The Little Mermaind, Copenhagen.  Easy to reach by train & ferry!
 

The Little Mermaid by Edvard Eriksen.  Unveiled in the Churchill Park in 1913, it's now a symbol of Copenhagen.

London to Denmark in comfort, without flying...

It's easy to travel from the UK to Denmark without flying.  Take Eurostar and comfortable onward trains from London to either Brussels, Cologne or Hamburg, stay overnight, then travel from Brussels, Cologne or Hamburg to Copenhagen next morning.  Between Puttgarten and Rødby the Hamburg-Copenhagen trains go onto a train ferry, one of the few places in the world where this still happens, a fascinating experience in itself.  A great alternative to an unnecessary flight, where the journey becomes part of the holiday.  For the record, the DFDS ferry from Harwich to Esbjerg was discontinued from 29 September 2014 after 140 years of operation, a victim of the EU's new low-sulphur fuel regulations for ferries.  Only a month or two later, the City Night Line sleeper train from Amsterdam & Cologne to Copenhagen was discontinued from 1 November.  But this page will show you the alternatives.

Train times, fares & tickets...

On this page you'll find a step-by-step guide to planning, booking & making a journey from the UK to Denmark by train or ferry, with train & ferry times, fares, and the best way to buy tickets.

  London to Copenhagen by Eurostar & daytime trains with overnight stop in Cologne or Hamburg

  London to Copenhagen by Eurostar & the Paris-Hamburg City Night Line sleeper train

  London to Copenhagen by Harwich-Hoek ferry then trains to Copenhagen

  UK to other destinations in Denmark:  Aarhus, Odense, Aalborg, Kolding, Legoland.

  Copenhagen main station & facilities

  Useful country information - currency, dialling code, time zone

  Hotels & accommodation in Copenhagen

On other pages...

  Trains from Copenhagen to other European cities

  Trains to Copenhagen from other European cities

  General European train travel information

  Taking bikes   Taking your dog   Luggage

  Send your luggage in advance

  Travel insurance, EU Health cards & SIM cards

Sponsored links...

Interactive mapClick on a route for train times from the UK...

Key - Finland via ferry from Germany Key - via Harwich-Hoek Key - via Eurostar Via the Harwich-Hoek ferry Train travel in Sweden Train travel in Norway Train travel in Finland Travemunde to Helsinki by ferry Helsinki-St Petersburg by train Ferries to Tallinn Stockholm-Riga by ferry Stockholm-Helsinki by ferry London-Norway via Hirtshals London to Oslo by train London-Sweden by train London-Copenhagen by train

Useful country information

Train operator in Denmark:

DSB www.dsb.dk.  For any European train time: www.bahn.de.

Eurostar times & fares    All-Europe online train times

 

Ferries UK to Denmark:

www.dfdsseaways.co.uk (Harwich - Esbjerg).

Railpasses:

 

Beginner's guide to European railpasses     Buy a rail pass online

Time zone & dialling code:

GMT+1 (GMT+2 from last Sunday in March to last Saturday in October).  Dial code +45

Currency:

£1 = approx 8.5 Krone.    Currency converter

Tourist information:

www.dt.dk    Tripadvisor Denmark page   Copenhagen city tours   Legoland

Hotels:

Find a hotel in Copenhagen & Denmark

Page last updated:

13 December 2014.  Train times valid 14 Dec 2014 to 13 June 2015.


London to Copenhagen by Eurostar & onward trains

  A Copenhagen to Hamburg EuroCity train on board the train ferry between Rodby & Puttgarten.
 

Train on a ferry!  This is a Hamburg to Copenhagen ICE-TD EuroCity train on board the Puttgarten to Rødby ferry.  This is one of the few remaining routes in Europe where trains go onto ferries, the other major route being mainland Italy to Sicily.  The Rødby-Puttgarten crossing takes about 50 minutes, and you must leave the train and go up into the ferry whilst it is at sea.  The ferry has bars, lounges restaurants & shops.  Naturally, you can leave your bags on the train...

You can travel from London to Copenhagen by Eurostar and comfortable German trains, leaving day 1, arriving day 2, with a comfortable overnight hotel stop in either Brussels, Cologne or Hamburg.  The Hamburg to Copenhagen ICE trains go onto a ferry for the 50-minute crossing between Puttgarten and Rødby, a unique experience. 

London to Copenhagen in a single day?  Incidentally, before anyone else points it out, yes, it's theoretically possible to leave London on the 06:50 Eurostar and arrive in Copenhagen at 22:14 the same day - however, this involves two tight connections, one in Brussels and one in Hamburg, with no way of splitting the ticket so that both connections are protected by the CIV conditions of carriage as explained here.  So I don't recommend this option, or show it here.  You can try this if you want, but there's a difference between armchair travel whilst thumbing through a timetable and real travel where connections have to be robust!

London ► Copenhagen with overnight stop in Brussels...

This is the most time-effective option.  You leave central London after a full working day in the evening of day 1, and arrive in central Copenhagen in time for dinner in the early evening of day 2.

London ► Copenhagen with overnight stop in Cologne...

London ► Copenhagen with overnight stop in Hamburg...

Copenhagen ► London with overnight stop in Brussels...

Copenhagen ► London with overnight stop in Cologne...

Copenhagen ► London with overnight stop in Hamburg...

How much does it cost?

 How to buy tickets online...

How to buy tickets by phone...

Have your train tickets, transfers & hotels professionally arranged...

What's the journey like?

London to Cologne by Eurostar & ICE Watch the video guide.

Cologne to Hamburg by InterCity train.

German InterCity train   InterCity 2nd class   InterCity 1st class (6-seat compartment type)

Most Cologne-Hamburg trains are InterCity trains, a few are high-speed ICEs.  Virtual tour of InterCity train...

 

InterCity 2nd class.  You'll also find a few compartment coaches on InterCity trains, and a bistro or restaurant car...

 

InterCity 1st class, often available in both open-plan saloons like this and in compartments.

Hamburg to Copenhagen by ICE...

ICE3 second class ICE3 first class High-speed ICE3 train from Brussels to Frankfurt

ICE 2nd class.  All seats in both classes have power sockets for laptops & mobiles...

ICE 1st class, with real leather seats.  Staff provide at-seat service of drinks & food.

The Hamburg-Copenhagen ICE on board the Puttgarden-Rødby ferry.  More info on ICE.

Hamburg to Copenhagen by EuroCity train...

Most Hamburg-Copenhagen trains are German ICE3s, but the 07:25 Hamburg to Copenhagen & 17:43 Copenhagen to Hamburg are shown as 'EC' or EuroCity in the timetable and are operated by a Danish IC3 train like this...

Danish InterCity train at Copenhagen...   Inside the InterCity train from Esbjerg to Copenhagen...   InterCity train at Copenhagen about to leave for Esbjerg...

A Danish InterCity train.

 

2nd class seats...

 

Arrived at Copenhagen...

Traveller's reports...

Traveller Ian Dow reports on a ride on a Hamburg-Copenhagen EuroCity train, which goes onto a special train ferry to cross to Denmark:  "The ferry portion is from Puttgarden to Rødby. The ferry has already been loaded with cars and lorries, and the train is loaded last.  On our journey, the train stops at Puttgarden station and then moves on to the ferry terminal, it then slows but runs straight to the ferry, moving on board at fairly slow speed. It then stopped about half a metre from the front (in the front First class the Guard had held the door to the driver’s can open and we could see through). The train then edged slowly forward.  At the front of the ferry on the bulkhead doors is an auto-coupler and the train couples on to this to ensure it does not move during the journey. The train engines then stop, the doors open and you can get off, as there is a sort of platform step on the ferry. Once the train is docked, the ferry doors closed and we departed immediately.  The trip on the ferry is just 45 minutes, and you get off to use the ferry facilities, you can also inspect the train arrangements. The EuroCity train is designed to fit and when I was on it, there was less than a half metre at the back of the train between it and the ferry doors. The track runs through the centre of the ferry, with cars and lorries on either side. You had better make sure that you are back on board the train in time at the end of the ferry trip, as it does not hang about!  The ferry takes a little longer than a normal car ferry to line up at the destination, but once it has, the doors open, the track is locked in place, and the train engines start, and we are off, pretty fast.  We made a brief stop at the Rødby station, then continued to Copenhagen."


London & E Anglia to Copenhagen via Amsterdam

  Boarding the Stena Line ferry from Harwich to Hoek van Holland for Amsterdam

London to the Netherlands by Dutch Flyer train & ferry...  Take a train from London's Liverpool Street station directly to the ferry terminal at Harwich.  You walk off the train, into the terminal, get your boarding card & cabin key at the Stena Line check-in desk and walk straight onto the overnight ferry to Hoek van Holland.  The new superferry Stena Hollandica is the largest ferry of its kind in the world.  See the Netherlands page and see the video...

  Standard inside cabin on the ferry

Cosy cabins:  The overnight Harwich-Hoek ferry is a floating hotel.  All passengers travel in a cosy private cabin with en suite shower & toilet and satellite TV.  This is the cheapest 2-berth cabin...

  Captain's suite deluxe cabin on the Stena Line ferry 'Stena Hollandica'

... and this is a Captain's Class cabin with double bed & complimentary bubbly in the minibar.

The ferry to Hoek van Holland, a useful alternative to Eurostar...

With daily departures, inexpensive fares, quality private cabins with shower, toilet, free WiFi & satellite TV, the integrated train-ferry-train service between London and the Netherlands makes a useful alternative to Eurostar, shown in orange on the route map above.  It's a good option if you need to travel at short notice when Eurostar is expensive, or if you live in East Anglia, or if you want to avoid the Channel Tunnel due to an incident or because you are claustrophobic.  Indeed, you may prefer this relaxing journey to the faster Eurostar options, cruising overnight to Holland on the Stena Line superferry in a luxury en suite cabin with shower, toilet, satellite TV and free WiFi (see the video), then travelling by daytime train to Copenhagen next day.  Why not stop off in Amsterdam on the way?

London, East Anglia & Harwich ► Copenhagen

Copenhagen ► Harwich, East Anglia & London

How much does it cost?

How to buy tickets online...

How to buy tickets by phone:  Special booking form


London to Copenhagen by DFDS ferry...

RIP:  The ferry to Denmark is no more

DFDS has just announced that after 140 years of operation, the Harwich-Esbjerg ferry was axed from the end of the summer season on 29 September, a victim of the EU's new low-sulphur fuel regulations for ferries.  Incredibly, that leaves no passenger ferries between the UK and anywhere in Norway, Sweden or Denmark.

Pictured, right:  DFDS Seaways ferry Sirena Seaways used to link the UK with Denmark.  Photo courtesy of DFDS Seaways.

DFDS Seaways ferry m/v 'Dana Sirena'

 


London to Odense, Aarhus, Legoland & other cities in Denmark

London  ► Odense, Aarhus, Kolding with overnight stop in Hamburg...

London  ► Odense, Aarhus, Kolding with overnight stop in Cologne...

Odense, Aarhus, Kolding ► London with overnight stop in Hamburg...

Odense, Aarhus, Kolding ► London with overnight stop in Cologne...

How much does it cost?

How to buy tickets...

Legoland  (www.legoland.dk)

The famous Legoland theme park, opened in 1968, is at Billund.  There is no rail station at Billund, but there are buses from Vejle, Kolding & Fredericia. 


Copenhagen main station...

Copenhagen H (main station)   Inside Copenhagen main station.

Copenhagen Hovedbanegård (main station) is right next door to the famous Tivoli Gardens (www.tivoli.dk) and just 5 minutes walk from the city centre shopping area.  However, the seashore park with the Little Mermaid statue is a brisk 45 minutes walk away on the other side of the city centre, and the DFDS ferry terminal for Oslo is some way beyond that.  Copenhagen main station is shown as 'Kobenhavn H' in many online systems including the online timetable at www.bahn.de, and it can also help to know that Copenhagen is 'Köpenhamn' in Swedish.  The station itself is typically Scandinavian in style, completed in 1911.  There are plenty of bars and restaurants and even an Irish Pub in the station.  As well as a ticket office, you can buy tickets to anywhere in Denmark using the self-service machines which have touch-screens and an English-language facility.  To buy tickets on the fast SJ2000 trains to Stockholm, use the two SJ (Swedish Railways) self-service machines on the left as you walk in the main entrance, which also feature touch screens and an English language facility.  But it's best to buy your SJ2000 tickets in advance at www.sj.se for the cheapest fares!

Map showing location of Copenhagen main station     Left luggage information    Hotels in Copenhagen

The official Copenhagen tourist information website is www.visitcopenhagen.com, and there's a tourist office just across the road from the station.


Send your luggage in advance

Ride the trains without heavy luggage... 

Send your suitcase ahead by Luggage Mule from around £30 each way.


The European Rail Timetable & maps

Thomas Cook European Timetable -  click to buy onlineTraveller's Railway Map of Europe - buy onlineThe European Rail Timetable (formerly the Thomas Cook European Timetable) has train & ferry times for every country in Europe plus currency & climate information.  It is essential for regular European train travellers and an inspiration for armchair travellers.  Published since 1873, it had just celebrated 140 years of publication when Thomas Cook decided to pull the plug on their entire publishing department, but the dedicated ex-Thomas Cook team have set up a private venture and published the first edition of a reborn European Rail Timetable in March 2014.  You can buy it online with worldwide shipping at either www.stanfords.co.uk or www.europeanrailtimetable.euMore information on what the European Rail Timetable contains.

A Traveller's Railway Map of Europe covers the whole of Europe from Portugal in the west to Moscow & Istanbul in the east, Finland in the north to Sicily & Athens in the south.  On the back are detailed maps of Switzerland, Benelux & Germany, plus city plans showing stations in major cities.  Scenic & high-speed routes highlighted.  Buy it online for £14.50 + postage worldwide (UK addresses £2.80) at www.stanfords.co.uk/Continents/Europe/Maps--Atlases/Europe-A-Travellers-Railway-Map_9789077899090.htm or (in the Netherlands) for €13 + €5.50 postage from www.treinreiswinkel.nl.


Find hotels in Copenhagen & Denmark...

 

◄◄ Hotel search & price comparison.

www.hotelscombined.com checks all the main hotel booking sites at once to find the widest choice of hotels & the cheapest seller.  It was named as the World's Leading Hotel Comparison Site at the World Travel Awards 2013 and I highly recommend it, both to find hotels in even the smallest places and to check that another retailer isn't selling your hotel for less!

www.booking.com is my favourite booking site.  It's really clear and you can usually book with free cancellation and so confirm your accommodation at no risk months before train booking opens.

Other hotel sites worth trying...

Backpacker hostels: www.hostelbookers.com...

Homestays: www.homestay.com...


Travel insurance & health card...

 

 

Columbus direct travel insurance

Take out decent travel insurance, it's essential...

Never travel without proper travel insurance from a reliable insurer with at least £1m or preferably £5m medical cover.  It should also cover loss of cash & belongings (up to a limit), and trip cancellation.  An annual multi-trip policy is usually cheapest even for just 2 or 3 trips a year - I have an annual policy myself.  However, don't expect travel insurance to bail you out of every missed connection, see the advice on missed connections here.  Here are some suggested insurers, Seat61 gets a little commission if you buy through these links, and feedback from using insurance for rail & ferry travel is always welcome.

In the UK, use www.confused.com to compare prices & policy features across major insurance companies.

If you have a pre-existing medical condition or are over 65 (no age limit), see www.JustTravelCover.com.

        If you live in Australia, New Zealand, Ireland or the EU, try Columbus Direct's other websites.

  If you live in the USA try Travel Guard USA.

Get an EU health card, it's free...

If you're a UK citizen travelling in Europe, you should apply for a free European Health Insurance Card, which entitles you to free or reduced rate health care if you become ill or get injured in many European countries, under a reciprocal arrangement with the NHS.  This replaced the old E111 forms as from January 2006.  The EHIC card is available from www.ehic.org.uk.  It doesn't remove the need for travel insurance, though.

Carry a spare credit card, designed for foreign travel with no currency exchange loading & low/no ATM fees

Taking out an extra credit card costs nothing, but if you keep it in a different part of your luggage you won't be left stranded if your wallet gets stolen.  In addition, some credit cards are better for overseas travel than others.  Martin Lewis's www.moneysavingexpert.com/travel/cheap-travel-money explains which UK credit cards have the lowest currency exchange commission loadings when you buy something overseas, and the lowest cash withdrawal fees when you use an ATM abroad.

You can avoid ATM charges and expensive exchange rates with a Caxton FX euro currency Visa Card, or their multi-currency 'Global Traveller' Visa Card, see www.caxtonfx.com for info.

Get an international SIM card to save on calls & mobile data...

Mobile phones can cost a fortune to use abroad, so consider getting a global pre-paid SIM card for your mobile phone which can cut call & data costs by up to 90%.  At the time of writing, www.roamsure.com claims a definite 25% saving within the EU and up to 90% saving in the rest of the world.  Incoming calls are free in 73 countries, including all of the EU, the USA, Australia & South Africa.  There's no contract or commitment, and at time I write this Roamsure is offering a global SIM card for free when you buy £20 of call credit.  Seat61 gets some commission to support the site if you buy airtime from Roamsure.

 


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