The main avenue in Copenhagen is a pedestrian succession of shops, with all the expected brands.
PS Funny thing!
I've been there again, without Fernanda, and I "had to" walk all the avenue again. This means that, once there, you can't miss it.
From the Castle we took the 10 minute walk to the all pedestrian area called Stroget .It was packed as it was Sat loads of shoppers. We stopped for a wonderful lunch , outdoors in the square ...
After lunch we walked through the cobblestones streets and enjoyed lots of different street musicians and performers. There was one amazing guy sitting in what looked like thin air....Just couldn't figure out how he did it.
While in Kobenhavn one place to see is the longest shopping area in Europe, it is called, "Stroget." It is a wonderful shopping and dining section of the city comprised of five walking streets, starting at Frederiksberggade and ending at Kongens Nytorv (Kings New Market.) This pedestrian mall winds through the center of Copenhagen, is about a mile long and offers shops, restaurants and the feeling of a street fair to tourists and residents alike.
Kongens Nytorv with the Royal Thearter, Hotel d'Angleterre and the Magasin Department Store is at one end. Radhuspladsen, at the other end and City Hall is it's landmark. In between is Gammeltorv--old square and the well of charity--Karitasboden, Nytorv--new square and then Gronnegade.
Summer is the best time to stroll along the winding streets, but during the winter it can be enjoyed while sitting in a warm cafe sipping coffee and looking out the window. However it's experienced it is a Scandinavian marvel.
The Strøget is 1.1 kilometers long and claims to be the world's longest urban pedestrian zone.
I'm not sure if this is still true (would have to fire up Google Earth and start measuring), but in any case the main significance of the Strøget is not how long it is but when it became carfree -- in the 1960s, when most cities were still busy widening streets, narrowing sidewalks and trying to make non-motorized movement as cumbersome and demeaning as possible. (Remember what Frankfurt am Main used to look like in the 1960s? Ogottogott!)
Of course a lot of people were involved in the creation of the Strøget. One of them was the Danish architect and urban planner Jan Gehl (born 1936), who is the author of the books Life Between Buildings and Public Spaces, Public Life, and New City Spaces.
In recent years Jan Gehl has built up a consultancy firm, consisting of about forty architects and other specialists, called GEHL Architects, Urban Quality Consultants. On their website, GEHL Architects describe their vision:
"Gehl Architects work to create sustainable environments for the 21st century. Our approach to design extends beyond the use of sustainable materials and advocating walking, cycling and alternative transport. We promote a holistic lifestyle."
Jan Gehl is generally credited with coining the verb copenhagenize meaning to transform cities through bicycle culture and urban cycling, but he stresses that Copenhagen was "copenhagenized" gradually, in small steps, with each step being evaluated before the next was taken.
Actually Strøget is not the name of one particular street, but of a series of streets with different names that lead from the City Hall Square to Kongens Nytorv, where the old theater is. (Sort of like the Royal Mile in Edinburgh, which is the collective name for five or six different streets with different official names.)
The official names of the Strøget streets are Frederiksberggade, Gammel Torv, Nytorv, Nygade, Vimmelskaftet, Amagertorv and Østergade.
As a non-shopper and a non-consumer of junk food I had little reason to linger on the Strøget, but I did stay long enough to see how popular it is and to take some photos of people walking their bicycles through.
1. Walking her bike in the Strøget
2. Also walking her bike
3. Another one walking her bike
4. They all seem to be walking their bikes
5. Street sign: Strøget, Frederiksberggade 23-29
Walking the length of Copenhagen's famed shopping street known as "Stroget" is a delightful way to spend several hours. The Stroget (pronounced "stroy - et") is Europe's longest, pedestrian-only shopping street. The Stroget is lined with charming apparell shops, gift shops, restaurants and quaint buildings, sidewalk vendors, and the window displays are a feast for the eyes. The somewhat narrow Stroget has many side streets and squares to explore. If you wander off into some of the scenic side streets, you won't be disappointed. Perhaps you will come upon a rather well-known, little restaurant called "Det Lille Apotek."
Begin your stroll down the Stroget at Radhus Pladsen, and if you like a good long walk, follow it all the way to Kongen Nytorv (King's New Square) and Nyhavn. Some say that prices in stores closest to the Radhus Pladsen are the most reasonable or least expensive while prices in stores at the far end of the Stroget are the most expensive---designer shops like Gucci, Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Hugo Boss would fall into this category obviously. This is a place to find trendy clothes and shoes!
If you're looking for gifts from Denmark, this is the street for it! From inexpensive to the very expensive. If you like postcards like I do, you'll find many choices here too.
You can take in the local free entertainment by watching some of the many street performers who obviously know a good thing when they see it---a captive crowd who will reward their performances with a few Danish Kronor tossed into a hat or even violin case. These performers are usually very good and worth spending a few minutes to watch and listen to.
We walked to the Stroget from our hotel 2 days in a row and had dinner each night at "Streckers Pub & Grill " because we thought it had a nice atmosphere and the price was certainly right. Had we been able to spend more time in Copenhagen, an evening stroll along the Stroget just might have become a nightly ritual!
1. Signspotting display at Nytorv
2. Signs and people at Nytorv
3. About the curator
4. Signspotting text
Part of the Strøget is a square called Nytorv (New Square). During my visit there was a display at Nytorv called "Signspotting" showing funny signs from around the world in English. These were signs that people found and took pictures of, and then they were re-made as signs for the exhibit. (So they were not stolen from their original locations.)
Copenhagen was an excellent place to show this, because so many people speak such good English that they could really appreciate it.
I of course particularly liked the sign reading "UNNECESSARY REPETITIVE DRIVING PROHIBITED".
Also I liked part of the text written by the curator, Doug Lansky. Click on the fourth photo to see the part I particularly liked.
The curator is American, by the way, so some of those signs are simply British English expressions that seem quaint to an American. Like "Changed priorities ahead", which as far as I know is perfectly normal in the UK (meaning they have changed the rules about who can drive first at the next crossing), but in the US the word "priorities" is mainly used in its more lofty meaning of what goals you have decided to concentrate on for the rest of your life.
After being shown for a month on the Nytorv in Copenhagen, the Signspotting Project moved on to Århus, Denmark, then to Edinburgh, Scotland for the Fringe Festival and after that to Gothenburg, Sweden.
Starting from the popular Nyhavn we decided to walk among the numerous pedestrian street at the centre of Copenhagen.
All these streets start from Kongens Nytorv(King’s New Square) a large public square that was created in 1670 by Christian V, a equestrian statue of him is at the centre of the square (pic 1) that until 1998 had numerous elm trees but a disease killed them all. There are some interesting buildings around like the Royal Danish Theater (from 1874) and Charlottenborg Palace (from 1671).
Then we walked down Ostergade, a pedestrian street full of stores but we didn’t come to Copenhagen to go shopping to a Louis Vuitton store so we just kept on walking. Actually Ostergade is part of Stroget, a pedestrian zone that suppose to be the longest pedestrian shopping area in Europe, it started in 1962 for a couple of days during Christams when the streets were closed to traffic. Interesting to mention that the closer to Town Hall you get cheaper prices (and lower quality too, lots of souvenir stores but also fast food spots)
We also saw the Guinness World Records Museums (we didn’t visit), sometimes we checked some side streets also where you can find a church like Nikolai Kirke (pic) or smaller squares where people gather, waiting for the dates or just relaxing near the sculptures of the fountains.
We made a break for ice cream at Hojbro Plads and then we walked down at Amagertorv pedestrian street, more touristic stores here, also many street artists (pic 3), we also visited Helligdnds kirke at a back street. Further down closer to the Town Hall we passed by a bigger square (Gammeltorv) where you can see a nice fountain (pic 5)
Copenhagen's Stroget is the longest pedestrianized shopping street in Europe and a major tourist attraction. The street stretches from Kongens Nytorv in the center of Copenhagen, all the way down to the City Hall over a kilometer away. The clean and busy street is lined with some of Denmark's most expensive and exclusive stores, and on its way it passes through and some of Copenhagen's most impressive buildings and squares, like Hojbro Plads.
In truth the Stroget is not one single street, but a collection of streets stretching through the west side of the city centre. Going from Kongens Nytorv, the streets are as follows:
Gammel Torv / Nytorv
While strolling through the chaotic and touristy Stroget can be mind numbing after a while, keep on the look out on some of the side streets. We found the Danish Luthern church where the ladies auxillary were selling coffee and pastries. We had a wonderful lunch in the church courtyard.
Stroget is Copenhagen's longest shopping street. Actually, Stroget is composed by several streets wih their own names (Frederiksbergadde + Vimmelskaftet + Ostergade), but all together make up the Stroget.
Along Stroget you may find the most varied kind of shops, being that I found that the side of the street connecting with Radhuspladsen was the one that pleased me the less - basically some tourist shops and restaurants kind of McDonald's. As you walk past those and head towards Nyahvn / Kongens Nytorv the shops become more pleasing and the streets are wider, lighter and cleaner.
Ströget is said to be the longest pedestrian street in Europe. Starting from Rådhusplads and ending on Kongens Nytorv Ströget is 1,6 km long.
There are lots and lots of shops, restaurants , cafés and fast food stalls on Ströget. The popular chain stores of H&M and NewYorker as well as the designer boutiques for those with bigger budget can all be found on this lively pedestrian street. It gets very crowded, especially on weekends, so it's also nice to sneak out to some of its more peaceful side streets.
Even if you don't like shopping, I'm sure you'll still enjoy wandering along Ströget. Try to be there early before the stores open their doors so it's not so crowded.
They say it is all about size, and the Danes claim this street to be the biggest. I guess they are talking in terms of length rather than girth.
The street is, as you would expect, lined with shops including several 'flagship stores' and the impressive illums department store.
I seems to be a bit of a lame boast to me. Forgive my pedantry, but hear me out. The road is crossed at a number of points by cross roads. Do the width of these roads count in the determination of overall length ? Does a road have to be previously opened to motor taffic before it is counted as pedestrianised ? What exacly is a 'street' anyway - would Main street USA in Disneyland, for example, count ? And what about a 'street' within a shopping centre - does that count ?
In any event the Chinese are putting together a new 1.8 km long pedestrianised street anyway - so that trumps it anyway.