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CPH Aquarium/zoo - yay or nay?

My daughter ( who is 30) wants to visit the zoo and aquarium while we are there this August, but from what I can tell, there's nothing particularly unique about either ( we have both in Toronto, Canada). Can anyone tell me if I am missing something special about either of these places, given all the other interesting things to see and do there?

Thanks very much.

Posted by
971 posts

You’ve got a point there. While I enjoy both the CPH Zoo and Aquarium, I don’t think they are particularly unique compared to other zoos and aquariums. Is there a particular reason why your daughter wants to visit them?

Posted by
232 posts

She's a big kid at heart, which is why I would feel badly for nixing her request. At the same time, with only 3-4 days, I'd rather spend it doing something else if there's nothing especially Danish about either.

Thanks for your input.

Posted by
1041 posts

Why not let her visit the zoo while you do something else?

I discourage visiting the aquarium - to me it was not worth the time (and money). YMMV

Posted by
971 posts

Do you and your daughter have other interests? Maybe we can suggest something that might be able to satisfy her Inner child while also being more Danish.

Posted by
232 posts

Thanks for the offer, Morten.

Our tentative plan is to try and do and see these in 3-4 days:

  • Tivoli
  • Nyhavn
  • Stroget
  • Christiania
  • Hojbro plads
  • Glyptotek
  • Marmorkirken
  • Vor freslers kirke
  • Islands brygge
  • CopenHot
  • Kastrup sea baths
  • Hillerod – Fredricksborg castle
  • Alexander newsky kirke
  • Assistens Kierkegaard
  • Carlsburg brewery tour

As you can see, lots of other things that are completely unlike anything we have here in Canada.

While I have you, does this seem too ambitious for the time that we have? I am still working on putting together a day by day itinerary to see if/how it could work. We arrive on Sat Aug.3 and plan to take the overnight ferry to Olso on either Wednesday August 7, or Thursday Aug.8.

Thanks in advance :)

Posted by
21 posts

If you are already planning to go to the Kastrup sea baths, the aquarium is only 15 minutes away on foot. If you will have the Copenhagen Card, the aquarium is included, so you might as well visit if your daughter is interested. There are rental lockers in the aquarium if you want to store your swimming items. My family spent around two hours at the aquarium, but an hour to 90 minutes would be sufficient for two adults to see everything.

Similarly, the brewery tour is about 20 minutes by foot from the zoo, but according to the Carlsberg website, it is closed for remodeling until 2020.

Posted by
971 posts

Well the first thing might be to try and group the things on your list based on proximity to each other.
a few comment son the items on your list:

Tivoli will certainly satisfy everyone's inner child. Aim for afternoon evenings. There is a fireworks show every Saturday evening.
Strøget is really just a pedestrian shopping street that runs through the inner city. In itself nothing special, but it's a nice way to get trough the city.
Højbro Plads is on Strøget.
Strøget ends on Kongens Nytorv square, where you will find Nyhavn on the other side. Nyhavn is very scenic (it's on every other postcard of Copenhagen), but also a bit touristy.
While in the general area you should also check out Rundetårn (the round Tower). There is a spiral walkway all the way to the top and nice views. Also have a look at Kongens Have (Kings Garden) and Rosenborg Castle.

Christiania is well worth a visit. i can highly recommend one of the guided tours run by the local residents:
Nearby is Vor Frelser Kirke. The walk up the exterior spiral stairway is very fun.
Also have a stroll along the Amsterdam inspired canals of Christianshavn while you are there.
Marmorkirken and Alexander Nevsky kirken are right next to each other and also just next to the royal palace Amalienborg, so go there and check out the royal guards.
You could also walk down to the old naval quaters of Nyboder.

Glyptoteket is great and worth a visit.
Nearby across the bridge is islands Brygge, which is really just a residential neighbourhood. The only reason to visit in my opinion is the harbour baths there.
As Jason says, Kastrup sea baths is close to the Aquarium, but it's way out by the airport. so unless you do both, i would skip the baths and just go to the ones in Islands Brygge.
CopenHot I had to google, it looks super nice, so I will have to go there sometime.

Assistens Kirkegård (spelled without the e. The philosopher Søren Kierkegaard spelled with an e is buried there though) is nice for a stroll and finding famous peoples graves.

Frederiksborg Castle is a day trip out to Hillerød. For a full day you could combine it with Helsingør and Kronborg Castle (the one from Hamlet). look at train schedules etc on The Copenhagen Card could be worth it here, since public transport is included.
If you take the ferry to Oslo, you will also sail by Kronborg Castle. it's a really nice view.

Posted by
232 posts

Thanks, i.p enersen, for your input. That’s my feeling as well. However, we are going to get the Copenhagen card, and since the aquarium is near the Kastrup sea baths, maybe we will stop in, as Jason suggested, if she has her heart set on it.

Jason, thanks for the info re: the Carlsburg tour!

Morten, thank you so, so much for your detailed reply. I was planning to start putting things together using google maps, so your insight about what’s where is really appreciated. I will post a separate thread (for feedback) with the day by day break down once I have it all figured out. Re: the link to the Christiania tour, ,thank you. I like the idea of having a resident show us around the place. I thought I had read somewhere about a bike tour of it, but this seems even better.

Again, thank you all so much for your help.

Posted by
1041 posts

Something nicely childish (I've enjoyed it a few times) and very Danish is the changing of the guards. Especially if you take it all the way.

You start at the corner of Gothersgade and Rosenborggade at 11:27 in the morning. The guard will leave the barracks around that time (The exact time depends on the class of guard; which depends on who is in residence on Amalienborg). They will then march to Amalienborg and you can follow them all the way.

It is described here, but I have failed to find an English version.