I have wanted to visit Copenhagen for a long time; Denmark is often regarded as one of worlds happiest countries and I've only heard amazing reviews from my friends who have traveled there. As the flight is only 1.5 hours from London, I decided to use my only spare day on my Europe trip to fly over for a night and meet a friend who has recently moved to Zurich.
We were blessed with a beautiful sunny but fresh day of weather and the blue skies really brought out the bright colors of the famous Nyhaven city center. We stayed in the Amaliegade area, right next to the Amalienborg Palace. This gave us easy access to walk to the other central areas including the infamous Christiania (a self-proclaimed "freetown"), Paper Island and the Opera house. We racked up 20,000 steps in no time.
The things that struck me most was the cleanliness of the city, how beautiful the architecture was and compared with Amsterdam it felt calmer and less overrun with tourists.
Paper Island was a fantastic spot for lunch, the food market has a fun and friendly vibe and so many vegan options! We ate vegan flatbreads and drank local beer, enjoying the sunshine in the outdoor seating by the water - definitely plenty of reasons to feel happy!
In the evening we visited Toldbogen - a nautical themed restaurant which seemed to be a popular spot for locals who were enjoying happy hour. The place was full and everyone certainly appeared to be in high spirits (although maybe just because it was Friday!) The only vegetarian option was vegetables and fries which was an interesting combination, but actually pretty delicious and much needed after a full day of exploring.
So why are the Danish so happy? From my experience in Copenhagen it is because of the fresh air, the open water, the opportunity to explore everywhere by foot or bicycle and the great vegan food! I am always looking to learn how to be happier, so I've added this book "The Danish Book of Lykke" (translated to happiness, luck or fortune) to my reading list; if it's good enough for the CEO of happiness, it's good enough for me :-)