Visiting Tivoli Gardens in Copenhagen With Kids
No visit to Copenhagen is complete without a day at Tivoli Gardens. This was one of the reasons we visited this beautiful city. Tivoli Gardens exuded an inviting atmosphere that included varied amusement park rides, carnival games, gardens, restaurants and theaters. It was unlike any theme park we’ve visited and was the highlight of my kids’ trip.
Opened in 1843, Tivoli Gardens is the world’s second oldest amusement park and Scandinavia’s most visited. Tivoli Gardens was to said to be the inspiration for Disneyland. There was a vintage feel and an old world charm throughout the park.
Tivoli Garden’s à la carte pricing meant its low entrance fees didn’t include the aquarium or any of the 26 rides but tickets could be purchased at many ticket machines. Unlimited ride passes were also available, but we opted for the popular all-inclusive package. This included a multi-ride ticket, aquarium admission and meals at some of the restaurants. Unfortunately, the aquarium was quite small. Get the Copenhagen Card to save time and money to many city attractions including free admission to Tivoli Gardens.
Rides and Character Areas
Most rides were age-appropriate for my elementary school age kids that ranged from classics like a carousel, a Ferris wheel and wooden roller coasters. We repeatedly rode the Flying Trunk which became our favorite ride. Riding on trunks, we soared over Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tale scenes. It was fun seeing the characters come alive on this ride.
There were rides for daredevils and adults too including the looping Demon roller coaster, the 360-degree swinging plane called Vertigo, and Europe’s tallest carousel. There were rides inspired by the Middle and Far East. Carnival and video games to win prizes were also available.
There was only one costumed character to meet here. Petzi, a Danish cartoon bear, had his wonderful world of 40 activities including playgrounds and gardens for the smaller kids. Unfortunately, we didn’t get to meet Petzi.
Beyond the Rides: Gardens, Theater and Restaurants
Various gardens scattered throughout the park was the highlight for me. They were beautifully maintained and were in full bloom during our June visit. There were lakes, fountains and small green areas to relax in between structures and rides.
What is universally more appealing than a pantomime theater? We saw two free shows at the Chinese Peacock Theater and loved it. The sets, costumes and stories were very well-done and entertaining. Kids even had special seats in the front.
Shows and concerts were common throughout Tivoli Gardens. The Tivoli Boys Guard (life size toy soldiers) performed on weekends. Fireworks occurred every Saturday at 11:45PM.
Tivoli Gardens was also a foodie paradise with over 40 diverse restaurants and food stands to satisfy everyone’s tastes. Many also had outdoor dining areas. Kids could even eat inside a pirate ship. Various dining plans were available to fit different budgets.
The Nimb Hotel, a white, Moorish-styled building, with towers and minarets, was a dominant structure upon entering Tivoli Gardens. Copenhagen’s most luxurious hotel only has 14 rooms.
Don’t miss Tivoli Gardens at night, too. The 120,000 incandescent bulbs illuminated the park and gave it a romantic and mysterious glow. Tourists and locals converged here. It was a popular place to enjoy picnics, watch shows and gather to support Denmark in many sporting events.
Tivoli Gardens had something for everyone. We enjoyed the traditional, personal and less commercial feel of the park. It felt like a mixture of an amusement park, a botanical garden and a state fair. We’ve never gone to an amusement park and felt relaxed. We spent two days here and that wasn’t enough for my kids. This historic park is a can’t miss attraction for the whole family when visiting Copenhagen.
If you’re looking for a hotel in Copenhagen, consider Hilton Copenhagen Airport which is only 12 minutes from city center by train and metro.
- Read about other fun things to do in Scandinavia with kids.
- See all of our vacation photos from Copenhagen.
- Saving Money with City Passes and Other Memberships.
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Mary lives in San Diego, California with her husband, 13 year-old daughter and 10 year-old son. She was born in the Philippines, grew up in the U.S. territory…