Wondering what day trips from Copenhagen are most worth your time?
We asked Josh from A Backpacker’s World to give us his top picks for 2024.
Copenhagen is one of the most popular cities to visit in Scandinavia, and it definitely lives up to its strong reputation- Copenhagen is an incredible city to visit.
But naturally, you might want to venture a little further and see what Denmark (and beyond) has to offer other than life in Copenhagen.
Luckily for you, I’ve spent a lot of time in Copenhagen and visited multiple times this year alone, so I’ve put together a list of the best day trips from Copenhagen which you should check out!
15 Day Trips From Copenhagen
If you have more than 3 days in Copenhagen, then a day trip is one of the best ways to spend your extra time.
If you have less time than this, I wouldn’t really recommend it because you won’t have enough time to see Copenhagen and take a day trip. Nonetheless, here are some of the Copenhagen day trips which I love.
1. Kronborg Castle
The most popular day trip from Copenhagen is to Kronborg Castle, a Renaissance castle about 45 minutes outside of the city. The main reason the castle is famous is because it was the castle where Shakespeare’s Hamlet was set.
In fact, there are performances of Hamlet in the castle throughout the summer months.
But if you’re visiting outside of the summer, you’ll still have a great time as the castle itself is mesmerising.
The outside of the castle is beautiful, it’s not quite a Disney Castle, but it’s a really traditional fortified castle. And the inside is stunning too- the rooms just scream “rich”.
In my opinion, it’s more impressive than the castles and palaces found in Copenhagen’s city centre.
What makes this day trip really appealing is that it’s included in the Copenhagen Card which allows you unlimited use of public transport on Zealand, the island in Denmark which both Copenhagen and Kronborg Castle are on.
It also includes free entry into a number of attractions, of which Kronborg Castle is one, so you’re able to take this day trip without spending a penny.
It’s actually possible to take a day trip from Copenhagen to another country, and that country is Sweden.
Malmö is the nearest Swedish city to Copenhagen, and it only takes 35-40 minutes to get there by train. The trains run very frequently, with more than 80 per day, you can even go directly from the airport too if you want to start your trip to Denmark in Sweden.
Pretty funny that you can get to another country quicker than you can get to some of the day trips “near” Copenhagen in Denmark!
The train journey to Malmö is a very scenic route as you go over a huge bridge which offers endless views over the sea and land. When you get to Malmö, there’s not a huge deal of things to do, it’s more a city designed for sightseeing.
But the sightseeing is really nice!
Malmö is a quaint city with pretty streets and charming canals with bridges. Although it’s a city, it feels more like a small town.
It’s pretty similar to Copenhagen in the atmosphere and vibe the city gives. Simply walking the streets is one of my favourite things to do.
If you prefer to have a local show you around, this full day tour of Malmo and Lund will take you over the bridge connecting Denmark and Sweden and guide you through the must-see spots in these picturesque cities.
When people think of Legoland, they usually think of the resort in Windsor or Orlando, but the original Legoland theme park is in Billund, Denmark.
It’s actually where Lego was invented!
Getting from Copenhagen to Legoland Billund isn’t as easy as some of these other day trips.
If you go by train, you’ll only be able to get to a station which is still a 35-minute bus ride away. The best way to get there is by taking a Flixbus round trip.
💡Pro Tip: There is only one bus there and one bus back most days, so you can’t be very flexible with your time.
Legoland is the perfect day trip if you have kids as there are so many rides and amusements to have fun on and loads of memories waiting to be made. Growing up, I always loved the Traffic School!
Not to mention how impressive all of the Lego builds are- even the adults can get behind some of the creations.
My personal favourite is the Lego replica of Nyhavn, it’s one of my favourite places in the world and its vibe is captured perfectly in the Lego.
4. Frederiksborg Castle
There are lots of castles and palaces in Copenhagen, and the high number continues well past the borders of the city.
The 17th century Frederiksborg Castle is another common day trip option, originally built as a royal residence for the Danish Royal Family.
It appears somewhat similar to Rosenborg Castle, with the red brickwork and the green copper roof, but the biggest difference is the size.
Frederiksberg Castle is massive, and the gardens are too! You could easily spend a full day here exploring the outside, inside and the gardens. And the good news is, it’s totally possible to spend a full day here as it only takes an hour by train, or 40 minutes by driving but given how pricey rental cars are, that’s not recommended.
Like Kronborg Castle, transport to Frederiksberg Palace and tickets are included in the Copenhagen Card. It’s a great way to save money, which is more than welcome since Copenhagen is so expensive to visit.
Odense is one of the largest cities in Denmark and it takes between 1hr 10mins and 1hr 20mins to get there by train depending on the speed of the train. Train is the most convenient way to get there as driving takes nearly 2 hours.
Odense is a very historical city as it played a big part in Renaissance Denmark.
It was the birthplace of Hans Christian Andersen, a famous Danish author. So famous in fact, that there are Christmas Markets named after him in Copenhagen!
As is the running theme with all of these Scandinavian destinations, there are lots of museums in the city, and of course, there is a castle too- but I personally would give Egeskov Castle a miss, just seeing it from the outside is enough.
Like with Copenhagen and Malmö, a bit of sightseeing does no harm, and there are lots of things which you can check out with a day in Odense.
Bakken is one of the shortest day trips from Copenhagen, as it only takes around 25 minutes to drive there. But since taxis are expensive, and there is no Uber in Copenhagen, it’s more financially worthwhile to opt for the train which takes between 30 and 40 minutes.
Bakken’s actual name is “Dyrehavsbakken”, and it’s the world’s oldest amusement park, opened in 1583. It’s even older than Tivoli Gardens!
The Danes must love their amusement parks as this isn’t the first one on this list and it’s not the last either.
Bakken is a really traditional amusement park, and the charm hits you as soon as you walk through the gates.
It’s a complete sensory experience as you can smell all of the food (which is expensive, but delicious), hear all of the screams of thrill from the roller coasters, and feel the sense of excitement throughout the park.
Visiting Bakken is completely different from any other amusement park, it’s a two-for-one deal as it’s like visiting a real life immersible museum.
Even though the rides have changed, parts of the park still feel like it’s 1583, and it’s sure to give you goosebumps.
7. Louisiana Museum of Modern Art
It takes just under an hour to get from Copenhagen to the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art by train. I know what you’re thinking, “Why would I take a day trip just to visit a museum?”
And the truth is, you might be right.
This won’t be a day trip for everyone but if you’re someone who loves a museum or appreciates art, you’ll love the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art!
It has one of the most impressive collections in the world, with art from the likes of Picasso, Giacometti, Warhol, and Hockney and more. Even if you aren’t a fan of art, you’re bound to recognise at least one or two of those names.
The museum is really modern too, so it’s not “boring” like other museums. It has an exhibit on AI art, for example, which is very modern and up-to-date for 2024.
Helsingør is another city in Denmark and it’s actually where you’ll find Kronborg Castle, so it’s possible to combine the two into one day trip.
It will take about 50 minutes to get from Copenhagen to Helsingør and when you’re there, pretty much everything is walkable, Kronborg castle included.
As is the case with most cities in Denmark, there are lots of museums in Helsingør.
And, if you’re visiting Copenhagen in winter, you need to take a day trip here, particularly if it has been snowing. Helsingør is absolutely stunning in the snow, it’s like something straight out of a fairy tale.
Roskilde is another example of why train travel is the best way to take day trips from Copenhagen. It will take you 20-30 minutes to reach by train, but 45 minutes if you’re driving.
Roskilde, like most cities in Denmark, is by a harbour, and this means you get some really nice views by the seafront. And like any good Scandinavian city, it’s got a Viking Ship Museum to check out too.
While it’s not a day trip which will blow you away, it’s still a nice change of scenery from Copenhagen and allows you to go a bit off the beaten track in Denmark.
Although if you can work out the trains to stay a bit later in Roskilde, you won’t regret it as the nightlife in the city is incredible.
10. The Cliffs of Møn
The Cliffs of Møn are a prime example of the natural beauty in Denmark, but unfortunately the beauty comes at a price, as you aren’t able to get a train to the cliffs.
This day trip is best suited to those who rent a car in Copenhagen, as you can drive there in around 2 hours.
Your other options would be to take a train to Vordingborg and take a taxi for an hour (remember there is no Uber in Denmark) or join an tour, like the Mons Klint and Forest Tower tour.
If you do manage to make your way to the cliffs, you’ll have a view worthy of a postcard. Møns Klint, the main mountain, is stunning.
The cliffs are a bright white colour and at the top of the cliffs is a forest, so the green colour contrasts perfectly with the white to create a view that will make you fall in love.
It’s one of the most scenic points in all of Denmark, so it’s really worth making your way here, even if it does cost a lot.
Dragør is a town which is very traditionally Danish. The architecture, the restaurants and cafes, the harbour and the town in general all feel very Danish, and it makes for a nice visit.
The people are very friendly and welcoming, and the word “charming” perfectly describes what it’s like in Dragør with the cobblestone streets and pastel-coloured houses.
It’s been named one of the most beautiful towns in Denmark before and it shows!
It’s one of the closer destinations from Copenhagen as it only takes on 35 minutes on average by train.
12. Hamburg, Germany
Hamburg is the longest day trip from Copenhagen on this list, as it takes 4-5 hours by train, so it’s a long day, but it’s worth it.
Hamburg is one of the most popular cities to visit in Germany, especially in the summer months when the weather is good.
I’d recommend taking a boat tour of Hamburg while you’re there, it shows the city from a different perspective but a stunning one.
💡Pro Tip: Visit the Elbphilharmonie Plaza for the best views in the city. Online you’ll see that you need to pay for tickets, but if you simply go to the ticket booth, you can get them for free!
13. Camp Adventure
If you’ve ever seen the picture of the large wooden tower-looking sculpture rising high above a forest near Copenhagen, that’s in Camp Adventure.
It’s a day trip popular amongst locals, but there’s no reason it can’t be for tourists too. As the name suggests, the park is filled with adventure!
The main attraction is the large climbing park which is a typical “high ropes” course high up in the trees of the forest. But if you’re feeling less adventurous, there are lots of other opportunities to connect with nature.
If you rent a car, it will take less than an hour to drive, but if you rely on the trains it’ll take nearly two hours.
You can also easily turn the day trip into an overnight stay as there are glamping opportunities within the park.
14. Viking Village in Albertslund
Denmark and the rest of Scandinavia are famous for a lot of things, but the Vikings are right up there at the top of the list.
Taking a short trip from the centre of the city to the Copenhagen suburb of Albertslund takes you to the Viking Village in Albertslund, which is exactly what you’d expect.
It’s a small village where life is still like it’s the age of the Vikings with a couple of small houses and a farmyard.
You won’t spend all day here, but if you have a few hours to kill, the Viking Village is a great place for it.
There’s nothing like stepping back in time and seeing what life was like when the Vikings ruled Denmark.
If nothing else, it’s free to visit and you can get there in only half an hour (driving- trains and buses are around 40 minutes).
Last but by no means least of these Copenhagen day trips is to Gilleleje, a small fishing town on the north coast of Zealand, Copenhagen’s island and it takes just over an hour to get there either by driving or by taking a train.
There isn’t too much to do, but it’s a super nice place to spend a few hours just walking around and taking in everyday life in Denmark.
Since it’s a fishing town, you can’t visit without trying some fish. There are lots of small local restaurants where you can get a meal for much cheaper than you can in Copenhagen, and it’ll be tastier too.
The town isn’t suited to tourism at all, so by visiting you are getting an authentic look into life in Denmark. There’s no denying it’s off the beaten track.
Where To Stay In Copenhagen
The best area to stay in Copenhagen is in and around the central station, København H. It’s right by Tivoli Gardens and gives you easy access to anywhere in the city, and you’ll be right by the station for your day trips too.
📍Budget Option: Next House Copenhagen is one of the most modern hostels in the world. The bunks are in pods, it has a gym, football (soccer) pitch, rooftop bar and more.
📍Mid-Range Option: Motel One Copenhagen is a surprisingly affordable and gorgeous boutique hotel in a great location. Inspired by 50’s/60’s Denmark, you’ll enjoy modern comforts in a cozy, historic building.
📍Luxury Option: Copenhagen Admiral Hotel is a stunning, sustainable 5* hotel located next door to the Amalienborg Royal Palace in a 1780’s building. This hotel is peak Danish comfort and luxury and don’t miss Salt, the on site restaurant.
Here are some commonly asked questions about taking day trips from Copenhagen along with answers to each question.
What countries are easy to travel to from Copenhagen?
Sweden and Germany are two countries which are easy to travel to from Copenhagen. You can easily take a train to Malmö from Copenhagen which takes only 40 minutes, and you can also travel south by train to Hamburg in Germany.
How many days are enough to visit Copenhagen?
Most people will spend around 3 days in Copenhagen. This is enough time to experience everything Copenhagen has to offer while abiding by the Danish “hygge” and not rushing through everything.
What cities can you take a train to from Copenhagen?
Some cities you can take a train to from Copenhagen include Odense, Aarhus and Randers in Denmark. You can also take a train to Malmö in Sweden or Hamburg in Germany.
And there you have it, a complete list of the best day trips from Copenhagen.
While Copenhagen is an incredible city to visit, it’s also a great base for taking day trips to some nearby gems.
Whether you opt for Kronborg Castle or Malmö or anything in between, you’re guaranteed to have an amazing day out.
If you’re looking to continue your Danish adventure even further, why not check out the Faroe Islands? It’s far from being an option for a day trip, but it’s so worth the trip.