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Best time to go to Denmark

Best time to go to Denmark

There are mountain people and sea people and, with over four hundred islands, it’s not surprising that our Denmark tours attract a salty set. Zealand is the largest island, at just over 7,000km², and home to the capital city of Copenhagen. This is separated from Sweden by The Sound (Øresund) where, if you’re a keen cyclist, you can cycle seamlessly between the two countries on our Øresund Strait circuit, available between May and September. These months are generally the best time to go to Denmark, when maximum temperatures are between 16C in May to 21C in the height of summer, coming down to a chillier 13C by the end of September and into October. We do have some tours that have a three season window, however, with more details of these and others below. 

The coast around Skagen on Jutland, the end point of our North Sea Trail tour in Denmark.

Best time to walk in the Silkeborg Lake District

Even on an inland walking holiday in Denmark, you’re never far from water, such as in the Silkeborg Lake District. Its name is Søhøjlandet in Danish, meaning lake, and with over 200km2 of lakes and lakes and forest, that’s a serious count. Our holiday in Jutland’s lakelands is available from the beginning of April until the end of September which is when they are in full flora and aqua adventure mode. The warmest month is July, with an average temperature of 17-18C, and if you want to combine some swimming with your sauntering, Julsø, Brassø and Sminge are just a few that have infrastructure to do so. 

Best time to walk the Gendarmstien

The Gendarmstien (or Gendarme Path) is so called because it was a popular smuggling path in the past, patrolled by police. Nowadays, this 84km coastal gem of a trail is patrolled only by outdoor adventurers, enjoying the wild seascapes that take you from Padborg on the Danish-German border to Jutland’s Als island. Similar to the Hærvejen, our Gendarmstien holidays are available from the beginning of April until the end of October, but as this is a coastal trail you may want to make the most of the summer temperatures for this one. Outside of these months, there is a risk of snow and, in early spring, there’s a risk of rain storms from the east, and a history of floods in Sønderborg, Vemmingbund and Broagerland, so keep an eye out for weather warnings. It is very popular in summer, though, so you need to book as early as possible to ensure that we can secure the best accommodation for you. If you are a keen swimmer, sea temperatures along this route average at 16C in June but go up to 20C in July, which is the highest of the summer months. 

A mellow misty morning on Denmark’s Gendarmstien.

Best time to walk the Hærvejen, Denmark’s camino

Denmark may be known for its mid-century style, but it also has a cool Middle Ages way to follow. The little-known Hærvejen, also known as the Oxen Road, dates back to ancient times for pilgrims going from Trondheim in Norway to Santiago or Rome. Our walking holiday on the Hærvejen, takes you between two of Denmark’s historic and handsome towns, Viborg and Jelling in Central Jutland. It’s open for booking between the beginning of April and the end of October, with maximum average temperatures of 10C in early April and 13C in October, but getting as high as 21C in summer months. These are also the months when most accommodations are open for business, between emerging from or re-entering Danish winters. If you can time it for late spring or early summer, the trail is dotted with wild daisies, foxgloves and cornflowers. 

Best time to go to the Faroe Islands

Our Denmark walking tours also extend further afield to the Faroe Islands, which are part of the Danish Kingdom. The Faroes are a revelation for many newbies, with hiking between small, remote communities such as in Gjógv, located on a natural harbour enveloped by mountains, including the archipelago’s highest, Slættaratindur at 882m. You can see all of these on our Faroes short break which runs between May and September. 

For wildlife lovers, the Faroes are all about the world-renowned bird watching at Vestmanna Bird Cliffs, accessible on our longer eight day Faroes trip, between early June and late August. With daylight for up to 20 hours a day in June, July and August, these are the brightest and driest months in the Faroe Islands, with average summer highs of 12C. It’s also the top time to see puffins on Mykines Island and other birdlife including storm petrels, gannets, guillemots and oyster catchers at Vestmanna. For a very different type of song, the G Festival takes place around mid July, and the whole island sings and dances on 29 July for their summer festival of Ólavsøka, named after Saint Olaf, the patron saint of the Faroes. 

Hike to Lake Hvannhagi on the northern side of Suðuroy island, one of 18 islands in the Faroes archipelago.

Midsummer in Denmark

Midsummer is party time throughout the country, when the celebrations are called Sankt Hans Aften. In Denmark, they celebrate both the middle of summer and the birth of St. John the Baptist, or Sankt Hans, who is believed to have been born on 24 June. This mix of pagan and Christian cultural celebrations begin on the eve, or Sankt Hans Aften, when you will see flower wreaths on doors and in people’s hair, and there are bonfires and fireworks in towns and villages throughout the country.

Best time to go to Denmark for festival fun

As popular food destination, late summer or autumn is one of the best times to visit Denmark for festivals, with the king of cuisine being Copenhagen Cooking in late August, followed by the Aarhus Food Festival in early September, which is the nearest airport for many of our tours, so you could easily extend your holiday for this epicurean event. For other cultural events, don’t miss Kulturnatten in Copenhagen, a night in October when the whole city goes culture crazy. Denmark goes all jazzy in July with both the Copenhagen Jazz Festival and Aarhus Jazz Festival and, for a more classical approach, you can add some arias to your adventures with the Copenhagen Opera Festival in August. 

Food festivals will never be short on Denmark’s delicious smørrebrød open sandwiches.

We hope that this has given you a broader understanding of the best time to go to Denmark for a walking or cycling holiday, and don’t hesitate to contact our adventure specialists for more details. As many of our tours take you to spectacular wild swimming locations, always remember to take care with cold water swimming, breathing deeply before entering the water and really taking your time. There are, in fact, over 1,300 registered beaches in Denmark, and many of them have lifeguards during the summer months too, details of which you can see here.