Denmark can be an expensive country to visit, but if you’re on a budget you can still find ways to entertain yourself without breaking the bank. Here’s a look at free things to do in Aarhus, Denmark’s second-largest city.
Explore the city by bike
The Danes are well-known for their love of cycling, and most places in Denmark are set up for biking with Aarhus being is no exception. Although in some places hiring a bike can be a bit pricey, in Aarhus all you need is 2 DKK (about 25p) – and you get this back when you’ve finished.
The city has a range of free to use bikes which are unlocked from bike stands the same way you would unlock a shopping trolley – simply pop your 2 DKK coin in and unhook it, and it’s all yours! They’re easy to spot as the wheels all have adverts in so they stand out from the locals’ bikes (they’re often parked next to public bike stands). They may not be the best bikes ever but for cycling round a flat city, they’re ideal.
A map of locations can be found here so you know where you can pick up and drop off your bike so you can get exploring!
Go to the beach
Aarhus is a coastal city and a short bike ride away from the city centre, and you can be on the beach. To the north of the city there is Den Permanente, which is also home to an outdoor swimming bath – although this is only open to members outside the summer months, and slightly further away to the south of Aarhus is Ballehage Beach.
Explore the Botanical Gardens
Enjoy some green space in the heart of the city with a stroll around Aarhus’ Botanical Garden. It’s a lovely spot and includes a windmill as well as a greenhouse to visit.
If you wanted to visit Den Gamle By (the Old Town) open air museum but don’t have the cash available, you can see some of the buildings from the gardens for free!
Peter Holms Vej
See the city from up high
In the heart of Aarhus’ shopping area, you can find department store Salling. But it’s not the clothes and homeware that’s the biggest draw, but what’s on top. Salling is home to a fantastic roof garden which has a bridge – complete with glass bottomed floor for the braver visitor – taking you right above the street. It offers a fantastic view and really gives you a feel for the size and varying architectural styles the city has. There’s also a cafe and bar on the roof garden if you want to stay for longer.
Søndergade 27 – salling.dk/om-salling/salling-rooftop-155
Feed deer in a park
A local in a bar recommended this as one of their favourite things to do in their city and it’s one not to miss! Located south of the city, Marselisborg Deer Park (Marselisborg Dyrehave in Danish) is a large park which is home to a large community of very friendly deer. Pick up a bag of carrots from one of the city’s many supermarkets beforehand and they’ll be your best friends.
If they spot that you’ve got goodies for them, they’ll approach you – some of them do get quite excited and might jump up but they’re all friendly and once they see you’ve got no food left for them, they’ll walk off and leave you in peace so you can explore the rest of the park.
Admission is free and the site also includes some wild boars who live in their own enclosure.
Ørneredevej 6, Højbjerg