Roskilde was the capital of Denmark until some 600 years ago. Nowadays, it has turned into a pleasant town, a short hop from the modern million-plus capital city Copenhagen. Its main attraction is probably the Domkirke or Cathedral, which has been declared a Unesco World Heritage Site. Construction of this cathedral started in the 12th century, and because of several additions it is a curious mix of several different Danish styles. The cathedral towers imposingly above its immediate surroundings, and since it is built on a hilltop, you can see it also from quite far down below.
Inside the cathedral, the most interesting sights are the St George's clock whose striking of the hour is something not to be missed, the 39 royal tombs that can be found in decorated crypts, and the altarpiece. From here, it is not far to reach the waterfront, where the Vikingship museum is located. Actually, most items of this museum, replica's of Viking ships from many parts around Northern Europe, are outside, including the reconstruction of a Viking longship that was recently launched.
Inside the museum, you can also see ships reconstructed from pieces of wood found in the fjord, and there are explanations of how the wooden boats were constructed with the relatively simple material the Vikings had: how the Vikings turned a tree into a seaworthy boat with which they undertook their daring trips across the cold waters of the North Sea. For me, these places are perfect to let the mind wander, and imagine these seemingly fragile boats loaded with wild Vikings, exploring and conquering.
Around the World in 80 Clicks
Personal travel impressions both in words and images from Roskilde (Denmark). Clicking on the pictures enlarges them and enables you to send the picture as a free e-card or download it for personal use, for instance, on your weblog. Or click on the map above to visit more places close to Roskilde. Read more about this site.