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Denmark Lesson for Kids: Facts & History

Instructor: Charles Kinney, Jr.
Surrounded on most sides by water, Denmark is a small country in northern Europe that has been voted the happiest country on Earth. Read about this nation that has given us Legos, Vikings, fairy tales, Danish hot dogs and more.

Bicycles, Cookies, and Legos

Denmark is famous for many things. Have you ever tried Danish cookies or pastries? How about Legos? Denmark is famous for creating both of those things. In fact, there's even a place in Denmark called Legoland, where there are exact replicas of many famous buildings, like the White House, made entirely out of Legos.

Millions of people visit Legoland each year
Legoland

Denmark also has a beautiful capital city and lots of bikes. In fact, there are more bikes in Denmark than people!

Where is Denmark?

Denmark is a country of more than five and a half million people in a region of northern Europe called Scandinavia. To the south, Denmark touches Germany. Norway is to the north but separated by the sea. Denmark is connected to Sweden by a bridge.

All of the colored parts are Denmark, which is bordered by Sweden, Germany and Norway (to the north)
Map of Denmark and surrounding countries

Denmark is very flat, and most of the country is surrounded by the sea. In fact, no matter where you stand in Denmark, you are usually less than one hour away from the sea.

Every day people go back and forth from Copenhagen, Denmark's capital city, to Norway on large passenger ships. Zealand, Denmark's big island, is connected to Sweden by a bridge.

Vikings and Wars to Peace

Denmark is a peaceful country that tries hard to be fair and safe to everyone. It wasn't always like that, however. Vikings, a group of traders and warriors, ruled the seas from about the year 700 AD to 1100 AD. Denmark fought a lot of wars, especially with its neighbor Sweden, and it controlled Norway for 300 years.

Denmark also colonized Greenland and Iceland. Eventually the Danes had to leave Iceland. They still control the defense of Greenland, but the Greenlanders want the Danes to leave.

Finally, Denmark decided it was better to be peaceful than to have so many wars. The country now works with its neighbors as part of the European Union (a strong European political and economic club).

Copenhagen, the Capital City

Copenhagen has over one million people. Denmark's queen lives in a palace in Copenhagen. The queen doesn't rule the country anymore, though. Denmark is a democracy, much like the United States.

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