What should my girlfriend and I do in Copenhagen and Berlin?
February 22, 2015 6:38 PM   Subscribe

My girlfriend and I are going to Copenhagen and Berlin for about a week each in mid-March and are looking for suggestions on things to do.

We've got our flights booked and our Airbnbs reserved so now we're looking for suggestions on things we should do while we'll there. We'll be flying into Copenhagen first for about a week in mid-March and then traveling via train to Berlin for the second part of our trip. We're in our mid-20s and our airfare and accommodations ended up being much cheaper than we thought so our budget is generous.
posted by duomo to Travel & Transportation (13 answers total) 13 users marked this as a favorite
What do you enjoy? Are you looking for museum recommendations, walking tours, history, shopping, skydiving ...?

My favourite Berlin activity is the Sunday Flea Market at the Mauerpark. You can shop for €5 Soviet-era wind-up alarm clocks and then go and listen to an elderly man sing Sinatra's "My Way" in front of 2000 spectators next to the market at Bear Pit Karaoke (which has recap videos you can watch on their facebook page).
posted by monkeymonkey at 6:50 PM on February 22, 2015 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Museums, walking tours, shopping, and dining suggestions would all be welcome. Our Airbnb in Berlin is right near Potsdamer Platz so it would be fun to explore things in that area.
posted by duomo at 7:18 PM on February 22, 2015

I really enjoyed the Viking Museum in Roskilde (short trip from Copenhagen), as well as the Danish Design museum and the Royal Library, which is a gorgeous building, in Copenhagen.
posted by TwoStride at 8:14 PM on February 22, 2015


Copenhagen is a wonderful, kickass city. Here are some suggestions.

You can spend a day each in Nørrebro, Vesterbro, and the Inner City (Indre By), which are three neighborhoods in Copes. They each have their own flair and some fly streets to eat treats and enjoy life. Nørrebro has a gorgeous cemetery, the sights and sounds that are Nørrebrogade, and the Berlin-esque street Jægersborggade (with Retro, which is I think the most affordable Michelin start restaurant in Copes). Vesterbro has the meat-packing distrinct (Kødbyen) (which has some great nightlife and food) and the street Istedgade. The Inner City has the trendy student area (like Studiestræde), the King's Garden, the National Art Museum (which is free! but not as good as Louisiana), the Botanical Gardens. You can also head over to Christianshavn, where you'll discover (the ever so famous) Christiania.

Copes also has super tasty bakeries. Look for the bakery symbol (top right of this image) and ask for kanelsnegl for a tasty cinnamon bun.

I would also suggest spending a day at Louisiana, which is slightly outside of the city, but a gorgeous art museum with a great collection. I actually think it's one of the best art museums in northern Europe.

Also, Alt Om København (All About Copenhagen) is a great resource to see what's going down: http://www.aok.dk/english
Plus, they do a "Best of" series, where they list what's best in the city every year. You can probably find super tasty eats and stuff on there.

Copes also has really fun jazz and nightlife.
posted by mrmanvir at 8:27 PM on February 22, 2015 [4 favorites]

I'm a die-hard Bowie fan, so one of the highlights of my last trip was a visit to Hansa Studios and a bus tour of related sites through Berlin Music Tours.They also have tours for U2 and Depeche Mode.

Other Berlin stuff :
Kathe Kollwitz museum
Topography of Terror
Jewish Museum
Memorial to Murdered Jews, which has an underground exhibit
Museum Island
Checkpoint Charlie
DDR museum
Sachsenhausen concentration camp

Zitty magazine publishes a restaurant guide in German.
posted by brujita at 9:50 PM on February 22, 2015 [1 favorite]

Potsdamer Platz is one of the more sterile areas of Berlin, though relatively central so you'll be able to head in lots of directions. Local transit tip: The S Bahn S1 / S2 / S25 which run north-south through Potsdamer Platz are not running within central Berlin, so you'll have to either take the bus substitute or rely on U2 (recommend this).

There's a nice outdoor farmers market on Tuesdays and Fridays on Kreuzberg along the canal on the Maybachufer side, Saturdays it's more fabrics but still fun to walk through. Kreuzberg in general is an interesting area to check out both food, nightlife, and shopping.

Markthalle 9 is an indoor street food market Thursdays-Saturdays.

If the weather's nice, go to Tempelhofer Feld, which used to be an airport but is now an enormous park! It's a bit further out but you can also go to Teufelsberg, which is a former NSA listening station.

Kurfurstendamm is the fancy shopping street in the West (Charlottenburg), alternatively also walk down Weserstrasse in Neukölln for some cafes, bars, galleries, and stores that are a little more alternative.
posted by polexa at 2:14 AM on February 23, 2015 [2 favorites]


  • The Danish Architecture Centre does these neat "podwalks" which are walking tours with commentary through a podcast you can download beforehand (English versions here)

  • Copenhagen Street Food recently opened on Papirøen on Christianshavn (kind of like Markthalle 9 in Berlin). This could be neat combined with a walk in Christania and towards the Opera.

  • The Green Path is a cool bicycle/walking path which you can follow to see many interesting neighborhoods (posh Frederiksberg, trendy and later "urban" Nørrebro)
  • Local art cinema Cinemateket has a feature called Danish on a Sunday (Danish movies with English subtitltes which I think is fun as a visitor.

  • Tivoli if it's open, canal tours and Louisiana are a must.

  • Make a reservation (at least a week in advance) at Schønnemanns for a traditional Danish lunch.

  • Go out one night in the meatpacking district in Vestebro (Jolene, Mesteren & Lærlingen, Bakken) and try out the bar Log Lady and Blue Velvet in Studiestræde (inner city).

  • Low-key food: Kebab or falafel on Nørrebro one day, traditional hot dog at DØP in the city centre, beer at Mikkeller (Vesterbro or Nørrebro), bakery visits to Meyers Bageri (bakery), Mirabelle and/or Lagkagehuset, "pork sandwich" at Chicky Grill.

  • *Some are repeats of what I've written on the green before.

    As a last note, please don't call the city Copes.
    posted by coraline at 4:22 AM on February 23, 2015 [2 favorites]

    In Jægersborggade in Nørrebro, Christian Puglisi owns affordable Michelin restuarant relæ and Manfreds & vin. He also recently open the Italian restaurant Bæst to great critical acclaim (his family is from Italy).

    Shopping is good most places in Copenhagen, with the inner city being more chain stores like H&M and high-end stores. But the department stores aren't at all bad. Otherwise, Vesterbro and Nørrebro are a little more hipsterish and Østerbro and Christianshavn are a little more posh.

    Nthing Louisiana!

    Other nice museums are Davids Samling, Rosenborg and Hirschsprungs Samling.
    posted by mumimor at 4:32 AM on February 23, 2015

    All the above suggestions, plus:

    If the weather is nice there is also the ferry across the Wannsee over to Kladow (it's public transit so you don't need another ticket, just get off the S-Bahn at Wannsee and get on the ferry). Once in Kladow you kind of turn right and walk about a km and there's a cafe/restaurant and a great view of the Wannsee/Havel.

    Also, if you're feeling ambitious/have a thing for peacocks or Romantic-era gardening, in that same area there's the 'Pfaueninsel' or 'Peacock Island.' It's a left-over from the time of Fred the Great (?) and basically a garden folly that takes up an entire island. And there's peacocks.

    The galleries on Potsdamer Strasse are worth a look and a detour into the park at Gleis Dreieck is also not bad, you can cut through the park and presto you're pretty much in Kreuzberg, Bergmann Kiez, which has a lot of OK restaurants and Barcomi's which has good coffee and cake. Also, around the corner from there is 'Hammet' which is a great (thriller) little bookstore, next to another great (sci-fi) bookstore.

    Prenzlauer Berg, the area around Kollowitz Platz or Arkona Platz is worth a look because it's like another city, as is Graefekiez in Kreuzberg. I always feel like a tourist going there, which isn't bad. Also, come to think of it HackescherHöfe in Mitte is the same way.

    Wear comfortable shoes and have fun!
    posted by From Bklyn at 5:19 AM on February 23, 2015 [2 favorites]

    For an excursion from Berlin, Potsdam is great.
    Not least the Einsteinturm, a fascinating place with a fascinating history.
    But also the wonderful palace gardens and the smaller buildings in it by Schinkel.
    posted by mumimor at 5:59 AM on February 23, 2015 [1 favorite]

    Copenhagen: dinner at noma or Kokkieret, if you can get reservations.
    posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 7:08 AM on February 23, 2015

    Visit the Reichstag and book a time to go on the roof - wonderful views of the city.

    Planet Modulor is a very cool place - mix of design, art, maker stuff, bookstore. For some reason I can't embed links right now but http://www.modulor.de/en/store-berlin/ will take you to their English site. Additionally in that area are some cool community gardens and other interesting shops.

    Embassy row - not far on foot from Potzdammer Pl has the Bauhaus Museum, interesting exhibits in the Scandinavian Embassies, lots of galleries. Lots of great ideas above too - have fun!
    posted by leslies at 8:20 AM on February 23, 2015 [1 favorite]

    start your visit to berlin with a free-with-reservation tour of the Reichstag dome. Great introduction to the major landmarks of the city, and a quick rundown of milestone historical info.

    If you like art, I highly recommend taking a Saturday tour of the Sammlung-Hoffman gallery/house. Their private art collection is curated like a really fun and playful museum, and its so fun to have the curators tell you about how the family commissioned/acquired/found the art that's on display. I loved this.

    I also had an awesome time visiting this former airport turned public park on the outskirts of the city, but I don't know what it'll be like in March. I was there in summer, and it was buzzing with people and things and activities.
    posted by So You're Saying These Are Pants? at 9:50 AM on February 23, 2015

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