The old port of Nyhavn is the most important centre of Copenhagen for locals and tourists alike. Here you'll find picturesque, colourful houses that are replicas of historic buildings according to surviving plans, with dozens of restaurants, bars and cafes.

Be sure to explore the place, but for coffee, head to the streets outside Nyhavn or ideally to the end by the sea behind the Royal Theatre.

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The harbour is charming both by day and by night.

Hans C. Andersen

In Nyhavn you will come across two addresses associated with one of Denmark's most important characters, the writer Hans Christian Andersen. From 1848 to 1865 he lived at Nyhavn 67, where a small memorial plaque commemorates his presence.

He lived at Nyhavn 18 between 1871 and 1875, and there is now a small gift shop dedicated to Andersen.

Boat Museum

The southern part of the Nyhavn Canal between the bridge and Kongens Torv Square is surrounded by 5 historic ships, mostly from the 19th and 20th centuries, which are catered for by the Danish National Museum. Walk along the promenade and see these ships and their educational descriptions up close. There is no entrance fee and the promenade is open 24 hours a day.

For more information, visit the museum's official website.

Accommodation in Nyhavn

If you're the kind of tourist who likes to stay right in the heart of the action in the most famous locations, then head to Nyhavn in Copenhagen. You'll pay a premium for the location, though, so expect higher prices than elsewhere in the city. We recommend the following hotels right in Nyhavn:

  • Hotel Bethel - a classic 3* with decent prices from 128 eur per night for 2 and good ratings
  • 71 Nyhavn Hotel - treat yourself to luxury and stay in a stylish 5* hotel right at the mouth of Nyhavn's sea

History of the harbour

Nyhavn harbour was built during the 17th century at the instigation of King Christian V. It was intended to serve as a link between the main harbour and the central Kongens Nytorv square, facilitating the flow of small goods directly into the centre.

With the increasing size of ships, Nyhavn gradually became less important and the final destruction and abandonment of the place was completed by the Second World War. In the 1970s, however, all the houses along the promenade were completely restored and renovated to their 18th and 19th century appearance.

Boat cruises

From Nyhavn, you can go on hour-long organised boat tours for 90 dkk to 100 dkk, cruises usually last 60 minutes and sail the entire Copenhagen harbour within the historic centre.

There are many companies organising cruises here, just come to the quay and choose one.

What to see around

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