I recently shared a few of my top tips for exploring Copenhagen, but there was one place missing from the list: the Botanical Garden. That’s because this swathe of green gorgeousness is perhaps my favourite spot in the city, and I thought it deserved a post of its own.
I really could spend all day strolling around this tranquil, rambling park. Paths weave in and out of the trees, past glass-like ponds studded with lily pads and flanked by weeping willows. There are sweeping lawns, Japanese-style bridges and rock gardens to explore, plus herons, swans and terrapins to spot. And of course there’s all manner of weird and wonderful plants, from cacti to exotic blooms to climbing roses. When I last visited in early June the air was swirling with blossom, but every season has its appeal: lush leaves in summer, fiery colours in autumn, sparkling frost in winter.
The garden’s centrepiece is an elegant old palm house that dates from 1874. The colonnaded interior, complete with spiral staircases that twist up to a treetop-level walkway, is beautiful but very hot – I only managed a few shots before my camera lens steamed up!
Dotted around the garden are vintage vans selling hot drinks and pastries, but for a real treat I’d suggest sprawling out on the grass with a picnic from nearby Aamanns. There’s also a shop by the main entrance, with a lovely selection of plants, seeds and gardening gear to browse.
The Botanical Garden is free to enter and open all year round, though the palm house is only accessible for a few hours each day. I’d certainly recommend setting aside a few hours to explore if you visit Copenhagen – you’ll soon forget you’re slap-bang in the middle of a major European capital.
Photography by Abi Dare