Café Miao is Denmark’s first cat cafe and the site of my introduction to cat art in milk foam. It is home to seven friendly permanent residents: Stoffer, Åse, Peter, Guffe, Tiger, Panter, and Snehvide. The cafe wasn’t very crowded when I visited in the middle of a weekday, so the cat to human ratio was quite high. I suspect the cats have a taste that is a bit more traditional than that of the average Danish person, as the design of the place leans toward cat-cozy rather than the more customary modern Danish style.
Food options include burgers, a brunch plate, various udon noodle dishes, sandwiches, and salad. It looked to be standard cafe fare, with the bonus of cat-shaped buns for the sandwiches. I was tempted to order the veggie burger ($15), but I opted to stick to only a latte. The Copenhagen food scene is bursting with amazing eating spots, and I wanted to sample as many as possible during my 5-day visit. Plus I know I get so distracted by cats that finishing my coffee before it’s cold is enough of a feat.
Location: HC Andersens Boulevard 5A, 1553, Copenhagen V
Hours: Tuesday – Thursday 11 am – 7 pm; Friday – Sunday 10 am – 8 pm
Admission charge: A minimum purchase of 50 kr ($7.60) is required for entrance
Reservations: Yes, but probably not necessary
Price for a small latte: 55 kr ($8.35) [Note: Denmark = $$$]
While I was pleased to get my cat fix at Café Miao, I had two others waiting for me at the Airbnb where I was staying. When I inquired about booking a room, the host said she’d be out of town for most of my stay, and asked if I’d be okay with watching her cats. Oh yes! They were super sweet and enjoyed sitting with me as I sipped coffee on the balcony in the mornings.
Copenhagen had been on my list of places to visit for some time, but it shot to the top when I became obsessed with The Bridge, a crime drama featuring the Øresund Bridge connecting Copenhagen to Malmö, Sweden. The food, design, architecture, and perfect summer weather all made for a pleasant getaway, even if the prices drained my wallet more than I would have liked. I also took a day trip to Malmö where I walked around the compact downtown and then ventured a bit out of the center to see Turning Torso, the tallest building in Scandinavia.
Copenhagen has no shortage of things to do, and I packed in as much as I could, walking more than the equivalent of a marathon during my first two days. One of my favorite finds was The Cisterns under Søndermarken Park. Formerly used to hold drinking water for the city, The Cisterns is now part of Frederiksberg Museums and hosts art installations. There were only a few other visitors, making it possible to walk in the near darkness with dripping water as the only background noise.
I stayed in the neighborhood of Vesterbro, which is within walking distance of the central train station and has plenty of funky shops and places to eat. I was pleased to find a real bagel shop, Bagelman, as I was seriously craving bagels after living in Finland. Two top-notch pizza restaurants, Neighbourhood and Mother, are in the area. And if you need to quench your thirst on a warm summer afternoon, Mikkeller Bar serves what may be the best beers on Earth. The communal tables outside are a nice spot to chat with strangers, who in my case included two guys who had just been filming narwhals in Greenland for a BBC documentary.
One of Copenhagen’s most famous attractions is historic Tivoli Gardens, an amusement park that puts American ones to shame. I also visited the alternative community Christiania and had a tasty lunch there at the vegetarian restaurant Morgenstedet. Another spot for a quick (but not necessarily cheap) meal is Torvahallerne, an outdoor market with 60+ stands selling all sorts of foods from sushi to gourmet porridge. I would have been content to have eaten every meal here, but I had time for only one. I opted for smørrebrød, the classic Danish open-faced sandwiches. It was a solid choice, but I’m dying to go back and sample some of the pastries that I had to pass up. There’s always next time.