A local's guide to Copenhagen

7 hidden gems

October 8th, 2019

Copenhagen is an amazing city filled with tons of things to see, do, eat and drink. If you live there – all we can say is, lucky you. Many people feel they have to travel somewhere during vacation time, but why not use the time off to explore the city you live in? Or the city you want to visit after reading this guide.

Regardless of wether you live in Copenhagen or not, we have put together a guide of some less known places in the city that are all worth a visit (and not as touristy as Nyhavn and Strøget). Keep reading to find out which 7 things we would recommend doing, eating and exploring while living in the great Danish capital.

1. Bastard Café

Step aside regular coffee places, here comes something out of the ordinary. Bastard Café is not just an ordinary café. Here, the focus is on competition, strategy, random knowledge, creativity and lots of fun. Bastard Café is actually an amazing boardgame café with over 3500 different games of all imagineable categories. The café serves really nice snacks and good food for everyone to enjoy in the comfy sofas or in the cozy courtyard.

Don’t be afraid to try new games. There are so called ‘Game Gurus’ around the café to help you out by explaining the rules of the game and getting you started. There is plenty of space inside, but it gets crowded quickly in the weekends – especially during a rainy day. Book your table online or be sure to be there when the doors open to secure your spot. The wonderful café is located in the middle of the city, only 1 kilometer from the central station.

Choose from over 1000 board games at Bastard Café | ©Bastard Café Facebook

2. Vester Vov Vov

Fun fact: “vov vov” is what a dog says in Danish. So why is this old school cinema named after af dog’s sound? The name comes from an old classic Danish mute film from 1927 called, of course, Vester Vov Vov.

The cinema on Absalonsgade in Vesterbro, opened in 1975, and is thereby Denmark’s oldest functioning art-cinema. Here, they try not to show the mainstream movies that can be seen at any other regular cinema, instead they show independent and often international films as well as documentaries.

At Vester Vov Vov you get a Parisian feeling when entering the café and bar. Here, you can bring your glas of wine into the cinema and take place in the airplane chairs with attached foldable tables.

This place is perfect to visit on a lazy Sunday for a niche movie or for a nice glas of wine in the bar after work. If you visit in the summer, you can sit outside and enjoy the afternoon rays of sunshine.

Cosy evening at Vester Vov Vov cinema in Vesterbro| ©Visitcopenhagen

3. Vang & Bar

In need of a great cocktail before heading out into the night? In that case the newly opened Vang & Bar is the place to go. The cocktail bar is located on Vesterbro close to Carlsberg station and is definetly an undiscovered gem.

The concept is based on classic American cocktail craftmanship and sustainability is a core value. Their cocktails are season based, the ingredients organic and they stand up against pastic pollution by only offering paper straws.

A cocktail costs DKK 100 but if you’re looking for more than a tasty drink, they also host tasting sessions and workshops where you get some behind the bar insights.

Visit Vang & Bar and be sure to get a great drink – at a great price. When you, a few drinks later, are ready to hit the hay, we have a bed for you at Zleep Hotel Copenhagen City not far away.

Vang & Bar KøbenhavnDelicious cocktails at Vang & Bar| ©Vang & Bar

4. Center of Photography

Most people know of the art museums Louisiana and The National Gallery of Denmark (SMK), but Copenhagen is a mecca of art and design. One rather unknown museum is the Center of Photography in the Meatpacking District on Vesterbro.

Located on one of the smaller streets, it is fairly hidden and not a place you would just walk by randomly. The Center of Photography focus on Nordic contemporary photography and other camera based media.

The gallery is very budget friendly, costing only DKK 40 for an adult and DKK 20 for students. If you’re into art and photography, and want to discover something opposite of mainstream – this is the place to go.

Always interesting exhibitions to discover at Fotografisk Center | ©Troels Jeppe

5. Food Revolution – Running Smørrebrød

That Dane’s love their smørrebrød is no secret. The ryebread can be combined with a thousand different toppings and more fusion versions just keep coming. The newest addition to the smørrebrød food market, is a Danish take on running sushi, only now of course we’re talking about running smørrebrød.

Sit down for lunch at the restaurant Food Revolution where delicious plates of different types of smørrebrød will be served on the rolling belt next to you – just grab the ones that intrigue you the most.

If you are looking for a nice hotel in Copenhagen, we have just the one for you. Our hotel on Vesterbro, Zleep Hotel Copenhagen City, is located litteraly 2 minutes or 170m from the restaurant. Stay at a hotel close to the Central Station and the new metroline ‘the Cityring’. Read more about our hotel in Copenhagen City only minutes away from the Meatpacking Disctrict.

Food RevolutionRunning Smørrebrød | ©Food Revolution

6. Pizzicato

Our maybe best tip, is the authentic Italian pizza bar ‘Pizzicato’ on Frederiksberg. The restaurant, which only has 5-6 high chairs by the window where you can sit, is a tiny place and easily missed if you don’t know what you’re looking for.

The owner of Pizzicato, Antonio, has worked with some of Europe’s best chefs, but in 2014 he decided to open the family owned Italian restaurant. They are not exclusively a pizza place, but also offer other traditional Italian dishes, of course pasta is one of them, and a must try is their home made tiramisu. Make sure not to miss this hidden gem when in Copenhagen.

PizzicatoDelicious Italian specialities |©Pizzicato

7. ARKEN

How does an architectural masterpiece with fantastic art by the water sound? ARKEN holds one of Scandinavia’s lagest contemporary art collections and features artists from all over the world. During the summer you can bring your swimsuit and enjoy the sun on the beach and during the colder months you can stay warm inside the cosy café and restaurant.

The art museum is easy to get to with only a short 20 minute train ride from Copenhagen Central Station. Or even better, stay at our hotel in Ishøj – it’s only 2,7 km from ARKEN, allowing you to either walk or jump on the bus a couple of stops.

Arken konstmuseum i Ishøj © Lars SkaaningBeautifully located Arken | ©Lars Skaaning

That sums up our current 7 best Copenhagen tips. If you’re thirsting for more, don’t miss our previous post “Staycation in Copenhagen” – giving you more inspiration and motivation to visit Denmark’s beautiful capital. Remember, if you need a hotel in Copenhagen, we have several to choose from. See you in Copenhagen!