Bae and I are complete opposites when it comes to our spending when we travel. He’s all about taking advantage of every local experience regardless of the cost, and I thrive on finding the cheapest way to soak in the culture.
The good news? Most of the time we balance each other out. He makes sure I don’t miss out on the once-in-a-lifetime opportunities, and I make sure he doesn’t wipe out his entire life savings. Win-win.
Our trip to Copenhagen in August was a great example of our budgetary mindsets colliding in perfect harmony. We tried everything from street food by the water to a Michelin Star restaurant, so I can say with confidence that you can find great food in Copenhagen no matter your budget.
Here are my favorite finds.
Price Range: $
Type: Street Food/Fast Food
Vibe: Outdoor, laid back, modern
Papiroen has something for everyone with more than 30 vendors serving everything from sushi to cheesecake. You can even grab an adult beverage to enjoy on the picnic tables by the water. We were especially smitten with the pizza from MadenItaly and the Moroccan flatbread from Marrakech. To top it all off, everything is super affordable.
Price Range: $$
Type: Beer and Bar Food
Vibe: Outdoor, laid back, historic
Everywhere you go in Copenhagen, you’ll find Carlsberg on the menu, but to truly understand the mark it’s made on Danish history, you need to visit their brewery. For DKK 95 (~$14), you get two beers and a self-guided tour of the facility, which features an active stable, brew house and (probably my favorite part of the entire experience) the world’s LARGEST beer bottle collection.
When you’re done with your tour, you can enjoy your two beers in their courtyard area or upstairs in their restaurant. You’ll often find a DJ keeping things lively.
And since I promised food, you can order from a pretty extensive bar menu that’s even equipped with a dessert option. Beer and dessert, they know the way to my heart!
The brewery is about 15-20 minutes outside of the center of Copenhagen. They even offer free shuttle service!
Price Range: $$$
Type: Variety of Options
Vibe: Outdoor, casual
Nyhavn is a must see. It is home to the iconic Copenhagen tourist photo attraction (see above) and a whole host of great restaurants. Most are middle of the road when it comes to price and you really can’t go wrong with any of the options. So sit down at whichever one catches your eye, order a nice cold beer and take in the beautiful views of the canal.
Price Range: $$$$
Type: Scandinavian, Organic
Vibe: Formal, modern
So this is when I admit that sometimes (just sometimes) bae is right and a splurge is worth the price tag. Deciding to try one of the several Michelin Star restaurants in Copenhagen was definitely one of these times.
Geranium is more than just a great meal, it’s an experience – as I am sure most Michelin Star restaurants are but I really wouldn’t know since this was my first.
Forget having to choose your entree, from the moment you walk in the door to the moment you leave, you’re presented with course, after course, after course of mind-blowing food.
There’s a team of about 15 of the world’s greatest chefs working in an open kitchen so you can watch the magic, and you meet almost all of them as the chef that prepared each dish brings it over to explain how the ingredients work together and the story that inspired it all.
To say this was the best meal I have had in my life wouldn’t do it justice. This was the great experience I have ever had with food.
Trust me if you can swing it, it is worth every penny.