The City Center and Old Town of Copenhagen

Copenhagen´s city center is fairly small and easy to walk through. Many streets are linked together to one long pedestrian street called Strøget, that contains many unusual and expensive stores and department stores. Strøget is one of Scandinavia´s most popular shopping areas for tourists. If you arrive from the central station, you can reach Strøget from Rådhuspladsen, the Town Hall Square, the largest square that is the heart of Denmark. Here you find the City Hall with its imposing tower. It ends at Kongens Nytorv that is the 2nd most important square. Just next to Rådhuspladsen is the famous old amusement park Tivoli and Glyptoket. Many of Strøget's crossing streets are also pedestrian streets. The three tallest ones of Copenhagen's old towers are located near Strøget.
However, it is important to note that central Copenhagen is not only Strøget, there are also many sights around this expensive tourist trap. There are many side streets and cozy lanes and immediately west of Rådhuspladsen is Vesterbro, Copenhagen's exclusive entertainment district and there are a lot of museums, parks and castles all over the center of Copenhagen. And very close to Kongens Nytorv is Nyhavn. East of Nyhavn is the royal castle Amalienborg.

The first part of this page is concentrated on the sights at Strøget, from Kongens Nytorv to Rådhuspladsen:

Rådhuspladsen, City Hall Square with the City Hall to the right and the Palace Hotel and it's tower to the left. Rådhuspladsen is the largest and most important square in Denmark, and the absolute center of Copenhagen.

Rådhuset, Copenhagen's City Hall, that is situated right at Rådhuspladsen. It is 106m tall, just like Christiansborg, and thus share the title as Copenhagen's tallest building. It was constructed between 1895 and 1902, designed in national romantic style. The golden statue of Absalon is above the entrance. There is also a separate page (click here) about the City Hall.

On this balcony, you can sometimes see royalties on national holidays. The gilded statue above is of Absalon. See more of the City Hall here.

This hot dog stand sells "pølser", a red sausage that is especially popular among Swedes visiting Denmark.

This is Industriens Hus (House of Industry), an office building that was modernized in 2013 with a glass facade instead of the look of the ugly 60s building that used to be there (the one that used to have a shopping arcade inside) at the west side of Rådhuspladsen.

Industriens Huse at Rådhusepladsen under construction (2011), before the application of the extern glass facade with the diagonal pattern.

The same angle with the old facade of Industriens Hus versus the new facade.

The new face of the Industriens Hus office building towards Vesterbro.

Rådhusepladsen 2016, looking towards Vesterbro. The square is here currently under reconstruction.

Rådhuspladsen during world football championship 2010.

Rådhuspladsen towards Vesterbro.

Rådhuspladsen with the Town Hall, the House of Industry and Tivoli.

The HC Andersen Statue is situated at Rådhusepladsen's corner opposite Tivoli, at HC Andersen Blvd.

HC Andersen Boulevard as seen from the crosswalk at Rådhuspladsen.
Left: Radisson SAS Scandinavia Hotel. Right: HK-Huset (52 m, 18floors). Between 1955 and 1958 HK was Denmark´s tallest highrise. It was known as Hotel Europa until it was remodeled in the 90s. It is now a hostel.

The beginning of Stroget at Rådhuspladsen.

The City Hall's clock tower looks really tall from this angle.

The information center and bus terminal is now deconstructed. It was Demnark's most hated building
because of its soulless architecture in the middle of the historical square that is the heart of Denmark.

Renaissance building at HC Andersen Blvd, near Rådhuspladsen.

Kongens Nytorv is Copenhagen's 2nd largest square and is where Strøget begins. It is currently under reconstrution (2011), just like Rådhuspladsen.

The equestrian statue of King Christian V in the middle of Kongens Nytorv (that means King's New Square).

Kongens Nytorv, northeast side. You can see Magasine du Nord and Nikolai kirke to the left.

Kongens Nytorv, to the left is Hotel D'Angleterre, Denmark's most fashionable hotel.

Kongens Nytorv with the royal theater to the left and Magasine du Nord to the right.

A market at Kongens Nytorv.

Magasin du Nord is also situated at Kongens Nytorv. It is Scandinavia's 2nd
largest and may be most fashionable department store.

The interior of Magasin. The department store chain opened in 1868 and is Denmark's oldest.

Kongelige Teater (The Royal Theater) at Kongens Nytorv is one of Copenhagen's most beautiful buildings.

The Royal Theater. This neo-classicsit building at Kongens Nytorv was built in 1874 and features 1600 seats.

Back part of the Royal Theater building, designed by Vilhelm Dahlerup.




Christiansborg Castle (center) is the tallest building in the city of Copenhagen,
106m to the top of the spire, but is sharing it's title with the town hall.
Note that the copper roof was green when the photo was taken.

Christiansborg Castle (now with brown copper roof) is situated on the island Slotsholmen. It is the seat of the Danish Parliament. Several parts of the palace are also used by the monarchy. It has served as the residence for Danish kings, and since 1849 as the seat of the parliament. The current buildings, the last one of 3 castles, were completed in 1928.

Absalon Statue, Hojbro Plads.

At the side of Christiansborg Castle and Thorvaldsen Museum.

Christiansborg Castle courtyard   Thorvaldsen Museum
  Christiansborg Castle courtyard

Square next to Christiansborg   Thorvaldsen Museum. A large collection of the famous sculptor Bertel Thorvaldsen (1770-1844) is represented here.
  Sculpture at Christiansborg

National Museum (click here)   Marmorbroen (Marble bridge)
  Traffic jam at Vindebrogade

National Museum (click here)   National Museum
  Ny Vestergade, opposite the museum


The book café   The book café
  The book café

The majestic backside of Christiansborg Castle.

The Bourse (Børsen), in downtown Copenhagen has an exciting roof with the "dragon spire", the top is at a height of 56 m. The building, built by Christian IV in typical Dutch Renaissance style, was Denmark's oldest stock exchange. It was completed in 1640 and is, just like Christiansborg, situated on the Slotsholmen island.

Details of the Bourse house.

Sankt Nikolajs Kirke from 1829. At 90m this is Copenhagen's tallest church.

Sankt Nikolajs Kirke as seen form Amagertorv, one of 2 small squares at the heart of Strøget.

Has the gravitation diappeared at Amagertorv?

The Metropol building at Strøget.

A parallell street to Strøget.


Larsbjornsstraede is the most hip side street to Strøget with record stores, cloth stores for young people and rock clubs.


Runde Tårn (round tower) from 1642, as seen from Købmagergade, a typical Danish street. Actually part of a church, this is Copenhagen´s premier observation point. You can see the views from it in the skyline section.

Domkirken. Vor Frue Kirke, the cathedral of Copenhagen is situated at Frue Plads, close to Strøget, and is the main building of the University of Copenahgen. The current church is from 1827, but there was a church on this place already in the 1200s.

The entrance to the Cathedral (Vor Frue Kirke - Church of Our Lady), built in neoclassical style. It was designed by Christian Frederik Hansen.

Interior with statues by Bertel Thorvaldsen depicting Jesus Christ and his Apostles. The cathedral (Vor Frue Kirke) is 63m high and 83m wide.

Looking up to the roof of the cathedral. Until 1648, many kings have been coronated there. Monday-Saturday morning a live act of worship is broadcasted there.

The University of Copenhagen, opposite the cathedral.

A nice parallel street to Strøget.

Amagertorv in the middle of Strøget.

Diverse architecture.

Diverse cars.

Helligåndskirken (Church of the Holy Spirit). This church is situated right at Strøget.

The Supreme Court (byreten) of Denmark was formerly the city hall of Copenhagen. It is situated at Nytorv.

Nytorv (New square) is a square in the middle of Strøget (not to be confused with the much larger Kongens Nytorv). It is situated opposite Gammeltorv (Old square).

Gammeltorv (Old square), opposite Nytorv, with the Cathedral (Vor Frue Kirke) in the background. The fountain is a popular place to sit for tourists.

An arcade from Strøget to a parallel street, a bit British in style.

Panorama from the left: The bourse house, Christiansborg, the supreme court, St. Nikolajs Kirke and Riksbanken.

Towards the old town city center.

Amagertorv, the square in front of the larger square Hojbro Plads at Christiansborg Castle.

Soap in the fountain at Amagertorv.

Street musician playing all instruments at Amagertorv.

Gråbrødre Torv (Greybrother's Square), a square with an oldtime atmosphere and many pubs and restaurants between Strøget and Skindergade.

Gråbrødre Torv, a small but very colourful square.

Gråbrødre Torv. Tried a guacemole burger at Sporvejen, a restaurant decorated like a streetcar.

Kultorvet (Bullet Square), another nice square with restaurants. We have tried to restaurants there; one Italian and one typical Danish.

Monki, one of many store fronts at Strøget.

Copenhagen souvenirs.

Illum, Denmark's 2nd largest department store, is more like a shopping galleria since it has independent stores.
The building has 2 atriums and panorama elevators.

Illum is perhaps Denmark most luxorious department store and is located at Strøget. It opened in 1891.

One of the 2 luxorious atriums inside Illum. It has a mosaic glass floor, marble columns and a large chandelier.

There's is an Irma supermarket in the basement of Illum.

Illums Bolighus, a department store on Strøget specialized on Scandinavian design. Not to be confused with the large Illum.

It is very expensive at Illums Bolighus, for example you can buy a chandelier for 250 000 DKR ( about 250 euro).

Another perspective of Copenhagen. Taken outside a public underground toilet.

The LEGO store at Strøget. As you might know, LEGO is Danish.

Inside the LEGO store; paintings and miniatures in LEGO.

Bogcafé, a very nice book café with old fashioned interior and old books.


The quarters a bit away from Strøget:

Radisson SAS Scandinavia Hotel, Denmark's tallest (86m, 26 floors) and largest hotel was built in 1973.


Buildings at Nørreport Station, a large transportation hub in central Copenhagen. The glass roof was recently added to this old building.

Torvehallerna, the new markethalls at Israels Plads next to Nørreport.


Majestic building at Israels Plads.

Ørstedsparken. Copenhagen has many beautiful parks, easy to forget if you just follow Strøget.

A black glass building in the city center with old buildings mirroring.

Sankt Andreas Kirke. Just next to the botanical garden.

There are many interesting church in the Old Town.

The National Museum.

The National Bank of Denmark, designed by the famous architect Arne Jacobsen. This modernist building, completed in the 1970s after Jacobsen's death, has won many prices, but is actually not very beautiful.


Rosenborgs Castle Gardens (Kongens Have)

This is the oldest and most visited park in Copenhagen, situated close to Strøget. Here you can find the Rosenborg Castle.

Rosenborgs Castle is a renaissance castle in Rosenborgs Have (the castle's garden), built 1606-24. It is 50m high to the top of the spires of this royal castle. It was a project by Christian IV, and has been a residence for many regents.

Rosenborg Slott (Rosenborg Castle).

Rosenborg Castle.

The park at Rosenborg Castle is a very popular place ot relax summertime.

Sculptures in Rosenborg Have.

Perfectly cut trees in Rosenborg Garden.

Vesterbro Osterbro Frederiksstaden and Nyhavn are also very central areas, but have their own sections.