7 Ways To Win At Winter In Copenhagen
Oh, the never-ending dark Scandinavian winter that even the Vikings feared is here. Don’t despair, seize the opportunity to experience Copenhagen’s hygge from a front-row seat! All over the city you’ll be able to experience Copenhagen its stunning winter dress, so let’s guide you to some of the best Copenhagen experiences during the crisp and let’s face it cold winter months of November, December, January and February.
Get warm by sipping Gløgg, hot chocolate, or coffee
All over Copenhagen, you’ll see locals clinging to cups during the winter months. In December, it will most likely be Gløgg, which is our version of mulled wine. It’s a steaming hot beverage that can either be made on white or red wine. Traditionally, Gløgg boasts spices of orange zest, cardamom, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, star anis and allspice, but it’s also topped with bourbon, rum or even aquavit that makes it stronger than your average mulled wine or even glühwein. The Gløgg is always served with a spoon, so you can eat the deliciously soaked almonds and raisins that you will find in the bottom of the drink.
Where to get the best Gløgg, hot chocolate or coffee
Finding authentic Danish Gløgg in Copenhagen is actually more difficult than you would imagine. The best places to taste it, which we found on a Gløgg crawl this year, is at Norrbohandelen or at Marchal. If you would rather have something more familiar or is a teetotaler, we recommend you to get the delicious hot chocolate with whipped cream and marshmallows they serve at Bertel’s Salon at Kompagnistræde 5 or consider visiting one of Copenhagen’s best coffee bars.
Find a fireplace and settle down for some hygge in front of it
Even though, lit candles are a dime a dozen in Copenhagen, nothing really beats a real fireplace where you can settle down for some hygge. You might wonder what hygge is and it is really not that easily defined, but it is easy to experience. It is all about the ambiance of the experience and our Hygge & Happiness tour will show you exactly what it is, so you could consider doing that before settling in for some hygge in front of the flickering lights of the fireplace.
Where to find the best fireplace
Calm down in the beautiful ball room at Nimb Bar, where you can settle down in front of their large fireplace in their comfy armchairs with a cocktail or a cup of tea. You could also head to one of our favorite cocktail bars, Balderdash, and just relax in front of their fireplace while sipping some of the city’s most innovative cocktails. If you would rather stay outside and take in the elements while you are feeling the heat from the fireplace, check out Gemyse inside Tivoli that have several fireplaces in their garden where you can get your hygge on roasting marshmallows and sipping warm chocolate in stunning surroundings.
Settle in for a super delicious and toasty brunch
The brunches of Copenhagen are to die for, no seriously they are that good! Especially during the winter season, where lit candles, the smell of baked pastries and a hint of coffee in the air contributes to the most leisurely breakfast you have ever had. So one of the biggest recommendations we can give you as a visitor to Copenhagen is to ditch the same old buffet experience that all hotels tend to offer and experience the créme de la créme of brunches.
Where to find the best brunch in Copenhagen
We have already dedicated a complete post on this subject, so click on the link for our mouth-watering recommendations for the best brunch joints in the city.
Gather with friends as much as possible
Our buffer against the long, cold winters is hygge. In a nutshell, hygge rhymes on coziness, snuggles and intimacy and it is best achieved through social gatherings and intimate get-togethers. It is the feeling of wellbeing and warm atmospheres, while you just enjoy the simple pleasures in life. In essence, it is a social nirvana. So get together with friends or strangers and get your hygge on is maybe our best recommendation when it comes to coping with the winter months.
Where to chill out with friends and meet strangers
We’re suckers for board games, brown pubs and social dining. So if you are like us, you will first of all love Bastard Café – a board game café with more than 1300 board games available for you to play. Settle in and join a game where you bond over the game! If you would rather just hang out in a cozy atmosphere, find one of the city’s many brown pubs such as Freddy’s Bar and chat with the regulars that all are hanging out and using the pub as their own personal living room.
When the hunger sneaks in, consider heading to either Hot Pot Republic or the Absalon Church for a social dining experience. Hot Pot Republic on one hand offers you and your friends a boiling hot pot to share around the table, where you also get to make the food creating an intimate get-together in a hyggelig atmosphere. On the contrary, Absalon Church offers you and your friends a unique set dinner experience inside a church, which have become a community room that offers the surrounding community activities where they among other things can share a delicious meal.
Bundle up and jump on a bike (yes, seriously!)
A little cold won’t stop the locals from bicycling, so why should it stop you? The first place that receives salt when we have temperatures below zero degrees is the bicycle lanes, so they’re perfectly safe and ready to let you explore Copenhagen on its amazing bicycle infrastructure. It is not only a fast way to experience the city, but it can also be captivating since the crisp days with the beautiful low winter sun make the city pop in a fashion that can only be experienced in the winters.
If you want to be more active, we definitely recommend to bike to Frederiksberg – a city within the city, which is particularly known for their hyggelige ice skating rink every year. Right at the entrance to the beautiful Frederiksberg Have (i.e. garden), you will find an ice skating rink formed like a square surrounded by glittering lights and an idyllic atmosphere. Afterwards or maybe before do yourself a favor and head for a stroll through the gardens, which we consider the most beautiful in the city even at winter time.
If you don’t want to head out on your own to explore this part of the city, the world-famed restaurant Noma and the people behind Broens Gadekøkken have created an ice skating rink within the inner heart of Copenhagen as well with stunning views from the harbor side. Since it’s the culinary geniuses behind these very two popular food places that have joined forces, you’ll of course also be able to buy some delicious Christmas goodies from the stalls! To find this fun place to be this winter, head over the Inner Harbor Bridge away from Nyhavn and you can’t miss it.
Warm up by visiting a spa and a sauna
If you were not prepared for the cold here in Copenhagen and just wants to escape and be warmed up or you just want to relax, we recommend you to visit one of the city’s spas and saunas. It is true Nordic wellness where you will have an opportunity to relax and be pampered, which is a welcome contrast to the hectic lifestyles we tend to lead today.
Where to find a spa and a sauna
Depending on what you’re in the mood for, you can either choose to visit CopenHot or Arndal. Whereas, CopenHot is true to the Scandinavian virtues of being one with the nature and as such is located outside with spectacular views of the city, Arndal is more luxurious and is a sanctuary in the midst of one of the busiest areas of Copenhagen. If you choose the latter, make sure to do as the owners suggest and jump into the ocean true Viking style for a nice cool down before heading into the sauna.
Shop ‘till you drop
January can be cold and wet, but it is one of many Copenhageners favorite months for one exact reason: The January sales. As you may know, Copenhagen, and Denmark, is very famous for its Scandinavian design and during January you will literally be able to spend days browsing small cute shops in search of bargain items to complete (or for some cram into) your wardrobe or home. We don’t get that excited about selling frenzies of computers, clothes and the likes, since we believe the best gifts you can ever give to someone else or yourself is an unforgettable experience.
Where to shop in Copenhagen for the January sales
All over the city you will find sales and there are just too many to mention, but we would recommend you to visit artisan shops where you often can find some unique and hidden gems. If you are anything like us, you can also purchase one of our tour experiences here in Copenhagen with 15 % off right now. Simply use the promo code ‘YAYEXPERIENCES’ at check-out.