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christiania copenhagen tour

Christiania

Christiania, the famous freetown of Copenhagen.

This controversial area is loved by many but has been a turning point for strong debate. For visitors, the area is subject to safety concerns due to criminal activity and drug dealing. 

It is important to know that dealing, buying and possessing illegal substances in any form is against Danish legislation.

Read more about safety in Christiania below.

Creative housing Christiania was founded in 1971 when a group of people cut a hole in the fence to the military barracks in Bådmandsgade. Soon, the area was known for Pusher Street, where you could buy hash and pot – but no hard drugs – from various stalls. Today, many of the original settlers still live in the collectively controlled village, and the area has a clear 70s feel to it. A lot of the people living in Christiania built their homes themselves, giving the area an extremely interesting architectural feel. And you will find a variety of eco-restaurants, workshops, galleries and music venues offering all sorts of cultural experiences.

Christiania existed under special conditions for 40 years, with constant conflicts and clashes between the local Christianites and the Danish state.

After many years of uncertainty about the future of Christiania, an agreement was entered in 2011, which meant that on 1 July 2012, a foundation, the Foundation Freetown Christiania, was founded.

The foundation now owns the entire part of Christiania located outside the protected ramparts and leases buildings and land on the ramparts, which are still owned by the state. Part of the money is raised by selling the symbolic Christiania shares. Safety in Christiania It is important that you are aware that Christiania is not like any other neighbourhood in Copenhagen. According to Copenhagen police the area around Pusher Street is controlled by organised criminal groups. The residents themselves have adopted a set of rules for security reasons, which they strongly advise visitors to abide by. They discourage visitors from photographing, running and talking on the phone in the area, especially in and around Pusher Street. At the main entrance, you will find a sign listing the rules, which the residents also advise visitors not to photograph. Over the years, there have been reports of acts of violence linked to organised criminal activities, and it is advised to check the recommendations of the local authorities before planning a visit to Christiania. Read about current affairs from Copenhagen Police or visit their account on X . Guided tours Locals give guided tours of the area. Every day throughout the summer (26 June  – 31 August) and every weekend the rest of the year. This is a really good way to experience the special Christiania vibe. The guides have lived most of their lives here, and they give a personal tour of this alternative community. The tours are in English and Danish and start from the main entrance at 15:00. The price is DKK 40 in cash to the guide.

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Justin Plus Lauren

Freetown Christiania Copenhagen: The Ultimate Guide to Plan Your Visit

Posted on March 28, 2022

Categories Art , Blog , Cultural Travel , Denmark , Europe

Have you ever heard of Freetown Christiania? If you love quirky places, alternative lifestyles, street art, or anything off the beaten path, you need visit when you travel to Copenhagen . Ever since I learned of Freetown Christiania in Copenhagen, I knew that I had to visit.

Freetown Christiania is located in the heart of Copenhagen. It has such an intriguing history and it’s really unlike any other place in the world. Furthermore, it’s just so quirky, colourful, and even a bit alarming. You really only need to carve out about an hour to wander around, and you can always stay a little longer for lunch if you’d like.

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Freetown Christiana Copenhagen

Table of Contents

What is Freetown Christiania?

Christiania is a self-proclaimed autonomous district in the borough of Christianshavn. It is an anarchist community on the site of a former military barracks, right in the middle of Copenhagen.

The Christiania residents follow counter-cultural beliefs based in the hippie movement, anarchism, the squatter movement, and collectivism. They fly their own flag, have their own currency, and sing their own anthem.

They don’t consider themselves part of Copenhagen, Denmark, or the European Union. Those living in Christiania don’t pay taxes. In recent years, approximately 900 people live in the commune, with even second or third generations of families growing up there.

A Brief History of Christiania

Entrance sign at Freetown Christiania Copenhagen

In the 1970s, homeless people started to live in the empty buildings of the abandoned military base. This was partially as a protest to the Danish government and also because there was a significant lack of affordable housing in Copenhagen.

Street art Copenhagen

In 1971, Christiania was officially established, as declared by Danish journalist, Jacob Ludvigsen. He wrote an article announcing the official proclamation of this new free town. He was also the co-author of Christiania’s mission statement:

The objective of Christiania is to create a self-governing society whereby each and every individual holds themselves responsible over the wellbeing of the entire community. Our society is to be economically self-sustaining and, as such, our aspiration is to be steadfast in our conviction that psychological and physical destitution can be averted.

What are the rules of Christiania?

Freetown Christiania Copenhagen

Freetown Christiania is a free state that makes its own rules of governance. There aren’t many rules and laws in Christiania, except for a few key ones to note.

First, Freetown Christiania is a community free of violence. There are no guns, knives, or bulletproof vests. Also banned from the community: bikers’ colours, hard drugs, and stealing of any kind.

Freetown Christiania Copenhagen

Don’t run in Christiania. Running promotes panic and fear. The residents won’t know if you are running from someone or something.

Christiania is a car-free zone. There’s a popular place to rent bicycles with carts on the back of them. Everyone I saw there either walked or rode a bike. It certainly keeps with the green and environmentally-friendly beliefs of the commune.

Street art of Copenhagen

It used to be a rule that visitors could not take any photographs within Freetown Christiania. However, the rules are a little more relaxed now. Feel free to snap a few pictures, as long as you’re being sensitive about it. Don’t photograph any people without their permission. Take a few photos here and there, but don’t use this as a backdrop to elaborate photo or video shoots.

The Green Light District

The Green Light District, also known as Pusher Street, is the famous street in Freetown Christiania that used to be the centre of the drug trade in Copenhagen. However, the Green Light District is much different than it used to be. There used to be permanent stalls set up along this street for the cannabis trade. Then, there were numerous police raids of the community, over and over again.

It wouldn’t take long for the drug dealers to resurface after the raids. But, there are no longer permanent stalls. You will hear the odd hushed voice asking if you’d like to buy drugs. But, it is no longer encouraged in Freetown Christiania. After all, cannabis is illegal in Denmark and Copenhagen, and those within this hippie commune want to keep their community safe.

When I visited Freetown Christiania Copenhagen, you could take photographs everywhere except Pusher Street. This was unfortunate because some of the best street art was along this stretch, but I didn’t want to disturb anyone or violate the rules of the commmunity.

Nowadays, you can take photographs everywhere, just as long as you are respectful about it. Don’t use it as a backdrop for your selfies or take involved Instagram photoshoots here. If there are any temporary tables with drug deals happening, it makes sense to not take pictures of the drug dealers. Otherwise, you’re good to go.

There’s now a sign installed on Pusher Street that asks that people do not purchase drugs in the Green Light District. The residents really want to keep the community safe and free of future violence or police raids. Please be respectful and do not purchase any drugs here.

The Vibrant Street Art of Freetown Christiania

Mural Copenhagen

Freetown Christiania is a paradise for lovers of street art. Bright and colourful paintings covered nearly every wall or surface. Keeping with a no-waste attitude, many works of art are created from reused materials.

Public art in Copenhagen

Nothing in Christiania is wasted, even if it isn’t as attractive. Old tree stumps are left to rot as they can attract certain insects and birds, leaving a positive impact on the ecosystem.

Public art in Copenhagen

Even if all you do in Christiania is walk around and appreciate the street art, it’s well worth the trip. People who live in Christianshavn often decorate their homes with all sorts of creative knick-knacks and colourful decor.

A Self-Guided Tour of Freetown Christiania

Freetown Christiania Copenhagen

I wandered around the alternative community of Freetown Christiania early on a Sunday morning, around 10:00am. The main entrance features totem poles welcoming you to the commune.

On this brisk, March day, there really weren’t many other people around. I walked the streets on my own, seeing a random person or roaming dog on occasion. It was very peaceful and quiet.

I didn’t see any drugs for sale on Pusher Street, though I did see a few men setting up their stalls. The Green Light District was most likely much more action-packed later in the day.

Colorful art in Copenhagen

I had an eerie feeling from time to time as I explored by myself. Christiania almost has a post-apocalyptic atmosphere in certain spaces. Muddy paths, crumbling structures, and messages spray painted onto plywood gave off unsettling vibes. With that said, I felt perfectly safe wandering around on my own.

When to Visit Christiania and My Experiences

Freetown Christiania Copenhagen

You can visit Freetown Christiania anytime. It was very quiet and relaxed on a Sunday morning. If you’re looking for a busier or more bustling atmosphere, I suggest going there later in the day.

I’ve heard that the residents are super friendly and kind, but I didn’t see very many people around on a Sunday morning. Some people like to keep to themselves, but it is possible to strike up a conversation with some of the local residents for an inside perspective of life in Christiania.

Freetown Christiania Copenhagen

If you’re seeking more energy and activity, I suggest visiting in the afternoon. However, Christiania is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Copenhagen and more crowded later in the day. There are also music venues, art galleries, and skate parks in Freetown Christiania that you can experience as well.

Exit sign at Freetown Christiania Copenhagen

Sadly, the fact that the Freetown Christiania commune has become a tourist attraction and has become more gentrified over the years has caused many original residents to move away. It’s become a really popular destination, and I can see exactly why. It’s just so unique and interesting. Please keep in mind that this is a residential area and not a tourist’s playground. Be respectful when you visit.

How to Take a Guided Tour of Freetown Christiania

Freetown Christiania Copenhagen

If you would rather take a walking tour of Freetown Christiania Copenhagen, you can easily book one in advance. While it is easy to wander around on your own, a tour guide can provide additional insights from a local. You’re likely to learn many more interesting stories, history, and information than walking around on your own.

Freetown Christiania Copenhagen

This walking tour is 1.5 hours long and you’ll learn all kinds of stories along the way. Please note that walking tours inside the gates of Freetown Christiania are not permitted. You’ll walk from Nyhavn towards Christianshavn, learning all of the details, history and stories. The walking tour stops at the gates of Freetown Christiania where you can freely go after the tour and explore on your own. Book your guided tour here.

Vegan and Vegetarian Restaurants

Morgenstedet vegan and vegetarian restaurant

Keeping with the green and natural lifestyle, Freetown Christiania has lots of vegan and vegetarian food for such a tiny community. There are a couple of vegetarian restaurants in Freetown Christiania that cater to vegans, too.

Morgenstedet is a vegetarian restaurant in Christiania. The fully organic menu blends various cuisines from around the world as the chefs have different cultural heritages. The prices are reasonable and lower than other dining options in Copenhagen.

Grønsagen is another restaurant in town serving meat and veggie options at their buffet. You pay by how much food you put on your plate. Fresh fruit and vegetables are also available. Looking for more vegetarian and vegan food in Copenhagen? Check out my vegan guide to Copenhagen . And for the coffee lovers, I also have this handy guide to the best Copenhagen cafes .

Christiania Christmas Market

Although I didn’t visit around Christmastime, there is an annual Christmas market in Freetown Christiania. It’s held within Grey Hall, the centre of the community. You can purchase lots of handcrafted items, including Christmas decorations, jewelry, knitwear, cards, and other handmade wares.

You can also watch some of the crafts being made, chat to local artists and artisans, and grab a bite to eat. Of course, you’ll be able to enjoy the full experience of visiting Christianshavn on your visit, like wandering the streets and checking out the street art.

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Getting to Freetown Christiania

I walked to Christiania from my hotel, Wakeup Copenhagen Borgergade . Walk past Nyhavn and across a bridge, and you’re almost there. It’s really easy to walk from Nyhavn to Christianshavn.

Alternatively, you can take the train to Christianshavn Station and it’s a short walk from there. With a Copenhagen City Card , you gain free public transportation. I used the train from one side of the city to the other, and it was great to not have to worry about buying any train tickets throughout my stay. There are so many other perks from buying the Copenhagen City Card , too, and I highly recommend it.

Where to Stay in Copenhagen

Wakeup Copenhagen Borgergade

I stayed at  Wakeup Copenhagen Borgergade , a modern, no frills hotel in the middle of town. It’s inexpensive (around $100 Canadian a night) and has your basic needs covered: it’s clean, has a modern design, and has the essentials (bed, shower, bathroom, TV, Wi-Fi).

Wakeup Copenhagen Borgergade

The hotel is right in the centre of it all. You can walk everywhere, and there’s a train station down the street. I took public transit from the airport to the subway stop and walked to the hotel (about an 8 minute walk). It’s the perfect place to stay if you have 3 days in Copenhagen: great price and great location.

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Freetown Christiania Copenhagen is a hippie commune with street art, veg food & an intriguing counterculture. Here's how to plan your visit.

Lauren is the full-time travel blogger and content creator behind Justin Plus Lauren. She started Justin Plus Lauren in 2013 and has travelled to 50+ countries around the world. Lauren is an expert on vegan travel as one of the very first vegan travel bloggers. She also focuses on outdoor adventure travel, eco and sustainable travel, and creating amazing travel itineraries for cities and small towns.

Frank Rebelo

Sunday 22nd of May 2022

I’m writing this as I sit in Cafe Nemoland waiting for out lunch. It’s noon on a Sunday May 22, 22. You’re correct, it is much busier later in the day. The sun is starting to come out and it’s quite busy. Stalls are up and busy. Definitely worth a visit.

Tuesday 24th of May 2022

Thank you for the update! I'm glad you had the chance to visit and enjoyed it. It's a very unique place!

Tuesday 5th of June 2018

Such a beautiful town, love the street art.

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Read This Before Visiting Freetown Christiania in Copenhagen

christiania copenhagen tour

Table of Contents

This post may contain affiliate links to things like tours, hotels, Amazon associates and products. These help me earn a small commission at no additional charge to you.

Welcome to my Freetown Christiania travel guide, one of the weirdest and most wonderful places I visited in Denmark (and possibly the world!).

This place is the total opposite to the rest of ordered, clean Copenhagen just across the bridge. As my tour guide on a walking tour told us, ‘if you have a spare hour here, drop everything and visit Freetown Christiania’. Of all the things to do in Copenhagen , this is for sure the most unusual.

Visiting Copenhagen? Check out my other blogs:

  • 3 day Copenhagen itinerary
  • Where to find cheap brunch and breakfast in Copenhagen

In this guide, I’ll share my Freetown Christiania tips and explain the area’s rules to ensure you have a safe and enjoyable visit.

Freetown Christiania, Copenhagen

Freetown Christiania is a neighbourhood not far from the centre of Copenhagen which was founded in 1971 by a couple of hippies who were fed up of societal rules so decided to create their own community. Nowadays it’s known for its alternative vibe and is home to a thousand residents. Unusual things about Freetown Christiania include the fact that it’s green, car-free – oh, and there are drugs. Lots of drugs. While they’re technically illegal, they’re overlooked by the police and openly sold on the main street which is (not so subtly) called ‘Pusher Street’.

Accompanying the hippie vibe is a sense of solidarity and a focus on sustainable communities. There are also galleries and cafes in Christiania and it’s a place that’s become popular with tourists. I’m all about seeing different cultures and ways of life so I knew I was going right in…

Facts about Freetown Christiania 

  • Renting and buying houses isn’t an option so you can only be given a home by the foundation who own the land.
  • Despite the fact it’s now a chill place, for 40 years until 2012 it was full of clashes between the inhabitants and the rest of the city.
  • Photos are banned along Pusher Street because locals don’t want images of drugs circulating.

What to expect when visiting Freetown Christiania 

Freetown Christiania is a really colourful place full of street art and despite the drugs and violent history, doesn’t feel at all scary or unsafe. I went as a solo female and loved visiting Freetown Christiania. It was busy and everyone was friendly. Follow my Freetown Christiania below and I’m sure you’ll love it, too. Pusher Street is so colourful . Nepalese prayer flags swing in the breeze and stalls sell weed like other markets sell trinkets. It’s the most surreal place!

Vibrant wall paintings Freetown Christiania

Freetown Christiania rules

Because of the area’s turbulent history, there are a few guidelines for visiting. Observe these but don’t let them scare you. They aren’t enforced by law but will make your trip safer and more enjoyable. Here are my Freetown Christiana tips:

DON’Ts for visiting Freetown Christiania 

  • Take photos where you’re not allowed, for example Pusher Street. There have been cases of tourists having their cameras broken by angry locals. You’ll find other areas where you can like the Christiania Art Gallery South Pacific where most of my photos were taken. If in doubt, just ask.
  • Run because can be associated with police raids and incite panic.

Colourful statues and shoes

DOs for visiting Freetown Christiania 

  • Eat. Try out Morgenstedet , an organic, veggie eatery with a pretty courtyard or  Spiseloppen inside a refurbed warehouse. This restaurant has a creative menu reflecting the home cuisine of the staff and chefs of 16 nationalities.
  • Chat! The locals are very friendly provided you respect their rules. Talking to them will give you an insight into their culture.
  • Go in the morning or afternoon if you’re a solo female because you’ll feel that bit safer. I felt very secure but I can imagine it being a bit more sketchy after dark.

I hope these Freetown Christiana rules are useful. You’ll feel perfecting safe if you follow them.

Street art refurbished buildings Freetown Christiania

Don’t miss Nemoland!

Nothing to do with the Disney film, Nemoland is a cafe and concert venue. In the summer there are two open-air gigs every Sunday (6pm and 8pm) where you can get a taste of Danish music.

Getting to Freetown Christiania Copenhagen 

You can easily arrive by foot. From Nyhavn Harbour, cross the bridge and keep walking. Y ou’ll come to Christiania after about 15 minutes.

Freetown Christiania opening times

While there are no official Freetown Christiania opening times, I would recommend timing your trip before sunset. In the winter, you’ll want to visit in the early afternoon but during the summer, you’ll feel safe walking around much later in the day.

Giant snail in Freetown Christiania

Tours of Freetown Christiania 

If you’re keen soak up the history when visiting Freetown Christiania, you can take a walking tour. Tours aren’t permitted inside Christiania but they’ll take you around the perimeters and tell you the facts then leave you at the gate so you can go inside. I decided against this option only because the tour didn’t finish ’til 4.30pm by which time it would be dark. If you’re visiting in the summer when it stays light longer, I think a tour would be a great idea. Consider a tour with Copenhagen Free Walking Tours . I did the general Copenhagen tour with them so I’m sure the Freetown Christiania one would be great too.

Thanks for reading my Freetown Christiana travel guide

If you liked it, please share it 🙂

See you next time for more adventures,

Ps. Liked my Freetown Christiana travel guide? Pin it for later!

Freetown Christiania

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Rose is a solo traveller from the UK who has been on the road since 2015. She wants to show other women that solo travel isn't scary and doesn't have to be expensive! Rose has lived in Mexico, Canada and all over Asia, seeking out food, bubble tea and street art wherever she goes!

3 thoughts on “ Read This Before Visiting Freetown Christiania in Copenhagen ”

christiania copenhagen tour

On contrary I found people are very unfriendly. Yelling at people who take photos. Also there is dirt everywhere, full of junkies, illegal drug sellers, … I advice rather to stay away and definitely don’t bring kids. It is not a hippie community rather a failed social experiment.

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COPENHAGEN CHRISTIANIA TOUR – 8 KM

Discover the unpolished pearl of Copenhagen – Christiania Free Town. An absolute must-see!

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Discover the unpolished pearl of Copenhagen - Christiania Free Town. An absolute must-see!

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Christiania is as big a “must” as The Little Mermaid and Nyhavn.

While Copenhagen is known for being clean, rule orientied and “proper”, Christiania provides a sharp contrast. Christiania Freetown is mostly known for its open cannabis trade but it is much more than this – it is self governance, it is art, it is ecology, it is tolerance and most of all it is unique!

This 8 km tour will take you through Christianshavn which is the most quaint area of Copenhagen and where you can see some of the city’s oldest buildings. With its cobbled streets, old houses and beautiful canal, this area is truly balm for the soul.

We will run along the moat and explore the non touristy side of Christiania and the life of the “Christianits”. Once in the centre of Christiania we will pass the many self-build houses, the female blacksmith, the organic eatery and of course walk through Pusher street. If possible we will visit one of the stalls so you can get a first hand view of the canabis trading.

Your guide will explain the history and self-governance of Christiania and give you the latest update on the governments efforts in cleaning up the place. The tour finishes off with a beautiful run along the fortification berms surrounding Christianshavn.

It may sound slightly dodgy for law abiding runner/citizens to visit a place a like Christiania, but you have a local runner with you and will be totally safe.

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1 person € 77.00 /person

2 persons € 55.00 /person

3 persons € 49.50 /person

4-10 persons € 44.00 /person

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Aini

Rated 5 out of 5

Aini – July 13, 2023

Christianian is such a unique and vibrant town and this tour is a wonderful way to learn about its history and culture. Really enjoyed its architecture, nature, art, and friendly vibes. My tour guide Michael is very knowledgeable about the town and a great running partner and guide!

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Kimberly Nelson-Brownlee

Rated 5 out of 5 Beautiful host, amazing run and history lesson was excellent

Kimberly Nelson-Brownlee – June 10, 2023

As you can see from the title I enjoyed the run with Lena. She was on time (I am one of those always early or on time people). I could tell immediately that Lena wanted to run and this is not just a job. When organizing the excursion I notified that I was recovering from a torn meniscus and physical therapy and she remembered and periodically asked how I was doing which I appreciated. The sites were great and hearing the history of Christiana was a highlight. I will definitely use Running Tours on future trips

christiania copenhagen tour

Rated 5 out of 5 So much fun!

Maria – May 15, 2023

My friend and I ran this tour with Lena a couple weeks ago and had the best time! Despite living in Copenhagen, we learned so many new and interesting facts about the city and Christiania at a perfect running tempo. Lena, thank you so much for the memorable experience! It certainly won’t be our last run with gorunning!

christiania copenhagen tour

ruben sanchez – September 9, 2019

This is a great run if you are looking to get out of the urban/tourist district and experience some nature and a see a society that is “living the dream.” A good portion of it is a trail run which is a nice break for the knees/feet. Kim is awesome. Can’t recommend enough!

Kim

Kim – September 13, 2019

Thanks Ruben! Sure was nice running and chatting with you and Micheline – and learning a bit about living in California…..

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Ashley A – February 3, 2019

This was an excellent and fun tour was a great way to learn all about Christiania. We would highly recommend it!

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Christiania

Visiting the eclectic enclave of Freetown Christiania in Copenhagen

Everything you need to know about the quirky commune of christiania ..

As anyone who has visited Copenhagen, Denmark knows, the city is constantly abuzz with a lively, vibrant energy 24 hours a day.

The Danish people and especially residents of Copenhagen pride themselves on their independent spirit and unique approach to life. You might enjoy a cozy coffee in traditional hygge style one day, go swimming at the city’s pristine beaches the next, and head out into the abundant wilderness for a camping adventure the following day.

From the city’s wholehearted embrace of all things green and ecological, to the herds of bicyclists zipping through the city streets commuting to work and school every day, to the eclectic modern architecture and burgeoning food and music scenes, Copenhagen is a widely recognised mecca for all kinds of outside-the-box thinkers.

And that bold and fearlessly independent spirit is especially apparent in the intentional community of Freetown Christiania, Copenhagen.

Freetown Christiania—usually referred to simply as Christiania—is a unique community founded on a disused military base right in the heart of Copenhagen.

The original residents of what is sometimes referred to as an “anarchist commune,” sometimes as an “autonomous intentional community,” pried open fencing surrounding the decommissioned base and started squatting there in the early 1970s.

The community grew, and residents constructed housing and soon declared themselves a separate and an open city.

And while such a contentious beginning of course prompted some scuffles with law enforcement and government regulators over the years—who unsurprisingly frowned upon Christiania’s embrace of all things marijuana and their (former) flouting of the national ban on cannabis—the community is the legal home to between 850 and 1,000 full-time residents today.

They live in wildly eclectic, often vividly painted houses constructed out of found lumber, discarded steel panels, and at least one house made entirely of discarded windows in their frames.

A good portion of the area claimed by the community is green space as well, a sprawling parkland that straddles the canal or moat that separates two layers of the city’s old defensive walls.

Having such a singular community just minutes from the heart of a cosmopolitan center for tourism like Copenhagen naturally draws curiosity seekers and Instagram-hungry visitors.

In fact, Christiania is ranked as the fourth-most popular tourist attraction in Copenhagen and draws some 500,000 visitors each year.

And for the most part, the residents of Christiania don’t seem to mind visitors — indeed there are cafes, restaurants, and vendors hawking all kinds of goods there to the tourists who come for a visit.

However, if you go, there are few rules of the road you should be aware of.

This guide will tell you all you need to know to enjoy your visit to Freetown Christiania, including how to get there, what to see while you’re there, when to go, and how to make sure you don’t run afoul of the community members who call Christiania, Copenhagen home.

Christiania

A little history

Christiania was formed out of the remains of a former military barracks called Bådsmandsstræde along with parts of the original city ramparts dating back to 1617.

In the early part of the 17 th century, King Christian IV ordered the construction of what was then a separate city called Christianshavn, built up from reclaimed beaches and small islands between the original city of Copenhagen and the island of Amager.

The ramparts were originally constructed to form a complete defensive wall structure on the reclaimed land, and eventually extended to surround the entire city over the course of the 1600s. By the 19 th century, Copenhagen had outgrown the western side of the ramparts and they were ordered torn down.

However, the walls on the eastern side, where Christianshavn faces the sea a short distance away across Amagen were allowed to remain.

To this day these walls along the east side of Freetown Christiania are considered one the best-preserved examples of surviving 17th-century defensive structures in the world.

The walls that form the outermost section of the ramparts have been dubbed Dyssen by the residents of Christiania and connect to the heart of Christiania via a bridge and a footpath on the northern end.

Among other historical points of interest in Freetown Christiania are four former gunpowder storehouses that line the walls and date back to 1779-1780. They are located at four of the five redans, which are the triangular defensive points built into the wall that extend out toward the direction of anticipated attack.

Incorporated into the walls and now the community of Christiania, they carry a fascinating history of their own that dovetails nicely with the overall history of the community.

The then-remote location was chosen for gunpowder storage following a 1770 explosion at the former gunpowder magazine located in central Copenhagen, an explosion that resulted in 50 deaths.

Following much the same reasoning, the Danish military in the 20 th century also used the remote area for munitions storage, a link to the past spanning the centuries and centering in Christiania, Copenhagen.

However, these days the residents of Freetown Christiania have turned a full 180 on the buildings’ former use as tools in the making of war, renaming the four of them Kosmiske Blomst (Cosmic Flower) Aircondition , Autogena , and Fakirskolen (The Fakir School).

Although a number of buildings within the former military base were designated as historically protected landmarks in 2007, over the years the residents of Christiania have made some minor alterations to them.

Another historical site of note that falls within the boundaries of Freetown Christiania, Copenhagen is the location of the last execution site in Denmark, the Københavns Gamle Henrettelsesplads  or Copenhagen Old Execution Space .

It is located at the Second Redan near the building that has been dubbed Aircondition. On this site following World War II, 29 convicted war criminals were executed.

The final time it was used for its original purpose was in 1950 when a high-ranking Danish collaborator who was convicted of working with the Gestapo was shot.

Although the wooden walls of the building are no longer there, the concrete pad that made up the structure’s foundation remains, and a drain for the blood of the executed is visible at the center. 

Up to and during World War II, the barracks the Danish military constructed in the former region of Christianshavn housed soldiers who were tasked with maintaining and storing ammunition and weapons.

The need for the barracks fell off steeply in the post-war years, and by the late 1960s the army began operations to shut the base. By 1971 the barracks and the surrounding lands were abandoned and closed off with fencing and barricades. 

But with the sprawling base area being guarded only sporadically by night watchmen, homeless people started moving in to the region and sleeping in the abandoned buildings.

By this time, neighbourhood residents had also begun prying open parts of the fencing surrounding the base and using the grassy areas as playgrounds for their children.

Christiania

The birth of a community

The origins of how the community of Christiania, Copenhagen started, or at least the story behind who first accessed the base and began staying there long-term are somewhat muddy — most accounts say the founding of Freetown Christiania was organic and haphazard, while some claim that it was an organised protest against the government of Denmark due to a lack of affordable housing.

Either way, by September of 1971, a journalist named Jacob Ludvigsen , a former member of the Provo counterculture movement—which sought to provoke violent responses from the Danish government using non-violent baiting tactics—declared Christiania an “open city.”

In a widely-distributed article, Ludvigsen described how he and five compatriots had “conquered” what he termed “The Forbidden City of the Military,” and declared Freetown Christiania open for anyone interested in building up “a society from scratch.” 

“Christiania is the land of the settlers,” he wrote.

Later, in co-authoring the mission statement of Christiania, Ludvigsen said that the goal of the community would be “to create a self-governing society whereby each and every individual holds themselves responsible over the wellbeing of the entire community.”

Indeed, the ethos of caring for one another and community are important threads running through the history of Christiania.

The community members are deeply into yoga and meditation, and although hard drugs are forbidden, Ludvigsen and the community’s other founders extended a standing offer to people looking to recover from drug addiction in a non-judgmental, healing environment, especially, as Ludvigsen wrote, for “…the stoners who are too paranoid and weak to participate in the race” of modern life outside the walls of Christiania. 

Such tolerance and declarations of independence from duly-elected government authority comes with risk however.

Over the years various Danish governments have undertaken different tactics to try to reign in or evict the residents of Christiania, and the residents have not infrequently found themselves in direct conflict with police and other government forces.

In 2007, an effort by the Danish forestry department to demolish the remains of an abandoned building on the land claimed as part of Freetown Christiania caused an outcry among residents, who took the incursion by forestry workers escorted by police as intent to begin demolishing all the structures in the area and evicting the residents.

After the forestry workers and police entered Christiania, residents made improvised roadblocks, threw rocks and shot fireworks at police vehicles. 

Eventually the police stormed Christiania in force, used tear gas on the residents and made a number of arrests, including the arrest of one resident who sneaked past the police lines and dumped a bucket of urine and faeces on the police commander.

In total, 50 people were arrested, and prosecutors demanded heavy sentences, declaring in court that Christiania was in a “state of rebellion.”

This, despite the fact that the residents of Christiania had forged an agreement with the Danish defence ministry in 1994 to allow them to occupy the land and pay taxes and fees for water, power and garbage pick-up.

It wasn’t until 2011 when the residents of Christiania finally hammered out an agreement to buy the land at below-market prices that the community of Christiania was officially recognised as legitimate.

The first payment was made in 2012, making the members of the anarchic collective known as Freetown Christiania, Copenhagen part of the landed gentry. 

These days the residents of Christiania continue to be avid practitioners of meditation and yoga. The community is also home to a theatrical group that in the past has performed happenings across the city of Copenhagen.

Christiania, Copenhagen also celebrates LGBTQ rights and is home to Gay House, an autonomous institution that works as a center for LGBTQ activism and hosts frequent parties, cabaret and variety shows and theatre that is beloved in wider Copenhagen’s LGBTQ community.

Christiania

Christiania and drugs

If you’d previously heard of Freetown Christiania, Copenhagen, it’s most likely in reference to the enclave’s reputation for openly defying Denmark’s cannabis laws.

For years the community allowed the open sale of marijuana and hashish, and indeed the main thoroughfare where the cannabis trade was conducted is known as Pusher Street, although the council of Christiania prefer to call it The Green Light District.

Interestingly, for years the government and police of Copenhagen tolerated this situation, despite the fact that marijuana remains illegal in Denmark.

Some theorise that the sales were tolerated in Christiania because it meant that, although Christiania forbids hard drug use and sales, at least hash and marijuana peddling would largely be confined to one area. 

However, all that changed following a shooting death in 2016 when a man believed to be carrying the receipts of marijuana sales for the day pulled a gun during a routine stop and shot two police officers and a civilian.

He was subsequently killed in a shootout with the Danish version of a SWAT unit, but not before police had locked down the entire neighbourhood and the residents were stricken with fear.

Following this incident, the community elected to shut down the cannabis stalls of Pusher Street and did so the following day, requesting that visitors respect the community’s decision and buy their weed elsewhere.

Although cannabis sales in all likelihood continue there on the down-low, the shuttering of the open stalls reportedly has caused a 75 percent decline in the drug trade in Christiania.

Christiania rules of the road

So for the first-time visitor to Christiania, Copenhagen, the first rule to keep in mind is that, despite Christiania’s long-time reputation for openness and especially openness to cannabis, looking for drugs there is a big no-no.

Not only do police periodically patrol looking for illicit activity, the residents of the area have asked visitors to respect their desire to keep that kind of trouble outside the walls of the enclave.

In addition, the community has a list of nine hard and fast Christiania rules:

  • No weapons, no hard drugs, no violence, no private cars, no biker colours, no bulletproof clothing, no sale of fireworks, no use of firecrackers or other incendiary devices, and no stolen goods.

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Another thing to keep in mind is that residents prefer that visitors don’t run and indeed there used to be a sign announcing that rule as you entered; given the past difficulties with the law and with violent drug dealers, a person running in Christiania and especially on Pusher Street is capable of sparking a panic.

Christiania

Getting there

As mentioned earlier, one of the unique and wonderful things about Freetown Christiania, Copenhagen is that it’s located within the city, making it easy to get to via a variety of transportation options.

That said, keep in mind that outside cars aren’t allowed into the community, so you might as well walk or take a short metro ride to get there. At the very least plan on parking some distance away if you do choose to drive.

From the city center at Norreport metro station catch the M2 train to Christianshavn station, just two stops away. From the station walk along Torvegade Street to the southeast two blocks until you reach Prinsessegade, where you’ll take a left. At the corner of Badsmandsstraede you’ll arrive at the bohemian community of Freetown Christiania.

If you choose to walk or cycle, it’s about a 2.3 km trip from Norreport, and offers a couple of cool famous sites to view along the way. Head to Fredericksborgadde and walk toward Amager, or southeast.

The street will soon change to Kultorvet, and you will continue past the Round Tower or Rundetaarn , until you reach the canal and cross over.

Next you’ll pass the gorgeous Christiansborg Palace with its 12th-century castle ruins. As you continue along the canal you’ll pass the impressive former stock exchange, the Borsen with its sharp, twisting spire.

You’ll cross another canal and soon reach the Christianshavn metro stop where you’ll take a left. Just a short distance along you’ll see the beginning of Freetown Christiania Copenhagen on your right.

Another way to get there is to take the 350S bus from Norreport to Christianshavn St. and walk southeast in the direction of Dronningensgade, about 10-15 minutes from the entrance to Christiania.

What to do in Christiania

Shortly after you enter the enclave, you’ll see the infamous Pusher Street right away, and possibly a sign asking visitors to refrain from taking photographs “because hash is still illegal.”

It’s likely that the ban on photos has been eased somewhat since the community shut down the open stalls, but nonetheless it’s still probably best to avoid photos in the Green Light District.

Even elsewhere in Christiania, as you seek out Instagram-ready moments to share with friends and family, keep in mind that this is people’s home, and they’re not likely to take kindly to being photographed as if they were animals in a zoo.

Be respectful and ask first, and most people will be happy to let you snap photos of them or their houses.

Keep in mind too that if you are interested in getting more of an insider’s view on the story of Christiania, there are usually people at the entrances offering their services as Christiania tour guides for a fee. 

Some must-see sights include the Christiania Community center with its brightly painted facade and outdoor art installations. Nearby you’ll want to check out the Alis Wonderland skateboard park, which was built by a couple of second-generation Christiania residents, friends who returned to create one of the most beloved skateboarding spots in the entire city of Copenhagen.

If you’re up for some music there are plenty of venues in Christiania for all tastes, including the Christiania Jazz Club and Children’s Theater , which hosts acts of all kinds, from jazz to hip-hop and more in an intimate atmosphere.

Loppen is another venue, more of a simple rock and roll hall featuring energetic shows and cheap beer, a favourite of locals and visitors alike. The Den Gra Hal is another great venue for concerts, lectures, and more.

Another of the unique draws that residents and visitors to Christiania enjoy is called Science and Cocktails at the community’s cinema, Byens Lys.

Talented mixologists will whip up delicious and imaginative cocktails for visitors there to enjoy as they listen to lecturers talk on all kinds of science-related topics. Often the free-form nature of Christiania spills over into the lecture hall, and the talks morph into freewheeling discussions with the audience. 

There are also any number of galleries, used and vintage clothing shops, and vendors selling all manner of tchotchkes related to Christiania throughout the community.

Keep in mind too that if you visit during the holiday season, Christiania plays host to one of the most beloved Christmas markets in Copenhagen — and don’t worry, it’s indoors!

You can enjoy a mulled wine and all kinds of Christmas cookies and treats as you shop the stalls for jewellery, clothing, and other artisanal handicrafts. 

Finally, after spending some time in Freetown Christiania’s bars, cafes, and shops, and enjoying the creative graffiti and other human-made beauty, don’t forget to cross over the Dyssebroen, the bridge that connects the main commercial part of the enclave to the Amager side.

This part of Christiania is wilder and greener, with lush grassy areas and trees, along with many houses. You can also find a number of platforms extending out over the water to sit and enjoy the tranquility of the natural area that the thoughtful residents of Christiania have protected for over five decades.

Christiania

Restaurants and cafes

After you’ve built up an appetite with all the walking around, don’t worry because Freetown Christiania has plenty of dining options for all kinds of tastes. Given the enclave’s historic roots in hippie culture of the 1960s and 1970s, it’s no surprise that vegetarian and vegan options abound.

Some of the highest-rated restaurants include vegetarian restaurant Morgenstedet and Cafe Loppen , which specialises in vegetarian food inspired by Thai cuisine. Another great vegetarian choice for simple, down-to-earth food is Gronsagen . A

great place for people-watching and to look for a chance to strike up a conversation with a local resident of Christiania is Manefiskeren , a great cafe with outdoor seating at long, communal picnic tables and even a pool table inside if it’s too cold for dining al fresco.

Finally, for the unreconstructed carnivore, Cafe Nemoland offers tasty burgers and sandwiches, and is also renowned for its great coffee and creative desserts.

All in all, Freetown Christiania, Copenhagen is a wonderful and unique treasure. Local residents of Copenhagen as well as visitors flock to the enclave and with good reason.

If you’re visiting Copenhagen, it’s well worth taking an afternoon and an evening to stroll around, have some dinner, and catch a show in one of the most creative intentional communities in the world!

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Freetown Christiania

  • What to See
  • Monuments and Attractions

Freetown Christiania

"You are now entering the European Union" is the sign that separates Christiania from the rest of Copenhagen. This self-governed bohemian neighborhood is unlike any other place on Earth .

Right in the heart of the Danish capital, you'll find the neighborhood with the most impact in Copenhagen: Christiania . This historically hippy neighborhood boasts a certain lifestyle that's difficult to find anywhere else.

Early Christiania

In the early 70s, an area of the Christianshavn neighborhood was used as a military base that later became abandoned. A few families from Copenhagen decided to move into the area to live away from the established rules of society at the time. Soon, more families arrived looking for the same sense of liberty, thus turning it into an  intentional community that thrives under self-governance with its own rules : Christiania .

Currently, more than 1,000 people live in Freetown Christiania. It's considered an independent town, free from Denmark and the European Union, as remarked on the famous sign when crossing back into Copenhagen: "You are now entering the European Union."

Over the course of nearly five decades, Christiania has consistently maintained its status as a self-governing community, guided by self-imposed principles such as recycling, the promotion of art, emphasis on fresh air , and a commitment to fostering a sense of overall community living among neighbors . In Christiania, residents enjoy the unique benefit of being exempt from taxes, leading to significantly lower prices for their products. This makes Christiania an ideal destination for shopping in Copenhagen, offering an array of authentic, handcrafted souvenirs made by locals, thrift shops, and charming watercolor postcards.

Drug Regulations in Christiania

Since 1971, Freetown Christiania has made a name for itself by legalizing the sale and consumption of marijuana . Due to controversy in recent years, however, the Copenhagen police have increased surveillance of the area, and the government has banned the sale of drugs.

Regardless, it's still straightforward to find marijuana in the city. Pusher Street, decorated with red lanterns, is the city's main avenue, where you can find street carts that you can buy from directly. However, you'll find various shops throughout the town also specializing in selling products for consumption.

The only rule on Pusher Street–  no photos  allowed .

An Unparalleled View

Christiania is undoubtedly one of the most intriguing sites to visit in Copenhagen. The free-wheeling environment is sure to win your heart over! At any time of day, you can enjoy a drink, listen to street performers, and appreciate the unique atmosphere .

When stopping in Christiania, rest assured you're entering a peaceful town  free of violence and vandalism. As long as you respect the rules set in place and take very good care to keep your camera tucked away while on Pusher Street , you'll happily enter a new world—the town of Christiania.

Entrance into Freetown Christiania

In the Christianshavn neighborhood

Subway : Christianshavn Bus:  line 9A

Nearby places

Church of Our Savior Copenhagen (769 m) Nyhavn Canal (899 m) Copenhagen's Amalienborg Palace (1.2 km) Designmuseum of Denmark (1.2 km) Guiness World Records Museum in Copenhagen (1.4 km)

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Tivoli Gardens is the most visited attraction in Copenhagen, drawing over 4 million visitors annually. Since its establishment in 1843, Tivoli has consistently upheld its magical and entertaining atmosphere, captivating both kids and adults alike.

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  • Destinations
  • Tours in Copenhagen

The Original Christianshavn Tour

The Original Christianshavn Tour Denmark — #1

FREETOUR.com says

Our Secret Traveller applauds this tour as "the ultimate way to experience Copenhagen’s special atmosphere". "Starting in the historic area around the parliament’s canals, we soon ventured to the wonderful freetown of Christiania to learn how the area was created and get fascinating insight to the unique culture here. This story is a truly intriguing and interesting one, and it is delivered exceptionally well by the local guide. It's the perfect way to experience Christiania, appreciate the origins of the movement, get cool pics as well as hearing about local history, architecture and seeing where one of the most memorable events in Danish history took place".

Overview of the tour in Copenhagen

The Christianshavn Tour is our most popular alternative tour, beginning at Højbro Plads and exploring the island of Christianshavn, which was built as a separate city from Copenhagen. It is now a great neighborhood with an eclectic mix of residents. The tour ends just outside the gates of Christiania, where you can wander at your own will. Our tours are free to join, we kindly ask that you tip the tour guide directly at the end of the tour based on what you think the tour is worth! Our tour guides also have credit card readers, giving you a more convenient and safe way to pay your tour guide directly. Please note that this tour is created for individual travelers and small groups. Guests traveling in groups of 6 or more are welcome to book a private tour.

This activity includes:

  • Knippels Bridge
  • Church of Holmen
  • Copenhagen Opera House
  • Christiansborg Palace
  • Højbro Plads
  • Christiania
  • Church of Our Saviour
  • Agnete and the Merman Statue
  • Gammel Strand
  • C.F. Tietgens Hus
  • Det Kgl. Bibliotek, The Royal Library
  • Christianshavns Kanal
  • Alternative free town of Christiania
  • Parliaments canals
  • Christians Harbour
  • Discover churches and hidden stories
  • Quaint colourful buildings

Meeting point

Bishop Absalon's Equestrian Statue (Højbro Plads).

At the footsteps of Bishop Absalon's Equestrian Statue (Højbro Plads).

Things to note

This tour finishes at the entrance of Christiania. We do not go inside Christiania together. We will share with you the history of the community, and you can venture inside on your own.

Free Cancellation

You are free to cancel a booking anytime. We kindly remind you to cancel bookings you cannot arrive for. Being reported as absent decreases your customer level points and the benefits you can enjoy.

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Travel Addicts

Home » Europe » Denmark » Freetown Christiania: Copenhagen’s Colorful Hippie Haven

Freetown Christiania: Copenhagen’s Colorful Hippie Haven

By Author Laura Longwell

Posted on Last updated: June 2, 2021

Freetown Christiania is one of the top sites in Copenhagen, Denmark

“The less I own, the more freedom I have.”

Although our tour guide was articulating his personal philosophy, he might as well have been telling us the slogan for all of Freetown Christiania. In this self-proclaimed free state in the middle of Copenhagen, Denmark, no one owns their homes, the people police themselves, and all decisions are made by consensus. It’s been this way for 45 years now, and the residents—all 850 of them—have no intention of changing.

Person sitting outside at a colorful cafe

What is Freetown Christiania?

In 1971, a group of squatters took over this abandoned military base in Denmark’s capital. At the time, there was no sewage system, two water pumps, and plenty of space to set up a community independent of the government, if one were so inclined.

Inside the walled complex, the group of hippies and free thinkers implemented the concept of collective ownership, set up their own governing laws, and even developed their own flag and currency. Even today, as you pass in and out of the community, it’s clear the residents see their neighborhood as distinct from the rest of Copenhagen.

Read about more things to do in Copenhagen here

Exit sign:

Christiania is now a bright mix of homes, cafes, art galleries, and workshops, many covered with colorful murals or accented by sculptures. There are even schools and a daycare for the 150 or so children who call the area home. There’s also plenty of open space, from courtyards and gathering places to the community’s beautiful lake that seems to attract just about everyone on a sunny day. And, like the rest of Copenhagen, there are bicycles everywhere.

Our guide explained that residents do everything they can to ensure that the space is used for “nature’s best use.” That best use could mean just about everything from comprehensive recycling to allowing certain trees to decay so they attract insects, which in turn feed birds.

Container painted red with three large yellow faces

A Walk Down Pusher Street

One of the most curious aspects of Christiania is Pusher Street. Signs in the notorious area warn that you that you are approaching the Green Light District, an open market for marijuana.

The two main rules on Pusher Street—don’t take photos, and don’t run (or people will think there’s a raid and chaos will ensue). Cannabis is still illegal in Denmark , so these rules are taken pretty seriously. I took out my phone to make a couple of notes on what our guide was telling us, and I was promptly scolded for even the appearance that I might be taking a photo.

Marijuana in pot

Several dozen booths on Pusher Street sell different types of hashish, related paraphernalia, and even brownies. There is a lot of paranoia about police raids, so many of the booths are covered with tarps so that all you can see are the products offered and the seller’s (possibly gloved) hands. Even underneath the tents, many sellers wear masks.

Although the marijuana trade is illegal, our guide explained that the hash sellers play an important role in Freetown Christiania—it’s part of their job to help ensure that there are no hard drugs and no gangs in the community. They have to live in the community for three years before they’re allowed to sell so they earn the trust of the other residents.

People relaxing by a lake

Is this Utopia?

Freetown Christiania sounds ideal in a lot of ways. The residents choose who moves in (and kick people out, if they choose), most people agree on most things, they live according to their own rules, and they’re surrounded by natural beauty and art that they’ve made.

As an outsider visiting for a few hours, it’s impossible to know if it’s all as utopian as it seems. After all, Freetown Christiania is the second most popular tourist attraction in Copenhagen, so there is value in telling visitors that the communal principles really do work and in keeping up the quirkiness that makes the hippie commune worth visiting.

Gift shop for Freetown Christiania in Denmark

Over the years, the residents have often been at odds with the government in Copenhagen. Periodic police actions shut down Pusher Street, though it’s often up and running again quickly.

There has also been a process of what the government refers to as “ normalization ,” though the residents question the meaning of such a loaded term. So far, the normalization has required them to become landowners by way of the Foundation Freetown Christiania, which was set up in 2012, though they still don’t own their homes.

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Visiting Freetown Christiania in Copenhagen

Christiania is in the Christianshavn area. It’s a lovely walk from the city center, or you can take bus 350S from Nørreport Street to Christianshavn Street.

Visitors are welcome to enjoy Christiania. Eat and drink in the community’s cafes and restaurants. Lounge by the lake, head to a concert, or join in an impromptu basketball game. You can even do what we did and attend one of the local-led tours (in Danish or English) for 50 kroner (about $7 USD) per person. Just make sure to follow the rules. (Tours are at 3pm daily late June-August and on weekends the rest of the year).

Metal artwork of a person with heart over its head

Laura Longwell is an award-winning travel blogger and photographer. Since founding Travel Addicts in 2008, she has written hundreds of articles that help over 3 million people a year get the most out of their travel. In that time, she has visited nearly 60 countries on 5 continents, often returning to favorite destinations over and over again. She has a deep love of history, uncovering unexpected attractions, and trying all the good food a place has to offer.

In addition to Travel Addicts, Laura runs a site about her hometown of Philadelphia—Guide to Philly—which chronicles unique things to do and places to see around southeastern Pennsylvania. Her travel tips and advice appear across the web.

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Stanlee Mouse

Saturday 25th of May 2019

I wondered with cell phones what it's like now. I thought in 1998 the entire communities property was no car, no camera, no hard drugs? The cell phone may have changed things, or not remembering correctly.

It was 1998 when I visited Freetown Christiania,Copenhagen, Denmark in JUNE/JULY. I was following a band from America who kicked off a 35+ Summer tour (10 in Europe) in Christiana. The energy was high for the 50ish or so visiting from the U.S. We were happy to have 3 nights together in same venue (wooden shed) . When we got to Christina it was like entering the opposite world! Many of us on tour were living in SOMEWHAT similar communities back home, nothing quite like this! The Band seemed to be saying thanks to the 50 of us that made it over starting in this (seemingly) marvelous place. Things CAN GET ODD QUICKLY. First 2 days/nights were great. The Band played almost 6 hours each night. They also choose to take intermission during sunset/sunrise. Which makes SUMMER a good time to visit. Witnessing for the first time with 60ish people 40min of nightime/sunset, is quite a spectical for the locals. . We were an easily ammused group of tourist. After the 3rd night. We forgot at the time the only rules were no cars, no cameras, no needles. It almost went BAD QUICKLY whith a camera incident. So, great place to experience, but PLEASE BE CAREFUL. JUST DON'T BE DIRESPECTFUL. THINGS CAN GET PRETTY DARK IN A HURRY WITH LOCALS.

Laura Longwell

Sunday 26th of May 2019

The rule of no cameras certainly still applies on Pusher Street.

Alan Pettengill

Friday 12th of October 2018

I was just there and loved it. Peace.

Tuesday 25th of July 2017

Hi Laura! Freetown Christiania looks like a happy town for me :) The fact that police can not stop the selling of drugs in this colorful town, considering that there are no crimes or gangs or anything that endangers the lives of the people living in the area or even tourists, then perhaps it's good to just support the Hippie Haven and their businesses, right? I can't wait to visit the place soon, looks and sounds interesting!

Thursday 15th of September 2016

Wow. This is quite an interesting concept, and the fact that it's been around for 45 years is impressive. I want to go!

Routes North - Nordic travel guide

Beyond weed: visiting Christiania in Copenhagen

Right in the middle of Copenhagen, in the neighbourhood of Christianshavn, you’ll find the alternative community of Christiania.

Christiania in Copenhagen is full of brightly-coloured murals.

It might be very close to expensive apartments and just a few streets away from the Copenhagen Opera House, but this laid-back part of town feels a million miles away.

Christiania was founded by a group of adventurous squatters and hippies in the 1970s, on an old military barracks.

Complete with habitable buildings and electricity, this area had all they needed to take up residence and begin creating an autonomous ‘freetown’ with its own laid-back way of life.

For some 50 years (and with the illicit cannabis trade that helped to make the area famous still obvious) Christiania has been a living monument to alternative thinking, green lifestyles, creativity and the hippie movement.

But don’t expect to see people with flower crowns burning sage and dancing in circles.

In recent years, there have been some violent incidents in the community, linked to gang crime and the drug trade, including a street shooting in August 2023, when one person was killed.

That said, violence is rare and provided you don’t get involved in buying or selling drugs, then Christiania is pretty safe overall.

And what most visitors experience today is a chilled, graffiti-daubed, artistic neighbourhood full of cosy cafés, open-minded, forward-thinking people and beautiful nature.

What is there to see and do in Christiania?

Christiania has around 850 inhabitants, including some of the people who first moved into the area back in the 1970s.

Some will be happy to show you around and chat about the good old days, while others very much prefer their privacy.

Christiania is still worth visiting

The residents’ cute and peculiar houses are easy to spot as you wander around. Most are brightly painted and many are decorated with unusual knick-knacks and drawings.

The community is dotted with brightly-coloured murals, graffiti, sculptures and artworks that brighten up old buildings and streets.

It’s also home to some interesting architecture, including Fredens Ark (the Ark of Peace), northern Europe’s largest half-timbered house, dating from 1837. Formerly a barracks, it now houses around 80 people plus a rock club.

Apart from being famed as a bit of a stoner’s paradise, where weed is sold openly on the street, Christiania is known for its environmental activism and a strong sense of community spirit, so you’ll see a lot of social activities being advertised on posters and billboards.

Our five favourite things to see and do in Christiania

  • Discover the hidden sights of Christiania and learn all about its unique origins and history. What we love about this tour is that its guide grew up in Christiania and provides a real insight into what it’s like to live in the community. 
  • Go on a beer walk. Run by the Christiania Bryghus, this tour starts off at the brewery and takes you round Christiania stopping off to sample five different brews on the way. It costs DKK 320, and is in Danish or English.
  • Explore by e-bike. Copenhagen is a very cycle-friendly city, and this  guided e-bike tour  includes the city’s main sights then stops off at Christiania so that you can go in, grab a coffee and look round on your own.
  • Admire the street art. Christiania is known for its graffiti and street art and you can wander around and see it on your own. We particularly like Green George, a sculpture of a friendly troll , made from the community’s rubbish, where children can sit in his lap.
  • Go skateboarding. Christiania is home to one of Copenhagen’s most popular skate bowls which is open 24/7. Bring your own board and have a go, or watch the pros practice their flips and tricks.

How long should you spend in Christiania?

You’ll get a feel for life in Christiania quite quickly, but you can easily spend a few hours here exploring, grabbing a coffee and a bite to eat, or even relaxing with a beer or at a concert.

You might even want to sign up for an art or crafts or yoga workshop.

Christiania in Copenhagen

Because Christiania is car-free and basically non-commercial, it’s a great place to escape from the hustle and bustle of the city. You definitely won’t find a branch of Starbucks here.

christiania copenhagen tour

Is the Copenhagen Card worth buying?

Read this guide to see how much you could save during your trip!

What are Christiania bikes?

As Christiania is a car-free environment, the favoured mode of transportation is the Christiania bike – otherwise known as a tricycle with a big box at the front. 

These distinctive bikes were first made in the 1970s in the blacksmiths at Christiania, but are now used right across Copenhagen, and further afield. The distinctive wooden box at the front is used to carry groceries, supplies, bags and even children and dogs.

The bikes are no longer made in Christiania, but the company still sticks to the same ethical and sustainable principles as when it was based in the freetown.

How do I get to Christiania?

Christiania is in the eastern part of the city centre. It’s easy to reach by bus or metro (just get off at Christianshavn station). You can even make a stop there on your way to the city from the airport.

Alternatively, it’s an easy fifteen-minute walk from Nyhavn to Christiania.

Can I take a tour instead of exploring alone?

If you really want to get to know Christiania and learn all about it’s fascinating history and how it works, it’s worth visiting on a guided walking tour.

Copenhagen's hippie town, Christiania

Paid guides are not allowed to enter Christiana itself and show you around, but several walking tours of the city will take you to entrance and give you the lowdown on the community and its lifestyle.

This one focuses on the city’s creative side and pays a visit to Christiania, giving you plenty of time to explore and ask questions along the way.

Alternatively, members of the community will take you on a guided tour round Christiania for a small fee.

Or, you can explore the freetown with this exploration game app , which tells stories and give you clues and challenges to work out while you’re wandering around Christiania. 

You can either play on your own or as a challenge against other visitors.

Can you still buy weed in Christiania?

The best-known part of Christiania is Pusher Street. Despite regular crackdowns, cannabis is still often sold from little booths along the street. Joints, blocks of resin, bags of skunk – you name it, you’ll probably find it here.

This ‘green light district’ has been the subject of curiosity and indignation for many years, with the government tending to turn a blind eye to the illegal trade, which has become a part of everyday life and is tolerated by locals, if not fully embraced.

Police raids take place on a regular basis, only for the drug trade to re-emerge shortly afterwards.

After a police officer was shot during an incident in mid 2016, things changed dramatically, with local residents backing a plan to remove drugs from the area for good.

Further violence and shootings by criminal gangs led to the mayor of Copenhagen, Sophie Hæstorp Andersen offering in May 2023 to close down Pusher Street’s drug trade if local residents agreed.

However, attempts by the police to banish the drug gangs have only been temporary and a further street shooting in August 2023 resulted in one person being killed and four being injured.

In January 2024, the Danish minister of Justice Peter Hummelgaard announced that Pusher Street would be closed for good, in consultation with residents and the Copenhagen city council.

Hummelgaard put a time-scale of six months on the closure, but since past attempts to permanently stop the violence and get rid of the criminal gangs have failed, many are sceptical as to whether it will happen.

And in the meantime can you still buy weed in Christiania? Well, yes.

As you walk along Pusher Street you will almost certainly hear people whispering ‘Weed, skunk, hash?’, and there will probably be a few stalls set up selling weed openly.

The smell of weed is still in the air, too, but the vibe is very different from how it was in Christiania’s heyday .

Before you step into Christiania and pass under its famous sign, you may even see posters asking you to “Help Christiania and buy your hash somewhere else”.

What happens if you buy weed in Christiania?

People are still buying and smoking weed in Christiania, but locals have agreed to video surveillance and police raids do happen more often than before. So, if you do decide to buy weed and smoke it there, do so at your own risk .

A house in Christiania, Copenhagen

Remember that buying marijuana is illegal in Denmark, even in Christiania. If you do buy, listen out for people shouting, which only usually tends to happen when police are on the prowl, and remember to be discreet when buying or smoking.

Being high is not illegal in Denmark, so you can relax in Christiania for as long as you want after you’ve finished your joint.

Can I take photos in Christiania?

For a long time photos were banned on Pusher Street, for fear that pictures would help the police to identify dealers.

Check out the statues, artworks and murals in Christiania, Copenhagen

And there are still plenty of ‘no photos’ signs around, especially around Pusher Street, where taking pics is a definite no-no. 

If you do want to take snaps else where in Christiania, always be courteous and ask permission if people or private houses are involved.

Most importantly: do not take pictures of weed being bought and sold!

Is Christiania safe?

Christiania is still considered a bit dodgy, so you should take the usual precautions that you would normally do when visiting a rough neighbourhood.

Don’t flash expensive phones around, keep your wits about you, don’t go on your own after dark – and don’t buy or smoke weed.

This particularly applies to the area around Pusher Street, which is controlled by organised criminal groups, according to the Copenhagen police.

Yes, there have been shootings and violent incidents on Pusher Street in recent years, but these are the work of criminal drug gangs and unlikely to involve innocent bystanders.

Avoid visiting the area at nighttime, especially if you’re a solo female traveller – mornings and afternoons usually feel pretty safe.

If you are careful, courteous and abide by the rules, you’re unlikely to have any problems. And there is no reason to feel worried about visiting any of the cafés, restaurants, galleries or bars in daylight.

What are the rules in Christiania?

As you enter Christiania, there is a sign with three rules on it. They are:

  • Don’t run – it causes panic
  • No photos – buying and selling hashish is still illegal

However, other – probably more important – rules that are set by the community include no violence and no cars. There is a zero tolerance approach to weapons, hard drugs and stealing.

Where should you eat?

There’s a lot of nice food in Christiania, and not just for when you have the munchies.

Bevar Christiania!

Right at the beginning of Pusher Street is the tiny Sunshine Bakery kiosk, which does a delicious dream cake (drømmekage) , among other freshly made delights.

You can enjoy decent coffee at Månefiskeren , an alcohol-free café with a big outdoor space. It’s one of the key hangouts for locals and visitors.

Another nice area with outside seating is the long-established  Café Nemoland and Bistro Nemo , painted yellow and red – the colours of Christiania. It serves up burgers, sandwiches, grills and salads, and hosts free concerts on Sundays.

For a more upscale meal, head to  Spiseloppen , where an international team serves up fresh fish, meat and vegetarian dishes using local and seasonal ingredients.

Vegetarians and vegans are well-served in Christiania, but most will want to head straight to  Grønsagen , a cosy eatery and grocery shop where you can choose from a hot and cold buffet and pay for your meal by weight

The slightly fancier vegetarian and vegan dining club Morgenstedet  offers hearty dishes made from organic and mostly local produce.

What about drinking?

Christiania is still a popular destination for going out. You can sip locally brewed beer at Woodstock Bar , where plenty of merry (and sometimes downright drunk) people will be only too happy to chat.

And the community also has its own brewery, the Christiania Bryghus , which makes a variety of beers all of which are brewed with hemp.

Listen to some tunes at Loppen or Operaen, both known for showcasing alternative musicians and emerging artists of all genres.

Den Gra Hal in Christiania has hosted some of the world's top bands and singers

Or check out the top bands at Christiania’s main concert venue Den Grå Hal . Past big-name acts include Bob Dylan, Patti Smith, Red Hot Chilli Peppers and Rage Against the Machine.

Jazz enthusiasts should head to the  Børneteateret  for some live performances and the famous Sunday jam, though the venue also hosts hip-hop evenings, comedy nights and country music gigs.

Where is there to stay?

There aren’t any hotels or hostels within Christiania itself but there are a couple of decent options nearby.

Try the cosy Sankt Anna B&B , just a short walk to the southwest of Christiania.

A cheaper, more sociable option is Bedwood Hostel , which is close by at Nyhavn, another popular Copenhagen sight and one that should definitely be on your sightseeing list when in town. It’s a fifteen-minute walk from Christiania.

And if you can afford a bit more luxury, the lovely Kanalhuset is just a short walk from Christiania. It has rooms and apartments in a converted eighteenth-century canal house that has been beautifully renovated and furnished.

Alternatively, this c osy second-floor apartment is just a stones’s throw from Christiania, with a balcony and a leafy communal courtyard for guests to use. 

And if there’s a group of you, this  good-value apartment about ten minutes’ walk from Christiania  sleeps up to six people, with one double bedroom, two sofa beds and a small balcony.

What’s new in Christiania?

One thing is for certain and that is that Christiania is an ever-changing and evolving community. 

Whether the police succeed in banishing the drug gangs or not, there’s an energy and enthusiasm about the place that encourages residents to think outside the box. 

Where else would combine a series of serious science lectures with cocktail making? 

Christiania’s non-profit Science and Cocktails puts on lectures, workshops and interviews by Nobel Prize winners and top scientists. 

Subjects such as “How migration really works” are covered, accompanied by live music and smoky dry-ice chilled cocktails.

Look out for innovative art events too, such as the container art exhibition My Loved Addict currently being held in one of the shipping containers that were used to close off Pusher Street to the dealers.

And there are always new events and gigs going on, with up-and-coming artists as well as established names such as Damian Marley appearing at  Den Grå Hal and Loppen : check their websites for what’s on.

So, should you bother visiting Christiania?

The short answer is: yes! Despite the current drug gang issues, there’s still plenty to see and do.

And while other neighbourhoods in Copenhagen such as Nørrebro and Vesterbro have become increasingly gentrified, Christiania has managed to preserve some of its edge and originality. 

Hopefully, even as things change, that will continue for years to come. As the brightly painted signs say: ‘Bevar Christiania!’ (Preserve Christiania!)

See also Where to eat Danish pastries in Copenhagen Our favourite beer tours and pub crawls in Copenhagen Copenhagen’s best communal baths and spas

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Lio

People there are very unfriendly. Yelling at people who take photos. Also there is dirt everywhere, full of junkies, illegal drug sellers, … I advice rather to stay away and definitely don’t bring kids. It is not a hippie community rather a failed social experiment.

Xavier Francoise

Buy from [email protected] He is legit

Victor

You’re quite mistaken. The weed trade is still alive and well, and is sold on the streets in dozens of booths lined up that are very much in the open

Routes North

This article is from a while ago, so things may well have changed 🙂

Troels

The cannabis trade on Christiania have not come to an end and it never will, i know this article is from 2016, but in most of 2016 you could buy cannabis and you still can?

Free Tour Copenhagen

  • Free Tour Copenhagen City
  • Free Tour Christiania
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Free Walking Tour Copenhagen Christiania

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WHAT’S IN OUR TOUR?

Discover Christiania: A Unique Free Walking Tour in Copenhagen

Embark on an enthralling journey through Christiania, Copenhagen’s most unique district! Join our free walking tour to explore the vibrant heart of alternative living, art, and community spirit.

Christiania, a former military base turned self-proclaimed autonomous neighborhood, is a testament to creativity and freedom.

Why Join Our Tour?

  • Explore a Different Side of Copenhagen : Dive into the colorful and unconventional Christiania, vastly different from the rest of the city.
  • Learn from Passionate Local Guides : Our guides are not just experts, but lovers of Christiania’s history and culture.
  • Discover Hidden Gems : From iconic murals to hidden cafes, every step is a discovery.
  • Capture Unique Photos : Christiania’s artistic and eclectic landscape provides unparalleled photo opportunities.

1 hour and 30 minutes

Search for the guide holding the ‘NORDIC FREEDOM TOURS’ sign.

  • Freetown Christiania : Experience the heart of this unique community, known for its relaxed atmosphere and artistic flair.
  • Pusher Street : Although its past is notorious, today it’s a hub of community activity and intriguing artwork.
  • Nature and Architecture : Witness the blend of natural beauty with unconventional architecture that defines Christiania.
  • Local Art Scene : Explore galleries and workshops showcasing the work of Christiania’s many artists.
  • Community Projects : Learn about the initiatives that keep the spirit of Christiania alive and thriving.

OUR MEETING POINT

Our guide, holding a ‘NORDIC FREEDOM TOURS’ sign, will meet you at the square outside the Christianshavn metro station  exit.

Click on the image below to access Google Maps.

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1. Traveling to the Free town of Copenhagen

2. the green light area.

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Image: By Annie Spratt. Unsplash

3. It was established as a different, self-represented society

4. various public venues give meeting spots and social scenes, 5. it is free of danish rule, 6.no one possesses any property, 7. anyone can visit.

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Image: Sedki Alimam. Unsplash

8. Marijuana is normal, yet not lawful

9. the people group has its banner and cash, 10. it has a self-made aggregate culture.

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Pamela is a writer with an insatiable wanderlust. Her storytelling captures the essence of every city, town, or hidden gem she researches or explores. With a background in literature, she diligently transports her readers to the heart of each destination. She writes for DW on numerous topics encouraging others to pack their bags and embark on their own adventures.

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How to get to Christiania in Copenhagen?

The free-town of Christiania in Copenhagen is a self-proclaimed city in the middle of the city. If you’re into bohemian areas, crafts and nature, it really is a must during your visit to Copenhagen.

Christiania is located in the city district of Christianshavn. Christianshavn is easily accessible by foot (just cross Inderhavnsbroen from Nyhavn). From there, you are about 15 minutes by foot away from Christiania. Walk along Prinsessgade with the water to the left until you come to Refshalevej. Stay on that street until you start seeing the signs.

If you want to travel to Christiania with public transport, you can (among other options) take bus 9A towards Refshaleøen and get off at Bodenhoffs Plads. From there it’s approx 10 minutes to walk. You can catch bus 9A from near the Central Station.

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When we began building our tours in 2011, we asked ourselves ‘what do we love about our travel experiences that help us really feel at home?’

The answers came quickly; people, places, culture, customs, sights, sounds, food and fine beer…and then we realised something. The most obvious answer was in our own question…

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2 Days in Copenhagen? Follow This Guide!

P lanning a quick weekend getaway to Copenhagen? With only 48 hours to spare in Denmark’s charming capital, you’ll want to make the most of your time here.

The Danish capital may be compact, but it packs a punch when it comes to world-class museums, cutting-edge design, historic landmarks, and cozy cafes.

I spent a memorable weekend discovering the best of Copenhagen that I coupled with nearby Malmo in Sweden, and I’m excited to share my 2-day itinerary to help you map out your own adventure.

This guide includes top attractions like Tivoli Gardens as well as some lesser-known spots like Norrebro, and some local favorites that will give you a taste of authentic Danish hygge.

Copenhagen 2-Day Itinerary Summary

No time to read the full post? You can check out the highlights below, or scroll down for all the details.

Day 1: City Center

1. Stroll down Strøget Street for shopping and cafes.

2. Explore Rosenborg Castle and see the crown jewels.

3. Wander through Nyhavn district and have lunch by the colorful canals.

4. Visit Tivoli Gardens amusement park at night when it sparkles with lights.

Day 2: Alternative Copenhagen

1. Take in the hip vibe of Freetown Christiania.

2. Climb the tower of the Church of Our Saviour for panoramic views.

3. Learn about Danish design at Design Museum Denmark.

4. Relax on a laidback canal tour around the city.

5. Grab drinks and soak up the atmosphere in Christiania.

2 Day Copenhagen Itinerary

Day 1 morning: explore norrebro and superkilen.

For your first morning in Copenhagen, fuel up on coffee and pastries in Norrebro. This multicultural neighborhood has hip cafes, international eateries, and an energetic vibe.

While wandering the trendy cafes and diverse eateries of Norrebro, you can fuel up before tackling the many wonderful things to do in Copenhagen .

After breakfast, head to Superkilen Urban Park to soak up the international essence of the neighborhood. An urban park designed by architects to celebrate diversity, Superkilen features objects and artifacts from 60 different nationalities around the world.

Go for a jog, chat with locals, and enjoy the quirky installations like neon signs from Russia and palm trees from China. It’s the perfect place to soak up the international essence of Norrebro.

Day 1 Afternoon: Rosenborg Castle, National Museum, and Nyhavn

After working up an appetite wandering Tivoli, make your way over to Rosenborg Castle, home to the Danish crown jewels and artifacts. Marvel at the ornate ceilings and royal furnishings as you explore this Renaissance castle.

Don’t miss the Treasury exhibition in the basement, where you can admire the crowns and jewels up close.

Next, dive into Denmark’s history and culture at the National Museum just around the corner. It houses everything from Viking ships to medieval religious art. Be sure to see the bronze Sun Chariot from the 3rd century BC – it documents an incredible array of ancient Nordic bronze works.

Once you’ve had your fill of history, take a scenic stroll over to Nyhavn, Copenhagen’s iconic waterfront district. Snap some photos of the colorful gabled townhouses lining the canal.

Stop for an open-faced smoked salmon sandwich and a Carlsberg beer at one of the restaurants with outdoor seating. Wave to boaters passing by as you soak up the vibrant atmosphere along the waterfront.

Day 1 Evening: Torvehallerne Market and Tivoli at Night

For dinner, make your way over to Torvehallerne Market, just a short walk from Nørreport Station. It’s an indoor food market with over 60 vendors selling fresh produce, artisan breads, cheeses, cured meats, chocolate, and more.

Grab ingredients for the perfect picnic dinner or try samples from some of Copenhagen’s top eateries and food shops.

Once you’ve eaten, end your first day back at Tivoli Gardens. The amusement park takes on a magical atmosphere at night when over a million twinkling lights illuminate the grounds.

Take a spin on the Ferris Wheel or Rollercoaster for an epic view of the city lights before watching the nightly fireworks show over the lake. It’s the perfect way to end an evening in Copenhagen.

A Copenhagen packing list should include multiple layers for keeping warm at the Torvehallerne Market and Tivoli Gardens.

Day 2 Morning: Christiania and Church of Our Saviour

On your second day, fuel up on coffee and head over to the infamous Freetown Christiania, a self-proclaimed autonomous neighborhood with art galleries, eateries, and music venues.

Wander along the car-free streets and canals, taking in the creative and free-spirited vibe. Don’t miss wandering down Pusher Street, where independent stalls and stands now sell handmade goods after the area’s former seedy past.

Next, climb the winding 400 steps to the top of the Church of Our Saviour’s spiral tower for stunning panoramic views of Copenhagen.

On a clear day, you can see as far as Sweden across the Öresund Strait. Don’t worry – you can take a breather on the landings on the way up. Trust me, battling the steps is worth it for the sweeping city vistas.

Day 2 Afternoon: Design Museum Denmark, Canal Tour, and Christiana

After you’ve caught your breath, cross over the bridge to Slotsholmen Island for a taste of Danish design at Design Museum Denmark. View iconic furniture like minimalist chairs, as well as exhibits highlighting Denmark’s leadership in modern design principles and architecture.

Then embark on a laidback canal tour to relax and enjoy Copenhagen from the water. Cruise by The Little Mermaid statue, Amalienborg Palace, the Black Diamond library, and the colorful houses of Nyhavn. It’s the perfect way to get your bearings while basking in Copenhagen’s charm from a new vantage point.

Once you return to land, take some time to browse the trendy shops and boutiques on Strøget and grab a smørrebrød for a late lunch. Duck into Royal Copenhagen if you want to take home some signature Danish porcelain.

Spend your final hours back at one of my favorite spots – Christiania. Explore the creative DIY homes and soak up the communal, bohemian atmosphere. Don’t miss grabbing a craft beer at Månefiskeren, sitting by the canals taking in street music performances before you have to jet off.

Extend Your Stay-Best Things to do in Copenhagen

If you have more time to spend in Copenhagen beyond 2 days, there are plenty more neighborhoods, museums, and activities to enjoy. Here are some top recommendations:

⭐️ Wander through the grounds of Kastellet and see the historic windmill overlooking the water. Kastellet is a 17th century star-shaped fortress with lovely green spaces and architecture.

⭐️ Rent a bike and cycle to see more of the city’s layout and scenic harbor views. Biking is the perfect way to cover ground like the beaches at Amager Strand.

⭐️ Visit Frederiksborg Castle in Hillerød, a short train ride outside the city. It’s an impressive Renaissance castle surrounded by gardens and lakes.

⭐️ Tour the Carlsberg Brewery to learn about the history of beer making and sample their famous pilsner.

⭐️ Relax at the beaches along the Amager coastline or in the gardens of Frederiksberg Palace.

⭐️ Head further afield to the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art or medieval castle Kronborg in Helsingør. Both easy day trips by train.

⭐️ Attend a jazz concert at Jazzhus Montmartre, which hosts local and international jazz musicians.

How to Get to Copenhagen

Copenhagen has an international airport, so you can easily fly directly into the city. There are also train and ferry options if you want to arrive overland from other parts of Europe.

Some options for getting to Copenhagen:

✈️ Flight – Copenhagen Airport is located just 8 km from the city center, with quick and easy transport links via train, metro, bus, or taxi. Many international airlines offer direct flights.

🚊Train – Copenhagen Central Station has direct trains from cities like Hamburg, Berlin, Amsterdam, and Stockholm. Rail travel provides scenic views of the Danish countryside.

⛴ Ferry – Take the ferry from Oslo or a ferry and train combination from London or Amsterdam. Perfect for enjoying sea views.

Savvy Traveler’s Guide to Crowd-Free Destinations

Where to stay in copenhagen.

With only 48 hours, you’ll want to stay as centrally as possible to maximize sightseeing time. Here are some top neighborhoods and hotels to consider:

📍 Tivoli/City Hall – For attractions like Tivoli Gardens, City Hall, and Strøget. Stay at Hotel Alexandra for luxury right beside Tivoli.

📍 Nyhavn – To be along the iconic colorful waterfront. Try 71 Nyhavn Hotel for canal views.

📍 Nørreport – For cafes, shops, and easy transport. Wakeup Copenhagen is an affordable design hotel.

📍 Vesterbro – Trendy area with cafes and nightlife. Stay at urban-chic Axel Hotel or Generator Hostel .

On a budget? Do what I did and book cheaper accommodation in Malmo, just 30 minutes away from Copenhagen over the Oresund Bridge. It’s ideal for combining your trip to Copenhagen with Malmo so you get to see both cities.

Final Tips for Making the Most of 48 Hours in Copenhagen

To recap, spending 2 days in Copenhagen is best done by…

• Exploring top attractions like Tivoli Gardens and Rosenborg Castle, balanced with local favorites like Christiania

• Visiting museums and landmarks during the day, and enjoying Tivoli Gardens at night when everything is illuminated

• Strolling and cycling along charming streets like Strøget and Nyhavn

• Sampling authentic smørrebrød, pastries, and other Danish cuisine as you go

• Ending your last day relaxing in Christiania with a craft beer along the canals

I hope this 2 day Copenhagen itinerary helps you experience the highlights at an enjoyable pace.

With this handy guide, you’ll know exactly how to make the most of your weekend getaway in Denmark’s fairytale capital. Just don’t forget your camera – so many Instagram-worthy moments are waiting to be captured in Copenhagen!

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2 Days in Copenhagen? Follow This Guide!

COMMENTS

  1. Freetown Christiania

    Read about current affairs from Copenhagen Police or visit their account on X. Guided tours Locals give guided tours of the area. Every day throughout the summer (26 June - 31 August) and every weekend the rest of the year. This is a really good way to experience the special Christiania vibe.

  2. Freetown Christiania Copenhagen: The Ultimate Guide to Plan Your Visit

    There aren't many rules and laws in Christiania, except for a few key ones to note. First, Freetown Christiania is a community free of violence. There are no guns, knives, or bulletproof vests. Also banned from the community: bikers' colours, hard drugs, and stealing of any kind. Don't run in Christiania.

  3. Christiania

    Christiania. This hippy enclave and alternative community in the heart of Copenhagen is home to many artists and artisans. Here, you can wonder at colorful street art all around, and stop by cozy cafes for some top-notch craft beers. Enjoy the area's bohemian vibes as you hunt for offbeat handicrafts, and go for a walk around the lake or ...

  4. Read This Before Visiting Freetown Christiania in Copenhagen

    Getting to Freetown Christiania Copenhagen . You can easily arrive by foot. From Nyhavn Harbour, cross the bridge and keep walking. Y ou'll come to Christiania after about 15 minutes. Freetown Christiania opening times. ... Consider a tour with Copenhagen Free Walking Tours. I did the general Copenhagen tour with them so I'm sure the ...

  5. Freetown Christiania, Copenhagen

    Copenhagen: Christiania Self-Guided Audio Tour Freetown Christiania is Denmark's landmark of freedom and cohesion and a unique example of alternative living in Europe. This self-guided tour highlights Christiania's particularities by pointing out some of its most valuable features and details.

  6. Copenhagen: Christiania & Christianshavn Guided Walking Tour

    Guided tour Copenhagen: Christiania & Christianshavn Guided Walking Tour. Activity provider:Lost with a Local. 4.9 / 5 15 reviews. Discover the captivating and unique districts of Christianshavn and Christiania on a guided walking tour led by a lifelong resident of this vibrant corner of Copenhagen.

  7. 2024 (Copenhagen) Hidden Corners

    About. Christiania is a controversial and ambiguous place, but it definitely deserves attention if you find yourself in Copenhagen by the will of fate. The tour will appeal to lovers of nature and unusual quarters, as well as everyone who is looking for new impressions and sensations.Christiania resembles a strange village of the Middle Ages.

  8. Free Vesterbro & Christiania Tour Copenhagen

    Lace up your shoes and get ready to journey off the beaten path with the Free Vesterbro and Christiania Tour. Your last stop is the renowned Free City of Christiania, a spirited, self-governing neighborhood unlike anything you've seen before. Although guided tours are not allowed inside Christiania, your guide will provide lots of information ...

  9. Copenhagen Christiania Tour

    Christiania Freetown is mostly known for its open cannabis trade but it is much more than this - it is self governance, it is art, it is ecology, it is tolerance and most of all it is unique! This 8 km tour will take you through Christianshavn which is the most quaint area of Copenhagen and where you can see some of the city's oldest buildings.

  10. Tickets & Tours

    The tour takes you around Copenhagen, enjoy the views and listen to the guides tips, facts and stories! Explore Nyhavn, the Little Mermaid statue and The Freetown Christiania area. - Comfortable cruising - Ride around without breaking a sweat - Local English speaking guide. More. 5 minutes. Free Cancellation.

  11. Visiting the eclectic enclave of Freetown Christiania in Copenhagen

    The birth of a community. The origins of how the community of Christiania, Copenhagen started, or at least the story behind who first accessed the base and began staying there long-term are somewhat muddy — most accounts say the founding of Freetown Christiania was organic and haphazard, while some claim that it was an organised protest against the government of Denmark due to a lack of ...

  12. Freetown Christiania

    Freetown Christiania—often referred to as simply "Christiania"—came into being in 1971, when squatters occupied the former Bådsmandsstræde military barracks, and then declared itself a state. The tax-free commune is home to around 1,000 residents, who make their own laws. One controversial law is the legal sale of cannabis, which is ...

  13. Christiania

    Social Sailing - Copenhagen Canal Tour - Exploring Hidden Gems. 1,047. Recommended. 96% of reviewers gave this product a bubble rating of 4 or higher. City Tours. from . C$88.32. per adult. ... Felt like we should visit the free neighbourhood of Christiania whilst in Copenhagen. Didn't feel at all threatened like some of the other reviewers.

  14. Freetown Christiania

    Freetown Christiania is Copenhagen's bohemian neighborhood famous for street art, music, and legal marijuana. Get to know its storied past here. ... Free Walking Tour of Christianshavn. 8.86 192 reviews . Free. book. Copenhagen Free Walking Tour. 9.23 15105 reviews . Free. book. Copenhagen Canal Cruise. 7.96 315 reviews . US$ 20.

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  16. The Original Christianshavn Tour

    The Christianshavn Tour is our most popular alternative tour, beginning at Højbro Plads and exploring the island of Christianshavn, which was built as a separate city from Copenhagen. It is now a great neighborhood with an eclectic mix of residents. The tour ends just outside the gates of Christiania, where you can wander at your own will ...

  17. Freetown Christiania: Copenhagen's Colorful Hippie Haven

    It was 1998 when I visited Freetown Christiania,Copenhagen, Denmark in JUNE/JULY. I was following a band from America who kicked off a 35+ Summer tour (10 in Europe) in Christiana. The energy was high for the 50ish or so visiting from the U.S. We were happy to have 3 nights together in same venue (wooden shed) .

  18. Beyond weed: visiting Christiania in Copenhagen

    Go on a beer walk. Run by the Christiania Bryghus, this tour starts off at the brewery and takes you round Christiania stopping off to sample five different brews on the way. It costs DKK 320, and is in Danish or English. Explore by e-bike.

  19. Free Walking Tour Copenhagen Christiania

    Embark on an enthralling journey through Christiania, Copenhagen's most unique district! Join our free walking tour to explore the vibrant heart of alternative living, art, and community spirit. Christiania, a former military base turned self-proclaimed autonomous neighborhood, is a testament to creativity and freedom.

  20. 15 Best Things to do in Christiania, Copenhagen

    8. Tour The Old Execution site in Copenhagen 1946-1950. A weird spot to visit, it is extremely unnoticeable. Simply the floor of the old execution cabin - and a few stones encompassing it however some say it has a very fascinating history while others call it the best spot in Christiania. 9.

  21. 10 Things to know about Christiania, The "Freetown" of Copenhagen

    Sightseers are extremely free to visit obviously. In this article, we examine ten things to be familiar with Christiania, the free town of Copenhagen. 1. Traveling to the Free town of Copenhagen. Freetown Christiania is situated in the Christianshavn region and you can arrive by metro, transport, or bicycle.

  22. Freetown Christiania Guided tours

    Our most recommended Freetown Christiania Guided tours. 1. Copenhagen: Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour with Boat Tour Option. Experience the beauty of Copenhagen from an open-air double-decker sightseeing bus. With your ticket, you can hop on and off as much as you like at any of the conveniently located stops around the city.

  23. How to get to Christiania in Copenhagen?

    The free-town of Christiania in Copenhagen is a self-proclaimed city in the middle of the city. If you're into bohemian areas, crafts and nature, it really is a must during your visit to Copenhagen. Christiania is located in the city district of Christianshavn. Christianshavn is easily accessible by foot (just cross Inderhavnsbroen from Nyhavn). From […]

  24. 2 Days in Copenhagen? Follow This Guide!

    Relax on a laidback canal tour around the city. 5. Grab drinks and soak up the atmosphere in Christiania. 2 Day Copenhagen Itinerary. Day 1 Morning: Explore Norrebro and Superkilen.