The fact that it’s the cheapest, fastest and healthiest way of transportation is not the only reason why half of the city’s population chose to commute by bike; it also lowers carbon emissions, and Copenhagen’s goal is to become completely carbon neutral by 2025. As a visitor you can also take part in reaching that goal, and you don’t have to bring your own bike.
A newcomer within green rides is the solar-powered GoBoat that lets you explore Copenhagen’s waterways on your own, showing you a side to the city that is usually reserved for locals. Scroll down to find out how to cover the main attractions with the help of a rented bike and boat.
To stay in a central location, book the Radisson Blu Scandinavia Hotel on Amager Boulevard for spectacular views of the city. Conveniently, the hotel has two Bycyklen docking stations within the immediate area. For accommodation just minutes from the GoBoat hub, stay at the Radisson Blu Royal Hotel, a stylish hotel swept in Scandinavian design and architecture.
Copenhagen by bike
Copenhagen’s rentable bikes are called Bycyklen, the City Bike, and you can rent one for 25 DKK per hour. They have almost 2000 bikes in the city, and 100 docking stations. Use this map to locate the docking station closest to you, or just look for a row of stylish white bikes with touchscreen tablets on the handlebars.
From Tivoli to Rundetaarn
A trip to Tivoli is an absolute must for everyone visiting Copenhagen. The amusement park has been keeping people entertained for more than 70 years, and it’s not getting dull anytime soon! With many magical rides and lots of places to dine, you can easily hang out for hours.
When you’ve had your fill of rollercoasters and rides, head to the northeastern exit and locate the GoBike station at Rådhuspladsen. Enter your information on the tablet to register, plot in Rundetaarn as your destination on the GPS route planner, and off you go!
The ride to Rundetaarn should take about 7 minutes, and you will be passing through the small inner city streets of Indre By. When you get to Rundetaarn the name will quickly make sense, meaning The Round Tower. Buildings this old rarely have elevators, but those willing to climb the 209-meter long ramp to the top get to enjoy a magnificent view of the city. Lock your bike from the tablet screen, and then the physical lock to make sure it’s still there when you come back.
From Rundetårn to Rosenborg Castle
The ride from Rundetårn to Rosenborg Castle should take you around 6 minutes and you will see the spires when you exit the inner city. The castle contains 400 years of royal splendour, having been built for Christian IV in the early 17th century. Go back in time while walking through rooms filled with exquisite figurines in gold and silver, paintings, portraits and royal jewels.
From Rosenborg Castle to The Little Mermaid
Turn north as you exit the castle grounds and cycle up to Langelinie, and you will soon spot a certain mermaid sitting on a rock looking for her prince. The Little Mermaid has been sitting there for over a 100 years, and she’s far from the Disney-fied version we’re used to seeing. It was a gift to the city of Copenhagen from brewer Carl Jacobsen after he fell in love with the character at the Royal Danish Theatre.
From the Little Mermaid to Kastellet and Amalienborg Palace
Next stop on the route is Amalienborg Palace, and the best way to get there from the Little Mermaid is to go back 250 meters and locate the entrance gate to Kastellet – the Citadel in English. The Citadel is a green lung in the midst of the city, and a favourite of joggers. The buildings inside are still in use as military barracks and offices. Cycle through the fort area and on to Amaliegade, and within a couple of minutes you will be at Amalienborg Palace.
The Palace consists of four huge identical buildings in a circle and it’s a perfect example of rococo architecture. The palace is the current residence of the Danish royal family, and if you take a tour inside you can visit some of the rooms they use today. Be here at 12:00 noon to witness the changing of the guard.
From Amalienborg Palace to Nyhavn
To reach Nyhavn, cycle two minutes south on Toldbodgade. Nyhavn is the perfect spot for a break so grab a beer and live it up like a local by drinking it on the quay. Along the harbour you’ll find many great restaurants, and the chilled-out atmosphere will make this the perfect end to the day.
This is also the place where you should snap that beautiful holiday picture to post on your Instagram (Psst! Don't forget to include #RadissonBlu !).
Copenhagen by boat – Waterways & Harbors
A GoBoat is a solar-powered boat that you can rent by the hour from their hub beside Islands Brygge. The boats are safe and easy to use as they can only reach a speed up to 5-6 km per hour, which lets you explore Copenhagen’s many canals in your own tempo. In the middle of the boat is a picnic table, so remember to bring a picnic basket if you’re two people sharing a romantic moment on the water, a family, or a social gathering of up to eight friends.
The GoBoat crew will provide you with instructions and tips on routes to take, depending on what kind of trip you’re after. Meanwhile, here are our suggestions on what not to miss, and remember to wave and smile when passing other boats!
As you depart from the GoBoat hub, set sail for the canal that goes around the tiny Slotsholmen Island. This route will take you down a charming canal lined with houseboats providing some nice views of Christiansborg Palace and the Danish Parliament.
Copenhagen Street Food
Finish your loop around Slotsholmen and head north towards Papirøen, The Paper Island. Here you’ll discover Copenhagen Street Food, a mouth-watering street food market. The indoor market hall contains food stalls selling every kind of cuisine from Turkish to Japanese, Brazilian, Indian and Korean plus a wealth of vegetarian and organic options. Did we mention the Cheesecake stall?
Read more about where to find the best street food in Copenhagen.
With a full belly we move on to our next stop, Freetown Christiania, a green neighbourhood famous for the alternative lifestyles of its inhabitants. Christiania was created in 1971 when hippies occupied some old military barracks on the site and developed their own society, which exists to this day. A visit here will prove it a vibrant and colourful place with small DIY houses, galleries, street art and eateries.
Sail through the canals of Christianshavn for a picturesque route back to the GoBoat hub. This is thought by many to be the most charming part of the city, and it’s a highly desired place to live. Christianshavn is also where you’ll find the 5th best restaurant in the world, Noma. Read our post about fine dining in Copenhagen if you are planning to check out the city’s culinary scene.
Before booking a GoBoat, make sure you check out what’s scheduled for the Beats & Bølger (only in Danish) series, where you can watch musicians and bands perform from your boat.
We hope that you’ll be seeing Copenhagen from a new perspective when you visit, either with the help of your own two feet or by solar power, or perhaps both? Either way you’ll be having a great time while doing the environment a favor. Enjoy the ride!