A few reasons to travel to Denmark’s second largest city
Copenhagen has got it all. In a semester, it’s not hard to find something new to do each weekend. When exchange students are not in CPH they’re taking 200dkk flights across the continent to explore the rest of Europe. It’s not a bad lifestyle, but what about the rest of Denmark?
Just three and a half hours on the bus (100dkk round trip!) gets you to Aarhus, Denmark’s second largest city.
Aarhus is the bar that you say you’re going to try each time you go out, but you never quite make it there. Almost everyone I’ve spoken to has said enthusiastically that they want to go….but….they might run out of time. I was part of this group until just over a month ago, when we finally got some friends together and booked tickets.
Aarhus surpassed all expectations and this seems to be the general consensus from anyone who’s been. The city is small but lively with just over 300,000 inhabitants, most of which seem to be students. It’s the perfect weekend getaway from Copenhagen.
Even if you’re not a huge art enthusiast ARoS is a must. The museum itself is stunning and the exhibitions were great. Of course, the main attraction is Your Rainbow Panorama by Danish-Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson. My friends and I spent the good part of an hour walking around the rainbow, admiring the view of the city and taking pictures. Even the amateur photographer is guaranteed success.
A short walk from ARoS are the Botanical Gardens which provide the perfect picnic spot and overlook Den Gamle By, an open air museum that recreates a Danish town in the ‘old days’. Other attractions include Moesgaard Museum, a museum of history and civilization, the new DoKK1 Library and a handful of beaches that can be reached by bike.
A lot of our time was spent walking around The Latin Quarter. This area is the oldest part of the city and is loaded with small shops, restaurants and bars. Make sure to peek into some of the alleyways; they often lead to hidden courtyards with quirky shops and cafes.
The nightlife in Aarhus was another pleasant surprise. The streets were packed with students and because of the small, walkable size, bar hopping was easy and CHEAP. I had my first 12dkk beer since arriving in Denmark! We spent a good amount of time dancing at Cafe Paradis but were in and out of a bunch of places (Ris Ras, Le Coq, Vinstuen) in the area.
The best part about Aarhus was how relaxed it felt. It was the first trip in a while that felt like a vacation. I arrived with very few plans and no expectations, a nice change in pace from the other travelling I had been doing.
Choose a weekend and get some friends together to check out Aarhus, it won’t disappoint.