I had read that the Norrebro Neighborhood was a fun, hip place to explore so I headed there on my second morning in Copenhagen. I took the 6A bus from downtown, which only took about fifteen minutes. When I got off at the stop that Google Maps had instructed me to, I was a little confused. There was nothing around. No shops, no cute cafes, just warehouses and residences.
I popped into a coffee shop for a latte and to take advantage of their free Wi-Fi. Of course I should have found more exact directions before I left the hostel and took the bus to an unfamiliar neighborhood, but I was too excited to get going to sit down and think about practical things. In the coffee shop, I discovered that the main hub of Norrebro was just a half mile walk away, so I headed in that direction.
I was instantly happy when I arrived in the neighborhood and immediately spotted a cute café, called Sebastopol, for more coffee and a bite to eat. I sat outside in the cobblestone square and people watched while I drank my coffee. This was exactly how I pictured I would spend my time in Copenhagen.
The women of this beautiful city make me want to throw my Ventra Card (public transportation in Chicago) in the river and buy a bike and some flowy dresses. The basket of bread and croissants I ordered (and finished off, I might add) was probably unnecessary, but I rationalized that it would give me the energy I needed to walk around. After I reluctantly peeled myself out of my comfy chair and paid my bill, I started to wander the neighborhood, popping into the very trendy clothing stores and thrift shops as I went.
The stores that I liked best were: Urban Room, a cut clothing and home goods store with beautiful posters and fancy undies, Mondo Kaos, which sold gorgeous vintage dresses with accessories to match, and Baan Suan, really beautiful and practical clothing and jewelry. There were plenty of others that were fun to browse through, but those were the ones that stand out to me.
In between the stores were plenty of cafes, bars, sweet shops and restaurants. Everyone I passed was super stylish and I was so glad I wore something decent that day. After hours of zigzagging through the neighborhood, I wound up at BRUS, a brewery/restaurant with craft beer and cocktails on tap.
I ordered the BRUS Cocktail (when in Rome…), which was a tastier, fancier gin and tonic. They had picnic tables set outside around the restaurant, which is where I sat to enjoy my drink and do some more people watching. The people of Copenhagen gave me some major fashion goals.
I decided to head to the SMK National Gallery from Norrebro, which had me wander back through the neighborhood one last time. My favorite thing about Norrebro is that wherever there was a free space along a wall, people had tables of antiques and used goods set up. It made exploring the neighborhood like a treasure hunt through an antique store.
Plus they had actual great antique stores throughout as well. The walk also took me along the three rectangular lakes in Copenhagen, named Sortedams So. It was a beautiful walk and I passed many other pedestrians and bikers and picnickers enjoying the beautiful day.
The museum itself was housed in a huge building with a sprawling lawn behind it and a pond in front. I arrived there in the late afternoon and the museum closed at 5pm, so I rushed in to see as much as possible. The entry was included in the Copenhagen Card, but my bag was deemed too big, so I had to store it in their cloak room. It was actually a relief not to have to carry that clunky thing around for a while.
I started at the top of the main building and work myself through the works of European Art from the 1300’s to the 1900’s. My favorite paintings were the works of Johan Christian Dahl, whose paintings of Danish landscapes were gorgeous, and the Picasso and Mattisse paintings, of course.
I would have loved to take more time walking through, but I did get through most of the museum in my two hours there. They have a whole other building dedicated to modern art that I wish I had more time in, but that side of the museum was amazing and whimsical in its displays. The two buildings are connected through indoor bridges on the higher floors and a walkway of sculptures on the main floor.
If you plan on visiting the SMK, I would recommend setting aside a few hours to take in all the amazing art there. After the museum closed, I headed back towards downtown, this time on foot. Each new area I was exploring in Copenhagen was making me love the city more and more.
Which neighborhoods in Copenhagen have you explored?
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