Copenhagen ( /ˈkoʊpənheɪɡən/ or /ˈkoʊpənhɑːɡən/) or København ( ) is the capital of Denmark and its most populous city, with an urban population of 1,213,822 (as of 1 January 2012 (2012 -01-01)) and a metropolitan population of 1,947,944 (as of 1 October 2012 (2012 -10-01)). With the completion of the transnational Øresund Bridge in 2000, Copenhagen has become the centre of the increasingly integrated Øresund Region. Within this region, Copenhagen and the Swedish city of Malmö are growing into a combined metropolitan area. Copenhagen is situated on the islands of Zealand and Amager.
Copenhagen became the capital of Denmark in the beginning of the 15th century, while being documented as such since the 11th century. During the 17th century, under the reign of Christian IV, it became a significant regional centre.
Copenhagen is a major regional center of culture, business, media, and science, as indicated by several international surveys and rankings (see International rankings below). Life science, information technology and shipping are important sectors, and research & development plays a major role in the city's economy. Its strategic location and excellent infrastructure, with the largest airport in Scandinavia, Kastrup, located 14 minutes by train from the city centre, have made it a regional hub and a popular location for regional headquarters and conventions.
Copenhagen has repeatedly been recognized as one of the cities with the best quality of life. It is also considered one of the world's most environmentally friendly cities. The water in the inner harbour is clean and safe for swimming. 36% of all citizens commute to work by bicycle. Every day, they cycle a combined 1.2 million km.
Since the turn of the millennium, Copenhagen has seen a strong urban and cultural development. This is partly due to massive investments in cultural facilities as well as infrastructure and a new wave of successful designers, chefs and architects.