Palaces And Castles In Copenhagen

Visit Christiansborg Royal Palace, Amalienborg Palace And Rosenborg Castle

Palaces And Castles In Copenhagen Denmark.jpg

We Saw Some Lovely Palaces And Castles In Copenhagen

On our 5 day stay in Copenhagen, we toured and saw several of the lovely palaces and castles in Copenhagen. We started with the Christiansborg Royal Palace and the fascinating ruins under the current palace. Our next stop was the new Royal Palace at Amalienborg where we saw the changing of the Guard and toured the Amalienborg Museum. We finished up with a visit to Rosenborg Castle and a tour of the stunning inside beauty.

This view of Royal Copenhagen presented an interesting variety. And added several other palaces and castles for a return visit to Copenhagen one day.

Explore The Old Christiansborg Royal Palace

The historic palace for royalty in Copenhagen was the Christiansborg Palace. It stood on a small island called ‘Slotsholmen’ (Castle Island). Many times we saw this large site from the outside as we moved about Copenhagen on foot, by bus and on our two canal tours. The palace housed the national parliament, the Prime Minister’s office, the Supreme Court and the Queen.

Christiansborg - Palaces And Castles In Copenhagen Denmark.jpg

Christiansborg Tower Statues.jpg

Christiansborg Tower Statues.jpg

Guided tours in the palace were included on our Copenhagen Card. The tour ticket included the Royal Reception Rooms, Great Hall with the Queen’s tapestries, Royal Stables, Royal Kitchen and Christiansborg Palace Chapel. The Royal Reception Rooms included The Tower Room and The Oval Throne Room.

On this visit to the palaces and castles in Copenhagen we just wandered around outside but did not do the full palace tour.

Christiansborg Outside Statues.jpg

Christiansborg Outside Statues - Palaces And Castles In Copenhagen Denmark.jpg

Tour The Christiansborg Ruins

While we didn’t see the inside of the palace, we took a tour and saw the ruins under the Christiansborg Palace. The castle was expanded and burned down many times. The new structures were built on the ruins of the old buildings. Under the present palace we saw the ruins of first castle (the Bishop Absalon’s Castle). One of the exhibits in the ruins showed the different structures that stood on this spot.

Christiansborg Ruins Models.jpg

Christiansborg Ruins Models - Palaces And Castles In Copenhagen Denmark.jpg

As we wandered through the ruins we saw the old stone walls. We saw a few artifacts dug up from the foundations. And parts of building facades and tiles.

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Christiansborg Ruins DIscoveries.jpg

Christiansborg Ruins DIscoveries.jpg

Christiansborg Ruins DIscoveries.jpg

We were sorry we missed the inside of the Christiansborg Royal Palace on our tour of the palaces and castles in Copenhagen. But our ruins tour brought another element to the history of this city.

See The New Royal Palace at Amalienborg

The Amalienborg palaces were originally built as residences for four high-ranking aristocrats. But when the old Christiansborg Palace burnt down in 1794 the Danish royal family moved to Amalienborg. We got our first view of Amalienborg Palace with Frederick’s Church (the “Marble Church”) beside it on our canal cruise.

Amalienborg From Water with Fredericks Church - Palaces And Castles In Copenhagen Denmark.jpg

Amalienborg had four identical classical palace façades with rococo interiors around an octagonal courtyard . In the centre of the square we saw the equestrian statue of Amalienborg’s founder, King Frederick V.

Amalienborg Buildings - Palaces And Castles In Copenhagen Denmark.jpg

Amalienborg Building King Frederik V Equestrian Statue - Palaces And Castles In Copenhagen Denmark.jpg

Amalienborg was guarded day and night by Royal Life Guards. They guard marched from Rosenborg Castle at 11.30 am daily through the streets of Copenhagen and executed the changing of the guard in front of Amalienborg at noon. We enjoyed the ceremony of the changing of the guards in Athens and at home at Parliament Hill in Ottawa. So we were glad we timed our visit properly and saw the changing of the guard.

Amalienborg Changing Royal Life Guards - Palaces And Castles In Copenhagen Denmark.jpg

Amalienborg Changing Royal Life Guards.jpg

Amalienborg Changing Royal Life Guards - Palaces And Castles In Copenhagen Denmark.jpg

The Amalienborg Palace was a great stop on our tour of the palaces and castles in Copenhagen.

Touring The Amalienborg Museum

The museum was spread over two floors in the Christian VIII Palace building. As we wandered through the Amalienborg Museum we saw the private interiors of the most recent kings and queens.

The rooms remained fully decorated and it provided a view into the royal life and the different personalities of the rulers. We were fascinated by the old decorative ceramic stoves. We saw these again when we toured the palaces in St Petersburg in Russia. There were many exhibits and photos of the monarchy with its many traditions.

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Amalienborg Museum Rooms.jpg

Amalienborg Museum Rooms.jpg

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Amalienborg Museum Rooms Portraits - Palaces And Castles In Copenhagen Denmark.jpg

We were glad we made time and saw the Amalienborg Museum on our tour of the palaces and castles in Copenhagen.

See The Rosenborg Castle From The Botanical Gardens

Before we visited the Rosenborg Castle, we strolled through the Botanical Gardens across the street. The gardens were part of the Natural History Museum of Denmark and covered about 10 hectares. The site was notable for the 27 greenhouses and the largest collection of living plants in Denmark.

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Botanical Garden Statue.jpg

We stayed on the grounds and did not visit inside the Palm House greenhouse. The large glass and cast-iron Palm House was built when the Botanical Garden first opened in 1874. The cost of a visit would have been covered by our Copenhagen Card.

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From the Botanical Gardens we got our first glimpse of the fairy tale Rosenborg Castle. We were excited to head off and get close to more of the palaces and castles in Copenhagen.

Botanical Garden View of Rosenburg.jpg

Explore Rosenborg Castle

Crossing the street, we entered the grounds of the Rosenborg Castle and strolled around the “King’s Gardens”. This Renaissance style garden was established in the early 17th century. The gardens had a large hedge border, a rose-garden and many sculptures.

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Rosenborg Kings Rose Garden Statue.jpg

As we approached the castle, we got a view of what remained of the moat that once circled the castle.

Rosenborg Moat - Palaces And Castles In Copenhagen Denmark.jpg

Rosenborg Entrance - Palaces And Castles In Copenhagen Denmark.jpg

Rosenborg Castle was protected by soldiers from the Royal Life Guard regiment. Their barracks were right next to the castle.

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Once we finished our walk around the outside, we started on our tour of the inside treasures at Rosenborg Castle.

Wander Inside the Beautiful Rosenborg Castle

We were not really prepared for how stunning the inside displays were. It was always a disappointment when castles only restored the outside. But the Interior of the Rosenborg Castle was well preserved and took us back in time. It reminded us of our visit to the Madrid Royal Palace.

We moved from room to room and saw the rooms as they once were. The decoration was ornate and filled with detail. Beautiful art was on display.

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Rosenborg Inside Rooms.jpg

Rosenborg Inside Rooms.jpg

Rosenborg Inside Rooms.jpg

Rosenborg Inside Room Art Clocks - Palaces And Castles In Copenhagen Denmark.jpg

Rosenborg Inside Room Art Clocks.jpg

Our eyes were constantly pulled up. The ceiling art was varied and quite amazing in detail.

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Rosenborg Inside Room Ceilings - Palaces And Castles In Copenhagen Denmark.jpg

Rosenborg Inside Room Ceilings.jpg

Rosenborg Inside Room Ceilings - Palaces And Castles In Copenhagen Denmark.jpg

We spent time in the Throne Room and Great Hall. The lion statues circled the throne and kept watch. Throughout the castle we found photographs that showed the history of this great castle.

Rosenborg Inside Great Hall Throne Room - Palaces And Castles In Copenhagen Denmark.jpg

Rosenborg Inside Portraits.jpg

Rosenborg Inside Portraits - Palaces And Castles In Copenhagen Denmark.jpg

We moved on to the Treasury. The royal jewels and crowns of the Danish kings and queens were embellished with cut stones, enamel and gold ornamentation. One section was devoted to weapons.

Rosenborg Inside Treasury Crown Jewels - Palaces And Castles In Copenhagen Denmark.jpg

Rosenborg Inside Treasury Crown Jewels - Palaces And Castles In Copenhagen Denmark.jpg

Rosenborg Inside Treasury Weapons.jpg

The inside of Rosenborg Castle was truly amazing and unexpected. We were so glad we got this view of history on our tour of the palaces and castles in Copenhagen.

Head Out Of Town For More Palaces And Castles In Copenhagen

We wanted to head out of town for the boat tour around the Fredericksborg Castle. This was touted as “Denmark’s most beautiful nautical mile”. We also wanted to head north and tour the Kronberg Castle and the Nautical Museum. This castle was immortalized by Shakespeare’s play Hamlet. Also on our list was the Egeskov Castle. This was one of Europe’s finest Renaissance buildings with a real moat, spires and a knight’s hall. There were many things for families at this site.

We were sure there were many other amazing castles to visit in Denmark. But the weather was rainy for several of the days during our stay in Copenhagen and we just finally ran out of time.

We Enjoyed Our First View Of The Palaces And Castles In Copenhagen

We found so much to see and do in Copenhagen. But we were glad that we saw several of the palaces and castles in Copenhagen. Our visit to the Christiansborg Royal Palace included the fascinating ruins under the current palace. When we stopped at the Royal Palace at Amalienborg we saw the changing of the Guard and wandered through the Amalienborg Museum. On our visit to Rosenborg Castle we got a tour of the beauty inside.

The castles and palaces gave us a look into the history of Denmark. Even if we knew there were still many others for a return trip.

Do you have a favourite of the palaces and castles in Copenhagen? Is there one for the top of our list on a return visit?

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About TravelAtWill 641 Articles
Travel blogger and photographer! Scuba diving, luxury cruising, chocoholic, sea and sunshine addicts, camera attached and just generally curious! Join us on our adventures!

62 Comments

  1. Man, I would love to travel to Copenhagen! It seems like such a beautiful place, and I feel much better prepared after reading this post lol.

  2. I love castles; the Copenhagen Card seems like a must have to visit all of the amazing places you posted. Great pics too!

  3. Love all the details of the royal castles. When we were in Copenhagen two years ago, we definitely used the Copenhagen card to its fullest extent so am so glad to see it featured here.

  4. Wow! These are all so incredibly beautiful. Although I’d like to visit them all, I think he Rosenborg Castle is at the top of my list. I also love that you can see if from the gorgeous botanical gardens. Definitely adding to my bucket list.

  5. Copenhagen looks beautiful! I’ve never been, but I am always a fan of European architecture and there seems to be a lot of it! Amazing and I love the amount of visuals you include in your posts.

    • We love to share the details of our travels so glad you hear you liked all the photos. The palaces and castles of Copenhagen certainly gave us lots to share!

  6. We were in Copenhagen the summer before last, and enjoyed seeing several of these sites. So much opulence! But I think my favorite thing to see was actually the Christiansborg ruins. We missed out on the Botanical Gardens and Rosenberg Castle, but I can see from your beautiful photos that they deserve a visit next time!

  7. This is such an interesting article. Love all the details. Especially the Christiansborg Ruins sound great to me. Once I go to Copenhagen, I will definitely check out some of these places.

  8. I haven’t made it to Copenhagen yet, but it looks like there are so many fantastic options to choose from. The Christiansborg Palace ruins would be on my list, that kind of stuff always fascinates me. I would also enjoy looking at the replicas of the structures that once stood there. The Rosenborg Castle looks absolutely stunning, I love all the details in the artwork

  9. I had no idea there was so much to see in Copenhagen! The Palm House greenhouse looks amazing… well, actually, everything in the post looks amazing!! Sounds like Copenhagen is somewhere you can visit repeatedly and still find something interesting.

  10. Wow it’s like something out of fairytales. I would love to visit coppenhagen. The botanical gardens remind me a little of brussels too. Did you find 5 days was enough time to explore the city?

  11. You indeed saw some lovely palaces and castles! I especially like to visit those that have extensive grounds and gardens. So definitely Rosenborg Castle, its moat and the botanical gardens would be one that I would have to add to my list if I am ever lucky enough to visit Copenhagen.

  12. Wow! These castles and palaces look so beautiful. I am quite fond of castles and Copenhagen seems to have a lot of them. I think changing of Guards is quite a fascinating view. Was it interesting at Royal Palace at Amalienborg? The interiors of the Rosenborg Castle is seriously stunning. What beautiful pieces of art! Copenhagen seems to be a wonderful place, where I would definitely love to visit.

    • The changing of the guard in Copenhagen was not as much of a spectacle as we found in other places we visited. But the inside of the Rosenberg Castle was far more stunning than most. So it balanced out.

  13. Yes, the castles in Copenhagen are just fantastic! Funny enough, I find the most important one Amalienborg the dullest. My favorite is Rosenborg with its wooden decors and the impressive treasure chambers the nicest – and I love Frederiksborg – just overwhelming! Copenhagen is always worth a trip.

  14. I guess I never really associate Copenhagen with palaces or castles but I actually said wow a few times reading about the ones you came across on your cruise. Dont get me wrong, the Christiansborg Royal Palace looks cool & we love checking out ruins but I have to say that the Amalienborg Palace may actually be our favorite. We actually said wow out loud when you toured the rooms cause those libraries and decor was just amazing. From the outside the Rosenborg Castle kind of reminded me of something in Scotland or northwest England which was cool too. But the Amalienborg hands down is my fav.

  15. I like the idea of taking that Copenhagen Card and seeing the attractions. It sure seems like a money saver. And all those beautiful hard bound books! The interiors are really sparkling. I have made it a point to always explore the open spaces and the botanical gardens are a must walk through for me.

  16. I have been to Copenhagen several times over the last years and visited Amalienborg Castle and Rosenborg Castler. We also went to the Botanical gardens. And I liked all of them. If you go back I would recommend a visit of Kronburg Castle – it is an easy day trip from Copenhagen. We also took a guided kayaking tour through the city. I think you would enjoy this too!

  17. I’ve never associated Denmark with palaces and castles. This is a refreshing read! These ruins are charming. I can just imagine how stunning these are in person. I’m particularly curious with the Botanical Gardens.

  18. I would love to see the changing of guards in the Royal palace. That is something that I have never seen but would love to see it. I wanted to go to Copenhagen last time I was in Europe but couldn’t make it there. The palaces, ruins and the castles are truly stunning. The other place which I definitely would go is at those ruin sites, so much history and would love to see it someday.

    • I hope you do get to schedule Copenhagen for a visit. Definitely worth planning some time to catch the changing of the guard and to see the places inside and out!

  19. Thanks for another informative post! Our good friends just moved to Copenhagen this week so we are starting to plan our visit. I’m pinning this for later and loved all of the inspiring photos as we start to dream of our trip there. It looks like the Copenhagen Card is a great choice and that we will need plenty of time to see everything!

    • I am sure your friends will have lots of things to show you in Copenhagen. And glad this post was a bit of a planning tease. I have a separate blog post on the Copenhagen Card coming up so that will help too.

  20. I was pleasantly surprised when I visited Copenhagen that there were so many historic spots to see. This is a lovely overview of the palaces and castles in the city – makes me want to go back!

  21. Gosh I need to go back when I have more time. We saw a lot in our short visit but did not see all of this. Wonderful!

  22. I’ve heard such wonderful things about Copenhagen and can’t wait to visit one day! Any city that has a palace and castles sign me up! That would be really cool to explore underneath the palace and see the ruins of previous castles there. I’d also enjoy visiting the botanical garden and Rosenborg Castle. The castle looks so beautiful and elegant!

  23. It was such a nice refresher. We were there in Copenhagen just for two days and so missed out taking to tours of the palaces. We enjoyed though from outside. The time spent at the Rosenborg Castle was memorable and managed to witness the change of guards.

  24. Copenhagen is on my list of places to see for its architectural richness and great location. Unfortunately, it is not a cheap city. But I hope that I will visit it soon, at least for the weekend. I would love to visit Rosenborg Castle and the Botanical Gardens. The insides of the castle hide so many treasures. I want to visit also Amalienborg Museum to see the private interiors of the most recent kings and queens.

    • We were happy to see so much of Copenhagen on this stay. And were definitely glad we planned the time to see the palaces and castles in Copenhagen. Even if we did not see them all.

  25. Copenhagen! I have wanted to visit so bad and then BAM, COVID. A canal cruise is high on my to do list and your image of Amalienborg palace is an example of why. I didn’t realize there are so many palaces and castles, and the Palm House greenhouse looks like it would be incredible. Also sounds like the Copenhagen card is worth the cost. I’m excited about visiting again, now I just need flights to open up!

    • I hope you do get to put Copenhagen back on your travel plans. We were glad we went in early before our cruise and got to see so many of the palaces and castles in Copenhagen. Although some more time would have finished our list!

  26. A great roundup of Copenhagen castles. We visited at Christmas and spent all our time wandering around the markets so it was nice to read in more detail about the castles.

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