Architectural gems, deranged village people and exclusive accommodation. Strandveien (the Coastal Road) is Denmark’s 40 kilometer long holiday paradise. That’s why we call it the Danish Pacific Coast.
It takes only about 30 minutes on the express highway getting to Helsingør from Copenhagen on the express highway. Strandvejen takes nearly twice as long, but you should allow for several more hours.
The 40 kilometer long road begins at Svanelmøøen station in Ytre Østerbro in Copenhagen and stretches along the Zealand east coast to Helsingør. This beautiful route showcases the very best of Denmark, with nice views over to Sweden.
Six miles north of Copenhagen’s center, you round the bend at Klampenborg and see the bay dotted with Victorian villas and low modern apartment buildings whose white facades and curving forms reflect the seascape.
Beautiful scenery with forests, up-market housing, beaches and pleasure gardens dot this 24 miles of coastline. We recommend that you use the whole day to take in all the sights and adventures this stretch has to offer. Strandvejen, curves through the area like a Danish version of the Pacific Coast Highway.
The Danish Pacific Coast, Strandvejen, alter its name along the route, to Coastal road, Skodsborg Strandvej and Taarbæk Strandvej, but don’t worry. You’re on track.
As you exit Østerbro, the northern district of downtown Copenhagen, you will soon reach Charlottenlund where Denmark’s Aquarium is located.
Famous museums like Karen Blixen museum, Louisiana museum for modern art, are also on the route. Take a stop at the more than 400 year, and the oldest in the world, Bakken amusement park near Klampenborg.
Along the route there is ample good food in restaurants, pubs, and small food stands. Some of Denmark’s most prominent citizens live here, facing the country’s traditional enemy, the Swedes, on the other side of the narrow Oresund strait.
The architect Arne Jacobsen won the competition to construct the Bellevue Beach Bath in 1932, and the whole bay was turned into a functionalist masterpiece.
About half-way between Copenhagen and Helsingør is the old fishing village Rungsted, where there was once a famous inn, established by King Christian II in the 16th century. It was later made into a private home, and the famous Danish writer Karen Blixen grew up in the house in the late 19th century.
Before you reach Helsingør and Kronborg Castle, scene of Shakespeare’s Hamlet, we recommend you to make two stops. The museum Nivågård in the village Nivå is famous for its 16th century Italian and 17th century Danish paintings. Among them is the only Rembrandt on public display in Denmark. Just a short drive from Nivå is Humlebæk where Louisiana is located.
Copenhagen’s mass transit system, the S-train, also has a “Coastal Line” for commuters, explorers and urban invaders. Car or S-train, take your time and take a few stops, it is not a race track. You can easily continue your Scandinavian trip further north to Sweden by ferry.
Where to stay
Skovshoved Hotel Charlottenberg
Hotel Villa Brinkly
What to see
Soigneur (cross and rising bikes)
Den Hvide By (The White Village – Arne Jacobsen’s functionalistic masterpieces)
Trois Pommes Vintage (Famous second hand shop)
Eremitage Castle (The Queen’s Summer Castle)
Karen Blixen Museum
Louisiana Museum for Modern Art
Where to eat
Vertshuset Sankt Peter (Danish website only)
Café Jorden Rundt (Danish website only)
Den Gule Cottage
Den Røde Cottage
Gamle Humlebæk Kro (Danish website only)
The Danish Pacific Coast, written by Tor Kjolberg