Rådhuspladsen - Town hall square, Copenhagen
Since the girls couldn't climb the tower at Rådhuspladsen, they climbed unto the lap of Hans Christian Andersen instead! Yes, he was their favourite author as he wrote diva classics such as " The Princess and the Pea " and '" The Little Mermaid" . The girls noticed that the larger than life statue was looking towards Tivoli Gardens which was still closed at this hour.
H.C. Andersen knew Tivoli very well as he was a friend of Tivoli's founder, Georg Carstensen, and was so greatly inspired by the Chinese buildings and the gardens that he wrote "Nattergalen" ("The Nightingale") in just two days! As an added note,this year is the 200th year celebration of Andersen and his classic tales! Visit the website for more details.
After two cranky girls arrived in Copenhagen, they did a walking tour starting from Rådhuspladsen or the city hall in the heart of town. It wasn't too difficult to locate even though the girls were cranky and sleepy as it was only a stone's throw from the central train station.
Note: Since it was only 7am, it was too early to get into the building and climb to the top of the tower for a bird's eye view of the city.
Tip update:Guided tours in English: Monday-Friday at 3 pm, Saturday 10 am. Tower tours: June-September Monday-Friday at 10 am, noon and 2 pm; Saturday at noon; October-May Saturday tours only. Radhus around 20 DKK; clock only, 10 DKK.
Its bang in the middle of the city where a lot of visitors start there exploration of Copenhagen. And there is little to publicise the fact you can go up it. What am I describing - the Town Hall tower of course!
Just inside the massive front door on the main square is a gift shop where you can find out the times of the ascent(s). I visited in October and there was only one per day, at noon. BE ON TIME!! Admission 20DK.
The most interesting thing about my climb up the tower (apart from the panoramic views) were the paintings, photos and maps at each level. There is a massive wall painting of medieval Copenhagen next to the first staircase, for example.
Since it was pointless banging on the gates of Tivoli at 7am, the 2 girls looked around and found a column topped by a pair of bronze vikings blowing horns in the southeastern corner of Rådhuspladsen. Just opposite the players was the grand tower of the 4* Palace Hotel.
It was much later that they found out the figures were playing LURS or a "s" shaped horns blown during funerals and ancient Danish rites. As for the Palace, well, they were told that it was rather shabby inside and expensive!
We began our acquaintance with the Danish capital from Radhuspladsen (Town Hall square). The square was the city centre during many centuries. Almost all routes of ground transport converge there. Concerts are arranged there on weekends.
Up to the middle of the XIX century there was the western gate of city on a place of the present square. A payment for right to sell the goods in the capital was collected at this gate. The square was repeatedly reconstructed. Its present shape and view developed in the XIX - XX centuries.
Unfortunately for us the reconstruction of a roadway proceeds nowadays. Therefore we admired the square which was forced by building and road technical equipment.
I have hardly found the necessary foreshortening for a photo shooting.
There is a fountain and a column topped by a bronze statue of two Vikings in the center of Radhuspladsen. Vikings blow in horns - long curved pipes.
According to a legend, on an alarm signal which will be made by Vikings, the ancient Hero Holger Danish who sleeps in a vault of the Kronborg castle will rise to protect the country...
Along the southwest side of Radhuspladsen runs H.C.Andersens Boulevard. The monument to the great storyteller is established near to the Town hall. Since our childhood Denmark and Copenhagen associated with this great writer.
Characters of his fairy tales usually accompany us all our life. It was very remarkable for us, that the Andersen's monument met us in Copenhagen right at the beginning of the excursion. This fact created good mood for the whole excursion day.
We advise to continue acquaintance with sights of Copenhagen connected with the name of Andersen.
The name of Radhuspladsen is connected with a huge building of the Town hall which is located on the western side of the square. The building was constructed of red bricks rather recently in 1892-1905. It was already the sixth building on this place.
The building of the Town hall has a very impressive appearance. It's decorated with the gilt statue of the founder of the city - bishop Absalon. It would be desirable to admire by fine brick decor. The viewing platform is opened on the tower which has 105 meters in height.
Rådhuset (Copenhagen Town Hall) is located on Rådhuspladsen (the Town Hall Square) in the centre of Copenhagen and is home of the Mayor of Copenhagen and the City Council. The building is inspired by the city hall of Siena in Italy and was opened on September 12, 1905 after 13 years of construction. If you take a closer look you’ll see that it is richly decorated with sculptures and paintings - for example the big statue of Bishop Absalon, the founder of Copenhagen, above the main entrance.
In my opinion, the main attraction of Rådhuset is the impressive tower. It is 106 meters (350 ft) high and is open for public on guided tours. No elevator, so the only way up is to climb the 300 steps inside the tower, but the amazing view from the top is absolutely worth the effort.
The Town Hall also houses the Jens Olsen’s Verdensur (World Clock). The World Clock was designed and calculated by Jens Olsen and shows not only the time and date but also various astronomical constellations. The clockwork is so exact that it's accurate to within half a second every 300 years. The clock was started on December 15, 1955 by King Frederik IX.
The information desk and ticket sale is located to the left when you enter the main entrance.
Rådhuset is built around a small hidden garden. There is not that much to see or do, but it is a nice place to rest for a few minutes. You can gain access to the garden from the streets of H. C. Andersens Boulevard and Vester Voldgade.
The cityhall of Copenhagen is opened in 1905. In front of the building you´ll find the statue of the foundator of the city, Absalon (1128-1201). He is showed as a bishop and was made by Christian Gottlieb Vilhelm Bisssen. He also made the horse-statue of Absalon, a army leadsman, at the Højbro-square (1901). The base of the statue, as well as the whole cityhall was designed by Martin Nyrop.
The central hall of the building is very impressive. It is a glass covered square, has a couple of floors and is often used as a party hall.
The main attraction of the cityhall is the worldclock, made by Jens Olsen (1872 – 1945). He worked 27 years on the object. In 1955 the clock was placed. It shows the local time, the real suntime, the sundown and sunset time, the Gregorian calender and the sky with stars.
The tower of the building is the highest tower of the country, with 106 meters. You can reach the top of the tower by climbing over 300 steps. From here you have a beautiful sight over the city. At night you can clearly see the enormous amount of neon lights at this busy square.
In the facade of the cityhall you´ll find a sculpture with grapes above the door. A winecellar was planned here, but the city government forbid this because they were strongly against the use of alcohol.
The Dragonfountain was placed at the Radhusplatsen in 1904. The bull that had to fight the dragon was placed 19 years later, made out of bronze, by Joakim Skovgaade.
There also is (off course) a statue of Hans Christian Andersen at the square, that is situated at the Hans Christian Andersen Boulevard.
This is the place to start in Copenhagen. There's always something happening here on the weekends, bands, street performers, car shows, rallies, etc.
Check out what it has to offer and then move on or sit in one of its outdoor cafes for a drink.
The Information Center is on one side of this square if you need some ideas on places to go and things to see.
You can catch a bus to where ever you like from here as well, its a very handy place!
The Rådhus (Town Hall) is located at Rådhuspladsen (Town Hall Square). Designed by Martin Nyrop, it was constructed from 1892 to 1905, and was modelled upon the town hall of Sienna, Italy.
The Town Hall is decorated with a large number of sculptures, and has a tower of over 106 metres. It is possible to take a tour of the tower (DKK20).
The Rådhus is open :
Monday to Friday : 08:00 - 17:00 General admission is free.
Tours are given :
October to May
Monday to Saturday at noon
June to September
Monday to Friday at 10:00, noon and 14:00
Saturday at noon only
Rådhuspladsen (The Town Hall Square) is located in the centre of Copenhagen, and is a good place to start your sightseeing tour. The Central Station is only a few minutes away and both the Tivoli Gardens and the pedestrian shopping street - “Strøget” - are visible from the square.
Rådhuspladsen is occasionally home of special events like concerts, live sport on big-screen (football games) and political demonstrations, but on a normal quiet day you’ll have to settle with the street entertainers (musicians, comedians…) performing on the square...
At Christmas time the neon signs around the square must compete with the light of the city’s official Christmas tree… Rådhuspladsen is the big gathering place in Copenhagen on New Years Eve, and Danish TV broadcasts live from the square when the clock on the Town Hall strikes 12. I went there once to celebrate the New Year - but never again. People were throwing fireworks everywhere and it was a bit too crazy for me…
The monument, Lurblæserne (The Lur Blowers), is located very near the Town Hall Square, and was built between 1911 and 1914. Lurblæserne is a gift from the Carlsberg Foundation to celebrate the 100-year birthday of Brewer J.C. Jacobsen (1811-1887). Legend says that the lur blowers blow a sound on their horns whenever a virgin passes by…
The spire of St Nikolaj Kirke seen in the background of City Hall Square was built from a donation given by Carl Jacobsen of the Carlsberg Brewery. The church is no longer used for religious purposes but as an art gallery, concert venue and other cultural events. Also in the square is the statue of Bishop Absalon - founder of Copenhagen.
Dankjewel to maartenw for his invaluable help with spelling and in the making of this tip!! ;-)
The Rådhuspladsen "City Hall Square" is a special place in Copenhagen. You might not go for a guided walk of the beautiful city hall itself, but even so, this place is where it all happens. It is where Copenhageners meet for a night out, it is where they meet to demonstrate or to cheer for their beloved football team. Both the city hall and the Palace hotel have Venetian style towers which gives the area a continental feel, even if the side streets are all distinctly Danish.