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Day trips Copenhagen, Tisvilde, Gilleleje

Exploring North Zealand's beaches, forests and lakes

The famous castles of North Zealand, like Fredensborg Castle and Frederiksborg Castle, are set within stunning surroundings and a great way to start exploring the nature of North Zealand. Fringed by the beautiful beaches of the Danish Riviera and popular holiday spots like Gilleleje and Tisvilde, North Zealand also offers you royal parks, beautiful lakes and unspoilt forests to explore.

The beaches of the Danish Riviera

The sea has shaped the culture of North Zealand, not just as a popular holiday destination. The Danish Riviera is rich in historic fishing villages, like Gilleleje and Tisvilde, impressive houses along the coast, including the home of Karen Blixen, and a variety of beautiful beaches. You'll find the northern coast more rugged and lined with cliffs, especially near Vejby and Gilbjerg Head, Zealand's northernmost point. But the majority of the beaches of the Danish Riviera are sheltered and calm, great spots for a day or holiday with the whole family.

UNESCO World Heritage Sites and forests

Denmark's newest UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Par Force Hunting Grounds, is a great place to walk and explore North Zealand. Starting from the popular day trip from Copenhagen of the Royal Deer Park and Bakken, you can venture out on forest trails and visit historic sites along the way. If you're brave, explore the twisted Troll Forest (Troldeskoven) at Tisvilde Hegn or walk the beautiful heather-covered Tibirke Hills (Tibirke Bakker). For longer walks, try the hiking trails of Grib Forest (Gribskov), one of Denmark's largest forests.

Exploring Denmark's fjords and lakes

Denmark's largest lake, Arresø, is worth exploring. You can enjoy many walking trails around the shores of Lake Esrum (Esrum Sø), Denmark’s second largest lake and home to Fredensborg Castle. Esrum Abbey is also close by and another great day trip from Copenhagen. At the far northwest of North Zealand, you can surround yourself in water on the Halnæs peninsula and enjoy views of the Kattegat, Isefjord and Roskilde Fjord. During the summer, catch the small ferry from Sølager to Kulhuse. From there, it is only a short distance to Jaegerspris Forest (Jægerspris Nordsko), with 1000-year-old oak trees.

Further reading

Read more about North Zealand.

Read more about Natural adventures in Denmark.

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Hamlet's Castle, Kronborg, Self drive holiday Denmark

Kronborg Castle - Home of Hamlet

Go visit Denmark's most famous castle, Kronborg in Helsingør (Elsinore), also known as Hamlet's Castle in Shakespeare's play.

Where is North Zealand?

Day trips from Copenhagen


- Explore UNESCO World Heritage Site, King Christian V's hunting grounds

- Soak up the seaside atmosphere around Gilleleje and Tisvilde

- Walk in the landscaped gardens of Fredensborg Castle

- Stop off at any of the calm Danish Riviera beaches

- Get lost in the Troll Forest (Troldeskoven)

How to get to North Zealand

Plan your train travel in North Zealand on the DSB website. You could also consider hiring a car to explore.


Things to do in North Zealand

For more details on any of the things to do in North Zealand we've written about here, go to the Visit North Zealand website.