14 magical things to do in Aarhus in winter

Aarhus in winter is nothing short of magical. These essential winter and Christmas tips will help you have a perfect trip to the City of Smiles.

Plan your trip to Aarhus in winter

👩🏻 Best guided tours in Aarhus

🏡 Where to stay in Aarhus

One of my favorite places in Denmark is Aarhus. It was my hometown for 7 years and I’m still there every month.

Aarhus is the second-largest city in Denmark, about 3 hours drive from Copenhagen, and it’s famous for its ArOS and Old Town open-air museums.

In winter, you’ll find Christmas markets, concerts, and possibly even snow, and I would highly recommend that you visit.

Here is a list of all the magical things to do in Aarhus in winter and how you can visit.

Aarhus in Christmas

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How to visit Aarhus in winter

Weather in winter

Winter in Aarhus is cold and damp, but not brutally so.

The average temperature is hovering around freezing. Snow is hit or miss, but you’ll definitely see your share of gray skies.

Pack warm, and don’t forget to indulge in some traditional Danish comfort food to keep you warm!

MonthHigh / Low (°C)Rain
December4° / 0°12 days
January2° / -2°12 days
February2° / -2°9 days

Read next: Winter in Denmark: 12 fun cold-weather activities

Aarhus in winter

Best things to do in Aarhus in winter

1. Aarhus Old Town (Den Gamle By)

A visit to Aarhus Old Town is a must when you’re in Aarhus.

Here, you can step back in time and explore this open-air museum, showcasing urban history and culture from the 1700s to the 1970s.

During winter, you can experience Christmas as it was celebrated in the old days, and there will be a Christmas market with mulled wine, traditional Danish rice pudding (risengrød) and much more!

Aarhus in winter
Aarhus in Christmas
Tasting mulled wine in the Old Town for Christmas

2. ARoS Aarhus Art Museum

Olafur Eliasson’s vibrant circular walkway is a hallmark of Aarhus.

The walkway is called “Your rainbow panorama” and it’s placed atop the ArOS museum that offers panoramic city views.

ArOS has other interesting art displays and installations you can see. It’s great fun for both kids and adults.

Things to do in Aarhus
‘Your Rainbow Panorama’ is designed by Danish-Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson

3. Tivoli Friheden

You can visit Tivoli Friheden amusement park all year round, but during winter in Aarhus, it’s magical.

Think seasonal attractions and festive lights – it’s a winter wonderland that’s cozy, fun, and beautiful to visit in the colder months.

4. Christmas market in Ridehuset

The central Christmas market in Aarhus is in “Ridehuset” Equestrian Hall, right next to ArOS.

It’s really well-decorated and has over 85 stalls selling handmade Danish crafts.

The café there?

They serve coffee, warm Christmas punch, and some tasty Danish baked goods. Plus, with the Christmas music and entertainment, it feels genuinely warm and welcoming.

Aarhus in Christmas

5. Hot cocoa at Cross Cafe or Løve’s Cafe

If you want a good hot cocoa in a cozy spot, try Cross Cafe or Løve’s Cafe.

They both have that “hygge” feel – really comfy and relaxed. It’s not super fancy, just genuine Danish coziness.

Things to do in Aarhus
Løve’s Cafe
Aarhus in winter
Cross Cafe is located by Aarhus River

6. Marselisborg Deer Park

Marselisborg Deer Park in Aarhus is one of those places I’d recommend if you’re looking for outdoor activities.

Make sure to also stop by Marselisborg Palace, while you’re there.

There’s something special about watching deer roam while you’re taking a break from life’s hustle. We love to go there with the kids.

Aarhus in winter

7. Christmas concert in Aarhus Cathedral

At 93 m (305 ft) in length and 96 m (315 ft) in height, Aarhus Cathedral is the largest cathedral in Denmark.

Make sure to visit during your trip, and check if there’s a Christmas concert – it’s an experience you shouldn’t miss.

The Gothic cathedral is all lit up, creating a warm, almost ethereal glow. The acoustics? Unbeatable.

Aarhus in winter

8. Dokk1

Dokk1 in Aarhus is an innovative public space and library where you can explore exhibitions, attend events, or simply relax and enjoy the harbor views.

Think interactive installations, workshops, and even a game room.

It’s a hit for families, but honestly, there’s something for everyone. If you’re in Aarhus, this place should top your must-visit list.

9. Experience the Christmas decorations

Strolling down Strøget in Aarhus during Christmas is like stepping into a holiday postcard.

The street transforms with twinkling lights, evergreen garlands, and charming wooden stalls with mulled wine and sugar-roasted almonds.

This is the Danish way of hygge 🤍

Aarhus in Christmas

9. Moesgaard Museum

Moesgaard Museum is a must-visit in the city of Aarhus.

Housed in a building you can walk on, the museum features top-notch archaeological exhibits, like the Grauballe Man, a 2,000-year-old preserved body.

This is the place to learn about Danish history, from the Stone Age to the Viking Age.

10. Aarhus Botanical Garden

Even in winter, Væksthusene and Aarhus Botanical Gardens are a retreat.

Inside Væksthusene’s tropical domes, you’ll find a diverse range of exotic plants, making it a warm escape from the cold.

The outdoor gardens can be beautiful under a layer of frost or snow.

Aarhus in winter

11. The Latin Quarter

The oldest part of Aarhus is the Latin Quarter.

I love walking in the cobble-stoned streets and just look at the boutique shops and historical buildings.

You should stop by one of the cozy cafes where you can warm up with a hot chocolate or a traditional Danish pastry. I recommend Café Drudenfuss, one of the oldest cafes in town.

Aarhus in winter

12. Go ice skating

If you’re in Aarhus from mid-November to February 18th, you can try ice skating on the outdoor ice rink.

It’s located between ArOS and the Town Hall.


  • It’s free to use and you can rent skates there.
  • Open every day from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Aarhus in winter

13. Go for a walk in Riis forest

Riis Forest is enchanting when covered in snow.

The trails are easy to follow, so you can go for a walk here. It’s quiet, and if you’re up for it, head down to the beach for here.

Aarhus in winter

14. Go winter swimming at the Harbour Bath

Up for a cold experience?

During winter, you can go for a refreshing dip in the Harbor Bath at Aarhus Ø on Saturdays and Sundays from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Winter swimming is great for your immune system!

The circular diving pool, locker rooms, and restrooms are available, and lifeguards are on duty for safety.

Aarhus in winter

FAQ – Aarhus in winter

Is Denmark worth visiting in winter?

Yes, Denmark in winter is super cozy with its festive markets, and beautiful landscapes. But it’s cold and has limited daylight, so pack warmly.

Read next: Winter in Denmark: 12 fun cold-weather activities

How many days do you need in Aarhus?

You’ll need 2-3 days for the main sights in Aarhus. If you want to relax and explore more, go for 4-5 days.

What is Denmark like in winter?

Denmark in winter is cold, with short days and temperatures ranging:

  • Average high: 32°F to 37°F (0°C to 3°C)
  • Average lows: 27°F to 32°F (-3°C to 0°C)

It’s often cloudy, and you can expect some snow. Cities light up, offering a cozy hygge atmosphere, perfect for warm indoor activities.

What is Denmark like in December?

Denmark in December is chilly, with temps around 0°C to 3°C.

Days are short, but the country glows with hygge vibes, cozy lights, and festive Christmas markets. You’ll experience the heart of Danish winter traditions.

Aarhus in winter

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