From experience, it is not always easy to find a place to live in Copenhagen. When you are new in town, and you don’t have the biggest network yet to reach out to – it can take time to find a place to stay. To help you on the way here is some information you might find useful.
København K / Indre by / Christianshavn
The apartments in the city center are charming. They are usually a bit more expensive than average and might be nice, but if you are okay with that and like to be in the middle of it all it’s perfect for you. On the other side of the canal from the city center, you will find the very idyllic Christianshavn. This area will remind you of Amsterdam, if you’ve ever been there Christianshavn is known for its charming canals filled with boats, cozy cafes and restaurants, brick roads, and colorful little houses. In København K there are not a lot of places to buy groceries, but there are definitely a few smaller shops you can find, and let’s not forget the very quick access to restaurants and take-away options, so if you enjoy the easy, (a bit more expensive) on-the-go lifestyle, this is the area for you. Large parts of Amager have been characterized by large-scale construction work since the mid-1990s, which for the most part has been initiated on the basis of a political desire to make Copenhagen – and thus Amager – a power center in the Øresund region.
København V / Vesterbro
The area behind Hovedbanegården (Copenhagen central station) has not always had the best reputation, but throughout the lastest 10 years, it has grown into a very hip and popular neighborhood. Here you can find the famous Istegade, the Meat-packing district, Sønder Boulevard, Fisketovet shopping mall, Vega (concert venue), and much more. Back when this was a very rough and unattractive neighborhood, the apartment prices were low, and because of the central location, it attracted a lot of young people that created great homes here. Today, many of these young people have grown into adult families with kids, cats, and dogs, so the average age might have gone up, but you will still find a lot of young people living here. Vesterbro has cleaned up very nicely over the years, and so have the apartment prices. For many people a favorite area to live in today. As mentioned Vesterbro is very central in Copenhagen, not far from the city center (ca.10 mins. by bike), but don’t forget that Vesterbro also has its own little center with nice cafes, restaurants/bars, and shopping/grocery opportunities.
Frederiksberg / Frederiksberg C
Frederiksberg is the only area in central Copenhagen that is not a part of Copenhagen municipality. Originally, the district was an independent town separate from the capital, but today it is a self-governing municipality located between Vesterbro, Nørrebro, Intre By, Vanløse, and Valby. You will find a lot of restored old apartments with tall ceilings in grand old buildings in this neighborhood, and it is the most densely populated municipality in Denmark (2018). As you might imagine, this is not the cheapest neighborhood to live in, and it is highly popular. You can find decent many grocery possibilities and shopping streets around in Frederiksberg. There are a lot of families, elderly, and you will also find some students sharing big apartments here. In Frederiksberg you can visit the lovely Frederiksberg Have, Frederiksberg castle, Copenhagen Business School (CBS), Frederiksberg shopping mall, and Frederiksberg Allé amongst other things.
København N / Nørrebro
If you cross the historical bridge, Dronning Louises bro, over the lakes, you will arrive at Nørrebro. Known for it’s hip and cosmopolitan vibes, it has become a very popular neighborhood for the young students, and artistic elite, although the area has increased with the number of families over the last years. There are a number of cultural offers, plenty of cafes, clothing and vintage shops, restaurants, and a sea of popular shawarma bars that are rated in an acknowledged Shawarma competition every year. Blågårdsgade and Jægersborggade are among two of the most visited streets at Nørrebro. Here you can visit different street-parties, flea markets, and seasonal events throughout the year. There are several small parks here, and Assistens Kirkegård is a very popular green area where H.C. Andersens, amongst others, lies buried. There are both nice old buildings and newer residential complexes to be found, and though the price was in the lower range a decade ago – it has become one of the most popular and expensive areas throughout the years. There are many grocery possibilities at Nørrebro.
København Ø / Østerbro
In the North-East part of Copenhagen, you will find the upscale and family-oriented community, Østerbro. Board boulevards, old majestic apartment buildings, design shops, cafes, and lovely green areas – are some of the words used to describe this part of town. It is one of Copenhagen’s most popular residential areas, especially for families with kids and dogs, cause of its quietness, but still full of possibilities close by. The most popular areas here are the national stadium, Parken, home to FC Copenhagen soccer team which also borders to Fælledparken, a vast park with play areas and training fields. By the shores, on Østerbro you find Kastellet, an amazingly well preserved and restored star-shaped citadel, and right in front of it, you (along with many tourists) will find the little Mermaid. Similar to Frederiksberg, this is not the cheapest neighborhood to live in, but you can get lucky and find a good affordable place here, especially if you are open to sharing apartments. There are many grocery possibilities and shopping streets around the area if your new home is here.
København S / Islands Brygge / Amager
If you continue south of Christianhavn, towards Copenhagen Airport, you will find København S with Islands Brygge in the west and Amager in the east. These two areas are quite different from each other, so they will be described separately underneath, even though they have merged more and moreover the last decade
Directly across the canal from Vesterbro you will find the popular harbourfront area, Islands Brygge, with all its charm. Back in the days, this used to be a highly industrial, dockland area, but for the last 20 years, Islands Brygge has undergone a massive overhaul and is today a fashionable and very attractive neighborhood. It is known for its mixture of old buildings and modern architecture, and you will find a number of old structures relating to the area’s old dockland, that has been transformed into new functions and spaces. By the harbourfront, you can find a well-known Waterfront park, Islands Brygge Cultural House, and the location of one of the Copenhagen Harbour Baths. You can also rent small boats and kayaks, play volleyball, and have picnics at the grass areas around the harbourfront. The residential area is surrounded by small shops, cafes, and restaurants. Islands Brygge has grown very attractive with its favorable location and waterfront. As the demand for this area has increased over the years, so have the apartment and rental prices. There are decent many grocery shopping possibilities around at Islands Brygge.
Both Christianshavn, Islands Brygge, and Amager is on the same island, called Øresund. If you keep on going straight through Christianshavn, you reach Amager. It is a large area, popular with sports enthusiasts and nature lovers. At the very east side, Amager Beach Park has lovely sandy beaches, and beach and watersport possibilities, and the further out you go, the better you will see the Øresund Bridge to Sweden. Since the mid-1990s large parts of Amager have been characterized by large-scale construction work, which for the most part has been initiated to make Amager a power center in the Copenhagen/Øresund region which you can see more and more today. Even though this area still is developing, a lot has happened over the last decade and the apartment prices are going up. However, the apartments in Amager are still below average in Copenhagen, and you can find some great deals here. At the west side of Amager you can run or take a long walk in the extensive natural area Amager Fælled and Kalvebod Fælled. There are many reasons to visit Amager if you live here or not, some of them are: DR concert hall, Amager Bio, Bella Center, Field’s, the second-largest shopping center in Scandinavia, and Royal Arena. And of course, in the southern part, you will find Copenhagen Airport and Øresundsbroen that take you to Sweden.
A list of sites that could be helpful in finding your new home:
Den Blå Avis (DBA)
Find Your Home