjoy restaurant quality food. And when we say ‘park’ we really mean ‘park’. Even though it’s right in the heart of Copenhagen, it’s an area of incredible beauty. There are woods and boating lakes, and lights in the trees. We’re talking a near-Disney level of magic. It opened in 1843, which makes it the second oldest amusement park in the word, and the modern city has grown around it, like it was protecting this little gem right at its heart. It’s no wonder Time Magazine named it one of the world’s greatest places.   

2. The History

Most people don’t know this, but Denmark is one of the few places in the world that still has a functioning monarchy. That’s right, they’re just like us. In fact, the British Royal Family and the Danish Royal Family are vaguely related. All of the remaining royals in Europe are. We’ll just say that their mating and marriage habits a century or so ago were interesting, and leave it at that. 

History and tradition are all around you in Copenhagen. You can walk straight from the street into the palaces, which are open all year round and welcome visitors. There are no shortage of tour guides to walk you around the castles, and tell you the history of each one. We don’t mean to sound like clickbait here, but you really won’t believe the story about the drunken price, and how the same castle had to be knocked down and built twice. We won’t spoil it for you either, because we really want you go to go and hear it for yourself.  

3. Visit The Little Mermaid

That’s right, there’s a real life little mermaid, and she lives in Copenhagen. Specifically, you can find her just out of the water on the rocks at Langelinie, where she’s been almost permanently since 1913. The statue was built to celebrate the famous work of Danish fairytale writer Hans Christian Andersen, and is celebrated as a Danish cultural icon. She’s as important to the people of Copenhagen as the Statue of Liberty is to New Yorkers. 

The statue has left Denmark only once since it was installed, when it visited China for Shanghai Expo in 2010. She never truly left her waters though - she was carefully loaded into her box that contained both rock and liquid from the site of her usual plinth. 

4. To Meet The Danish

If you haven’t met the Danish, you absolutely have to meet the Danish. They are incredibly warm hearted, friendly people. We’re all told, all the time, about how unfriendly we are as Londoners, and how much kinder people are up North. Compared to the Danes, and especially the people of Copenhagen, the Northerners are as cold hearted as we are. 

To go to Copenhagen is to meet a people and town of the future. They’ve largely pedestrianized the middle of the city, and nobody minds. They all just ride bikes. Everyone smiles. Everyone asks you how you are. It’s routinely voted one of the friendliest cities in the world. In 2016, the Independent newspaper went one better, naming Copenhagen singularly as the greatest city in the world to live in. It’s easy to see why, too. If you come here, you may never want to leave. 

5. Because They Invented Hygge

If you haven’t come across the word ‘hygge’ before, allow us to educate you. It’s one of those words that doesn’t translate properly into the English language. You’ve probably heard of schadenfreude - the feeling of enjoying someone else’s misfortune. That’s a German word without a British equivalent, and whilst it’s a usefully descriptive word, it’s not exactly the most wholesome of emotions.

The Danes appear to have invented the exact opposite. Hygge, translated as closely as we can get it, means “a mood of coziness and comfortably conviviality with feelings of wellness and contentment” Hygge is that feeling just after you’ve slipped into a warm bath. It’s the relief in your feet when you take your shoes off after a long day. The Danish invented a word for it, and not only that, they made it a cornerstone of the way they live. There are buildings - especially homes - in Copenhagen that were designed to fit with the ethos of hygge. In other words, they literally build homes for the purpose of being cozy. Isn’t that the most adorable thing you’ve ever heard?

You’re probably thinking we’re overselling it here, but we’re not. We’ve been. You haven’t. But don’t’ just take our word for it. Get over there and find out for yourself! 

5 Reasons you should go to Copenhagen
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