Under-The-Radar Destinations In Denmark That Are Just As Cool As Copenhagen

Although Denmark was once known for relentless Vikings, the country has managed to rewrite its history, with millions of tourists now visiting each year. For instance, approximately 16 million tourists had a good time in this small, trendy country in 2020 (via World Data). In case you're wondering why a vacation in Denmark is worth every penny, the country features contemporary museums, sand dunes, stunning botanical gardens, gourmet gastronomy, innovative architecture, glorious beaches, a temperate climate, ancient castles, and a lot more. It's a unique destination that blends modern developments with its prehistoric roots.

When it comes to the top places to visit in Denmark, Copenhagen takes the cake. According to World Data, it was one of the most sought-after cities by tourists as it took the 73rd position in 2019. The city continues to draw tourists from all walks of life with an efficient transport system, diverse shopping options, excellent Danish cuisine, historic sites, and revolutionary architecture (per Visit Copenhagen). But the attractions in Copenhagen are just the tip of the iceberg — Denmark brims with a lot that tourists can't exhaust in one trip. Besides the country's capital, here are some other equally exciting destinations to include on your bucket list.

The Open-Air Museum (Frilandsmuseet), Lyngby

The Open-Air Museum covers about 86 acres, and it is home to about 50 farms and 25 historic gardens. It is also home to about 100 buildings that illustrate how life was between 1650 and 1940, so you'll have a chance to learn history worth hundreds of years. It's never a dull moment any time of the year at this museum because you can ride a horse-drawn carriage, visit historic gardens, organize a picnic with your family, check out spectacular historic structures, or marvel at vintage mills (via Wonderful Copenhagen).

For fun-loving history buffs, the museum hosts drama productions and unique festivals that are aimed at telling historic stories or celebrating different elements. For example, guests enjoy a play that entails a puzzling murder that occurred in 1865, trying to figure out what exactly caused the crime is truly mind-boggling. For further exploration with your kids, you can check out the petting zoo or see what's available at an old-school cooperative market (per Visit Copenhagen).

LEGO House, Billund

Your kids will be excited to discover where the LEGO brick originated from, so a visit to LEGO House in Billund will be one for the books. You can take family photos at the LEGO Square to remind you of the good times you had in Billund. You also can build creative structures with your kids because there are literally millions of LEGO bricks available to use. When playing with such bricks, kids improve their problem-solving skills, learn to be creative, and appreciate the power of working as a team.

There's a lot to explore if your kids want to satisfy their curiosity. For example, you can marvel at the Tree of Creativity, which is one of the largest LEGO models as it stands at 15 meters. It took a whopping 24,350 hours to build this iconic tree using 6,316,611 LEGO bricks. With its gigantic size, it's not surprising that it weighs 20 tons (per LEGO House). This model, among other LEGO artworks you can find at the Masterpiece Gallery, are mind-blowing to all guests, regardless of their age.

If you want to make a day out of it, you can visit one of the three restaurants found at the LEGO House, like the Mini Chef Restaurant. A reviewer on Trip Advisor said, "If you're visiting LEGO House do not fail to book this in advance. It's amazing! Use Lego pieces to order your food from robot chefs." Another Trip Advisor reviewer who visited the Mini Chef Restaurant noted, "Highly recommendable when you visit LEGO House!"

Kronborg Castle, Helsingør

Kronborg Castle, which is now a UNESCO Heritage Site, has a rich history that dates back to the 15th century. William Shakespeare popularized the location when he included it in "Hamlet," one of his most popular plays. If you love live performances, you can visit this castle during the summer to enjoy Shakespeare's plays performed by talented actors from companies such as the Royal Shakespeare Company. The castle hosts other events like the HamletScenen's Shakespeare Festival to celebrate Shakespeare's legacy (per Visit Denmark).

If you feel a bit adventurous, you can go on a guided tour of the castle to learn more about the history of this locale. One of the exciting activities you shouldn't miss on your list is exploring the underground of the Kronborg Castle, where you'll be lucky to see the majestic Holger the Dane, which is an iconic stone statue believed to have the superpowers to protect Denmark in case of any problem or attacks (via Visit Denmark).

Egeskov Castle, Kværndrup

For an amazing family trip, a day spent at Egeskov Castle is a great treat because there is a lot to explore and learn. This castle is well-conserved to maintain its originality, so it offers a golden opportunity to check out a building that was constructed in the 16th century to serve as a defense center. However, in 1883, renovations were made to include a new gate, which you can use to enter the castle. Other additions included a power plant, a railway, and a dairy farm to ensure the castle generated wealth (per Wanted in Europe).

Like most ancient buildings, how this castle was built is still mind-altering since its foundation lies in a lake that's up to five meters deep. You might wonder how many oak poles it took to make this foundation, and the truth is that the trees that were needed could make an entire forest. The other interesting feature of this castle is that it comprises about 2,000 windows, which most probably served surveillance purposes (via Wanted in Europe).

Viking Ship Museum (Vikingeskibsmuseet), Roskilde

If you find Viking stories fascinating, here is a chance to learn more about their way of life. The Viking Ship Museum has the Viking Ship Hall, and this is where you will find five Viking ships that were used in the 11th century, among other water vessels. In addition, there is the Boatyard section, where Viking materials such as tools, pottery, and other remains from their era are studied. At the Boatyard, exhibitions are held, so you'll get a chance to see how boat builders use ancient tools and techniques that were employed by Vikings to build ships (via Vikingeskibs Museet).

The In the Jetty experience is also worth looking into, where you can wear the clothes worn by Vikings and get into an ancient vessel that has a wide range of weapons (per Visit Denmark). Doing so, you'll get a better understanding of how it felt going into war during the Viking era, plus it's an enjoyable experience that you'll not find in another place.

You can buy souvenirs at the Museum Shop, which includes artworks and textiles that are inspired by Vikings. The shop also features toys, games, and books your kids will find interesting to read since they tell Viking stories. Buy your friend or lover a gift from the shop, like replica jewelry from the Viking age (per Visit Fjordlandet).

Den Gamle By, Aarhus

Although the culture and traditions of the Danish people have significantly changed, Den Gamle By still holds on the past ways of life, giving tourists a chance to understand the history of Denmark. There are recreations of 75 buildings that were originally constructed in about 20 towns from different parts of Denmark. The aim of constructing these buildings in the museum was to create a space that allows visitors to experience the traditions of Danes, just as they were centuries ago. Today, this museum is a highly sought-after attraction in Denmark that attracts approximately three million tourists who are curious to learn more about Danes (per Expedia).

Something that makes this museum stand out is that it hosts other museums, which include The Danish Posters Museum, The Toy Museum, The Jewellery Box, The Aarhus Stories, and The Decorative Arts Gallery. Each museum has something unique to offer, for example, The Jewellery Box features jewelry made between 1900 and 2000. The Toy Museum boasts a collection of about 5,000 toys made between the 17th century and the 20th century. The Decorative Arts Gallery, on the other hand, features unique pieces of art, including watches, silverware, porcelain, and clocks made by the finest Dane artists (via Visit Aarhus).

Reddit user stated, "Basically the museum demonstrates life in an old Danish market town ... I'd recommend a visit if you're planning to visit the non-Copenhagen parts of Denmark."

Hans Christian Andersen Museum, Odense

The Hans Christian Andersen Museum celebrates the life and works of Hans Christian Andersen, a legendary author and artist who died in 1875. You'll learn his story from his humble begins to when he became a celebrated Danish artist. This museum features a collection of the artist's drawings, sketches, and paper cuts, among other pieces of artwork (per Visit Nordic). Some of his popular tales include "The Nightingale," "The Little Match Girl," "The Ugly Duckling," "Thumbelina," and "The Princess and the Pea." These fairy tales inspired Disney filmmakers to create movies such as 'The Little Mermaid," "Frozen," and "The Emperor's New Groove," so you and your kids will be excited to see and learn from the original collection (via Lonely Planet).

The museum hosts exhibitions that showcase the life and work of Andersen, so you understand what inspired him and the message he intended to pass through his artwork. The museum also has works of other artists, including Daniel Handler (a renowned American author), Andy Gent (a puppet designer), and Veronica Hodges (a paper sculptor). By the end of your visit, you will start seeing the world in new dimensions because the fairy tale pieces of art will open your mind to unlimited imagination.

A Reddit user who once visited the museum said, "I went to Odense and if you are into the Hans Christian Andersen stuff it's actually really cute. A lot of fairy tale vibes."

Wadden Sea National Park, Esbjerg

Covering a 1,459-kilometer-square area, this natural UNESCO site has a lot for nature lovers to explore. The Wadden Sea National Park has an awe-inspiring landscape that features sand dunes, tidal flats, salt meadows, barrier islands, and marshy grounds. The scenery keeps transforming due to the impact of the strong tidal waves, so you can capture Instagram-worthy photos for unique memories. If you love bird watching, this is the place to be, especially since it serves as a stopover for approximately 12 million migratory birds per year. The shallow waters of the Wadden Sea are excellent breeding grounds for fish, a feeding area for birds, and a home for seals (via Vadehavskysten).

The national park is also a great destination for a vacation with friends or family since it has a diverse landscape suitable for different activities. For example, the nearby Rømo and Fanø islands have stunning beaches where you can relax as you enjoy the breeze. Foodies are not left out since there is a wide range of seafood to try out, including the mouth-watering flavor of sea-meadow grass, oysters, and shrimps (via Visit Nordic). Campsites are also available at the park, so you can get your gear ready for adventure in this unique and charming nature.

Aarhus Street Food, Aarhus

Enjoy a culinary tour at the Aarhus Street Food, which features chefs and foods from different parts of the world. Once you get here, the tantalizing aromas will make you eager to try new street foods from other cultures. There's everything under one roof, including Mexican tacos, Vietnamese salads, Danish sandwiches, and American cuisines, among other delicacies that are signature foods in other countries (via Visit Aarhus). The variety of food here caters to the unique tastes and needs of different people, so whether you are on a tight budget or you prefer specific diets, there's something for you.

A reviewer on Trip Advisor said, "Incredible collection of different types of food from Italian to Greek and Thai to Indian. Something for everyone and the quality of the food is fantastic." Another reviewer on Trip Advisor added, "My daughters are vegetarian and loved the plant-based options. The duck was delicious and the Turkish grill and the pittas." Lynette on Instagram posted a photo with a caption that read, "What a dining experience at #aarhusstreetfood ... It was my first visit to this food market and it will definitely not be my last." 

Camp Adventure, Roennede

Adventurers looking for challenging activities to engage in will enjoy their visit to Camp Adventure. From experienced adrenaline junkies to newbies who would like to try thrilling activities, this locale has high-rope courses for all. If you'd like to try something extreme, you can try a zip line that's a 500 meters long. For kids, there's the mini climbing park with exciting obstacles to tackle that are manageable for kids. If you prefer indoor adventures, there's a climbing wall you can try for more fun, plus it's kid-friendly (per Camp Adventure).

The Forest Tower is another incredible attraction you should add to your list of must-visit attractions. It's a mind-blowing architectural structure that's 45 meters high, so you enjoy splendid views of the surrounding. In addition, you can view Malmö and Copenhagen if you are lucky to visit this spot in bright weather (via Camp Adventure). Once you finish exploring nature, you can relax at the indoor lounge as you sip on drinks. Other interesting spots you can check out at Camp Adventure include the Flower Farm, the farm shop, and a vegetable market.

A Redditor who enjoyed the views from the Forest Tower said, "Been there, done that. Easy walk up, with a stroller and two kids." A reviewer on Trip Advisor noted, "We had a great time at Camp Adventure ... The Forest Tower is a magnificent structure in the middle of the forest and you have an amazing view over forests and fields from the top."

Tivoli (Friheden), Aarhus

If you have kids, a holiday in Denmark won't be complete until you visit Tivoli, which is a spectacular amusement park with numerous play grounds, four roller coasters, and a wide range of rides to choose from, including The Hurricane, The Dragon, Bumper Cars, The Typhoon, The Pirate Ship, 5D Cinemagic, Illusions Factory, and Haunted House, among others (via Wake Up Copenhagen).

Entertainment is also part of this package because concerts are hosted in this spot. If you're a music lover, you can loosen up during Cool Friday concerts, where Danish artists grace the stage to give their fans thrilling performances (via Wake Up Copenhagen). If you feel hungry, there are different types of food you can eat at the public dining area to get the energy to keep going. A reviewer on Trip Advisor stated, "Very nice amusement park ... It is great for families with children ... They have a variety of rides – for the cautious and for the daredevils."