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Five reasons Odense is actually Denmarks best city

29.08.2018  17:27
Odense is a city of roughly 200,000 inhabitants, located on the island of Funen, between the hustle and bustle of the Copenhagen-dominated island of Zealand and Jutland, which connects Denmark with the rest of mainland Europe.

The city has an extremely rich history, from Viking settlements of significant historical value to being the birth place of Denmark’s most famous story teller and national icon Hans Christian Anderson. But Odense isn’t looking backwards these days; it has set its sights on a modernized, vibrant future that will shake off its demeaning reputation as Denmark’s largest village.

Following there are five ways the city is shaking up the perceptions that not only Danes but the world has of Odense. 

1. Odense is going to become more cycle friendly than a velodrome in the Olympics
Denmark is universally known for its fantastic cycling, to the extent that Copenhagen was named the world’s best city for cyclists. But with 560 kilometres of cycle paths and 123 cycle-only bridges and new developments that will increase these impressive figures, Odense is truly striving to become the cycle city of Denmark.

The new plans for the city will create an even safer environment for commuters to tear up the cycle lanes and connecting the central area of the city to the harbour and train station.
Even Klaus Bondam, head of the Copenhagen-based Danish Cyclists’ Union (Cyklistforbundet), has admitted Odense is taking the lead over Denmark’s capital city when it comes to bicycle safety. “In many places in Copenhagen we do have a cycling environment, but you don’t feel safe sending a kid out to cycle. Odense is doing good,” Bondam told.

2. Odense is Denmark’s cheapest major city
Denmark is not cheap; in fact it is the fifth most expensive country in Europe. But as it turns out Odense is Denmark’s cheapest city according to a 2015 study conducted by economist Johan Juul-Jensen. For a family in Odense, annual expenses amount to 255,127 kroner – 41,790 kroner less than the most expensive place in Denmark, Helsingør. 

3. Music and culture are taking off in a serious way.
Last year it was the launch of Odense’s new music festival Tinderbox, which due to its success will now be hosting international stars such as The National and Rammstein this summer. Furthermore, the city boasts the largest music library in all of Scandinavia, a place to truly sate your musical yearnings. Not to mention Phono, Denmark’s leading electronic music event for those wishing to rave the night away at the redeveloped harbour.
Odense also boasts an Oscar qualifying film festival called OFF. As of 2015, OFF winners in two short film categories will be submitted to an Academy Awards pre-jury in Hollywood. 

4. Business.
Odense is not only trying to make the city a destination for cyclists and cultural connoisseurs, it is broadening its appeal to businesses looking to establish themselves in the developing city.

Coupled with the developments occurring around the city’s central area that are estimated to create 1,000 new work places, developers are focusing on bringing the previously industrialized harbour area back to life: the plans aim to develop new offices and housing by the waterfront, offering competitive business taxes to companies, investors and entrepreneurs, a plan that the city's mayor is firmly committed to.

The harbour will also have an outdoor swimming pool located in the middle of the newly developed work spaces, so you can take a dip meters from your office. Work hard, swim hard.

5. Odense is a tasty multi-cultural haven
Odense may have a strong sense of national identity, but it is also a progressive and diverse city that boasts over 155 different nationalities. The effect of this melting pot of cultures has been delicious, with the city offering an astonishing variety of culinary delights in the city’s breathtakingly large Bazar Fyn. Whether it’s Indian, Greek, Turkish or Brazilian food, Odense has some of the most diverse and fantastic food you can find in Denmark.


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