Aarhus- The city of Smiles (Smilets By)

Masa Mesic | Live the World

November 23, 2022

Denmark’s second largest city is located on the east coast of Jutland; in 2017 it was also voted as the European capital of culture.

For anyone who has already visited Stockholm and Copenhagen... believe me, you will love Aarhus even more.

Aarhus is a rather large student city with a very vibrant vibe, exciting cuisine choices, plenty of music festivals and stunning sunny beaches for the warm summer days.


There are plenty of trendy food choices in Aarhus; it’s also important to highlight that Aarhus won an award in 2016 as the best European region of gastronomy. If you would like to try something traditional, then the smørrebrød at Kähler Spisesalon should be on your list. Smørrebrød is a typical lunch in all parts of the country; Danes in general prefer having a "cold" lunch. Smørrebrød is a nicely decorated rye bread sandwich, topped with different cold cuts. A favourite amongst Danes is the one with herring.

Smørrebrød, © Photo: Bartroff

If you’d like to taste something more alternative, head over to Fika café, which is a popular choice for a delicious healthy brunch, on Jægergårdsgade street. If you’d like yet another healthy, plant based, gluten free meal, then try out the Café Gaya.

© Photo: CafeFika

For the thirsty souls and beer lovers, the Mikkeller Bar (also on Jægergardsgade street) serves more than a dozen of different brews, one of them being Mikkeller, which is a popular Danish beer.

© Photo: Mikkellerbar

Festival, culture and shopping

Denmark has become a rather popular destination when it comes to music festivals. NorthSide music festival has grown in size and popularity over the years, with its 3-day long festival which takes place in June, not far away from the centre of Aarhus.

There’s plenty to visit and see on the cultural spectrum in Aarhus, due to its magnificent 12th century style architecture that blends in with modern built architecture. Getting lost in some of Aarhus’ back streets is the best way to venture through the cultural richness and diversity of the city. The Latin Quarter takes you back to the 14th century with its cobbled stone streets, its terraces of all different colours, and its cosy social vibe amongst all the cafés.

© Photo: Danefromspain

Once you already make your way to the Latin Quarter, take your time to do some window-shopping through all the small boutiques and shops, which sell numerous local Danish brands. Aarhus offers a vast choice when it comes to shopping, from smaller Danish brands, to international labels, but also home ware shops- after all Denmark is the land of the interior design, furniture and hygge.


Just like the rest of the country, Aarhus has plenty to offer in terms of greenery and spending time outdoors. From sandy beaches (Den Permanente) that you can cycle to from the city centre, to stunning botanical gardens (west of the old town), and national parks with a sea view such as Mols Bjerge (Mols Hills) located a short ride outside of the city.

© Photo: HildaWeges

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