Tuesday 3 October 2017

24 hours in Odense, Denmark

Odense is charming, it's the third largest city in Denmark, the main city on the island of Funen, and the birth place of Hans Christian Andersen. It's a 2-hour drive from Copenhagen and the perfect place to spend a couple of days thanks to a plethora of things to do.

In order to make the most of your time in Odense, you should grab yourself an Odense City Passes* from the tourist office, situated in the town hall. The pass costs 169 DK per person, which is about £20, and it lets you enter the majority of city attractions, for free, over a 24 hour period. If you're into sightseeing this will help you save money. Had we paid individually for all the attractions we visited we would have spent 350 DK each.

Vestergade 2, 5000 Odense
Open 10am - 4:30pm daily (except Sunday
10am - 1pm Saturday


Start your day with breakfast at Cafe Skt. Anne which has a great selection of organic plates including a delicious avocado on toast. When you're done, stroll over to the town hall to pick up your city pass. When you pick up your city pass you need to write down the date and time you started using it on the back. Make sure you write down the time you enter your first attraction, and not the time you picked up the pass.

Mageløs 7, 5000 Odense
Open various times daily (except Monday)

Make your first stop the fantastically curated Møntergården, a local history museum that documents world events such as the Industrial Revolution and WWII through a local lens. The chronological order of events dates back as far as the Viking Era and Middle Ages where you can learn all about Odense and the island of Funen. The museum is found in the middle of the city's historic quarter and walking through the quaint cobbled streets, lined with candy coloured houses, is like stepping back in time. You could easily spend an hour at the museum, if not longer, but make sure you dedicate some time to exploring this historic part of the city.

Møntestræde 1, 5000 Odense
Open 10am - 4pm daily (except Monday)

Another must visit is the Hans Christian Andersen Museum, where you can learn all about the author's life. The museum thoroughly explains his life and achievements, plus you can visit his birthplace and a reconstruction of his Copenhagen study. This is another big museum that require a decent amount of time but is thoroughly worth it for an insight into one of the most famous Danes' life.

Bangs Boder 29, 5000 Odense
Open 10am - 4pm daily (except Monday)

A short walk away will bring you to Hans Christian Andersen Childhood Home. The house is tiny, 18 sq metres in size, but it is an excellent complementary component to the larger museum. Andersen lived here from the age of two until he was fourteen, and an exhibition talks about Andersen's links to the city. The museum is located next to the cathedral where you'll find a Hans Christian Andersen statue in the park.

Munkemøllestræde 3, 5000 Odense
Open 11am - 4pm daily (except Monday)

Lunch time! Grab yourself a traditional Danish open sandwich from Lagkagehuset and enjoy a stroll through the centre of town, checking out any shops that take your fancy. Ganni and Weekday are great for fashion; Moby Disc and RecordPusher for music; and Georg Jensen, Ingvard Christensen, Schiang Living Interior Design, and Lindegaard Poulsen for furniture and lifestyle.

Vestergade 1, 5000 Odense
Open 6am - 6/7pm daily

After lunch visit the Tidens Samling, the museum of everyday life in the 20th century. The museum is like stepping back in time, eight rooms have been meticulously reconstructed to represent different eras between 1900 and 1980. You're allowed to make yourself at home in each of the rooms by sitting in the furniture, opening drawers and cabinets, reading books, and playing music. I loved the 60s style living room thanks to the gorgeous mid century furniture.

Farvergården 7, 5000 Odense
Open 10am - 4pm daily (except Sunday)

If you're a fan of art then Brandts is an absolute must see. The city's premier art gallery hosts a selection of fantastic Danish and international temporary exhibitions, covering photography, design, and traditional arts. The permanent collection takes you on a journey through 250 years of Danish art, starting in 1750. The gallery is located in the same building as the Media Museum which is worth a quick look if you're interested to see some original printing presses.

Brandts Torv 1, 5000 Odense
Open 10am - 5pm daily (except Monday)
Midday - 9pm Thursday (free entry 5pm - 9pm)

Your final stop of the day should be Brandts 13, an outpost of the bigger Brandts, where temporary exhibitions cover 'young art' from living Danish and international artists.

Jernbanegade 13, 5000 Odense
Open 10am - 5pm daily (except Monday)
Midday - 9pm Thursday (free entry 5pm - 9pm)

Finish your day strolling through town, checking out the cute, cobbled streets and Odense Castle. Unfortunately the castle is not open to the public, it's used as administrate office, but it does look nice from the outside. The nearby theatre is the second oldest in Denmark and boasts a lovely façade.

There a some fantastic restaurants in Odense that you may be interested in visiting come dinner time. The charming bistro Restaurant 61 is a favourite among locals thanks to its menu of traditional European and Danish dishes. While Mmoks is a restaurant that would not be out of place in Copenhagen thanks to a menu of inventive small plates.

Restaurant 61
Kongensgade 61, 5000 Odense
Open daily 5pm - 10pm (except Sunday)

Kongensgade 65, 5000 Odense
Open daily 5:30m - 9/10pm (except Sunday)

If you're looking for a place to stay, Odense City B&B is a charming option, right in the city centre. Rooms are clean, comfortable and breakfast is offered for a small additional fee.

Vindegade 73B, 5000 Odense


Do as the locals do and grab coffee and a breakfast pastry from Nelle’s Coffee, the city's best coffee and wine bar.

Rosenbæk Torv 1, 5000 Odense
Open various times daily

Make sure you get to your final museum before your city pass expires. We visited the Danish Railway Museum which has a huge collection of Danish trains from various periods in Denmark's rail history. The museum is huge and you could spend hours here which is why it's a good place to visit just before your city pass expires. Highlights include an E class steam locomotive that was used to haul the funeral train of King Frederick IX of Denmark, a NOHAB diesel locomotive (sectioned on one side, to reveal the engine), an original 1930s Copenhagen-area S-train carriage, and a 1950s Lyntog diesel multiple unit.

Dannebrogsgade 24, 5000 Odense
Open 10am - 4pm daily

Alternatively you could visit the Funen Village, an open-air museum that features 25 buildings from Funish villages, most of which date from the 18th and 19th century.

Sejerskovvej 20, 5260 Odense
Open 10am - 5pm daily (except Monday)

There are a few more museums covered on the Odense City Pass, including the Tinderbox, where HC Andersen stories are brought to life for children; Odense Bunker Museum where you can visit a Cold War nuclear bunker; and Odins Odense, where you can discover what life was like during the Iron Age and Viking era. The pass also includes a tour of the city hall, a HC Andersen themed city walk, a river cruise, and free bus transport within Odense.

Thank you Visit Odense for providing Steve and myself with complimentary city passes during our visit.

Follow me on: Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Bloglovin' 

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment.