Picturesque Copenhagen seems tailor made for sightseeing. Neat and compact, its biggest landmarks are perfectly packaged and arranged around the harbor and inner city.
Of the many sightseeing tours of Copenhagen on offer, the best is surely a self-guided Canal Tour, an attraction in itself – nab the hop-on, hop-off option and fit in as many of the city’s waterfront landmarks as you can. This is an ideal way to see much-discussed icons like The Little Mermaid and the ultra-modern Opera House in the same trip; and while you won’t get up close enough to Amalienborg Palace to see the changing of the guard, sightseeing via the canals offers a completely new perspective on the city. Pick the tour up from Nyhavn – a bustling quayside popular with tourists and locals alike.
Take a walk away from the harbor front to see two examples of Copenhagen’s splendid Renaissance architecture, Rosenborg Slot – home to Denmark’s crown jewels - and Rundetaarn, a still functioning observatory in a unique round tower from 1642. On the opposite side of the city in picturesque Christianshavn, Vor Frelsers Kirke, with its distinctive spire, is arguably Copenhagen’s most attractive church: All of these 17th-century architectural pearls were the vision of Christian IV (1577-1648), often referred to as the ‘Builder King’.
Sightseers shouldn’t miss out on Copenhagen’s two power bases: Parliament’s Christiansborg and City Hall Rådhuset are both impressive examples of quite different architectural styles. At Christiansborg, the layers of history are clear as not one but four previous castles were all built on this same site, the oldest dating back to the origins of Copenhagen.