Copenhagen – the „happy capital“

Hello everyone, today I would like to give you a little insight on my short trip to Copenhagen. If people speak about Denmark or more precise Copenhagen, they mostly refer to it as a place of happiness.

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Me enjoying the sunny weather at the harbour of Copenhagen.

This is not just a subjective feeling but has also been documented in numerous studies and surveys where Denmark was always ranked at the top. There are various of reasons like the low corruption rate, low wage gap, high quality education system and health care etc. The Danes even happily accept their high tax system, as they believe that they can help creating a better society. But there are other countries with more or less the same conditions, so what is the secret for the happiness of the Danish people?

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Cafes & restaurants at the Nyhawn shore.

During my trip to Copenhagen I felt the warm-heartedness, the open-mindedness and the friendliness of people living there. It is no coincident that the Danish people even have a word for the cosiness and the positive emotions you have while enjoying life: “hygge”. Now how can you as a traveller seek in some of this happiness and „hygge“?

How to get around in Copenhagen?

While standing in the middle of Copenhagen you should hold on for a second, take a deep breath and have a look around you. You will notice happy people with a smile on their faces riding on bikes, e-scooters, segways or even little boats. Of course, you can buy special city passes and use conventional transport systems like buses, subways or city trip boats, but I recommend trying something new and innovative.

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Why not exploring the city with small boat?

 Have you ever made a boat tour with your loved ones on your own boat, piloting it through the canals of Copenhagen? If not, you should definitely take the opportunity to do so in Copenhagen. There are different companies that specialised on renting boats. The best thing is, you don’t even need a special certificate to pilot the boat. However, I recommend to make a reservation in advance, because normally they are fully booked when the weather is good.

The multiple ways to explore the city in different ways must make people happy, right? No matter which transport system you choose, the city pass, the e-scooter, the boat you can book and pay online with PayPal or credit card. Which brings us to the next special thing about Denmark – forget about cash.

You don’t need much cash in Copenhagen…

Don’t get me wrong here. Copenhagen is not a cheap city, not at all. It actually is one of the most expensive cities I have ever been to. However, most the payment is done either online or with credit/EC-card.

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Danske Bank Head Office Building.

Maybe this is another point, why the Danish people are so happy. They don’t have to carry around heavy wallets filled with numerous dirty coins and banknotes to survive in the city.

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Harbour Navigation building.

To be honest, as a polish girl living in Germany this made me uncomfortable at the beginning.Even though you can pay with card in Germany as well, most of the people still tend to pay by cash. But once you get familiar to the cashless system, it really is convenient and useful. Especially for travellers as they don’t need to look at the foreign coins and banknotes for minutes to find out the value of it.

 Where you can feel “hygge” in Copenhagen?

Well I don’t want to waste a lot of words about it, because words can’t describe it. Just go to Nyhawn and enjoy the view and the atmosphere there – you eventually will understand what “hygge” really means.

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Nyhavn.

With its rainbow houses, crystal, deep blue water and happy people sitting in restaurants, coffeehouses, boats or just sitting on the shore, you will be feeling blessed and cherished too.

But you won’t feel “hyggelig” if your stomach is growling. A really nice place to have lunch is a street food area close to Nyhawn. You can find dishes from around the world over there. No matter if you are graving for some Singaporean dish, some classic Burger or Pizza or local fish and chips, you will definitely be satisfied. There a also a lot of stands with good brews and cocktails. I really liked the idea to put a permanent street food area in the city centre. It is located near the water canal and there are enough seats to enjoy your meal. You can also just grab some cold beer and chill on some sunbed like a lot of people are doing. It really is a nice place to have a rest or have some nice time with your friends.

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Fish & chips with a cold blond one;)

If you want to feel some culture, I can recommend you the Area near the Black Diamond (Den Sorte Diamant). It is a modern area of Copenhagen’s harbour with Royal Danish Library’s old building on Slotsholmen and the War Museum in central Copenhagen.

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Royal Danish Library – The Black Diamond.

If you are done with the culture time you can take a break on the stairs along the shore. You can find a lot of young Danish people enjoying their time there too.

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Danish War Museum – Krigsmuseet.

Among all the happy people there, I eventually met one famous but really sad girl. I am talking about the little Mermaid, a statue from the tales of Hand Christian Andersen, which played a big role during my early childhood. Even though she looks a bit depressed, you should definitely not forget to visit her, during your stay at Copenhagen.

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The Little Mermaid –  Den lille Havfrue.

So for now that’s it what I wanted to share with you about Copenhagen and my research about the happiness of the people living there. Like always I have prepared for you some helpful tips, what you should know before going to Copenhagen and I hope you have enjoyed reading this post. Even tough Copenhagen is an expansive city, don’t forget that a low budged city break is always possible with some advanced planning.

Sincerely yours,

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Karo

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