Copenhagen is beautiful, but once in a while, you need to get out of the city and breathe in some fresh sea air. Fortunately, Denmark’s coast to the north of Copenhagen is well developed and, in fact, one of the most affluent areas in the country. Not only is the area beautiful, it is also easily accessible by public transport. Alternatively, it is the perfect route to explore on bicycle. In this post, we’re exploring a few things worth seeing and doing on a day trip from Copenhagen. In addition, we have collected some practical information for you in order to make your outing a success!
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Getting Around Copenhagen’s Northern Suburbs
This day trip will take you into the suburbs of Hellerup, Charlottenlund, and Klampenborg. Conveniently, all three are connected by s-train. The C Line leads from Copenhagen Central Station all the way until Klampenborg Station. Trains run every ten minutes which makes it very convenient to hop between locations. The trip will take you into zones 30 and 40 which means you’ll need to buy two additional zones if you already own a public transport ticket for Copenhagen. Plan your journey with the Rejseplanen App!
Alternatively, you can easily take a day and cycle between the stops. On a sunny day, it’s simply beautiful to cycle along the Danish coast. We recommend you start your tour from Østerport or Svanemøllen. Both can be reached by s-train and it is free to take bikes on the s-train. However, we do recommend that you avoid taking bikes on the s-train during rush hour. From Svanemøllen you’ll cycle about 9 km to Klampenborg.
What to Do in Hellerup
Hellerup, often considered an extension of Copenhagen’s Østerbro district, is an affluent and leafy suburb of Copenhagen. The area attracted wealth when it underwent a transformation from country to an industrial area in the late 19th century with the opening of a harbor and, more notably, the Tuborg Brewery. Today, Hellerup is mostly residential with many upscale properties.
One of Hellerup’s major attractions is Experimentarium, an interactive science museum. At the museum, there are hundreds of experiments for you to explore. The museum was recently redesigned in 2017 and is fully equipped with facilities such as lockers and a cafe. The place is particularly popular with families with children under 12 but offers fun for people of all ages. It’s easy to spend 3-6 hours here, so be prepared! There is also a rooftop terrace to enjoy a city view from.
The museum is open throughout the year (except during Christmas and New Year). Admission is 195 DKK for adults and 115 DKK for children (free with the Copenhagen Card). Read more about the fun experiments and practical information on their website!
Strandvejen is a 38 km long street leading from the fringes of Østerbro in Copenhagen to Helsingør. Although Strandvejen is a scenic drive along the Danish coast, it’s particularly famous for its built-up stretch in Hellerup. It’s the location of several high-end boutiques, organic bakeries, and anything that costs money 😉 I recommend that you find Impronta for some traditional Portuguese pastel de nata and sit outside their little cafe. It’s the perfect place for people watching! Who knew that many people drove convertibles in Denmark?!
What to Do in Charlottenlund
A little further to the North lies Charlottenlund, named after Princess Charlotte Amalie. Equally as affluent as Hellerup, Charlottenlund is home to villas and beautiful parks.
The town of Charlottenlund was named after Charlottenlund Palace. The palace was originally built in a Baroque style in 1733, but rebuilt in a Renaissance style in the late 19th century. It served as the royal summer residence until 1926. Today it is an event venue and not generally open to the public, except for its gardens. The gardens of Charlottenlund Palace are popular with families and joggers alike.
Not far from Charlottenlund Palace is Charlottenlund Strandpark. Charlottenlund Strandpark is a large public park which also serves as a sunbathing spot for Copenhageners. Towards the water you will find something resembling a beach, consisting of gravel and sand. On the beach, you will find bathrooms as well as a kiosk to buy some small snacks from 🙂
The beach lies adjacent to Charlottenlund Fortress, which was built as Copenhagen’s sea fortification efforts in 1886. Today it is used as a camping ground but is also the location of Restaurant Charlottenlund Fort which has a beautiful view over the Øresund strait.
What to Do in Klampenborg
Our last stop for the day, Klampenborg is one of the most popular destinations north of Copenhagen. Klampenborg is especially known for its many architectural landmarks designed by famous Danish architect Arne Jacobsen, including the Bellavista Housing Estate and the Bellevue Theater. Also, Klampenborg has one of the prettiest train stations I’ve ever seen in Northern Europe <3
Bellevue Strand is one of the most popular beaches in the vicinity of Copenhagen and receives up to 500,000 visitors every year. It features a 700 m long sandy beach along the Danish coast and large patches of grass. Apart from the recreational value of Bellevue beach, it’s also particularly pretty. The lifeguard towers and kiosks designed by Arne Jacobsen are just too cute!
Bakken, or Dyrehavsbakken as it is actually called, is the world’s oldest amusement park still in operation. I really love it for its history, after all, Bakken wasn’t always the amusement park we know today. It started off as a recreational space for Copenhageners in the 16th century. The park began to attract visitors when a freshwater spring was discovered on its ground. The crowds then attracted vendors and entertainers which finally led to the rides we know today.
Although most people only visit Tivoli Gardens in Copenhagen, I must say I definitely prefer Bakken for several reasons. Firstly, it is much less crowded than Tivoli, especially if you visit during the week. Secondly, admission to the park is free. Yes, the rides are expensive, but so are Tivoli’s where you have to pay an admission fee on top of the rides.
The most famous ride at Bakken is undoubtedly Rutschebanen, an original wooden roller coaster dating back to 1932. It is much scarier than it looks from the ground. We had great fun on the ride, although Mihir did lose his hat. So we recommend you store all your belongings securely before getting on the ride 😉 There are lockers available at Bakken for which you’ll need a 20 kr coin.
Apart from the roller coasters and other fun rides, there are also plenty of carnival games on location to keep you busy. If you’re lucky you can win yourself a giant bar of Marabou chocolate for as little as 20 DKK!
How to Get to Bakken & Practical Information
Bakken is a 10-minute walk from Klampenborg station which leads you through a tranquil forest. Alternatively, you could also opt for a horse-carriage ride. If you are visiting during the week, you should note that most rides only open at 14:00, so don’t show up at noon like us unless you feel like having an expensive lunch 😉
If you want to save some money on the rides, you should visit on Wednesday when most rides offer reduced rates. Although the rides are significantly cheaper on Wednesdays, please note that you can only pay in CASH on these days. It can also get very crowded on these days, which is why we decided against visiting on Wednesday. Wristbands are also available if you plan on spending the day and going on several rides. The wristband costs 269 DKK if bought at the park or as little as 219 DKK if bought online before your visit.
Apart from traditional Danish cuisine, you can buy plenty of carnival food at Bakken. Whether you’re in the mood for cotton candy, candied apples, or ice cream, you won’t be disappointed. We bought some delicious ice cream at Almas Terrace at the very entrance to the park.
Deer Park & Hermitage
If you are looking for something a little quieter, pass on Bakken and continue further into the forest known as Jægersborg Dyrehave (or Dyrehaven in short). Dyrehaven is known for its enormous oak trees and the large population of deer. The deer park is fenced on all sides and is accessed through its characteristic red gates at each entrance. Although the deer are used to people and generally friendly, we strongly recommend that you do not get too close to them while they are nursing their young in the spring and summer.
The deer can be found most easily around the Hermitage Hunting Lodge. The lodge was constructed in a Baroque style in the early 18th century. While it is not a royal residence, it is used for formal banquets and other occasions. During the summer months, the Hermitage is open to visitors on guided tours. The tours take place Wednesdays, Saturdays, and Sundays. Tickets are available online for 125 DKK per person.
Continue Further North
Although the s-train doesn’t go any further than Klampenborg, you can simply hop on a regional train and explore the region a little further. For example, you could see the royal spring and autumn residence at Fredensborg Castle in Fredensborg. Or, you could visit one of the world’s best museums of modern art, Louisiana Museum, in Humlebæk. And if that’s not enough, visit Kronborg Castle in Helsingør, which inspired Shakespeare’s Hamlet. The possibilities are endless 🙂
- Click here to read our full guide to Louisiana Museum of Modern Art!
- Learn more about the full Hamlet experience at Kronborg Castle here!
Map for Your Day Trip to Copenhagen’s Northern Suburbs
Now, what do you think? Which of these spots north of Copenhagen would you like to visit? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below! Let’s stay in touch!