Guide to the ultimate weekend with culture and nature
Culture stimulates the heart and brain. Time spent in nature is good for body and soul. We think you deserve both. And in Horsens you can actually do it all – in just 48 hours.
This is our personal guide to a perfect weekend in Horsens and surroundings.
In the guide you will find recommendations, inspiration and ideas for places and experiences that we, ourselves, love most in the city and in the surrounding nature.
Remember that you can pick things that you find interesting and save them in My VisitHorsens. With your personal travel guide, you will get more out of your visit whether you visit with your family or a travel companion, or if you have come to explore the area on your own.
You can also save the entire itinerary with one click:
Plan your weekend in Horsens
- This is why you should just do it
- Departure time – transport to and from Horsens
- Day 1 – exciting culture in the city and around Horsens Fjord
- Late morning – catching museum trip and wild street art
- Afternoon – nature, air and a small amount of luxury
- Evening – eat well and spend the night in a historical setting
- Day 2 – hiking in nature and the footsteps of the past
- Late morning – captivating nature
- Afternoon – unique storytelling
- Evening – sleep in local and homely surroundings
Just do it: We have got your back
Imagine a weekend where you have plenty of time. Where you spend time with your family, your boyfriend or girlfriend, your dog, your friend or your BFF.
A weekend that gives you new energy to handle the rigours of the everyday. A weekend of socialising and talking, experiences, exploration, activities and relaxation.
You pack your bag Friday, take off for just two days and go to work Monday morning – ready to take on the world again.
We have your back! Our guide to a weekend in Horsens is exactly what you need, and it does not cost an arm or a leg, require a week’s planning or drain your energy.
Horsens and the surrounding area offer both great culture, great gastronomic experiences and, not least, magnificent scenery. A weekend here happens at your pace and with plenty of time for what it is really about: being together, having new experiences and recharging your batteries.
So, for once, leave the laundry; go and enjoy life.
Train, coach, car, aeroplane and ferry – travelling to Horsens is easy
Wherever you come from, travelling to Horsens is easy. If you set out from Copenhagen or Kastrup Airport, you can cross Storebæltsbroen by car and arrive in just over three hours and from Aalborg you arrive by car in less than two hours.
When travelling from Zealand, you can also rest your right foot aboard the cosy Mols Ferry to Aarhus which is a short 30-minute drive away.
Horsens is located at the heart of Denmark and enjoys excellent coach and train connections as well as the E45 motorway which passes right by. Billund Airport is only an hour away by airport coach – and, from here, there are departures to Copenhagen as well as the rest of the world.
Also, check out: Transport to Horsens
The city is full of museums, cultural experiences, lovely restaurants and shopping. Also, check out our guide to 24 hours in Horsens. Here, you will find our best recommendations for a full day in the centre of this cultural city. If you are game for combining the city experience with an active trip around Horsens Fjord or a driving to attractions in the area, then we have some super advice for you in this guide.
History behind walls and barbed wire
Start the day by visiting the Prison Museum. FÆNGSLET is located a mere 20-minute walk from the train station but taking a city bus is also easy. The Prison Museum is a special experience that gets under the skin of most people. The old Horsens State Penitentiary served as a prison up to 2006.
Also, check out: Museums in Horsens
Today, it has been converted to an interactive, vibrant museum experience with personal and captivating stories about being and inmate or a prison guard in a Danish prison.
Afterwards, you can have a cup of coffee at Café Lorentzen and digest the many impressions.
Follow in the footsteps of great and small art in the cityscape
Michael Kvium, modern street artists, classic bronze sculptors, Christian Lemmerz and Bjørn Nørgaard – over the years, many have left an impression on the city.
You will feel that and much else if you take a walk through the streets. When on the hunt for art, you will automatically look up and discover things you would otherwise not have noticed. We think it is a great way to activate curiosity and attention.
Horsens Municipality and Horsens Art Museum have prepared a guide to the sculptures and street art you can experience in Horsens and where to find them. The guide is free, and you can pick up a paper copy at the Horsens Art Museum or in our tourist information at FÆNGSLET. You may also download it in PDF format.
Also, check out: What is happening in Horsens
If you feel peckish along the way, there are plenty of opportunities to satisfy your hunger. We highly recommend Café Bytorv, Gran Bar or Vaffel Caféen, all of which are centrally located in the Horsens pedestrian street.
Alternatively, if you are travelling with children: Splash around and relax in Horsens’ indoor water complex
If you are travelling with children who do not have the patience to walk around and look at street art, then we have the perfect option. In Aqua Forum, the little tykes can splash, paddle, jump and play and you may even find a moment to lift weights in the gym or relax your muscles and thoughts in the spa, sauna or steam room. The Horsens water complex actually has it all – even a nice open-air swimming pool, if you visit in the summer.
Also, check out: Free fun and pleasures
You could also nip past Horsens Library which is located at the very centre of the city. Borrow a book for the visit or catch one of the many free events that are held there every week. Did you know that you can borrow a book in Horsens and return it at any other Danish public library? No need to run out of books while on vacation!
Nature, air and luxury
After an eventful morning in the city, it is time to see what happens outside the city limits. If the weather is up to it, the obvious choice is to borrow one of the free city bike found around the city – including at FÆNGSLET, Horsens Art Museum and the Bytorv Horsens shopping centre in the pedestrian street, Søndergade.
Also, check out: Places to eat in Horsens
Does anyone not love to have lunch in nature? A beautiful view lights up the senses and everything just tastes better. Bring a sandwich from the city or choose a slightly more luxurious and comfortable alternative: an organic lunch at the restaurant Kokken ud af huset at Stensballegaard Golf Club accompanied by a sumptuous view of the fjord, the forest and golf courses.
Also, check out: Golf in Horsens
Stensballegaard Golf Club is located north of the fjord just 7 km east of Horsens. In addition to being a stellar place to enjoy a meal, the golf club is the tops and recognised as one of Denmark’s best. Even untrained golfers may feel like swinging a golf club here which, fortunately, there is ample room for.
Around Horsens Fjord
Once everyone is full and satisfied, head for the fjord. After a short, 2-kilometre bike ride or drive , you reach Husodde Beach and Husodde Strand Camping where you can play crazy golf, enjoy the beach or maybe rent a kayak and go out on the fjord. Outside the season, it is a beautiful place for a hiking or cycling trip – here, too, you can rent bikes.
Also, check out: Hiking and cycling routes
Bonus: Nearby, you will find the protected nature reserve at Sondrup and Brigsted where you will find amazing birdlife, labyrinthian trail systems and, not least, the vista point Udsigtshøjene – the best view of Horsens Fjord.
Bicycle ride around the fjord and island hopping
You are now standing at the water’s edge. Have you heard about the East Jutland Archipelago? In the mouth of Horsens Fjord are a number of small islands which make the area something special. By definition, a fjord has an outfall in the sea, so, typically, you cannot get around it without getting wet feet. However, the islands Alrø and Hjarnø are located in Horsens Fjord which are connected via a small ferry.
Throughout the summer, the cosy bicycle ferry between Alrø and Hjarnø accommodates up to 12 people and the Hjarnø Ferry continues to Snaptun. It means that you can island hop across the fjord and maybe ride your bike all the way around – if your legs and the weather are up to it. You should try this if you are visiting during the summer season.
Driving to the local attractions + Endelave
Of course, you can also spend the afternoon on moving around the area and maybe slightly further afield. You can actually drive across to Alrø on a 1-kilometre-long embankment and have a beer, a cup of coffee or a cup of tea at Alrø Traktørsted or the cosy Møllegården.
Drive south of the fjord and visit Glud Museum on your way to the port of Snaptun.
Also, check out: The islands near Horsens
From Snaptun, you can ride the ferry for an hour to Endelave – a small island of only 13.2 square kilometres where you can experience wild rabbits, seals, tranquil island atmosphere and crystal-clear waters.
We have to admit that it will be hard to do everything in one day. But, then, you must choose a favourite and come back for more another time.
You have passed the day having lots of impressions and experiences. Now it is time to relax. Do you feel how the calm descends on you? You are going to have something to eat in pleasant surroundings and, for that purpose, many of our guests recommend Restaurant Corfitz.
Try their signature burger with crispy fries or mix a plate for yourself in top tapas style. You could also choose the family-friendly Restaurant Flammen which always has at least 15 kinds of meat on the grill or eat at one of the city’s hotels which also have good kitchens.
Also, check out: Horsens nightlife
End the day with one or two drinks – such as a Gin & Tonic at Gasfabrikken made from their own, organic gin.
Spend the night in a historical setting
Spend the night in a historical setting at Scandic Bygholm Park which is a 1775 manor house or stay the night at the cosy Teaterhotellet in the heart of the city. Horsens and its surroundings provide a wealth of different types of overnight accommodation, so we think you should choose the one that suits your sleeping needs.
After a hearty breakfast at your chosen overnight accommodation, we recommend that you unwind completely.
Put on your hiking boots and get ready for a refreshing walk at your very own pace.
Today, you will go about 20 kilometres west of Horsens to the area around the town of Brædstrup and the southernmost part of Gudenåen. This is some of Denmark’s most scenic nature. Nature trails, woodlands and streams provide the idyllic setting, while lovely farm shops and inns ensure that no one starves on the excursion.
Hiking in captivating nature with historical aspects
Start your journey by driving to Klostermølle. Where the river Gudenåen has its outfall into Mossø, there is an old pulp and paper mill which burned in 1974. In the Middle Ages this was the location of a Benedictine monastery whose foundations were later hidden under Klostermølle.
In addition to the monks’ 1.3-kilometre-long mill channel which, today, is a beautiful hiking trail, do visit the place for its cosy and historical mill idyll. The old buildings contain a small exhibition – however, only in Danish – with plans and stories as well as the sounds and atmosphere of the time when the mill was active.
Access to all buildings and exhibitions is free.
Also, check out: Nature experiences
From here, several trails lead to Sukkertoppen the top of which rises 108m above sea level and offers magnificent views over the Gudenåen valley. Sukkertoppen is named after its white sugar-like quartz sand. Today, grass holds on to the sand, but there are not many trees on top of the hill. For this reason, you can see far afield in many directions and the views are amazing.
The high hill was well-suited as an outpost in wartime and archaeologists have found traces of a small fortification from the Viking Age on the south-western side of the hilltop. There are beautiful views of Mossø and Klosterkær, Denmark’s largest inland estuary, formed by sand and mud from Gudenåen.
Hop onto history
In fact, you are now very close to the old station town of Bryrup. Taking the 5-kilometre-long trip on the vintage train on the line Bryrup-Vrad Veteranbane is therefore an obvious choice – it is a unique experience that you will not find anywhere else. The railway line is operated by local train enthusiasts and the price of a return ticket for an adult is less than DKK 100. See the updated timetable here.
Lunch in natural scenery
After the morning’s hiking trips and ride on the vintage train it would be good with a little something to eat. Nearby are two prime places. We recommend driving about 10 kilometres to the super-cosy restaurant Det Lille Røgeri and either order a shooting star with fresh shrimp and home-smoked salmon or buy a sandwich to take away. You can also buy sandwiches and other delights at the market at Sdr. Vissing Torvehal.
New heights of storytelling
The old railway line used to go all the way from Bryrup to Horsens. Today, it has become the Silkeborg-Horsens Nature Trail – and, along it, you also find The Uncovered Bridge, one of the most beautiful attractions in the area today.
The old railway bridge was uncovered in 2014 after having been hidden in a dam for 85 years. The bridge was built in 1899 and was then the tallest bridge in the Nordic Region. A total of 15 metres above Gudenåen.
Also, check out: Experiences at The Uncovered Bridge
However, even by today’s standards, the construction is outstanding and beautifully placed in a glade with the stream rushing far below. We recommend taking a break here and considering the work from one of the benches.
If you visit on the right day, there are also guided tours at The Uncovered Bridge. A guided tour takes 1-1.5 hours and is free.
Are you looking for nature experiences from horseback? Try Fuglsang Horseback Riding which offers trips on Icelandic horses.
Eat and sleep in local surroundings
The weekend is nearly over and has been spent on culture and nature, especially, and so we think you should grab one more overnight stay. It is nice not having to drive in the evening and be able to just dribble into a ready-made bed.
Also, check out: Overnight accommodation in Horsens
You have plenty of options in terms of overnight accommodation – both in Horsens and in the Brædstrup area. Hotel Pejsegården is a super-cosy family-run hotel with lots of different activities and a really nice restaurant to boot. Elite Camp Vestbirk is also a nearby option and it is especially nice in the summer. If you want to stay the night close to the coast, there are plenty of atmospheric holiday homes along the east coast, both to the south and to the north of Horsens.
Also, check out: Spending the night in nature
The nice bathing lake, Ring Sø, is also located nearby where you could go for a morning swim before starting your homeward journey.