Running around Copenhagen. No really!

“You two look to be in great shape” is what our tour guide said upon meeting us on a very cold, windy and slightly rainy Sunday morning in Copenhagen.

Certainly not a sentiment I’ve heard very much (ever) in my life. It made me blush. I still can’t get over it when that happens – when people meet me for the first time and assume that I have probably always been healthy and active. If only they knew!

 When first visiting a new city, especially in another country, Glenn and I often take an orientation tour.

Although they are occasionally cheesy – and often involve a brightly colored bus that is supposed to look like a trolley car or something equally conspicuous – they are a great way to quickly get familiar with a new city and to map out the places you’d like to return for a longer visit. This time we decided to try something new – a running tour of the city.

Glenn found an outfit online called Running Tours Copenhagen that was highly rated. Glenn booked us the “grand tour” – a running route of a little over 6 miles that hit many of the city’s highlights.

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Our running route around the city of Copenhagen (Denmark)

We met our guide, Troels, in the square by City Hall.


Copenhagen’s City Hall


The main floor of City Hall – pretty impressive!

I was quite nervous at first as I was worried about how fast he was going to run (Troels was very tall – I’d have to take two steps for every one of his!) and that I’d just end up falling behind the whole time. And, if I’m honest, I was still suffering with a bout of self-doubt after my recent horrible running experience.

In the end, I had nothing to worry about.

Troels maintained a nice leisurely pace, talking and telling stories as we ran along the cobblestoned sidewalks. We stopped often along the way so that Troels could share information about the various landmarks, buildings and history. He often added in funny stories and personal anecdotes, and his dry sense of humor made the outing very enjoyable.


Glenn (left) and our guide Troels (right) jogging through the sites.

We had a great time on our running tour, and we’ll definitely be looking to do running tours on future visits to new cities and foreign lands! Plus, it’s a great way to help get over jet lag.

Follow along our running route through the pictures below…


A lovely square near the Danish Jewish Museum.


Christianborg Palace – where the royals used to live, and where the Danish Parliament, Supreme Court and the Prime Minister are housed today.


Over 40% of the people in Copenhagen ride their bikes to work and school! When we ran past here people were doing yoga in the dome and in the distance you can just make out Langebro Bridge (The Long Bridge).

We learned important history from Troels, including about the time a large monster attacked Copenhagen – only to be stopped by the raising of the platforms on the Langebro Bridge (see previous picture). {Or, maybe that was just the 1961 movie ‘Reptilicus’ – essentially the Danish version of a Godzilla movie.}


The stock exchange (green roof) and parliament building (center) – money and politics conveniently co-located. One would have thought we were still in the U.S.  😉


On the run we played on these trampolines built into the sidewalks. They were so much fun we went back the next day and took them for another spin.


Nyhaven – a beautiful walk along the water lined with restaurants and shops.


Amalienborg Palace – where the royals live today.


Jogging past the palace guards.


Across the water from the palace you’ll find the Opera House, which is particularly beautiful at night.

Our running route took us past the Gefion Fountain, the Kastellet (star fortress) and the famous Little Mermaid statue. However, at this point in our adventure it was crazy windy, super cold and starting to rain so I neglected to capture any pictures!


The running route took us past Kongens Have (Kings Garden) – which is beautiful in the winter, so I can only imagine what it would look like in the spring and summer.


We came across many statues of their beloved Hans Christian Andersen, author of such tales as The Ugly Duckling and The Little Mermaid.


The running route also took us past the Rosenborg Castle by the beautiful royal gardens.


On the other side of the road we ran down you’ll find the Botanical Gardens.


Toward the end of the run we went past an amazing bakery. Glenn and I promptly circled back to get a much deserved pastry after the run was over!


The quiet city streets made for a great place to run – although you had to watch your step as to not turn an ankle on the cobblestone streets and sidewalks.


The tour ended at the same place we started (City Hall) – which is just across the street from Tivoli Gardens – an amusement park that opened in the 1840s and was the inspiration for Disneyland.

We were in Copenhagen for about a week. If we weren’t sleeping or eating we were invariably walking – logging 10 to 15 miles of walking a day. There was no shortage of amazing sites in the beautiful city of Copenhagen, even at night…which was a good thing, since the sun was set before 4 in the afternoon!

The photos below capture many of the other sites – and food – we took in!


Giving Glogg a try – a Scandinavian holiday drink of hot mulled wine – with a shot (or two) of hard liquor – served with slivered almonds and raisins in the bottom of the glass.


A beautiful display of Smørrebrød at the food market.


I was fascinated with the variety and presentation of the Smørrebrød – including this one of steak tartare, called Tartarmad, that came complete with a raw egg!


Glenn, on the other hand, was fascinated by the variety of waffles on a stick! The man loves his waffles…so a mobile version was right up his alley.


The coffee and baked goods were also amazing! This was from one of our favorite cafes where we regularly sat watching the world (and more bike commuters than you could count) go by.


We also found a quirky little cafe that included several resident kitties that would come say “hi” and try to steal a little sip (see the shelf in the background).


Many of the streets downtown have been closed to car traffic – making enjoyable pedestrian malls where the old intersections become outdoor markets.


Looking down on the city from above.


I loved the juxtaposition of the elegant old church steeples with the power plant stacks in the background.


First time seeing wild swans – at least, that’s what we think they were.


The sun tried to come out a couple of times while we were there.


We took day trips by train to the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art (which had amazing views of the coast!) and also to Malmö Sweden.


Braving the chilly wind along the Øresund Coast of Denmark.


5 comments on “Running around Copenhagen. No really!

  1. Hey kids,if you go back use the same camera.
    All of those pictures are out of this world! Open the pictures in a “New Link” then blow them up as big as you can get them. The background will explode into detail and you will spend hours looking at “Things”. (The wood Igloo is too easy to find don’t you agree?)

  2. Im always giggling at your comments, amazed at your photos and in awe of where you are in life! Love you dearly! Keep up the fun! Always looking forward your your next blip! 🙂

  3. I am so jealous. I spent a summer in Denmark about 50 years ago and have been talking about going back. A running tour sounds like the perfect way to see the sights. Have you been to Amsterdam?

    A month or so ago I bought new running shoes – but the rain and cold have kept me off the road. Boy am I a wimp.

    Take care and keep having fun,

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