About Denmark [ Country ]

Here we've distilled information and facts from various sources about the location, size, population, geography, transport, climate, economy, history, government, law, and so on, of Denmark; into a view that makes sense for a traveller to, or within, this country.


Northern Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea and the North Sea, on a peninsula north of Germany (Jutland); also includes two major islands (Sjaelland and Fyn)


Temperate; humid and overcast; mild, windy winters and cool summers


Low and flat to gently rolling plains


lowest point: Lammefjord -7 m
highest point: Mollehoj/Ejer Bavnehoj 171 m

Geo Notes

Controls Danish Straits (Skagerrak and Kattegat) linking Baltic and North Seas; about one-quarter of the population lives in greater Copenhagen

Approved Official Names

conventional long form: Kingdom of Denmark
conventional short form: Denmark
local long form: Kongeriget Danmark
local short form: Danmark

Capital City

name: Copenhagen
geographic coordinates: 55 40 N, 12 35 E
time difference: UTC+1
daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October
note: applies to continental Denmark only, not to its North Atlantic components

Administrative Divisions

Metropolitan Denmark - 5 regions (regioner, singular - region); Hovedstaden, Midtjylland, Nordjylland, Sjaelland, Syddanmark
note: an extensive local government reform merged 271 municipalities into 98 and 13 counties into five regions, effective 1 January 2007

Natuaral Hazards

Flooding is a threat in some areas of the country (e.g., parts of Jutland, along the southern coast of the island of Lolland) that are protected from the sea by a system of dikes

Environmental Issues

Air pollution, principally from vehicle and power plant emissions; nitrogen and phosphorus pollution of the North Sea; drinking and surface water becoming polluted from animal wastes and pesticides

Life Expectancy

total population: 78.47 years
male: 76.11 years
female: 80.97 years (2010 est.)

Sex Ratio

at birth: 1.055 male(s)/female
under 15 years: 1.05 male(s)/female
15-64 years: 1.01 male(s)/female
65 years and over: 0.78 male(s)/female
total population: 0.98 male(s)/female (2010 est.)

Languages Spoken

Danish, Faroese, Greenlandic (an Inuit dialect), German (small minority)
note: English is the predominant second language

Religions Practiced

Evangelical Lutheran 95%, other Christian (includes Protestant and Roman Catholic) 3%, Muslim 2%

Legal System

Civil law system; judicial review of legislative acts; accepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations

National Holiday

none designated; Constitution Day, 5 June (1849) is generally viewed as the National Day

Telephone System

general assessment: excellent telephone and telegraph services
domestic: buried and submarine cables and microwave radio relay form trunk network, multiple cellular mobile communications systems
international: country code - 45; a series of fiber-optic submarine cables link Denmark with Canada, Faroe Islands, Germany, Iceland, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Russia, Sweden, and UK; satellite earth stations - 18 (6 Intelsat, 10 Eutelsat, 1 Orion, 1 Inmarsat (Blaavand-Atlantic-East)); note - the Nordic countries (Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden) share the Danish earth station and the Eik, Norway, station for worldwide Inmarsat access (2008)

Broadcast Media

Strong public-sector television presence with state-owned Danmarks Radio (DR) operating 4 channels and publicly-owned TV2 operating roughly a half dozen channels; broadcasts of privately-owned stations are available via satellite and cable feed; DR operates 4 nationwide FM radio stations, 15 digital audio broadcasting stations, and about 15 web-based radio stations; approximately 250 commercial and community radio stations are operational (2007)


Once the seat of Viking raiders and later a major north European power, Denmark has evolved into a modern, prosperous nation that is participating in the general political and economic integration of Europe. It joined NATO in 1949 and the EEC (now the EU) in 1973. However, the country has opted out of certain elements of the European Union's Maastricht Treaty, including the European Economic and Monetary Union (EMU), European defense cooperation, and issues concerning certain justice and home affairs.

Economy Overview

This thoroughly modern market economy features a high-tech agricultural sector, state-of-the-art industry with world-leading firms in pharmaceuticals, maritime shipping and renewable energy, and a high dependence on foreign trade. The Danish economy is also characterized by extensive government welfare measures, an equitable distribution of income, and comfortable living standards. Denmark is a net exporter of food and energy and enjoys a comfortable balance of payments surplus. After a long consumption-driven upswing, Denmark's economy began slowing in early 2007 with the end of a housing boom. The global financial crisis has exacerbated this cyclical slowdown through increased borrowing costs and lower export demand, consumer confidence, and investment. The global financial crises cut Danish GDP by 0.9% in 2008 and 4.3% in 2009. Historically low levels of unemployment have risen sharply with the recession. Denmark is likely to make a slow and modest recovery, though unemployment is likely to rise through 2010. An impending decline in the ratio of workers to retirees will be a major long-term issue. Denmark maintained a healthy budget surplus for many years up to 2008, but the budget balance swung into deficit during 2009. Nonetheless, Denmark's fiscal position remains among the strongest in the EU. Despite previously meeting the criteria to join the European Economic and Monetary Union (EMU), so far Denmark has decided not to join, although the Danish krone remains pegged to the euro.

National Anthem

name: "Der er et yndigt land" (There is a Lovely Land); "Kong Christian" (King Christian)
lyrics/music: Adam Gottlob OEHLENSCHLAGER/Hans Ernst KROYER; Johannes EWALD/unknown
note: Denmark has two national anthems with equal status; "Der er et yndigt land," adopted 1844, is a national anthem, while "Kong Christian," adopted 1780, serves as both a national and royal anthem; "Kong Christian" is also known as "Kong Christian stod ved hojen mast" (King Christian Stood by the Lofty Mast) and "Kongesangen" (The King's Anthem); within Denmark, the royal anthem is played only when royalty is present and is usually followed by the national anthem; when royalty is not present, only the national anthem is performed; outside Denmark, the royal anthem is played, unless the national anthem is requested

Denmark location map

total: 43,094 sq km
land: 42,434 sq km
water: 660 sq km
note: includes the island of Bornholm in the Baltic Sea and the rest of metropolitan Denmark (the Jutland Peninsula, and the major islands of Sjaelland and Fyn), but excludes the Faroe Islands and Greenland

Denmark flag

5,515,575 (July 2010 est.)


noun: Dane(s)
adjective: Danish

Ethnic Groups

Scandinavian, Inuit, Faroese, German, Turkish, Iranian, Somali


0.2% (2007 est.)

Independence Date

ca. 965 (unified and Christianized under HARALD I Gormson); 5 June 1849 (becomes a constitutional monarchy)

Government Type

Constitutional monarchy

Voting Rights

18 years of age; universal

Internet Users

4.579 million (2008)

Internet Hosts

4.145 million (2010)

Internet Country Code


Number Airports

92 (2010)

Number Paved Airports

total: 28
over 3,047 m: 2
2,438 to 3,047 m: 7
1,524 to 2,437 m: 4
914 to 1,523 m: 12
under 914 m: 3 (2010)


total: 2,667 km
standard gauge: 2,667 km 1.435-m gauge (640 km electrified) (2008)


total: 73,197 km
paved: 73,197 km (includes 1,111 km of expressways) (2008)

Inland Waterways

400 km (2008)

Ports & Terminals

Aalborg, Aarhus, Copenhagen, Ensted, Esbjerg, Fredericia, Kalundborg

National Budget

revenues: $172.5 billion
expenditures: $181.2 billion (2009 est.)

Account Balance

$12.43 billion (2009 est.)
$7.009 billion (2008 est.)

Exchange Rates

Danish kroner (DKK) per US dollar - 5.4742 (2009), 5.0236 (2008), 5.4797 (2007), 5.9468 (2006), 5.9969 (2005)
note: the Danish krone is pegged to the euro

Inflation Rate

1.3% (2009 est.)
3.4% (2008 est.)

Main Industries

Iron, steel, nonferrous metals, chemicals, food processing, machinery and transportation equipment, textiles and clothing, electronics, construction, furniture and other wood products, shipbuilding and refurbishment, windmills, pharmaceuticals, medical equipment

Agricultural Products

Barley, wheat, potatoes, sugar beets; pork, dairy products; fish

Labor Force

2.841 million (2009 est.)

Main Occupations

agriculture: 2.5%
industry: 20.2%
services: 77.3% (2005 est.)

Unemployment Rate

4.3% (2009 est.)
3.4% (2008 est.)

GDP (USD Parity)

$197.5 billion (2009 est.)
$207.3 billion (2008 est.)
$209.1 billion (2007 est.)
note: data are in 2009 US dollars

GDP Per Capita

$35,900 (2009 est.)
$37,800 (2008 est.)
$38,200 (2007 est.)
note: data are in 2009 US dollars

Family Income Percent

lowest 10%: 1.9%
highest 10%: 28.7% (2007)

Family Income Gini

29 (2007)
24.7 (1992)

Below Poverty

12.1% (2007)