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DENMARK TRAVEL GUIDE
Hello, my name is Gwen, and here is my Denmark travel guide for solo travel over 40, including budget, safety/female and eco-travel tips, photographs and interesting posts for your Denmark travel planning.
VELKOMMEN TIL DANMARK!
Denmark – “Land of the Danes” is an archipelago of over 100 islands with no place further than 30 miles from the sea, and home to the world class city and capital, Copenhagen, the oldest monarchy in the world, coffee lovers, double the number of bicycles to cars, rain or snow every other day, Cold Hawaii beach and the Tivoli Gardens, Lego, Lurpak butter, Carlsberg beer, the inventor of Skype, the philosopher Søren Kierkegaard (known as the “Father of Existentialism”), the nuclear physicist Niels Bohr, Hans Christian Andersen, the oldest flag use by an independent nation, and is currently reported to be the least corrupt as well as the happiest country in the world.
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LANGUAGES IN DENMARK
The official language is Danish, but there are several minority languages spoken, namely Faroese, German, and Greenlandic.
How's Your Danish?
Brush up on your Danish before your trip to Denmark.
The Danish have a long history going back to the Nordic people in the 1st century. The Kingdom of Denmark, however, was established in the 17th century. Danish culture stems from how they live with simplicity, politeness, and equality. They are direct and punctual.
Denmark is often considered the benchmark of civilization due to its social policies and core values of freedom and respect for the individual with tolerance and a strong sense of mutual trust.Denmark is known for its liberalism and are fairly relaxed when it comes to marriage – the country has a high divorce rate with nearly 20% of Danish couples participating in “paperless marriages” – cohabitating without ever marrying.
Approximately two-thirds of Danish people are Lutheran Christians with a third considered as non-religious. The country houses stunning old, as well as modern, architecture, and a national health care system.
Popular food include fish, pulled pork and chicken, cured or salted pork, fried pork and potatoes, rye bread and licorice. They also enjoy frequenting breweries and brew houses as the Danes have a 5000-year old tradition of brewing beer (the oldest beer going back to 2800 BC).
POPULAR DANISH ACTIVITIES
Football (soccer) is Denmark’s favorite and national sport. Danes also love to cycle. Denmark has many beaches and resorts that lend to popular activities like fishing, canoeing, kayaking, and other water-themed sports. Most Danish children participate in after school sports clubs – the most popular being football and handball.
The Danish also provide a wide contribution to the world’s literature, art, photography, cinema, theater, music, architecture, and science fields. In addition to general socializing in restaurants and brew pubs, traditional events and festivals are also observed by the Danish, based mostly around the Christian calendar, and are typically spent with family.
Denmark uses the Danish Kroner (DKK or kr). Exchange rates are usually favorable for U.S. citizens. Check throughout your travel planning phase on any exchange rate changes.
Denmark has all modern forms of transportation (Uber has been recently banned due to the Taxi law), including some regional ridesharing services and apps, so getting around and booking transportation in advance or working on the fly, is no problem.
TIPPING IN DENMARK
Traveling in a new country is easier when you know the country’s tipping etiquette in advance as each country has its own rules. That said, country rules and norms can shift, so here is an international tipping resource for over 70 countries to use as a general guideline that I have found is constantly updated.
What’s not on there is how to tip a concierge, beauty salons or spas, travel or tour guides, etc. For these extras, it is acceptable to tip 10% at minimum. Remember, tipping is for good service only.
Additionally, you should always tip in the local currency (if tipping in cash), and do not be offended if your tip is refused as it may not be the norm. I feel it’s always better to offer a tip for good service than not, unless I know it will be considered offensive, like in Japan.
A key activity to do in your early planning stage is to know, at minimum, the national holidays. I so suggest also looking into the local holidays. It’s a complete bummer to spend time and money to take the holiday of your lifetime and when you show up at one of your key attractions, it’s closed due to a holiday. It’s also not fun trying to travel and have a hard time accessing travel or other essential resources when no one is around because, yes, it’s a local holiday. So take just a few moments to look at Denmark’s holidays.
DENMARK ELECTRONIC ESSENTIALS
Besides money, required ID and your ticket, Denmark voltage is 230V and the standard frequency is 50 Hz, so bring Type C, E, F and K adapters (doesn’t hurt to bring 2 of each) for Denmark outlets and research if your electronics require a voltage converter, if not already included in the adapter; or, you can bring electronics already adapted for Denmark outlets or wait to purchase them there (I recommend just bringing the adapters with converter). Remember, most smart phones, tablets and laptops don’t require a converter, but double-check your device(s) before you leave home. If you are going to another country in addition to Denmark on your trip, you can check the global adapters list to make sure you’re prepared. I have also provided suggested adapters below for your convenience!
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TRAVEL DOCUMENTS FOR DENMARK
From the U.S., you will need a valid passport. Visa’s are not required if your stay is less than 3 months. Make sure your passport expiration date is greater than 6 months from your return to the U.S. The U.S. State Department always has their link up to date with pertinent information when traveling to Denmark. It is advised to always check there during your planning stage and again before you leave. If you are not from the U.S., please check your government’s website.
VACCINATIONS FOR DENMARK
There are normally no vaccinations required for Denmark travel. The U.S. State Department always has their link up to date with pertinent information when traveling to Denmark. It is advised to always check there during your planning stage and again before you leave. If you are not from the U.S., please check your government’s website.
SAFETY / FEMALE TRAVEL TIPS
DENMARK TRAVEL SAFETY
Some consider Denmark the safest country to visit. Still, use your common sense while traveling. There could still be instances of theft or pickpocketing, which usually happens in public transportareas. All are expected to obey traffic signs, of course, and this includes pedestrians so be careful to watch bicycle paths as there are many bicyclists in Denmark. Beyond that, there is nothing I can recall from Denmark making it a “safety concern”. As always, my standard tips for female and solo travelers are:
- always carry photo ID with you; if you don’t want your passport on you at all times, at least carry a copy of it.
- always be “street wise”.
- always be aware of your surroundings, especially if you feel the need to imbibe or feel the need to “let loose” – you’re on vacation so have fun!
- never leave your food or drink unattended.
- keep your belongs on your person, or at least in your view in close proximity, at all times.
- be open to meeting and talking with new people – that is where a lot of the travel experience lies – but be careful on how you divulge personal information.
- research places in advance, if possible, so you know what to expect (i.e., “have a familiar view” – I like to Google the street view of new addresses I’m going to first).
- if something, someone or someplace makes you feel uncomfortable, go with your gut – leave.
BUDGET TRAVEL TIPS
BEST TIME TO VISIT DENMARK
Denmark is considered an expensive country to visit, but this should not deter you from visiting, even if just for a few days. Consider what you’d like to see and budget wisely. Private homes and hostels can be found for a less expensive stay, especially if you can cook your own meals. Eating out in Denmark, especially Copenhagen, can be pricey. If visiting Copenhagen, you could consider staying outside the city and take public transportation in to see the sights. Like other Scandinavian countries, Denmark’s high, tourist season, and most expensive time, is the summer (July and August), when the weather is warmest. Crowds are not as heavy in the spring (April and May) and autumn (September to October), and prices in these months are better than the summer season. If you want the best weather and prices, try booking well in advance or opt for visiting late spring or early autumn.
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SUSTAINABILITY / ECO TRAVEL TIPS
It is very easy to do your part for the planet and implement environmental sustainability into your travel. If you would like to learn more about how you can implement environmentally sustainable, or eco-friendly, travel measures into your travel, please see my 10 Easy Eco Travel Tips and suggested Eco Travel Resources.
Additionally, if you are flying to, or within, Denmark consider purchasing carbon offsets through your airline or through a third party, like MyClimate.org, Carbonfund.org, or terrapass. Carbon offsetting allows you to buy a certificate to reduce carbon emissions, a major contributor to climate change, which in turn contribute community projects across countries to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. There are several ways to go about this to help reduce your impact to climate change through your travel. Check it out!
I’ve had the pleasure to visit Copenhagen, a beautiful city with stunning architecture, albeit only for a couple of days. Yes, it’s on the bucket list to go back and revisit along with other Scandinavian cities. Although I was there in late May, it was still rather chilly and rainy. This, of course, did not keep me from seeing the city sights. Tivoli Gardens are definitely worth a visit, as well as seeing the changing of the Danish Royal Guard at the Amalienborg Palace, which happens at noon daily. I always like to get a nice view of a city I’m visiting, and the Round Tower, which is the oldest functioning observatory in Europe, provided just that. It is also neat architecturally – you walk up a spiral walk to the top. After that vertical hike, it was nice to kick back with a Carlsberg at Nyhavn, the waterfront harbor surrounded by colorful buildings (see picture at top of this page). It’s a great place for people watching, eating, music, and resting your feet.