Aarhus Local Guide: Live Music, Beautiful Parks & Nordic Street Vibe | Aarhus Holidays
Aarhus offers both Michelin-starred restaurants and cheaper options popular with locals. For the latter, Teater Bodega serves affordable yet high quality traditional Danish cuisine. Here you will get the best stegt flæsk med persillesovs (fried pork belly with parsley sauce), with a glass of strong local spirit, snaps. It also serves good vegetarian dishes, if you ask for them, and the place oozes Aarhus history, being over 100 years old.
For shared dishes, such as khinkali (Georgian meatballs), visit the Eastern European-inspired Bardok, which has an excellent bar. The best affordable meal is at down-to-earth cuisine pub Vesterlauget, whose slate menu can include wild boar stew or mushroom risotto.
It is impossible to talk about Aarhus without mentioning ARoS: it is one of the largest art museums in Northern Europe, with its “walkway” at the top with rainbow-colored glass walls. -very photographed sky by Olafur Eliasson. It is a very unorthodox and modern museum, with exhibits from all over the world.
The Moesgaard Museum, a few kilometers from the city, explores the evolution of humanity through ancient times and the Viking Age. The museum is surrounded by breathtaking nature and its design is very innovative. The cafe has large windows on a grassy roof where you can walk around and breathe in the feeling of infinity.
Aarhus is a university town, with a vibrant atmosphere. The cobbled streets of the Latin Quarter are full of boutiques and independent cafes and bars. Visitors shouldn’t miss the Soul Shine thrift shop, and Ris Ras beer and coffee. The neighborhood does not seem affected by the recent urban development of Aarhus. The same goes for the neighborhoods Jægergårdsgade, Frederiksbjerg and Marselisborg, which remain unchanged and are great places to have lunch or walk around with an ice cream.
The Botanical Garden is a must, with stunning tropical houses and collections of plants. Aarhus also has many beautiful parks; try Tangkrogen, Marselisborg Memorial Park, Riis Skov and Marselisborg Dyrehave (deer park). If you’re looking for the sea view, head to Lystbaadehavn (Aarhus Marina), where you can grab an ice cream on the pier and pop into one of the cafes.
For mainstream music and a dance floor, head downtown where you’ll find plenty of options. If you like rock music and beer, visit Sway or Escobar. If you like an unpretentious atmosphere on a dance floor with room for your sleazy moves, check out HeadQuarters, which I own. On weekends, HeadQuarters transforms from a music venue into a nightclub, which will take you back to the original nightclubs with a soul and funk vibe. Or try Café Paradis, a hot club with great cocktails and a cool urban vibe.
Aarhus has a long musical history and the city’s Royal Academy of Music produces brilliant musicians, who often perform at local concert halls and festivals. Spot Festival in May focuses on up-and-coming music, and there’s the enduring NorthSide Festival in June. Venues such as the Musikhuset concert hall, Radar, VoxHall, Godsbanen and Train offer a full range of live music.
For an affordable option, the recently opened BOOK1 hostel (dorm beds from £28, doubles only £89) is right in the city center and offers suites as well as ‘pod dorms’. It’s in an old library and the design is very cool. La Villa Provence (doubles from £146 B&B) is a small, French-inspired, family-run hotel on the water’s edge, with a Nordic vibe and lots of hygge.
Amira Gluhic lived in Aarhus for 15 years and owns the head office concert hall