Sure, there are some theme parks that contend they are the happiest places on earth, but Copenhagen, the capital city of Denmark, has scored consistently as the happiest city in the world on the World Happiness Report.
Really, there is such a thing!
At GetAway Travel we’ve got Copenhagen included in one of our upcoming group trips. We can help you plan a trip to just Copenhagen, or any place else you might consider your happy place.
Come on, get happy
More than 400 cities in and around Europe are checked out as part of the World Happiness Report. The report’s focus is on the environment of a country — social, natural and urban. Through the respondents’ answers, it calculates happiness, well-being, sustainability and resilience.
Finland is the happiest country, but Denmark is second with Copenhagen ranking as the happiest city. Danes celebrate what they call “hygge” which translates to comfort or coziness. How can you go wrong visiting a country that values comfort? It ranks high in the areas of health services, housing, utilities, social network, leisure activities, climate and personal safety.
Copenhagen is very pedestrian and cyclist friendly. See the sights on a bike like the locals or take the walking tours.
The Little Mermaid, castles and palaces
The Little Mermaid is one of Copenhagen’s most iconic attractions, but don’t expect a giant statue like the Statue of Liberty or you will find the statue somewhat underwhelming. It’s based on the fairy tale by Danish poet and author Hans Christian Andersen. The bronze and granite statue sits on the pier, and it offers visitors the most spectacular view of the sea. If you want to take a panoramic selfie, show up early or late because it’s a popular, busy place.
In the middle of Copenhagen is King’s Garden and that’s where you will find Rosenborg Castle. It houses 400 years worth of royal treasures and other royal artifacts as well as the Crown Jewels. Built by Christian IV in the early 17th century, one of the most visited areas is the Knight’s Hall. There you will find the coronation thrones, stunning tapestries that chronicle the battles between Denmark and Sweden and the room is guarded by three life-size silver lions.
One of the world’s finest collections of Venetian glass is at the castle as well as a collection of Flora Danica, folio-sized illustrations of all the plants native to Denmark.
Christiansborg Palace was the home of kings and queens for 800 years and now Parliament, the Supreme Court and the Ministry of State are located there. Check out the Great Hall where the Queen’s tapestries are hanging. In 1990 the Denmark business community presented Queen Margrethe II 11 tapestries for her 50th birthday. The tapestries, with full-sized hand sketched scenes, depict 100 years of Danish history.
Take a 45-minute train ride or travel an hour by car to Kronborg Castle. A Unesco World Heritage Site, the castle is where Shakespeare set Hamlet. It’s existed since 1420, although it has been burned to the ground and rebuilt. It stands at the head of Øresund Sound and ships passing into the Baltic Sea paid their tolls there. In addition to somewhat creepy crypts and catacombs, the legendary giant stone statue of Holger the Dane is at Kronborg Castle.
Tivoli Gardens and other attractions
Tivoli Gardens is one of Europe’s most visited theme parks. It opened in 1843 and supposedly was a source of inspiration for Walt Disney. It has something for everyone, exotic architecture, historic buildings, gardens and at night it becomes a lighted wonderland when thousands of colored lights turn on.
There are more than two dozen rides, including a wooden roller coaster. Erected in 1914, it is one of only seven roller coasters in the world where a brakeman stays on board. The Vertigo, voted Europe’s best ride in 2014, flips you upside down while traveling over 60 mph. There’s live music every day and the gardens are decorated to match the holidays and seasons.
Copenhagen Zoo has more than 4,000 animals in exhibits designed to mimic their natural environments. It is one of the largest and oldest zoos in Europe.
The National Museum of Denmark has stunning collections of Danish porcelain and silver as well as an impressive amount of runic stones, Romanesque and Gothic church fittings and antiquities and coins.
Nyharn Harbor deserves a visit. Brightly painted houses line the canals and there are residences on top and shops, cafes and restaurants on the street level.
Speaking of eating — you won’t go hungry. Tourists and locals love their smørrebrød. Literally translated as butter and bread, it’s so much more! It’s an open-faced sandwich with cheese, cold meat, egg, fish, seasonings and garnishes. There are rød pølse, think a sort of hot dog, stands all over. Try the frikadeller which are Danish meatballs eaten on smørrebrød or with potatoes and friskefrikadeller, which are white fish cakes with onion, parsley, lemon, salt and pepper.
If you are interested in history, fine cuisine, better weather or just getting away, we’re here to plan your trip at GetAway Travel. We can be reached at: (262) 538-2140, e-mail: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org