location: copenhagen, denmark
My husband had a work trip to Denmark in mid December and I had to jump on the opportunity to tag along and make a winter wonderland vacation out of it. This is my first trip somewhere in the winter as a vacation besides skiing. I was pretty excited to experience somewhere and enjoy it in the winter since LA does not have a typical “Christmas winter wonderland” weather experience. There were a lot of fun places to eat and drink and oh boy the Christmas markets and Christmas cheer being spread everywhere in Denmark was the most exciting part. Here is the itinerary, what area to stay in, and how to dress for a trip to Copenhagen in the Winter!
WHERE TO STAY:
We chose to stay in the Meatpacking District of Copenhagen about a 10- 15 minute walk from Tivoli Central Station. We really liked this area because it was away from the typical “center of Copenhagen” touristy spots and really let us experience and explore the culture of Danish people. The Meatpacking District has lots of shops, restaurants, and bars with local people walking and biking (omg biking is like a huge deal here lol) everywhere. It also had a younger crowd of young couples and families everywhere. We also just used Airbnb since that is how we typically prefer to stay when visiting places, but there are also quite a few hotels in the area that looked nice as well.
DAY 1: ARRIVE AND THRIVE
I left LAX on Thursday around 7:30 PM which had me landing in Copenhagen at 6:30 PM which I highly recommend getting a flight that puts you in a country overseas at mid afternoon or evening time. This helps with any potential jet lag and makes you get the most of your time in the country andddd be able to enjoy it without being so tired. I love just being able to land, check into my Airbnb, and then get settled before just going right to bed. This also helps for those of you who can never get sleep on planes. When landing at the Copenhagen Airport, I took public transit to the Meatpacking district and it was not too hard to do. If you find your way to the trains and metro area at the airport, there is a kiosk for you to buy a train ticket. Buy the ticket that says “Central Copenhagen “ on the M2 train. You will go for about 8 stops and then transfer to the M3 metro red line. From there, you can get on a bus if your place is not within walking distance from the central station. When riding the metro or buses daily to get around, you can choose a 24 hr or multi day pass for certain regions.
Tip: I highly recommend traveling with your thickest coat as a carry on during your flight because when you arrive, it will be cold and you don’t want to have to rummage through your luggage to find it!
DAY 2: BREWERIES & EXPLORING
On Saturday, I slept in a bit to make sure I got a good amount of sleep to take on the vacation. And the sun does not come up early in Copenhagen so it is hard to get up and get going haha. I just went to the nearby Bodenhoffs Bageri to get some coffee and fresh pastry to start off my day. I then met up with Patrick mid morning since he was finishing up his work trip and meeting me in Copenhagen for our vacation. We were ready for some food and to have a drink from a beloved Copenhagen brewery, Mikkeller and decided to go to War Pigs. War Pigs has some amazing yummy BBQ and a nice selection of Mikkeller brews to choose from. The craziest thing that we found at War Pigs was the sauces that they had were from different BBQ regions in the US, and one being Alabama’s famous BBQ white sauce!! So crazy to find some of your little hometown all the way in Copenhagen, Denmark. After hanging out and stuffing our faces, we grabbed an afternoon coffee at Prolog Coffee Bar and then went around exploring the city and Meatpacking district. Just walking up and down the streets was so fun to explore.
If you don’t already know, the sun rises late and sets really early in Copenhagen during the winter time. So as the sun set everyday around 3:30-4 pm, we were semi on a weird schedule and our bodies would thing it was 8 pm at night lol... so most everyday we would venture back to our Airbnb to warm up, take a nap, or just rest for a bit from 4 pm to dinner time. So that is why there is pretty much an afternoon gap in most of our days. We decided to go to DEJ for the best meatball and mint pizza with yummy gin and tonics. Highly recommend getting the pizza special and they also have seasonal cocktails. Such a cute little place! After pizza, we decided to have a night cap at yet another Mikkeller bar called La Neta. La Neta is a taco bar with a different selection of Mikkeller brews than War Pigs. They also had some liquor cocktails at this location too.
DAY 3: COPENHOT
Day 3 for us was a Sunday and I booked us an afternoon at CopenHot which I was super excited about. That morning, we got up and started making our way from the Meatpacking District to CopenHot. We took the M3 red metro line to Gammel Strand stop and walked around the Hojbro Pads Christmas market and that area for a bit. We then decided to stop at Broaden and Build Brewery which is located at the last bus stop before having to walk to CopenHot. We had a beer and split the fermented fries and fried chicken. A really cool place to hangout and grab lunch.
I prebooked our trip to CopenHot’s Hot Days which is a social hour of getting to experience wood burning hot tubs on the edge of the harbor overlooking the water and city of Copenhagen. It was such a must do experience in Copenhagen for sure! Hot Days allows you and a group access to multiple hot tubs, 2 saunas, and a cold bath for an hour and a half. They also have yummy drinks that can be served directly to you in the hot tub,
Tip: I highly recommend bringing a large zip lock or waterproof bag so that you can put your wet bathing suits in after to travel home. I also recommend that the last 15 or so minutes left in your CopenHot Hot Days that you get out of the hot tub and try to fully dry off in the sauna so that you aren’t soaking wet trying to change back into all of your layers.
We headed back home to shower off and rest before dinner. I would say one of the best dinners we had in Copenhagen was at Kodbyens Fiskebar. Denmark has so much fresh fish so it is a staple in the Danish diet. We started with a sampler of oysters from the Nordic regions that we have never had oysters from before. They tasted so different and the texture from the oysters we have had from the United States east and west coasts. Highly recommend getting the oyster sampler while there as a starter. We also got the Uni and Plaice fish appetizers and then the cod main dish. This meal was hands down delicious!
DAY 4: TIVOLI & NYHAVN
Day 4 was the ultimate tourist day that is fun to experience for your winter wonderland vacation experience. We started off with breakfast and coffee at Petròl Cafe and then went across the street to Butik Anne Tine to purchase some antique Christmas ornaments that I saw in the window when passing by to dinner the night before.
Tivoli Gardens is a magical winter wonderland that embodies all of the Christmas spirit in one place. You can buy tickets to rides or just walk around and enjoy the shopping and food booths. We decided to get hot chocolate and the cutest thing happened. They give you real complimentary mugs!! I highly suggest going during the afternoon before 4 pm because we walked by one other night and the line was out the door. It was nice to walk around with not a ton of people or lines to wait in. You can also buy tickets online before. And omg there were live peacocks just roaming the park!
Next stop was the Nyhavn Houses. These are the picturesque colorful houses that are the perfect spot in Copenhagen. Once you have strolled to and from the Nyhavn houses along the water, head to the Kongens Nytorv Christmas Market and get a hot dog at the stand and mulled wine called Gløgg. Gløgg is a staple in Copenhagen and is perfect because it will keep you nice and toasty as you walk around the market and then head across the street to all of the shopping. Explore around a bit and just sip on your Gløgg. Lastly, we went back to the Airbnb to take a rest before heading out to Mikkeller Bar for drinks. This bar is really cozy and you enter going straight down to the basement floor. And yes, this Mikkeller bar had different draft beers than the previous ones we had visited. They also have wine too!
DAY 5: DESIGN MUSEUM
On our last full day in Copenhagen, we decided to hit the museums . This day would be a perfect day for the worst weather day you have on your trip to avoid the rain or crazy cold. We went to the Danish Design Museum first. The M3 red metro line drops you off right at the most beautiful church, Frederik’s Church. Then I highly suggest you walk across the street to check out another darling antique store called Fil De fer. I got some more vintage Christmas ornaments here too. The Danish Design Museum was really cool. It is not your typical museum like what I have visited in the past. It is a design museum that explores the groundbreaking designs of furniture, clothing, appliances, electronics, etc. They also had a really cool Danish Chair exhibit as well. A very interesting little piece to see the evolution of chairs and their styles over the years. We then were planning on going to the
Blox Architecture and Design Museum but we got too hungry and decided to find food instead. We went to Restaurant M and had shrimp, pork, and meatballs tapas and a glass of wine.
That night we went to another really awesome Danish style restaurant. H15 has yummy dishes that are completely affordable and authentic. We just decided to go with the chef’s special since we could not decide what to order since it all went yummy! We had a gorgeous yellow beet salad, chicken liver mousse, ceviche, and a white kidney bean chili. They also have some amazing house wine and a good selection of beers. The best thing about this place is there is no fuss and it feels like a true neighborhood spot. We loved enjoying a meal and drinks for hours here. Afterwards, we headed to a swanky cocktail bar called 1656 Cocktail Bar. You may walk right past it because it looks like an apartment building door, but there is a folded wooden sign right out front so just start trying to open the door and whah la its there. The perfect ending to our last night in Denmark.
Athina Jacket (similar here) , Joes Jeans ,
Forever21 Sweater (old, similar here), and Adidas Sneakers
You cannot complete a trip to Paris without going to see the Eiffel Tower. No matter how many times I visit, I am still in awe of how grand it is. I think my favorite part about it is to enjoy a nice picnic on the lawn in front during the day and of course, see it glitter at night. It was amazing to see the leaves in their fall colors surrounding the tower and park around it. It made for the perfect backdrop.
I highly recommend getting to see the Eiffel tower both day and night as they are totally different experiences. To go during the day, I love to go to a local store near where I am staying to grab lunch supplies, because I haven't found a good spot near the Eiffel tower yet. I normally stick to cheese, meats, and a baguette or any already prepared lunch foods at the store. Oh and you can't forget the wine! During our trip in mid November, the lawn directly in front of the tower was blocked off to help regrow the grass properly. But there was plenty of space on the side to enjoy the view and eat our picnic.
THINGS TO KNOW:
So after you have basked in the sunlight gazing up at the Eiffel tower while sipping your wine, I highly recommend scheduling a time during your trip to come back at sunset. I suggest getting there at sunset because it is incredibly beautiful to watch the sun set with the tower. And then right after sun down, the glitter light show will happen. You can read all about how to visit the Eiffel Tower at night through this post here.
Forever21 Sweater , Gap Black Jeans , Zara Overcoat ,
Plaid Scarf , Forever21 Beanie , and Adidas Sneakers
If you are in Paris for more than a couple of days, I highly suggest you take a day trip to Versailles. Versailles has an over the top interior of the palace and a huuuugge garden. It was quite a nice day trip to get out of the city and experience some great history. And if you are as lucky as we are, you will witness an amazing sunset.
Before you go inside Versailles, stop by two local stores in Versailles for a picnic to have in the park after the Palace tour. We went to Boulanger Patissier for sandwiches and pastries. Then we headed right down the street to Rapid Market for a bottle of wine. And if you forgot plastic cups and a bottle opener, ask the cashier for plastic cups and buy a bottle opener. When you get through the line, you can check your food bag in and then you can get it after the tour of the palace.
The best way to get to Versailles from the center of Paris is the metro. It is about a 45 minute ride out there. It is pretty much an all day thing so wake up, grab some coffee and a croissant, and then head to the metro. The most important thing that we did not do is to order a ticket BEFORE you go and make sure it is thepassport with a timed entry which guarantees that you can enter entrance A within 30 minutes of your time slot. If not then you could wait 1 hr + within a pretty long line, which is sadly what we did... They have headsets which explain as you go the history and facts about the palace and gardens.
The Palace of Versailles was more elaborate than any house, palace, or castle that I have ever seen. And I saw the Buckingham Palace in London. Every single inch of the walls are covered with cold, mirrors, wall papers, art, or whatever you can think of! There is so much to marvel at. I really enjoyed the hall of mirrors as well. Wow it was the perfect banquet hall. I also really loved the Gallery of Great Battles. It is an entire hallway showcasing so many famous wars depicted on wall sized canvases.
Once you exit the Palace, grab your packed lunch and go enjoy it in the park. Then however much time you have left until sunset, just explore the grounds and wander through. Then once sunset has hit, head back up to the top of the stairs immediately behind the palace. This is the money shot and man was it beautiful!! Of course it got colder as the night went on, So I threw on this beanie to keep warm because man was it chilly.
A born and raised Southern girl who's wanting to inspire every women through style and beauty while living in the big city of Los Angeles.