Copenhagen open water event claims to be the world’s hyggeligste swim

Entries are now open for the 11th running of the Christiansborg Rundt on 26 August 2017. The 2km swim weaves through the centre of Copenhagen taking in the Danish Parliament along with a host of other famous and historic buildings and attracts around 4,000 swimmers each year.

Picking up on a word that has become somewhat vogueish in English recently, the organisers say it’s the world’s hyggeligste swim. For those who’ve missed the trend, hygge (pronounced ‘hoo-ga’) is a Danish word which roughly translates to ‘cosiness’ and can be applied to any area of life.  It is about people enjoying moments in a simple way.  While hygge is more common in the long winter months, hygge can also be created at any time of the year including when swimming apparently.

The swim certainly has a fun and friendly atmosphere and while it has 4,000 participants, swimmers set off in manageably sized waves. Being in the centre of Copenhagen it’s easily accessible by public transport (or bicycle) and there are plenty of places around the course for spectators to watch. We’re not quite sure we totally agree with the hygge label as there are a couple of long dark slightly scary bridges to swim under, but maybe this just adds to the excitement.

The event started after the hugely successful project by the Copenhagen municipality to clean up their harbour water.  The results have been dramatic with the harbour now being one of the cleanest in the world. The first event took place in 2006 and attracted 260 swimmers. While the only time you can swim around Christiansborg is during the race, the city’s canals host a number of specially built outdoor swimming spots.

As well as the 2km solo swim, there is also an option to take part in a four-person relay team and swim 500m each. Wetsuits are optional but with the water temperature typically in the mid to high teens, most swimmers choose to wear one.

Find out more and register:

Photo Credit – Michael Vienø

Copenhagen Swim Photo Credit Jesper Westley

Copenhagen Swim Photo credit – Jesper Westley

Stay up to date with The Dip, our free weekly outdoor swimming newsletter.

I created Outdoor Swimmer in 2011 (initially as H2Open Magazine) as an outlet for my passion for swimming outdoors. I've been a swimmer and outdoor swimmer for as long as I remember. Swimming has made a huge difference to my life and I want to share its joys and benefits with as many people as possible. I am also the author of Swim Wild & Free: A Practical Guide to Swimming Outdoors 365 a Year and I provide one-to-one support to swimmers through Swim Mentoring.