Aarhus, the second largest city in Denmark.
Aarhus has been named Europe's Capital of Culture for 2017, so this contemporary-cool city is the place to go for a weekend break. Following in the footsteps of other Scandi cities such as Copenhagen and Stockholm, Aarhus is known for its vibrant and forward-thinking culture with eye-catching architecture, impeccably clean streets and healthy grub left, right and centre.
When to go?
In the winter, daylight can break for as little as seven hours so head here in the early summer where relatively warm weather (15°C) allows plenty of walks through the city. July and August might find you fighting the tourists as this is peak holiday season - visit in May or June to avoid the crowds.
Who to take with you?
A coffee, food or art lover is the ideal companion. The city is packed with independent coffee houses and perfect brunch spots for watching the world go by. In the north of the city try La Cabra Coffee Roasters, Bernth + Co or Pica Pica. If you're looking for something more central, head to Kjærs Kaffebar or the food market for fresh salads, cocktails and burgers, enjoying in surrounds of hanging lights and indoor plants.
Most likely to bump into?
Stylish locals and visitors looking for an alternative city break, leaving the hoards of tourists behind in Copenhagen.
See the city in a spectrum of colours at the ARoS Art Museum as you wander through their rooftop skywalk. Situated high above the city, the glass walls are splashed with vibrant hues to see the world in technicolour. Walk along the waterfront to check out the new area with an urban beach. Chill out on HAY furniture or join in with one of the group activities such as volleyball, zumba or yoga. If you're not feeling up to sports, kick back with a cocktail and admire the new developments along the waterfront such as 'The Iceberg' - built sustainably by renovating an abandoned container terminal - which was designed to reflect sea views while channelling the ethereal beauty of an iceberg.
How to get there
The Aarhus airport, Tirstup, is located 40KM north of the city and offers direct flights from London, Gothenburg, Helsinki, Oslo and Stockholm . Shuttle bus from the airport takes 50 minuted direct to downtown Aarhus. There are hourly train departures to the north, south and west. From southern and central Europe, the connections are via Hamburg or Flensburg. Travel time from Hamburg to Aarhus is approximately five hours.