Centrally located on the mainland of Denmark, Billund is perhaps most famous as the birthplace of LEGO...
... and the home of the original LEGOLAND park theme park. But there's more to the city than plastic bricks and pirate ships. Take a road trip out of town to discover the bleak beauty of the Jutland peninsula, with its powdery sand beaches, vibrant port towns and ancient heathlands, and return home telling tales of Viking rune-stones, ancient kings and fascinating wartime history.
Arriving at Billund Airport
Billund International Airport is the second largest in Denmark and serves a wide range of domestic and international routes. With only one terminal, the airport is relatively easy to navigate, and the public transport connections are good too. Buses run from outside the terminal to train stations in Vejle, Give, Esbjerg, Skanderborg and Aarhus – and of course to Billund itself, which is only a few kilometres away.
Onward travel is even easier between June and August, when a free shuttle bus runs regularly between the airport, the city centre and Billund’s main attractions. LEGOLAND is also served by route 384, which leaves the airport every hour on the hour and stops at the LEGOLAND Holiday Village and Hotel LEGOLAND, before continuing to the city centre.
Outside of peak season, many visitors opt to hire a car, and there are a number of international agencies stationed at the airport, including Avis, Budget, Hertz, Europcar, and Sixt. Taxis are also readily available outside the terminal building, but this is Denmark, so be prepared for high prices.
No visit to Billund is complete without a trip to LEGOLAND, the theme park that made the town famous. A staggering 65 million tiny bricks were used to build this miniature world, whose attractions include LEGO replicas of the Statue of Liberty, Egypt's Abu Simbel temples and Copenhagen’s intricate Nyhavn Harbour. There are nine lands to discover, plus the innovative LEGO House, packed with interactive experiences and jaw-dropping models by master builders.
The Company Town Route
Follow this leisurely walking trail – marked with brightly-coloured tiles – and you’ll gain an insight into the cultural history of Billund and its transformation from a tiny heathland village into a high-tech hub. There are nine information stands and the route passes several landmarks which showcase the development of the town, including Billund Heating Plant and Løvehuset (the Lion's House), built by LEGO founder Ole Kirk Kristiansen in 1924. The route also runs through Billund's beautiful Sculpture Park.
A 50-minute drive from Billund will bring you to Denmark’s oldest town. It's full of crooked cottages and winding cobbled streets, and acts as a gateway to the wild and beautiful Wadden Sea National Park, the world's largest unbroken system of intertidal sand and mud flats. The area is famed for its huge array of birdlife, as well as its colony of grey seals and harbor porpoises. For lunch, try Restaurant Vægterkælderen, which serves up Danish classics such as pickled herring.
Billund is in the heart of Viking land, and there are few better ways to get an insight into the period than by visiting the spectacular standing stones at Royal Jelling. Dating from the 10th century, they were raised by the Viking king Gorm and his son Harald Bluetooth to celebrate the conquest of Norway and Denmark. There’s a depiction of Christ on one of the stones that appears on all Danish passports. You’ll also find a magnificent late medieval church nearby, plus a huge museum and visitor centre.
This zoo and safari park is just a 25-minute drive from Billund. If you have a private vehicle you can self-drive through its huge open enclosures, enjoying close-up views of African savannah species including rhinos, antelopes, giraffes and zebras. The pride of lions that roams these fields is the largest in Northern Europe. No car? Just hop aboard the safari bus for a guided tour of the grounds.