A Little Bit of Hygge at Nyhavn Port -Copenhagen

Long ago, Nyhavn Port was known for being a shady place teemed with sailors, alehouses and brothels. Today, this colorful 17th-century waterfront is one of the liveliest areas in Copenhagen.

The multicoloured facades, the classy restaurants and cafes alonside the quay and the old wooden ships docked in the canal create such a maritime atmosphere that made us feel at home.

Guille is from  the elegant city of Santander in the north of Spain where countless of traditional eateries and bars are located within the colourful and busy Fishing Quarter and and around Puerto Chico (Small Port). Nyhavn somehow seemed familiar to us.

Shady Side and Sunny Side

In the 1700s, the rich citizens in Copenhagen had their mansions built on the peaceful Shady Side. Hans Christian Andersen for instance, one of the fathers of the Danish literature, lived in number 20 from 1834 to 1838.

It was during that time, in 1935 to be specific, that Andersen published the first installment of his famous Fairy Tales which have been translated into more than 125 languages. Then he moved to  no.67 on the Sunny Side and would return to number 18 on Charlottenborg side spending here the last years of his life.

On the contrary, the brightly painted houses on Sunny Side were destined for the poor. Pay special attention to the house n0.9 which is the oldest dating back to 1681. The area was greatly renovated and today it´s a real magnet for tourists.

We visited Copenhagen in winter and as you can see in the pictures, the port exuded tranquility and timeless beauty. In summertime, it´s the ideal place to gather with family and friends and have a cold beer. If fact, Nyhavn has often been referred as the “longest outdoor bar in Scandinavia”.

Experiencing ‘hygge’ like the locals do

I have a Spanish friend who married a Danish girl a couple of years ago. When he knew I was travelling to Copenhagen he told me: “Have some hygge!!”.

He explained Hygge was a Norwegian word widely used in Denmark which meant creating a warm atmosphere and enjoying the everyday easy pleasures with your friends or loved ones. 

My father, who is a teacher as me, didn´t have the chance to travel when he was young, loves joining us whenever we travel around Europe. I love it when he comes with us. We have unforgettable memories together.

That day in Copenhagen, I truly understood the idea of Hygge. There we were enjoying a warm cup of coffee under a thick woolen blanket on a cold winter day. We laughed, shared stories and appreciated that simple yet remarkable moment in Nyhavn Port.

Danish are often considered the happiest people in the world…so let´s follow their example and add a little bit of Hygge to our lives!



Nyhavn Port Illuminated at Night

Nyhavn Port

You can´t miss the bright moon illuminating Nyhavn Port at night. Countless tealights and lanterns create such a magical ambiance that invites you to linger over a glass of wine.

In Scandinavia cosy restaurants and delightful cafés create a glowing contrast to the darkness of winter.

Multitude of details like soft blankets, roaring fireplaces and candles make a warm and soothing haven where you can beat the winter blues and share an intimate moment with the person you love.

The following two tabs change content below.
Inspired by James Cook voyages, Rakel decided to travel the world and live a life of adventure. Rakel

Latest posts by Rakel (see all)


  • Marie says:

    I love your blog! It looks amazing 🙂 What theme did you use for that?
    The post about Denmark is really good! I am from Denmark myself and just wanted to see how other people see Denmark.
    Your blog is really good – keep doing that!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *