creating joy in the winter months

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Copenhagen’s winter is longggg. While Scandinavia is known for its beautiful summer where the sun practically never sets, the other side of this is cold winters where sometimes there are only 3 hours of sunlight. As a native Bostonian, I was told that winter in Copenhagen would not be that bad as the weather was pretty similar. In my experience, this was not the case. Copenhagen has some of the most intense winds I’ve ever experienced. The wind makes a difference! As much as I dreaded the weather, I was committed to finding ways to enjoy Copenhagen regardless. Here’s a quick list of my favorite things to do in Copenhagen during the winter months.

1. Cafes!

I absolutely love the cafe culture in Copenhagen. They’re everywhere and really cultivate a cozy environment. You can often find cafes with couches and an abundance of pillows, almost like being in an actual living room. These cafes make a great place to do work but also chat for hours on end. I also appreciated that I did not necessarily feel pressured to buy something all the time. Copenhagen is expensive and sometimes I just really needed a place to sit for a while. These cafes were a place to do that.

My favorite cafe in Copenhagen is The Living Room! The bottom floor of this cafe is what I’d describe as a cozy cavern. Full of couches and comfy armchairs fill the space and there are various nooks to sit in. The dim, warm lighting also adds to the ambiance. Also, DIS students get a discount! Other honorable mentions include Pisserenden 8 (overpriced but very good delicious hot chocolate) and Kaffebaren (The owner is so lovely! She walked me through all the various kinds of coffee to help me decide when I was unsure).

2. Absalon

Absalon is by far one of my favorite places in Copenhagen! (I even wrote a paper about it). A former church, Absalon has now been converted into a community space. They serve lunch daily and have community dinners every night. Throughout the day they have a large variety of events, from yoga to ceramics classes to parties. Everyone who works there is so kind and lovely. Outside of these events, it is also a great space to sit and chat.

P.S.: If you are interested in going to the community dinners, make sure to buy tickets in advance! They sell out quickly.

3. Free Museum Wednesdays

Many of Copenhagen’s museums are free on Wednesdays! As an avid museum lover, I spent many of my first weeks in Copenhagen exploring them. There’s a bit of everything, from museums specializing in more classical work to modern and contemporary art. No matter where you go, I’m sure you can find something that suits your taste.

My top museum recommendations are the Glyptotek, the Nikolaj Kunsthal, and the Louisiana (technically an hour outside Copenhagen but worth the trip!).