Tivoli Gardens in Copenhagen: A Place to Feel Like a Kid Again

Amusement parks have always brought me a sense of thrill and happiness — now, they bring me feelings of nostalgia.

Growing up, I went to amusement parks with my family all the time. Whether it was Disney World or a small park in New Hampshire, I always had a great time.

I came to Copenhagen in 2016 with my mom for five days. We went to Tivoli Gardens twice in that short time. Tivoli Gardens is an amusement park and garden that offers rides, games and music concerts.

The park opened in 1843, and in 2018, according to Tivoli’s website, “The annual attendance figures totaled 4.85 million, which is 11% higher than in 2017 and is the highest figure in recent times.”

 Why It’s Newsworthy: Tivoli Gardens is a top rated tourist attraction in Copenhagen. 65% of visitors are Danes and 4% are from the U.S.  

Visitors’ Perspectives

“I think it’s like a fun activity for families because when you have kids, there’s rides, and for the parents they put a lot of work into the gardens and into the scenery,” Marc Brinkland, a Danish student living in Copenhagen, said. “It’s like a good family experience for everyone to enjoy.” 

Dana Fernandez, an American study abroad student in Copenhagen, agreed.

It was fun to see the kids get really excited about being there,” Fernandez said.

Back in 2016, my mom and I rode every ride together, and I remember being so lucky that I had a mom who was willing to do that with me. It was a special activity for us to share.

I had discovered the park before my trip while watching a YouTube influencer vlog her trip to Copenhagen with her boyfriend.

While I was there with my mom, I daydreamed about being there with my future boyfriend. Six years later, I came back to Copenhagen for a summer study abroad trip.

My boyfriend came to visit me for a weekend, and the first thing we did was go to Tivoli Gardens. We spent nearly six hours at the park, and it was truly some of the most fun I’ve ever had with him. The experience was just as special as it was with my mom, but just in a different way.

My boyfriend and I in Copenhagen. This picture was taken after our day at Tivoli Gardens. (Photo/Olivia Breen)

We played in the funhouse and screamed like kids on the rollercoaster. It was a really great feeling to share this special memory with him and to have him enjoy it so much with me. 

Tivoli Gardens is the third-oldest operating amusement park in the world. Its wooden roller coaster dates back to 1914.

“I enjoyed my time there. It was cool to see Tivoli because it was such an old park, so it was very different compared to Six Flags or Disney,” Fernandez said when asked why she liked Tivoli. 

Brinkland said, “It’s an old place, so when i’m going with my mom, she’s probably thinking about when she was like 10 years old going herself, and maybe even my grandmother, too.” 

Brinkland said that he’s been going to Tivoli Gardens since he was a baby.

“Obviously there’s some nostalgia about going back because you reminisce about all the good times you had there growing up, going there with family,” Brinkland said about his experience. “You feel like you are 12 years old. I think that’s the good feeling about going to an amusement park because you can just feel young again. Going on all the rides and having fun, and no one is judging you.” 

Tivoli Gardens has a special place in my heart like many others in part because amusement parks are safe spaces for adults to play like kids.

Olivia Breen is a senior majoring in advertising in the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Georgia.

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