If you’re visiting Copenhagen and want to live like a local, you’ll want to rent a bicycle to get around town. It’s not only a fairly inexpensive way to travel, it’s also one of the best ways to experience the city.
City bikes are available around most stations and main streets, but economically speaking, they’re better used for a few hours rather than full days. They’re also useful late at night or early in the morning (they’re available 24/7), or when you want to take advantage of their GPS system as you travel.
If you’re going to be in the city for more than a day or two, hiring from a bike shop is your best bet. You’ll need cash for a deposit and a picture ID. When renting, make sure you get a lock and lights (and check that the lights work before you leave – it’s super unsafe to have faulty lights, particularly in winter when it’s dark early). These should come with the price of the rental. Some cycle shops will also let you hire a helmet, though it may cost extra.
Don’t be afraid to ask if you can cycle up and down the street to make sure the chain isn’t falling off and the brakes work properly.
Here’s how to start your Copenhagen cycling experience right:
Baisikeli is a bike repair and hire shop doing some real good in the world – the shop’s name means bicycle in Swahili. The team at Baisikeli collects used bicycles in Denmark and sends them to Sierra Leone, where secondhand bikes help to generate jobs, promote education and provide personal transportation.
1705 København V
Since 1881, Cykelbørsen (The Bicycle Exchange) has been a respected name in the business of bicycle saes, repairs, and rentals. The shop’s founder supposedly helped to teach over 2000 people to ride a bike during his lifetime.
1123 København K
Bike Rental Copenhagen
Located at Kongens Nytorv, in the very heart of the city, Bike Rental Copenhagen keeps it simple with only three bike options to choose from. The convenient location for pick-up and drop-off makes this shop a good option for those staying in the city centre. Tip: book ahead online and receive a 20% discount!
Kongens Nytorv 8
1050 København K
The white, pay-as-you-go Bycyklen (City Cycles) are available for hire at locations throughout the city. In order to hire or reserv a Bycyclen, you will need a user account (set-up online with an email address and credit card). The City Cycles are each equipped with an electric motor and built-in locks, lights and luggage rack.
City-wide. Use this locator to find a cycle close to you!
If you hire from Copenhagen Bicycles, you can join the shop’s daily guided bike tour of Copenhagen for only 100 additional kroner. All bikes come with lock & lights.
This great local workshop and bicycle rental spot is used by travellers and locals alike. You get your cycle for only 65 DKK a day – a great deal!
2200 København N
The first 5 items in this list are written by Austin Sailsbury, from his book The 500 Hidden Secrets of Copenhagen. This post was written in collaboration with Luster Books.
Have you had a good experience renting a bike in Copenhagen? Tell us about it (and where you did it!) in the comments.