12 wow-experiences in Denmark that should be on your bucket list now

Photo: VisitSydsjælland-Møn

How well do you actually know your own home country? Perhaps you've seen the Eiffel Tower in Paris and the Sydney Opera House, but what about Møns Klint, the Forest Tower, and a UNESCO-recognized nature? We may be a small nation, but we can certainly serve up great experiences and adventures in the Southern Zealand countryside.

Here are 12 things you need to see and experience before the summer is over

#1 See the country's highest cliff

Møns Klint remains one of Denmark's most beautiful natural phenomena. The luminous chalk cliff towers a full 128 meters high and to get from top to bottom and back up again, one must conquer no fewer than 497 steps. The descent and ascent go past gnarled tree trunks shaped by wind and weather, and on the horizon, you might be lucky enough to spot a peregrine falcon. Møns Klint is located in a unique natural area with its very own microclimate. Here, one can find both natural forests, rare orchids, and a rich wildlife.

#2 Climb to the top of an architectural masterpiece

In Copenhagen, they have the Round Tower. In Aarhus, they have AROS. And in South Zealand, we have the Forest Tower - Camp Adventure. An architectural gem located deep within a forest, it has become one of Denmark’s most recognizable landmarks. The spiral-shaped tower stretches high above the treetops, offering a dazzling 360-degree view of the green landscape. The Forest Tower has been nominated for and won several international architecture awards. The path to the Forest Tower includes a three-kilometer-long elevated walkway that winds around beech trees and across the forest floor’s small streams.

Photo:Mads Tolstrup

#3 Experience a UNESCO attraction

Tyrannosaurus Rexes as big as buses and oversized lizards with gigantic wingspans. 66 million years ago, the world looked markedly different – that is, until the fateful day when a gigantic meteor strike obliterated half of all life on Earth. Of all places on this colossal planet, Stevns Klint is actually the best place to see the traces of that mighty asteroid, and that has earned the cliff a spot on UNESCO’s coveted World Heritage List. Experience Stevns Klint up close on a guided historical and culinary walking tour with Klintetours, or get a completely unique view from Højerup old church, which was built right on the edge of the cliff. Travel back in time at the interactive experience center Stevns Klint Experience, where you can learn the entire incredible story of the cliff’s formation.

Stevns Klint

Photo:Mads Tolstrup

#4 Explore a fairy-tale castle on a deserted island

It's enchanting to roll down the long cherry avenue, cross the small stone bridge that connects the island pearl Gavnø with the mainland, and see the old, yellow fairy-tale castle reveal itself ahead. Gavnø Castle is an elder lady with more than 600 years under her belt, situated in a secluded location in Karrebæk Fjord. This year, Gavnø Castle has built six new treetop tracks, where the whole family can frolic on zip lines and climbing nets, while history and culture enthusiasts can explore the largest private painting collection in the Nordics.

Gavnø Slot

Photo:Mads Schmidt Rasmussen

#5 Visit Denmark's largest organic vineyard

25,000 vines, local recognition, and international awards are just some of the things that Vesterhave Vineyard can boast of. It was almost unthinkable that anyone would attempt to grow red wine grapes in Denmark, as it was believed to be impossible. But with ingenuity and inspiration from Italy, the fields quickly expanded, and the wine gained recognition throughout Europe. Walk along the numerous vines and be transported to the warmth of the south while gazing out over the sea – either guided by the vintner Jesper Rye Jensen or with an audio guide in your ears. Taste the wine for yourself and discover exactly why reviewers are particularly enthralled with the Danish-produced amarone.

#6 Dive into the historical underground

During the Cold War, the Cold War Museum Stevnsfort was the defense fortress of all of Denmark and NATO from the east. An atomic-proof military facility on the Stevns peninsula on the frontline facing the Baltic Sea, from where one could keep a vigilant eye on the enemy. The fort is deeply buried in Stevns Klint with kilometers of underground passages and had missiles ready on land for launch if necessary. Fortunately, it never came to that. But the fort was manned around the clock for 40 years. Today, the facility has been transformed into a museum, so visitors can see for themselves how the soldiers lived and worked back then – and learn more about some of the biggest espionage cases of the time.

Stevnsfortet undergrund

Photo:Frame & Work

#7 Wake up by the lakeside

In the midst of an eastern forest on the island of Møn, just a few kilometers away from the cliffs of Møns Klint, lies Huno Lake, which gives its name to the luxurious nature hotel, Villa Huno. Here you get the best of both worlds, where the charm of untouched nature meets bright luxury rooms with balconies overlooking the enchanting forest lake. On the ground floor, you'll find the terrace and the associated restaurant, which serves the best dishes with local produce and meat from the nearby Klintholm Estate.

Photo:Richard Clark

#8 Become a nature expert

Right next to Møns Klint, you'll find GeoCenter Møns Klint, where in the new biodiversity exhibition you can learn all about the utterly unique and UNESCO-recognized nature of Møn. In the exhibition, among other things, you see a three-meter-tall orchid, and you learn about the fragile balance on which nature hangs, and how you can contribute to keeping nature healthy and thriving. In the other exhibits, you travel all the way back to the time when prehistoric monsters ruled – long before Møns Klint was formed. You become an expert on today's nature and the birth of Denmark in a way that you cannot learn from reading alone.

Photo:Egon Gade

#9 Visit an azure lagoon

Fiji or Faxe? It's hard to tell when you gaze out across the beautiful turquoise-green lakes at Faxe Limestone Quarry. Millions of years ago, the quarry was a thriving coral reef, and over time, many spectacular fossils have been found right here. You can learn much more about the prehistoric tropical sea and borrow equipment to dig up fossils at Geomuseum Faxe. The knowledgeable guides show you all the best spots to find sea urchins, photoluminescent stones, and much more. There are also plenty of great opportunities to snap pictures of the azure lakes and wander around the limestone quarry. Although it's tempting to take a dip in the cooling water, it's best avoided. The water is alkaline and can cause rashes. Instead, you can have an extraordinary nature experience.

Faxe Kalkbrud

Photo:Frame & Work

#10 Unique exhibitions and Danish design culture

Holmegaard Værk is Denmark's first, largest, and last glassworks, where iconic pieces of glass such as the Provence bowl, the Lotus candle holder, and the Blixen vase were conceived, shaped, and born. However, in 2008 Holmegaard Glassworks was abandoned when the financial crisis hit. At that time, the hosts from Nul Stjerner, Jan Elhøj and Morten Kirckhoff, explored the glassworks and photographed the cold glass ovens and cluttered desks. This year, they are exhibiting both pictures from the old Holmegaard Glassworks and many other unique and eerie destinations from around the world in the exhibition ‘FORLADT’. In the permanent exhibition, you can experience over 42,000 pieces of world-class glass art gathered in one place, and you can also watch glassblowers in action creating new, beautiful design vases and glass.

Photo:Mads Tolstrup

#11 Stop by one of Denmark's most idyllic harbor towns

The old harbor town of Præstø is a gem, located right by the Præstø Fjord. The town offers cozy moments down by the marina, refreshing swims, and sailing trips on the fjord. Drop by Eventurbåde and take a tour on the water to see the beautiful nature, or take a walk through the charming and magical old streets. If you get hungry, in Præstø you can enjoy everything from delicious café food to a visit to a Michelin restaurant.

#12 Visit the art gallery at the old manor

At Rønnebæksholm, you can explore the current exhibitions, which are part of the unique annual program 'HORSE', where the concept of the horse, its historical significance, and cultural symbol are elaborated through installations, paintings, and performances, among other art forms. In the garden, you will find several living works of art, such as the 'Horse Field' full of herbs and a compost sculpture that benefits the biodiversity of the area. Take a trip past the famous poet's pavilion, which Marie Toft had erected for her husband N.F.S. Grundtvig between 1852-1854. Rønnebæksholm's history, traceable all the way back to 1321, with its belonging stable and massive idyllic garden, is truly marvelous. The art gallery is steeped in mysteries, myths, and stories from the many artists and poets who have frequented the estate, many of whom have left their mark.

Get much more inspiration for magnificent experiences in South Zealand & Møn here.