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Introducing Denmark

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The coast of Denmark © josef.stuefer

Denmark Travel Guide

Like many Scandinavian countries, Denmark is a cosmopolitan and modern society with a proud history going back to the Viking Age, making it a fascinating holiday destination in Northern Europe. Although it is often sadly overlooked by tourists 'doing the continent', Denmark's rolling countryside and gleaming cities have much to offer holidaymakers.

Mainland Denmark is located on the Jutland Peninsula, with 482 islands (including Zealand, Fyn, and Bornholm) in the Baltic Sea making up the rest. The landscape is a patchwork of dairy farms, small towns, fishing villages, and verdant countryside, while gleaming cities like Copenhagen and Århus maintain an effortlessly chic style with Michelin-starred restaurants, buzzing nightlife, and world-class shopping.

Denmark's long history is evident in the 18th-century settlements, thousand-year-old churches, and Neolithic tombs scattered around the country; remnants of Viking settlements can be found in coastal towns like Roskilde.

Denmark is often cited as one of the happiest countries in the world according to contentment surveys, and it's easy to see why when you look at the clean streets, efficient public transport systems, and progressive social policies. For visitors, this relaxed, organised and friendly attitude is just one aspect of a pleasant holiday in Denmark.

Best time to visit

The weather in Denmark has four distinct seasons, with a cold winter and warm summer. Spring tends to be unpredictable, with large temperature swings and unexpected rain showers. Autumn and winter tend to be very cold, and it gets dark fairly early. The best time to visit Denmark is in the warm period between May and August, when typical daytime temperatures are just about 69°F (20°C) and the days are very long; this is why most of the events in Denmark are held in July and August. Read more on Denmark's Climate and Weather.

What to see in Denmark

-See the Little Mermaid Statue in Copenhagen.

-Tour the Viking Ship Museum in Roskilde.

-Visit the birthplace of Hans Christian Andersen in Odense.

-See the elaborate Christiansborg Palace. Read more about Denmark Attractions.

What to do in Denmark

-Ride the Ferris Wheel and catch a concert at Tivoli Gardens.

-Swim on the beaches in Bornholm.

-Treat the kids to a day at Legoland Billund.

-Wander the streets of Freetown Christiania.

Getting to Denmark

There are many direct cheap flights to Denmark from the UK, departing from a number of airports. There are also some convenient train connections to Denmark from London. Flights to Denmark from the US are also fairly easy to come by, with direct flights to Denmark from several major US cities. Get more information on Denmark Airports.

Read

Hamlet by William Shakespeare, Smilla's Sense of Snow by Peter Høeg, and The Snow Queen by Hans Christian Andersen.

Listen

Maskarade (Carl August Nielsen).

Watch

Beowulf (2007), Hans Christian Andersen (1952), and The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo (2009).

Drink

Locally-brewed Carlsberg and Tuborg beer.

Eat

Frikkadeller (Danish meatballs) and Smørrebrød (open sandwiches).

What to buy

Miniature Little Mermaid statues, Danish chocolate, Bevar Christiania merchandise.

What to pack

Denmark can get wet at any time of year so a travel-size umbrella is a good idea.

What's on in Denmark

Twinkling lights are everywhere at the December Tivoli Christmas Market. Held each summer, the Roskilde Festival is one of the biggest rock festivals in Europe. Dance, music, theatre, art and sport come together for four frantic days at Copenhagen's Cultural Harbour Festival. More information on Events in Denmark.

Did you know?

-Popular children's toy LEGOS and internet phone service Skype were both invented in Denmark.

-There is not a single mountain in Denmark; the closest thing is a 560-foot (170m) hill called Møllehøj.

-Denmark became the first country to legalise same-sex marriages in 1989.

-The 'Dannebrog' is the oldest national flag in the world.

-Denmark was the first European country to abolish slavery.

A final word

A cosmopolitan culture with roots going back to the Vikings, travelling to Denmark makes a fascinating holiday.

Become our Denmark Travel Expert

We are looking for contributors for our Denmark travel guide. If you are a local, a regular traveller to Denmark or a travel professional with time to contribute and answer occasional forum questions, please contact us.