Coming to Copenhagen This Winter? Light it up!

A Light Festival in the Capital Helps Cope With the Dark

SECOND ANNUAL COPENHAGEN LIGHT FESTIVAL ILLUMINATES THE CITY

It’s really no secret. Denmark truly can be dark, damp and chilly during the winter. But despite the lack of daylight, Copenhagen can also be all sorts of cozy at this time of year.  There is hygge to be had, even in time spent outside. Bundle up. Let me enlighten you.

After the twinkly lights of a beautiful Danish Christmas are boxed up and put away  – the city may feel a little bit sleepy come January 1st. After one of the best New Year’s Eve celebrations in the world, the first month of the year can be a bit quiet and uneventful. So if your plans for travel to Denmark don’t include the holidays and you can make the choice, point your passports and itinerary towards a visit come February. I have plenty of reasons why. Don’t worry about the cold. Bust out your warm coat, gloves, scarf and your hat. You will need them to brave the night. Or twilight. It comes early here. But it can still be brilliant. Come to Copenhagen, she said. Even in winter.


RELATED: 2018 COPENHAGEN LIGHT FESTIVAL

2019 CPH Light Festival and Tivoli Winter Season Brightens February
MARK YOUR CALENDAR FOR FESTIVAL OPENING FEBRUARY 1

Beam yourself to Copenhagen at the beginning of February for the opening of second annual Copenhagen Light Festival. It is just the sparkle the city needs at this time of year and conveniently coincides with the newest wintertime season at the Tivoli Gardens Amusement Park. I can concur it was indeed the motivation we needed to get outside and explore the city last year. If you live here, it’s time to step out of your comfy pants, turn off the Netflix and put down the bowls of slik (candy – it’s a ritual here in Denmark.) Time to get outside.

BØRSEN STOCK EXCHANGE OPEN TO PUBLIC FOR LIGHT FESTIVAL OPENING

This year on Friday, February 1st the lights turn on starting in the city center as a giant kilometer long green laser shines from Nikolaj Kunsthal across the old town to Tivoli Gardens. In between, you’ll find a myriad of magical installations and illuminations to keep you sparked. On opening night, take advantage of a unique and rare opportunity to see inside the iconic Børsen building, dating back to 1624.

Having bicycled, walked and boated by this beautiful structure more times than I can remember, I am excited to finally get a glance inside the old Stock Exchange. It is probably one of my favorite buildings in town. Copenhagen’s Chamber of Commerce (Dansk Erhverv) welcomes the public to come and explore the antique salon (Børssalen and library inside the historic Børsen during the Copenhagen Light Festival Opening between the hours of 18.00 and 21.00.

Børsen by Night
Slotsholmgade 1, 1217 Copenhagen
Friday, February 1, 2019 | 18.00 – 21.00
COST: Free

Børsen Building | Old Stock Exchange illuminated
SAILING OF GHOST SHIP AND PERFORMANCE BY DANISH ROCK MUSICIAN

Get ready to rock as Artist and sculptor, Christian Lemmerz’s Ghost Ship sets sail from Højbro Plads around 17.00 through Frederiksholm’s Canal on opening night. Look out for the flashing white light and the sounds of Danish rock pioneer Lars Top-Galia, from the band Sort Sol playing ‘I Danmark er jeg født’ (In Denmark I am born).

ADD YOUR OWN LIGHT AT KAYAKBAR ON HOLMEN’S CANAL

Bring a light or buy a candle at the popular Kayak bar to light up their dock and celebrate the festival. Food and drinks available and live Jazz later in the evening.

Kayak Bar | Light up the Darkness Together
Børskaj 12, 1221 Copenhagen
Friday, February 1, 2019
17.30-22:00 | Put out lights on the bridge and on the dock.
18.30 | Kayak Illumination
20.00 | Live Jazz Music

SNEAK PEAK OF ILLUMINATIONS YOU’LL SEE THIS YEAR
Eternal Sundown Light Installation by Mads Vegas | Kalvebod Brygge Marriott Copenhagen | Oregon Girl Around the World
Eternal Sundown Light Installation by Mads Vegas | Kalvebod Brygge Marriott Copenhagen
Illumination at Nikolaj Kunsthal | Photo courtesy: CPH Light Festival

 

”The Ice is Melting at the Pøules” at Nordatlantens Brygge | art and photo by Martin Ersted

 

How to See the Illuminations Around Town
SELF GUIDED USING FESTIVAL APP

Starting with the opening events set for the evening of February 1st, you will be able to download an app called “Within 10 Minutes – Copenhagen Light Festival.” Designed to show you light works near you, the app will be free of charge.

GUIDED CANAL CRUISE WITH STROMMA

Take a ride in a covered and heated classic Copenhagen canal boat. Tours take place after dark and are 45 minutes long, departing from Ved Stranden. Pick up a warm beverage to take along on your tour as guides tell you about the different artists and installations from the water. We went last year and loved being on the canal at night.

Stromma Light Cruise
February 1 – 24, 2019
Multiple Tours/Night | 45 minutes
Ved Stranden 26, 1061 Copenhagen
COST: DKK 125 for all ages

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25 thoughts on “Coming to Copenhagen This Winter? Light it up!

    1. oregongirlaroundtheworld

      I definitely have a bit of January blues – looking forward to a bit of enlightenment! Happy New Year Erin – cheers from here!

  1. Trish @ Mum's Gone To

    Twinkly lights to bright up the winter nights – how clever are the Danes to think of that. Hope you enjoy seeing the inside of the old Stock Exchange too.
    #farawayfiles

  2. This is such a brilliant way to break up the monotony of winter. We pack so many festive activities into December that there’s usually nothing left to celebrate for the rest of the season. I hope more cities follow suit! By the way, I’m heading to Copenhagen in April and reading his has reminded me I need to do a bit more research. #farawayfiles

  3. Clare Thomson

    What a wonderful way to lighten up the darkness of Northern Europe! I always find February the hardest month. Something like this would really cheer me up. Love the idea of the bar where you can bring your own candles and the boat on the canal. #FarawayFiles

  4. I’d very much like to see a festival like this. Growing up in the Northwest isn’t exactly like Northern Europe, but I do know what a long dark cold winter feels like and would have loved to have something like this. Enjoy, and before you know it spring will be here! #farawayfiles

  5. So many cool things to do! I’d love to visit the Stock Exchange and maybe watch Ghost Ship set sail, you can’t go wrong with a live band on board! #FarawayFiles

  6. I remember you mentioning this on Insta – so neat to see more photos! Light displays are so much fun and I love how they’ve turned it into an art show in places. Glad you have this to light up your winter. #FarawayFiles

  7. bavariansojourn

    This is something they didn’t have when we lived there, how fabulous! Saw your post on New Year’s Eve too, I have honestly never seen so many fireworks in my whole life! 😀 #Farawayfiles

    1. oregongirlaroundtheworld

      Yes – this is the second year they have done the light festival and while still evolving- it’s so nice to have something to pull you outside again after the sparkle of Christmas and NYE are over!

    1. oregongirlaroundtheworld

      Slik = candy! And every Friday you go to the pick and mix shop and get your Fredagslik – Friday candy. Helps with the hygge’ing with family and friends!

  8. The Dane’s are doing it properly! I love that more and more places are running light festivals like this to help us through the gloom of the new year, but this is my kinda festival as it sounds so well planned with that app – lets visitors really make the most of it… #FarawayFiles

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