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Denmark is Europe’s oldest kingdom and is so picturesque it is often marketed as a ‘fairytale country’ – but don’t worry, it is thoroughly modern and full of exciting things to do and see. It’s a great place to go if you like theme parks – it has Legoland, the Tivoli Gardens, and Bakken, the world’s oldest amusement park at 426 years old! Copenhagen, the capital city, is full of attractions such as the statue of the Little Mermaid, the alternative freetown of Christiana, Amalienborg Palace which is home to the Danish royal family, and the central shopping district, Strøget. The Danes are well educated and have a high standard of living, and the official language is Danish.

The culture is cosmopolitan and independent, though Denmark is a small country, less than half the size of the North Island – and, like New Zealand, the coastline of Denmark means that it has plenty of sandy beaches which are highly recommended – that and the pastries!

Eligibility Requirements

You must be 16, 17 or 18.

What's included in your experience

  • Airfare
  • Airport Pick-up
  • Host Family Placement
  • Housing
  • Meals
  • School Placement
  • Medical Insurance
  • 24/7 Emergency Support
  • Assistance with Application Process
  • Visa Application Assistance
  • Pre-Departure Orientation
  • Orientations during your time abroad
  • Access to Alumni Network
  • Continuous Support
  • Worldwide Presence
  • 70 Years Experience

What you are responsible for

  • Vaccinations
  • Visa and Passport Fees
  • School Uniform
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Host family and culture

You can live anywhere in Denmark, including Greenland and Faroe Islands, however, you will likely be in a rural or suburban area. Danish towns are close together and you can comfortably rely on the public transportation system. Families in Denmark are very close and most prefer to cook dinner at home together every night. Follow the lead of your host siblings: Be independent, do your homework and help out around the house on your own.

Danish food includes a wide variety of meats and vegetables. Danish lunch is a traditional open-faced sandwich, called smorrebrod. Dinner is usually the main meal and typically a time for the whole family to gather and talk about their days. Danish people enjoy pickled herring and salted black licorice.

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Language and school

The main language spoken is Danish, while Faroese, Greenlandic and German are also recognized as official regionally. Danish people tend to be quite proficient in English, so a basic knowledge of English will be helpful. AFS will help you find language courses in the first few months or provide you with materials to learn the language on your own before going on your exchange.

You’ll either attend the first or second year of gymnasium (a university preparatory high school), or folkeskole for students between 6 and 16 years old. School runs from August through June, Monday to Friday (8 am to 3 pm). You will probably have five or six mandatory subjects and one ortwo electives, in addition to  Danish language classes throughout the year. Schools and community organizations offer extracurricular activities: sports, music, crafts, drama or scouting clubs.

Global Prep: One month school programme in Denmark

Check out our short-term Denmark programme here 

Let AFS guide your intercultural adventure

Kick-start your future with AFS and discover who you really are, make new lifetime friendships and immerse yourself in a fascinating intercultural experience.

This programme begins at your home country with a pre-departure orientation and continues with orientations, other supported learning activities and facilitated conversations which will help you maximize your experience, cope with the challenges of navigating a new culture and community as well as gain knowledge, skills, and a global understanding throughout your time abroad, and as you return to your home country. AFS volunteers will be there to support and guide you and your host family the whole way through.

Find out more