Scandinavia has a reputation for being expensive, but this doesn’t have to be the case. For some reason flights from the Living Rock to CPH are incredibly cheap at the moment and we took advantage of this for a four day trip. We like to have the option to cook for ourselves, and to see parts of a city outside of the main tourist areas, so we opted to stay in an AirBnB flat ten minutes walk from Vanløse metro station, the last stop on the line. Being so close to the metro gave us direct links to the airport and the centre whilst the suburban setting provided supermarkets and the quiet nights of a peaceful residential area for a quarter of the price of a hotel.
There are some things that you will only see in a city if you walk; lipstick on a stone angel, interesting graffiti, fine architectural details, and Copenhagen certainly makes it easy with many of the main sights situated close together. There are also miles and miles of well maintained and respected cycle paths for those that want to move at a faster pace. If, instead, you want to cut down on foot time, you can buy single trip, 24 hour or 72 hour travel cards which give unlimited use of the metro, trains and buses within your selected number of zones. For a little extra there is also an ‘all zones’ option which includes journeys out of the city. Trips to both Roskilde and Helsingør are covered by these (see https://profusionofeccentricities.wordpress.com/2016/04/29/nothing-is-rotten-in-the-state-of-denmark-sightseeing-in-helsingor/ and https://profusionofeccentricities.wordpress.com/2016/04/10/flotsam-and-jetsam-roskilde-viking-ship-museum/ for what you can do when you get there).
We spent most of the time walking but took a break to go on a canal tour. They’re not the cheapest but definitely to be recommended, giving an alternative view of the city’s landmarks, including the little mermaid from the rear. You can even find trolls lurking under some of the many bridges. Other worthwhile, and inexpensive, activities include climbing the Rundetaarn, or the Round Tower, with excellent views from the top and interesting architecture inside, a visit (or two or three) to the National Museum of Denmark (https://profusionofeccentricities.wordpress.com/2016/04/15/the-woman-from-huldremose) and a walk along the water, taking in the little mermaid, the Gefion fountain and the star-shaped fortress of Kastellet.
Another good way to get the most for your money is, where possible, to fly home in the late afternoon or evening. This gives you an extra day to re-visit favourite spots or squeeze in a bonus activity without paying for another night of accommodation. Our pre-flight morning was spent taking an obligatory tour of the Carlsberg Museum. Before lunchtime it was free of stag parties and surprisingly child friendly with lots to look at including a stable of horses. Entry is roughly £10 for an adult and includes two drinks (alcoholic or soft) which, when you consider the price of beer in a bar in Copenhagen, is pretty good value. The helpful staff in the shop even let us store our luggage in their cloakroom. For those happy to give the beer, and the entrance fee, a miss you can visit the famous Elephant Gate a few streets away which formed part of the original brewery complex.
The great thing about budget travel is that you come home with no regrets and hopefully some spare pennies to start planning your next trip. For us that’s to Iceland in a couple of weeks. In a tent. What’s next for you?