9th August 2015

Is Copenhagen Really That Expensive?

Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post (however affiliate links may be used, including Amazon Associates, which mean I earn commissions on purchases at no extra cost to you) and all thoughts are my own.

Without a doubt, Copenhagen is known for being one of the most expensive cities in Europe (much like the rest of Scandinavia!). So when I found cheap flights and spontaneously booked it with a few of my friends, the panic soon kicked in about how on earth we were going to afford it! After reading copious blogs and reviews online beforehand, I think we did it pretty damn well, so here’s all of our little secrets!

Generator hostel

Photo Credit: RetailDesignBlog

1) Stay At Generator Hostel!

Without a doubt, if I was going to return to Copenhagen (which I am hoping to!), I would stay at Generator Hostel again. The location is perfect as everything is in walking distance – we didn’t once use public transport. The staff were incredibly helpful both before we arrived and during our stay and they couldn’t have done more for us. As I was travelling in a group of 4, we decided to treat ourselves and book a quad private room rather than stay in dorms. The rooms were really clean, large and included a private shower and toilet. While the room was amazing, it was the modern common areas such as the bar, restaurant, reception, outdoor terrace area and boules sandpit that really make this stand out as a great place to stay! If you want to cut costs further, dorm rooms are generally around half the price of a private room, while I didn’t get to look inside these rooms, I assume they are as beautifully modern as the rest of the hostel! My friend even said “This isn’t a hostel. This is a posh-tel”.

2) Eat at Lunch Time & Avoid Tourist Traps

This is one of the top-tips that I actually picked up from other people’s blogs! In the city, most of the restaurants have a separate lunchtime menu where the prices are lower but the portion sizes are still large. Each day, we sat and had a hearty meal at lunch, then picked up something quick like a takeaway pizza in the evening to save money. A nice big portion of Danish pastries in the morning were good to start a day of exploring! Our favourite place for pastries was Lagkagehuset (pictured above) which is conveniently located on the main shopping street. I would also avoid streets such as Nyhavn when trying to buy food, of course the most popular street in the city for tourists will be the most expensive to eat and drink! Although… Copenhagen is home to 2015’s 3rd best restaurant in the world – Noma! So if you do feel like splashing some cash, here is the place to do it!

3) Take a Free Walking Tour

This was an absolute essential for me because I’d spontaneously booked the trip and knew VERY little about Copenhagen other than it was a beautiful city. This year I’ve been to many countries who’s history revolve around World War II and the Cold War, so hearing Scandinavian Viking stories was really interesting. Copenhagen is a small city that is easily walkable (or bikeable!), so the Free Walking Tour covers a lot of ground and is a really good way to get your bearings before heading out and exploring the city yourself. Big shout out to Jens for being the best tour guide!


4) Visit the Only Free Viewpoint of the City

Copenhagen has a few high up viewpoints, however as with many of the ridiculously gorgeous buildings, there is usually a fee to enter. The only high up viewpoint of the city that you can enter for free is at Christiansborg Palace. Copenhagen hasn’t got the most incredible skyline in the world but the story behind the flat skyline is an interesting one! Copenhagen was prone to many great fires in the 1700s and therefore the best way to keep the fires under control was to have a watch tower that was higher than all of the other buildings so that you can look out and detect smoke. Therefore most of the buildings you will see in the city centre are never above a certain height – apart from the abundance of beautiful church spires of course!

5) Explore the Beautiful Parks

Copenhagen is one of the most “chilled out” cities that I have ever visited, there are barely any cars on the road, people are friendly and within a few hours of being in the city, I’d already declared that I could live there. So where’s the most chilled out place that you could possibly imagine? Of course, any of the beautiful green parks. After the disappointment that you have to pay 99 DKK to enter Tivoli (I’m sure I read on the internet that it was free – sacré bleu!), we were pleased to stumble across some equally beautiful green spaces – our favourite being Botanisk Have which houses a very impressive green house also!


6) Buy Alcohol in the Supermarket And Chill Out In The Beautiful City!

Without a doubt, bars and clubs in Copenhagen are EXPENSIVE! The party also doesn’t get started until about midnight and then carries on until the very early hours – so maybe not the best time schedule for someone who is only in the city for a few days and wants to continue sightseeing the next day! Do as the Danes do and buy your alcohol in a convenience store and then chill by the canals of Nyhavn, in the parks, anywhere you can think of! Drinking on the streets in Denmark isn’t frowned upon (a good thing as boy do those Danes like to drink!). While there is a 7-Eleven on practically every street corner, we found this to be fairly expensive in comparison to places like Netto and Aldi! I REALLY wish we could have done more of this but it was freezing when we visited and we hadn’t packed enough layers to brave the cold so settled for playing card games in our hostel with drinks instead!

7) Walk Around and Enjoy the City!

Copenhagen is a small city and it’s very easy to walk everywhere to make sure you don’t miss anything! The city is ridiculously beautiful, so I suggest taking different routes back to your hostel/hotel each night, you never know what will be around each corner! There are currently a lot of building works taking place in Copenhagen, this is because they are building new metro stations and improving the current service. To be completely honest, as a tourist I don’t think that you will need to use the metro once – just pick up a good map! Be warned that some road names are so long that they don’t fit into the designated space on the map – helpful!

8) Take a Stroll Down the Longest Pedestrianised Shopping Street in Europe!

By all means, this task could get expensive – but a little window shop can’t hurt! Copenhagen is home to the longest pedestrianised shopping street in Europe (Strøget) standing at 1.1km! Walking down this street proved to be the quickest way from our hostel to the city centre, therefore we did A LOT of window shopping! However, if I knew that the shops would be so good, I’d have spent an extra night in Copenhagen, come with a half empty suitcase and a much larger budget! I’m not usually a fan of shopping on abroad as it means you’re spending less time soaking up the culture – but hey ho, when shops are that beautiful you can’t say no! Also – Pandora is a Danish company and apparently Denmark is the only country whereby retailers are allowed to deviate from the set prices that Pandora offer in other countries – so if you’re lucky, you might get yourself a bargain! I’m not 100% sure why on earth I have no photos of this street… I’m a blogging failure!

Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post and all thoughts are my own.
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5 responses to “Is Copenhagen Really That Expensive?”

  1. K says:

    YES, a million times over! I got back 3 weeks ago… and lived on croissants the whole time I was out there. Such an expensive (if beautiful!) place. 🙂 Great

  2. I would love to visit Denmark one day! Love the fact that you can walk to a lot of places from the hostel. Thanks for recommending where to stay if you are low on budget! 🙂

  3. People always think that Scandinavia is incredibly expensive but I think it’s relative and there are huge differences between the countries themselves. When I visited Copenhagen last summer after spending almost a year in Norway, I found everything incredibly cheap in comparison and ate out way more often than I would do at home 😉
    Anyway, the tower at Christiansborg is definitely one of my favourite things to do in the city 🙂

  4. emi says:

    such great tips! ANY place is affordable if you’re a smart traveler, like you’ve shown here! we loved copenhagen and ate organic hot dogs from the street carts for lots of meals there to save $! (plus that amazing danish soft serve afterwards 🙂

    xo welltraveledwife.com

  5. Latasha says:

    To think, I was couesnfd a minute ago.

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