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anthonyespardelahti Feb 15th, 2020 03:38 PM

Copenhagen - Berlin - Prague
Hi all, I'm traveling to Copenhagen in May 2020 and would like to visit one or two other cities while in Europe. Initially was thinking of staying in Scandinavia the entire time, but I'm not terribly interested in seeing Oslo, and thought it might be fun to see another part of Europe (in addition to Copenhagen) while abroad. I'm visiting from Los Angeles. Would this itinerary be doable without being too hectic:
  • First four nights in Copenhagen
  • Next three to four nights in Berlin
  • Final two to three nights in Prague
My plan would be to land in Copenhagen on May 13 and spend four nights there. Then, I'd take a flight from Copenhagen to Berlin and stay for three to four nights (I checked trains from Copenhagen to Berlin, but they take about 9 hours door to door, which would needlessly kill an entire day). Finally, I'd take the train (about 4.5 hours) from Berlin to Prague, where I'd stay for a two or three nights before flying back to Los Angeles. Also, I'm traveling alone, so am interested in hearing about alternatives to Berlin/Prague if there are better places to spend time solo. Definitely intend to start my trip in Copenhagen though. Any tips/advice/thoughts on this plan are appreciated!!

kja Feb 15th, 2020 04:25 PM

IT depends on what you want to see and do, but FWIW, I would find that trip much, much, MUCH too rushed. Remember that each time you change locations, you need not only the time it takes to get from place to place, but also the time to check in / out, pack / unpack, get to / from your hotel, and get lost / oriented. So for distances of the sort you are contemplating, you "lose" about a half day with each change. Plus, coming from LA, you'll be jet lagged that first day. So you end up with:
  • At most 3 days in Copenhagen, of which one would be lot to jet-lag. As a starting point, 3 or 4 full days is not unreasonable for that city.
  • 2 or 3 days in Berlin, a city where many of us want at least 5 days.
  • 1 or 2 days in Prague, where many of us want at least 3 days.
Those are all perfectly wonderful places to spend time solo. But then, I have yet to find a place that isn't a delightful place to be solo. ;)

Scandinavia holds MUCH more than just Copenhagen and Oslo. And please don't assume that because places are in the same general area that they are similar -- I find the contrasts among various locations fascinating, and that includes the differences among various parts of Scandinavia.

anthonyespardelahti Feb 15th, 2020 04:36 PM

Thanks so much! Great points re time to get lost/oriented, unpack and pack. I probably should have mentioned that this will be my first time to Copenhagen, and I'm interesting in checking out the city generally but the design shops/museums/galleries in particular. I have been to Berlin once previously, but it was a long time ago (2006) and I'm sure it's changed a lot since then. With your advice in mind, do you recommend staying for one extra night in Copenhagen (so, five nights instead of four), and then spending the next five nights in just one additional city? If so, do you have any cities you would recommend? BTW, I'm 38, single, gay, sober, and enjoy art/design, architecture, food/restaurants, and cultural/historical sites.

kja Feb 15th, 2020 04:41 PM

None of us can tell you how long to spend in any one place, or where to go -- it really depends on your interests! You would do well to consult a few good guidebooks, decide on your priorities, check opening hours, estimate how long you'll want to spend on various activities, and lay things out on a calendar.

With those interests, I would think Copenhagen a great choice; with 5 nights, you could see most of its highlights and probably also include a day trip (e.g., to Roskilde). With those interests, Stockholm might also be a great choice, and estimating about 5 days there would be a good starting place for adjustments based on your specific interests and preferences. But you have an incredible range of options. Have fun exploring them!

anthonyespardelahti Feb 15th, 2020 04:45 PM

Thanks again! Really appreciate your advice. I bought a book on Stockholm a while back, will start reading through it.

mms Feb 15th, 2020 04:56 PM

Copenhagen and Prague are wonderful! I haven to been to Berlin yet, so can't comment. I think 5 nights in Copenhagen is good, and definitely 3 in Prague (we just returned from there a week ago). We too fly from the west coast, so know the long flights! FWIW, when our son was studying in Copenhagen, he loved Stockholm when they went.

anthonyespardelahti Feb 15th, 2020 10:59 PM

Thanks mms!

Odin Feb 16th, 2020 02:19 AM

I think your original itinerary was fine, at least it would be fine for me, another night in each city would also be fine. Getting out of the city to see local architecture might be interesting for you, in the Copenhagen suburbs there are some very nice mansions, in Nyboder (also in CPH) you can see some interesting old navy barracks, the Louisana Museum and not too far from that, the Rudolph Tegner (controversial) sculptures. I would recommend adding Stockholm if you can, 3 or 4 nights is sufficient, it is a really beautiful city. I almost never stay for more than 3 nights in any city and fly to NY or LAX/LAS from Europe and rarely stay more than 3 or 4 nights. I have to get on with jetlag otherwise I need alot of time to fully recover, which I don't have at this stage of life. I find I am ok on arrival and raring to go, it is the next few days the jetlag kicks in, getting worse before it gets better. And that seems to be the way it is for US co-workers who come over here for business, they arrive early am, go straight to the office from the airport (after a shower), work the whole day, go out at night for dinner and they tell me they feel OK. Your experience might not be the same.

Food scene in Copenhagen is better than Stockholm IMO.
Stockholm is more scenic and beautiful than Copenhagen.
Copenhagen suburbs are usually missed out by tourists but IMO some are worth visiting esp ones by the sea.
Illums Bolighus in central Copenhagen is a great department store, full of Scandinavian design. There are branches in Stockholm but prefer the one in CPH.
Hotel Alexandra in Copenhagen has retro Danish furniture, the famous SAS Royal was designed by Arne Jacobsen, I believe it has been renovated.
If you are into Danish chairs eg Hans Wegner, Kaare Klint etc, you can see them in the Design Museum.
östermalms saluhall in Stockholm was under renovation for about 3 years, it looks as if it might have reopened, it is a famous food market.

It's good that Copenhagen is your 1st stop as it is a small city with easy connections to/from the airport, everyone speaks English and you are unlikely to get lost/disorientated.

Its been a few years since I visited Berlin so others can give you more up to date info, having just watched a programme on the city and food scene, there are some very interesting restaurants to try (eg Cookies and Cream, if you can find it or the traditional Zur letzten Instanz).

Prague is another long weekend destination IMO, have been 2/3 times, 3 nights is ample for me - many many great places to eat, very inexpensive, metro system very easy to use.

mms Feb 16th, 2020 05:40 AM

FWIW, coming from Seattle I am fine heading to Europe and I don't get jet leg. Coming home though I am totally thrown off. My husband though, he is terrible on arrival day in Europe. He is good for a few hours outside, that is all. So our recent trip, I left him at the hotel around 4 and went out on my own. No reason for me to stay in the hotel room, lol. He was sound asleep when I came back several hours later.

Odin--Our son was at DTU in Lyngby. It was really nice to go check out that little town and see something besides Copenhagen itself and this main sights.

anthonyespardelahti Feb 16th, 2020 09:57 AM

Wow, thanks Odin and thanks again mms. I'm starting to get pretty excited. Definitely into Danish furniture and the Design Museum is a priority on my to-do list. Last night I found websites discussing Cogenhagen's various flea markets and am really excited to check those out too, and hopefully bring home a couple good finds. Thanks for the tip on the Copenhagen suburbs, will be sure to tour them. I started compiling the list of things I want to do and see in Copenhagen, and now am now leaning toward spending the first 5 nights there (instead of 4 nights). There's just so much to do there.

For my hotel in Copenhagen, I'd been thinking of staying at the 71 Nyhavn Hotel while in Copenhagen. It looks cool, old, and authentic. Somewhat pricey but maybe worth it? That said, the Hotel Alexandra looks pretty cute too, especially the Design Deluxe Double Room, and is much less expensive. Any thoughts on these options?

For the second part of the trip, I'm leaning toward scrapping the Berlin+Prague idea and switching to a single city where there's a lot to do, and just spending the second 5 nights of my trips in one location. One of the following: Rome, Paris, Berlin (by itself), Florence, or Stockholm. They all have direct flights from Copenhagen (but would take the train if I elect to visit Stockholm). The only place I've never been on that list is Stockholm (although it's been 15 years since I've been to the others...) so am reading up on it now.

mms Feb 16th, 2020 04:13 PM

Check out the deer park by Lyngby. I can't help with the hotels you mentioned. We stayed at the Scandic Front, FWIW, and loved it.

grantlyons4034 Feb 17th, 2020 12:56 AM

Your itinerary looks great- I went to Copenhagen recently and I think you should definately visit the amazing Louisiana gallery which is a short train journey outside of the city.
I have more info on Copenhagen here which i hope you find helpful :

anthonyespardelahti Feb 17th, 2020 07:45 AM

Thanks Grant! Great pictures from Louisiana. Adding it to my list. :)

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