Three Days In Family-Friendly Copenhagen, Denmark - My Family Travels

Castles, museums, and sightseeing boat tours await you in this Denmark city, making it a great place to bring children if you have a weekend to visit.

On our recent “Denmark Bicycling Trip” with Backroads (800/GOACTIVE), we thought it would be a good idea to arrive a couple of days early, to overcome jet lag. Little did we know that for our 3, 8, and 10-year-old girls, Copenhagen was an ideal city to visit with children.

There are castles (known as slots) open to the public for touring, a long pedestrian street, the Stroget, a canal system with sightseeing boat tours (this is the best way to see the famous statue of The Little Mermaid, which we could not miss!) and many excellent museums.

Excellent Family Museums

One of the best science museums worldwide, the Experimentarium (+45 3927 3333), commands the better part of a day for families with school-age children. This tremendous museum, housed in a former beer factory, had plenty of hands-on fun for young kids through adults, including a construction area, a huge water play room, and fascinating exhibits on sound and light. Sela, age 8, made a beeline to the computers, and quickly had English language games up and running. I found this a great place to check e-mail. The very good café sold beer, and we were surprised to see the brown-baggers at their own cafeteria unloading six-packs.

The Nationalmusett (+45 3313 4411) has a separate children’s museum, with old Danish costumes for dress-up. My kids played school there, then dressed up in Pakistani costumes and played house. In the main museum, we explored the Viking costumes and ships.

In nearby Roskilde, we visited the famous Viking Ship Museum, which had recreated Viking ships in the harbor. There is a dress-up area inside where boys and girls acted out their warrior fantasies; in addition to Viking furs, there was a heavy chain mail suit and helmet that each child had to try on.

We also spent an evening at Tivoli Gardens (+45 3315 1001), the summer entertainment area that offers concerts, puppet shows, restaurants and amusement park rides in the heart of the city.

Here’s a really fun video of the place, with its latest attractions.

Details, Details

Our family of five stayed at the Hotel Ascot (+45 3314 6000), a very short walk from Tivoli Gardens, where a family suite with kitchenette was a convenient option.

By the way, a Copenhagen Card is a must for short stay tourists; the one or three day cards include most museum admissions, bus and subway rides, and admission to Tivoli. For more general information on Denmark, contact the Danish Tourist Board at (212/885-9700).

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