Royal Danish Horticultural Society Garden

Water gurgles from one of the many small fountains. A red squirrel shimmies on the yellow-tinted wall. The sun glimmers through the treetops, casting fine, flickering shadows. Frederiksberg Gardens’ discreet neighbour has its own distinct mood – and a sense of deep tranquillity.

You won’t be overtaken here by breathless runners or busy cyclists. Bikes are banned from the garden and must be carefully parked by the entrance. The Royal Danish Horticultural Society Garden is designed for serenity and inspiration.

It occupied several sites before finally settling here, near Frederiksberg Palace, which you may catch glimpses of as you explore the garden.

The grounds were once part of the palace garden, but after it lost its status as a summer residence and there was no longer a need for the vegetable gardens, the Horticultural Society moved in.

The idea was that the garden would be a place where people could find help and ideas for their own gardens, and that remains the case today. As you warm your back against a sun-drenched bench overlooking the fountains, ancient trees and statues, there is a wonderful feeling that you’ve stepped back in time – but this is no museum garden. It is renewed periodically, as new ideas and ideals gain ground.

Coming from Frederiksberg Runddel, the entrance to the garden is by Brøndsalen, part of an old spa where visitors could take the spring water from the well, which was believed to be curative.

Today, the garden provides an antidote to city stress.

Photo: Scanpix/Mads Jensen

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  • Gardening inspiration
  • Peace
  • Relaxation
  • Walks
  • Picnics
  • Dogs and bicycles are not allowed
  • The garden is open around the clock
  • The Royal Danish Horticultural Society is the continent’s oldest horticulture society, and the second oldest in the world.
  • Designed in 1830, the English-style garden’s purpose was to raise awareness of horticulture. The current garden was established in 1884, when Frederiksberg Palace no longer needed the land to grow vegetables. At that time, the garden was situated close to what is now St. Thomas Square. However, the plants were adversely affected by urban pollution from coal – so when the opportunity arose, the garden was moved to the foot of Frederiksberg Hill.
  • The garden’s current location is in fact its third: the first was on the corner of Sortedams Dosseringen and Østre Farimagsgade.
  • The garden has its own beehives, and honey produced here is on sale at several places in Copenhagen.
  • Some of the trees and hedges are more than 100 years old, and date back to the garden’s earliest days.
  • There are many rare trees and flowers, and the varied vegetation, together with streams and ponds, provides good living conditions for birds and insects.
  • There are many songbirds and other small birds. As for mammals, squirrels have found out that the garden makes an excellent pantry.
  • No chemicals are used here, partly to provide the best possible conditions for the bees and other pollinating insects, and partly to inspire other Danish gardeners to do the same.
  • No special facilities, but most paths are suitable for wheelchairs.
  • At the entrance is a gourmet restaurant, Mielcke & Hurtigkarl, which uses herbs from the garden in its recipes.
  • There are several places in the garden where you can eat your own food. Please make sure to take your rubbish away with you.
  • Frederiksberg Garden
  • the Southern Field
  • Enghave Park
1 km

Get directions here