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Louisiana Museum of Modern Art | © Jelm6/Flickr

10 of Copenhagen's Top Museums

Picture of Aliki Seferou
Aliki Seferou
Updated: 15 May 2017

The capital of Denmark has a great art scene with plenty of museums covering a wide range of art movements and eras. Therefore, a few hints are always helpful to those who want to explore every part of Copenhagen‘s culture scene. Scroll down the page to discover the 10 best museums and choose the one that suits your taste.

The National Museum of Denmark

The collection of The National Museum of Denmark covers a wide range of eras, including the Bronze Age, the Danish Prehistory, Middle Ages and Renaissance. Unique antiquities of Mesopotamia and Persia are displayed in the specially designed exhibition rooms of the Prinsens Palæ. Hosting unique findings from the ancient times, such as the prehistoric Sun Chariot and the Gundestrup Cauldron, the museum has fairly earned the title of the most important in the country.

National Museum of Denmark, Ny Vestergade 10, Copenhagen, +45 33 13 44 11

National Gallery of Denmark (Statens Museum for Kunst)

With 35,000 artworks covering a period of 700 years of Danish and European art, The National Gallery of Denmark is certainly a must-visit museum for history and culture buffs. A stroll around the diverse exhibitions spaces will take visitors to a journey through time, which spans the Danish Golden Age to the international contemporary art of the 20th century. Picasso, Braque, Derain and Matisse are just a few of the artists whose paintings are hosted in the internationally renowned museum. 

Statens Museum for Kunst, Sølvgade 48-50, Copenhagen, +45 33 74 84 94

National Gallery of Denmark | Courtesy of National Gallery of Denmark

Thorvaldsens Museum

Thorvaldsens Museum opened its doors for the first time in 1848 and it is the first public museum building in Denmark. Besides a great collection of Bertel Thorvaldsen’s outstanding sculptures, the museum hosts the famous sculptor’s extensive collections of contemporary art, objects from the antiquity, graphic art, medals, letters, books and personal objects. Moreover, Thorvaldsens is a must-visit museum for architecture lovers, who will have the chance to observe Michael Gottlieb Bindes­bøll’s stunning design of the building – with lighting playing a significant role in the atmosphere of the museum.

Thorvaldsens Museum, Bertel Thorvaldsens Plads 2, Copenhagen, +45 33 32 15 32

Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek

Egyptian mummies, greek marble sculptures and C.W Eckersberg’s paintings are only some of the artworks Glyptotek’s visitors will have the chance to explore. The elegant museum, which has been standing in the same spot in Copenhagen’s historic city center since 1902, has welcomed million of tourists and locals over the years; presenting antiquities of the places around the Mediterranean as well masterpieces of the French and Danish art of the 19th century.

Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek, Dantes Plads 7, Copenhagen, +45 33 41 81 41

The Hirschsprung Collection

Those who want to see more of the Danish art of the 19th century and unique masterpieces of the Golden Age shouldn’t miss out visiting The Hirschsprung Collection. It includes paintings by the internationally renowned artists C.W Eckersberg, Anna Ancher, J.Th.Lundbye and other popular figures of the Danish Golden Age and “The Modern Breakthrough” (1870-1890). Hirschsprung Collection is one the six museums included in the Parkmuseerne ticket, which costs 195DKK ($28.60 USD). Check out this article to find out more about membership cards that will help you discover Copenhagen on the cheap

The Hirschsprung Collection, Stockholmsgade 20, Copenhagen, +45 35 42 03 36

Louisiana Museum of Modern Art

Louisiana is a museum of international fame that every modern art enthusiast should visit. Not only does it house a great collection of Danish art, pop art masterpieces, a sculpture park with Ernst’s, Heerup’s and Miró’s creations and Yayoi Kusama’s stunning installation Gleaming Lights of the Souls – but its unique location by the Øresund coast offers a great view to its visitors. On the warm summer days, the museum’s café and front yard are filled with culture lovers soaking up some sunlight.

Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Gl Strandvej 13, Humlebæk, +45 49 19 07 19

Natural History Museum of Denmark (Statens Naturhistoriske Museum)

The Natural History Museum of Denmark consists of the Zoological Museum, the Geological Museum and the Botanical Garden. So, those who would like to see an awe-inspiring mammoth skeleton, or would love to stroll around a great collection of plants and fungi should definitely pay a visit. With the Zoological Museum hosting more than 10 million specimens and the Botanical Garden affiliated to the largest Danish herbaria collections – with plants and fungi from all over the world, education and entertainment are guaranteed. 

Statens Naturhistoriske Museum, Øster Voldgade 5, Copenhagen, +45 35 32 22 22

Viking Ship Museum

The Viking Ship Museum is definitely the one that the kids will love the most, but adults won’t get bored either. Through texts, images, digital installations and other activities, children and adults will gain an insight in the life of Vikings and their excellent craftsmanship in ship construction. Those who want to take a real taste of what feels like to be a Viking, can sail on a real 1,000-year-old boat or dress like a Viking. 

Viking Ship Museum, Vindeboder 12, Roskilde, +45 46 30 02 00

M/S Maritime Museum of Denmark (M/S Museet for Søfart)

Denmark is a nation strongly connected with sea and sailing. Therefore, it comes as no surprise that the Maritime Museum is considered one of the best in the country. Through a variety of permanent and temporary exhibitions for the whole family, visitors can learn about the life of sailors and try to find their way in the vast blue sea with the help of navigational instruments of the past. The museum’s building is considered one of the most innovative and it has been awarded with many national and international prizes for its design. In January 2015, National Geographic included it in the list for 10 structures that is recommended traveling to for the design alone.

Workers Museum (Arbejdermuseet)

The Workers Museum displays a great collection of approximately 63,000 items and 13,000 works of art related to the labor movement in Denmark and other countries. From books and magazines to posters flag and banners, the museum offers a great insight to 150 years of Danish history and presents workers’ daily life and habits.    

Workers Museum, Rømersgade 22, Copenhagen, +45 33 93 25 75