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Pricey Copenhagen! Trip report!

UK
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Pricey Copenhagen! Trip report!

We just returned from a long weekend trip to Copenhagen:

- It's definitely NOT cheap! We live in central London and it's notorious for being expensive and bad value for money but we thought Copenhagen was very pricey. A decent meal for 2 with wine/beer can cost up to 700-800dkk which is around £70-80 GBP. We love eating out at great restaurants, and Copenhagen has it' s fair share of good restaurants, again quite pricey. Do book ahead if you're planning to visit one of the many Michelin starred restaurants here e.g. Noma, Restaurant Ensemble, Kommandaten. The restaurants tend to be on the small side, seating around 20-40 people. We came away thinking how on earth the Danes can afford to live here! We only found out later that the city with the highest gross wage level is Copenhagen, now ahead of Zurich, Basel and Oslo!

- Eating out and restaurants: We were hoping to eat at some traditional Danish restaurants but in the end this proved quite tricky. The vast majority of restaurants serve food with a very strong Italian/French influence. We checked out the menu at some Michelin starred restaurants and although they do use local ingredients, the dishes are cooked in very much the French tradition, which was rather disappointing. Having said that, we found a very nice restaurant : 'Restaurant Kanalen' (Wilders Plads 2, Christianshavn) which was very cosy. The service was very good and the standard of the dishes was pretty high. We went to the 'Cap Horn' restaurant in Nyhavn and that was ok but pricey for the standard of food served.

- If you love theme park rides you will be disappointed if you visit Tivoli Park. The rides are not particularly scary and there are far better rides at Alton Towers/Thorpe Park. The rides are probably more suited to much younger children and young teenagers. It's expensive, bordering on horrendous! It's 75dkk for entry ONLY (around £6.80GBP). You also have to pay extra for the rides. A multi ride ticket is 200dkk (around £20) and a single ride ticket is 15dkk (£1.36). You can buy the single ride tickets inside the park at machines which you pay with using a credit card. There IS an additional charge for using a credit card for payment at these machines but this is not displayed. The catch is the 'single ride ticket' does not refer to a ticket for a single ride. You actually have to buy several of these single tickets to go on ONE ride, well the more thrilling ones anyway! You need to buy 4 tickets to go on the best rides i.e. Daemonen coaster. The rides for kids are 1 ticket. You can see how going on the rides will add up - OUCH! Another tip - eat outside before entering the park - there are probably more restaurants than rides in the park! But the food is ridiculously expensive for what you are being served and very poor value for money. Having said that, it is lovely at night when the park is lit up and don't miss the theatre show in the evening.

- Stroget: This is great for shopping, though again it's expensive. It's mostly populated with the usual brand suspects: Gucci, Chanel, Rolex, Louis Vuitton, Hermes etc and chain stores. It's nice to sit around for a coffee in the cafes but I don't think anything is cheaper here!

- The Oresund Bridge: We stayed in Malmo during our trip and made the crossing over the bridge into Copenhagen. The Oresund train passes through Copenhagen Central (Kobenhavn H), the Airport (Kastrup) to Malmo Central (sweden). The hotels are far cheaper in Malmo, if you don't mind the inconvenience of travelling over to Copenhagen everyday. There are 3 trains every hour. The train is not cheap, it costs around £30 GBP for round trip for 2 people. Train departures run late very frequently and when we were there the train was not running at all for a couple of hours due to a technical problem. It takes about 40 mins to get to Malmo from Copenhagen Central and about 20 mins from Malmo to Copenhagen Kastrup.

- There's a lot of walking! Wherever possible, make use of the public transport i.e. buses as it's very convenient and not too expensive. Taxis are very expensive way to get around. Alternatively hire some bicycles - there are bike lanes in the road and there are bikes everywhere in Copenhagen. The Danes seem to love them and take them everywhere. There's even a special large carriage with seats for bicycles on the Oresund train. The Danes also seem to love their huge 4-wheeler pram pushchairs. This can get annoying when the train is packed full of people.

- Opening hours: Most shops are closed on a Sunday and shops close much earlier during the week than in the UK. Shops close as early as 4pm.

- The Little Mermaid: this is quite a walk away (a good half hour by foot) from the city centre and Stroget, so take the bus if you can. It's rather disappointing as it's very small and you have to clamber over some rocks to get to, which can be dangerous. It isn't in a spectacularly scenic place either; there are industrial plants and warehouses in the backdrop.

- Carlsberg Brewery: this is great value for money and a must see. It's a fair walk right to the end of Vesterbrogade and then some (around half hour walk). It's worth taking the no. 26 bus there and back and it's a frequent service. It's great value for money, you get to walk around the old brewery and the entry fee includes sample of 2 beers (Tuborg, Jacobsen) afterwards in the bar upstairs, although you can choose to have a soft drink if you prefer!

- Weather: we were lucky with the weather as it was sunny throughout our trip, but it is very windy.

Overall, Copenhagen is enjoyable for a weekend trip, though do expect to pay high prices. We felt it lacked the buzz and energy of Barcelona, there just aren't as many things to see or do to keep you there beyond a weekend. Vesterbro can feel a bit seedy in areas but generally a very safe city to visit.

Billericay UK
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1. Re: Pricey Copenhagen! Trip report!

Well,

I'm a Dane now living iand working i n the UK (Essex) since October 2005.

As I havn't lived in my home country since 1987 my knowledge about Copenhagen where I lived for many years is a bit rusty, but I have visited regularly over the years and have loved it every time. I'm well aware that Copenhagen is pricey, but that is no secret. You should have know that if you had done some research on beforehand.

You shouldn't go on holiday if money apparently is a problem. Holiday is for relaxing and having a good time and you should start a holiday with a positive attitude. You concentrate on almost everything negative and especially that everything is expensive and pricey. Your quote "We felt it lacked the buzz and energy of Barcelona, there just aren't as many things to see or do to keep you there beyond a weekend."

That is because you apparently havn't bothered to investigate what Copenhagen can offer before you left.. At least you can talk with the Danes in English, there you would have quite a lot of difficulties in Barcelona (I know I have been there a couple of times)

Too bad that you never found the special Danish "hygge".

K-J

Copenhagen
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2. Re: Pricey Copenhagen! Trip report!

I have to agree with Brage on some of the points...but on other points you're absolutely right - yes, CPH is very expensive (especially going to Tivoli costs a fortune) - even for some of us people living here - on the other hand I NEVER eat at the michelin restaurants...simply way to pricey for me. The little mermaid is small, I don't know anyone who hasn't been disappointed when they saw it - including myself. But then again - would she be a better sight had she been 4 meters tall?

CPH is not and will never be like Barcelona. Barcelona is about 1,7 mill. people while CPH is 1 mill. and that's including the suburbs - so only 1/2 mill. live in the city itself. The Scandinavian culture is way different from the culture you'll find in the southern european countries, which may partly explain why you won't find the same buzz and energy here, as we don't "live" our lives outside in the same way - mostly due to the weather; it's simply too cold.

As for the restaurants - there are several restaurants offering danish specialities like smørrebrød. But looking for traditional Danish food at a michelin restaurant is not the way to go about it. I mean I wouldn't expect to find traditional greek meatballs at the finest restaurant in Athens. Instead ask some of the local people - on the street, in a shop or at your hotel. People are usually very friendly and helpful, and as Brage already said, Danish people speak english very well.

About the shopping possibilities - yes, Strøget is full of international brands and different chains - but again this is not so different from shopping at Oxford Street in London or in any other capital. If you walk away from Strøget down some of the smaller streets you will find many different shops, independent designers, special boutiques etc.

tricota
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3. Re: Pricey Copenhagen! Trip report!

I have to agree with the other people here. It seams like a very shalow review, and a visit done without to much reasearch.

Copenhagen is expensive yes, but noone is forcing you to spend 100 pounds on dinner. It can be done a lot cheaper. But if you insist on going where the turists go, you will get cheated. Same as in every other city. That is the cardinal rule of traveling. Find out where the locals eat. Ask the hotel. Do some research.

Strøget. Yes the area around Kongens Nytorv is mostly high end and Strøget has many chainshops. But you should really try to go beyond just the main street and you will find many independent shop, designshops, vintagestores, creazy little teahouses and cafes.

Opening hours. Yes shops are mostly closed on sundays, but I dont know of any shops that closes as early as 4. Most have been really bad luck. Most shops close between 6 and 7, som even later.

Little mermaid. "you have to clamber over some rocks to get to"...

Actually you dont. You look at her from the platform. You are not suposed to claim over the rocks and onto her. Why most turists dont understand it is beyond me. Please dont write things like that. Thankfully the city is now planing on moving her further away from the harbour side.

Since you apparently have a great deal of dificulties looking beyond the normal turist stuf that is presented to you and dont really do any research of your own, I am not surpriced that you only feel the city is only suted for a weekend trip. The truth is that the city has lots to offer for anyone, buth in tearms of culture, restaurants and attractions. Im really sorry that you apparently missed all of that....

southwest
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4. Re: Pricey Copenhagen! Trip report!

One additional note about Barcelona, You have to watch every SINGLE step you take because of all the dog droppings on the sidewalk. I personally found it filthy. CPH is a quaint, tidy and modern city.

I am not sure what you were trying to say. Did you think CPH was expensive?

New Orleans
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5. Re: Pricey Copenhagen! Trip report!

It's sad that *wideeyedtraveller* can't post a review without being torn apart. This definitely should NOT be what this forum is about.

I spent September 7-8-9-10-11-12 in Copenhagen. That was way too long. A weekend would have been sufficient.

The expense was eye-popping and not worth the prices asked.

25$ for burgers and fries-yikes! 60$ plus tip for breakfast for two.

Someone stated that money should not be thought about while on vacation. That is so off-base. That's how most of us can afford to travel. I for one do not like to just throw money away.

Wideeyedtraveller posted their review. I found it to be an open and honest review.

Why can't we come to TripAdvisor and post individual thoughts on a place without getting 'whacked'?

Dublin
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6. Re: Pricey Copenhagen! Trip report!

I totally agree with taintbluegrass and am very surprised at the reaction of some people to wideeyedtraveller's report.

Brage seems to have jumped at wideeyedtraveller's last sentence that Copenhagen 'lacked the buzz and energy of Barcelona'. My read of this was that is was simply stated as a fact, and not a complaint. I would have thought it was perfectly true to say Copenhagen lacks the buzz and energy of Barcelona, but this is not to say Copenhagen does not have many other things to offer which Barcelona does not. Copenhagenthisweek (www.ctw.dk) agrees with wideeyedtraveller:

"Dating back to the mid-12th century, Copenhagen - Chapmens' (Merchants') Haven - København in Danish, Hafnia in Latin - population 1.5 million - may lack the buzz of major metropolises like London, Paris, Berlin and Rome but it compensates for this with its provincial charm, elegance and relaxed atmosphere."

Overall, I didn't take wideeyedtraveller's report as negative or complaining. I just took it as an honest report of someone's visit. In fact, if you take out the comments regarding expense, the report was quite positive overall. True, they probably should have known it was going to be expensive, but many friends of mine who have known this in advance are still surprised at how expensive it actually is. It is simply a fact that Copenhagen is one of the most expensive cities in Europe.

Brage's comment that "you shouldn't go on holiday if money apparently is a problem" is arrogant and patronising. I can only assume and hope it is not indicative of the general attitude of Danish people to others.

I welcome all reports (positive or negative), and thank wideeyedtraveller for taking the time to share his/her long report on the trip to Copenhagen. As taintbluegrass says he/she should not have been torn apart. We welcome all opinions here on tripadvisor.

I will be going to Copenhagen shortly and hope to share my opinions/tips with you when I return. I do this in the open and sharing environment that tripadvisor depends on, and in thanks to the many many people who have taken time to share their opinions and give their help. I trust this won't be in anticipation of being torn apart if someone doesn't agree with me or I get something wrong.

Hereford, England
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7. Re: Pricey Copenhagen! Trip report!

I agree, after writing a couple of fairly long and fairly detailed, also entertaining (attempted) reviews of Milan in genral and the san Siro football stadium, after people rated it as 'not useful' I wont bother again as I cant work out what people expect apart from an honest report. Check out my reviews and tell me how either could be not useful, its not as if anyone has to bother trying to be helpful, and what really makes me laugh is the amount of forum posts asking the same thing yet never check other posts, reviews of golists.

Birmingham
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8. Re: Pricey Copenhagen! Trip report!

a bit detracting from the current theme.. but the start topic mentioned pricey restaurants. can any of the locals suggest a nice little local restaurant, not all flashy and pricey where me and my partner might enjoy a taste of copenhagen? were off in december :) can't wait - even bad reviews wouldn't put me off! just grateful to be having a holiday!

C4M
UK
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9. Re: Pricey Copenhagen! Trip report!

I find the bickering and sniping that has been posted on this forum absolutely ridiculous! I stumbled accross it whilst trying to do research for my forthcoming visit to copenhagen - attempting to find tips about how best to enjoy the city. My understanding of this website is to offer advice to fellow visitors to places we have enjoyed - why would you ruin someones trip before they have even had the chance to go on it by posting negative opinionated reviews?!

I certainly won't be consulting this site again and intend to throughly enjoy my trip to copenhagen IN SPITE OF selfish negative want-to-be travel critics!

augusta, ga
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10. Re: Pricey Copenhagen! Trip report!

I am looking forward to my trip in mid-November. I second the request for some reasonable and filling places to eat. I can eat fancy at home. How about the weather. I live in Georgia, US not Russia, how cold and wet will it be? So many posts are geared to the summer traveler, is there plenty to be enjoyed in the waning days of Fall?