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Denmark’s Tivoli Gardens Opens For Christmas Season Despite Covid-19



Copenhagen residents queued around the block to enter Tivoli Gardens for the opening day of its Christmas season, despite a recent surge in Covid-19 cases in Denmark.

The traditional downtown amusement park first opened its doors in 1843 and has opened for a short season in the run-up to Christmas since the 1990s.

After a quiet few hours, the after-work crowds flooded in for some festive cheer featuring live music, the Christmas lights switch-on, Santa’s grotto in the Pantomime Theatre and full access to all the rides and attractions.

One of the reasons for the long queues was the requirement for anyone entering the park to show a valid Covid certificate. The EU-wide pass proves the holder is fully-vaccinated, has recovered from a recent infection or has recently tested negative.

However, there were very few signs of pandemic restrictions inside the park. Face masks around the mostly outdoor attractions were few and far between.

While it has been unseasonably mild in Denmark just lately, there was still enough of a winter chill that, combined with the sprinkling of fake snow, completed the illusion of a traditional white Christmas.

Despite the rides, Tivoli attracts a diverse crowd. Travel blogger and Copenhagen native Claus Andersen explained why many elderly people and families hold season passes: “They go to look at the gardens, enjoy the view and talk to the other regulars. A season ticket is not that expensive, so many elderly people buy one, in order to have a little breathing space in the middle of the city.”

Tivoli is well-known for its live music and theater productions. Throughout December, Hans Christian Andersen’s The Snow Queen will be performed in the concert hall.

How to visit Copenhagen this Christmas

Tivoli remains open for its winter season daily until January 2, but it is closed on December 24. Santa’s grotto closes on December 23.

If you’re considering a festive trip to Tivoli and are not currently in the country, the first thing to do is check Denmark’s travel restrictions. At the time of writing, fully vaccinated travelers from the EU/EEA and many other countries including the U.S. and Canada can enter Denmark with requirements for testing or self-isolation. These rules change frequently so double-check the official government website before departure.

Once in Denmark, a valid Covid certificate is required to enter most public spaces including Tivoli, museums and restaurants. You may also need to show one when checking into a hotel.