Last Updated on January 22, 2024
On my quick trip to Denmark I learned some fun facts about Copenhagen and Denmark that I thought were worth sharing For example that Danes were rated the happiest people on the planet (two years in a row, by the way!). I also learned about ‘hygge’, which I think is pretty similar to the German word ‘Gemuetlichkeit’, coziness, but a little bit better. It translates to ‘cozy feeling of togetherness’. No wonder that Danes are the happiest people on earth, when they have this cozy feeling of togetherness all the time.
I think Copenhagen makes for a perfect city break – a weekend is a good amount of time to see a lot of this relatively small capital city – and I want to share seven fun facts about Copenhagen with you that I hope will intrigue you to visit Denmark’s capital:
7 Fun Facts About Copenhagen
1 Cycling is huge in Copenhagen
55% of Copenhageners commute to work by bicycle. 55%!! Isn’t that amazing? And that’s not only during the summer months – that’s year round, rain or shine! The Netherlands might be known as a cycle nation, but the Danish are just as active as the nearby Dutch. And it’s quite a sight to see the mad traffic in the bike lanes during commuting rush hour!
2 Copenhagen has a self-governing freetown
The autonomous ‘Freetown’ Christiana is home to about 1,000 residents and is a self-governing part of Copenhagen that sits just outside the city center. Christiana residents don’t pay taxes and run the ‘freetown’ according to their own laws, most famously the selling and using of marijuana. While visitors are welcome here, cameras and cars are not allowed inside.
3 Copenhagen has the longest pedestrian shopping street in the world
Copenhagen is home to the longest pedestrian shopping street in the entire world, Stroget. You’ll find plenty of international brands here, but also smaller Danish chains, where you can pick up some unique souvenirs from Denmark. That’s some Copenhagen trivia I bet you didn’t know!
4 Copenhagen is a Green Capital
That sure goes along with the aforementioned cycling – Copenhagen is incredibly green, as in eco-friendly. So much so that it was rewarded with the title of Green Capital Of The Year in 2014. The city actually aims to become the most cycle-friendly city in the world! And it doesn’t stop there: Copenhagen aims to become the world’s first CO2 neutral capital by 2025. Around 64% of the city’s hotel rooms are certified as eco-friendly, and ¾ of food served in public institutions is organic.
5 You can’t pay with Euros in Copenhagen
Surprisingly enough, Denmark is part of the EU, but they don’t use the Euro. Isntead, you pay with Danish Krone. Speaking of money – if you’re planning a trip to Europe, here is my guide to traveling Europe on a budget.
6 Canals galore in Copenhagen
Another similarity to the Netherlands is that the city is ringed by canals. Nyhavn is the most famous one, but the area of Christianshavn has so many canals that it carries the nickname ‘Little Amsterdam’.
5 Copenhagen boasts Fifteen (!) Michelin Stars
For a city of its size – Copenhagen has a population of just over half a million – Denmark’s capital has a surprisingly high number of Michelin Stars – 15 altogether! That’s a fun fact about Copenhagen you can share at your next dinner party. The most famous Michelin Star restaurant is Noma, which serves exquisite new Nordic cuisine and has been awarded the title as the best restaurant in the world four times! Unfortunately, 2024 was the last winter for Noma as we know it, but apparently, they’re planning pop-ups moving forward, so I recommend checking the website for details should you plan a visit to Copenhagen.
6 Copenhagen has an amusement park right in the city
Tivoli is Denmark’s second oldest amusement park (the oldest one, Bakken, is about an hour north of Copenhagen) and draws hundreds of thousands of visitors every year. The rides here are all old-school – the oldest roller coaster is over 100 years old – making it the most endearing and charming amusement park you’ll ever visit.
7 Danes are coffee lovers
And last but not least, my favorite Copenhagen fun fact: On the list of countries with the highest coffee consumption, Denmark takes #7 with 5.3 kg per capita, which comes to about 1.5 cups per day. This explains the high number of excellent coffee shops in Copenhagen – make sure to stop at one and have a cup of outstanding coffee – like most of Scandinavia, Denmark’s baristas take pride in preparing exclusively high-quality cups of Joe. And if you are a coffee lover too, Erin shares 10 amazing coffee shops in Copenhagen here.