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Denmark’s largest island offers much more than the dazzle of Copenhagen. North of the city lie some of the country’s finest beaches and most impressive castles. Here you’ll find dazzlingly ornate Frederiksborg Slot in Hillerød and the hulking Kronborg Slot at Helsingør, Shakespeare's Elsinore. Helsingør also features the excellent Maritime Museum of Denmark. En route don't miss Louisiana, the superb modern/contemporary art gallery, not the US state.

West of Copenhagen awaits history-steeped Roskilde, home to a World Heritage–listed cathedral, Scandinavia’s classic rock music festival and a tremendous Viking Ship Museum. History also comes to life at nearby Sagnlandet Lejre, an engrossing, hands-on archaeology site.

Further west stands the millennia-old Trelleborg ring fortress, while Zealand’s southern assets include medieval charm in Køge and the World Heritage–listed cliff geology of Stevns Klint, plus a nearby Cold War fortress-museum.

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