Places to Visit for Norse History & Culture

Hopefully you’ve enjoyed this Norsevember event – maybe you’ve learnt something new or even developed a brand new interest in all things Norse.

Books are great (obviously) but what is also incomparable is getting a flavour of something up close or experiencing something yourself, if you are able to.

For this reason, I’ve compiled a list of places you can visit or things you can do, to bring you that little bit closer to the Norse world in some way or another. For the most part, I’ve copied the description of each place from the tour guide or website, which will give you a better idea than my own words seeing as I haven’t been to most of these places.

I hope you enjoy the post.

Skål!


Jorvik Viking Centre – York, UK

Discover the Original Viking Encounter at JORVIK Viking Centre!

With an updated ride experience and state-of-the art galleries showcasing our unique collection of 1,000-year-old artefacts, visit JORVIK Viking Centre to discover York’s fascinating Viking legacy.

Discover Coppergate

At JORVIK Viking Centre you are standing on the site which revealed some of the most astounding discoveries in modern archaeology. Your first experience at JORVIK is an exploration of the Coppergate Dig, with a fully immersive display taking you back to the 1970s.

Explore the Viking-Age City

Travel around 10th century York, experiencing what it was like living in the city. The sights, sounds and even the smells of the Viking-Age are brought vividly back to life as you journey back 1,000 years.

Experience the Real Thing

Get up-close with some of the most beautiful and rare Viking artefacts in the world, from delicate earrings and socks to frying pans and padlocks and even a fossilised Viking poo!

Dig deeper into the Viking story of York using the latest in cutting-edge technology located throughout the centre and the opportunity to handle real artefacts whilst talking to our friendly Viking hosts.

The Viking Ship Museum & The Historical Museum – Olso, Norway

Two museums from the Museum of Cultural history in Oslo, The Viking Ship Museum features “The world’s best preserved viking ships! The Oseberg, Gokstad and Tune ships were originally ocean-going vessels before they were hauled ashore to be used in burial rituals for their rich owners. Study the ships and the Viking treasures up close!”

The historical museum meanwhile features “Norway’s largest collection of historical artifacts, housed in our beautiful Art Nouveau building. Visit the country’s oldest skull, exquisite Viking treasures…” Plus many non-viking exhibitions.


Birka the Viking City Museum – Stockholm, Sweden

“You can almost touch history in our Viking museum. In our exhibition you can see ancient wooden objects from the archaeological excavations and exciting maps as well as a lost rune stone that was recently found.

In the museum’s permanent exhibition you find detailed models that show how life might have been like for the inhabitants of Birka in the Viking Age. You can also watch archaeological finds and replicas from Birka’s many excavations.”


The Viking Ship Museum – Roskilde, Denmark

“The Viking Ship Museum in Roskilde is the Danish museum for ships, seafaring and boatbuilding culture in ancient and medieval times.

The Viking Ship Hall, the oldest part of the museum, was opened in 1969. It was designed as a large showcase to display the five Viking ships found at Skuldelev. The hall also houses special temporary exhibitions and a cinema, where a film about the excavation of the ships is shown.


The Settlement Exhibition – Reykjavik, Iceland

Perhaps a smaller exhibition than some of the features on the list, but no less interesting, The Settlement Exhibition displays the remains of Iceland’s first known Viking settlement set in its original location in Reykjavik.

Visitors to the Settlement Exhibition can see an array of artefacts excavated at the site as well as the stone foundations of a Viking Longhouse!


Dublinia – Dublin, Republic of Ireland

Dublinia is described as a living viking history, where you can learn about Dublin’s Viking history.

“Walk where Vikings walked before. Travel back to the city in Viking times. See what life was like on-board a Viking warship, see the weaponry and learn the skills of being a Viking warrior. Try on Viking clothes, become a slave and stroll down a noisy street. Visit a smoky and cramped Viking house and learn about the myths and mysteries surrounding the Vikings and their legacy.”


L’Anse aux Meadows – Newfoundland & Labrador, Canada

Yes, there is something for North Americans to see at home on this feature.

The Vikings arrived here in 1000AD and it is the only official and ratified Viking settlement site to visit in North America.

Visitors to L’Anse aux Meadows can tour reconstructions of a trio of reconstructed 11th century wood-framed Viking structures as well as viewing finds from archaeological digs at the interpretative centre.


Jarlshof Prehistoric and Norse Settlement – Shetland, Scotland

Jarlshof has been described as “one of the most remarkable archaeological sites ever excavated in the British Isles.” The Viking ruins there make up the largest such site visible anywhere in Britain and include a longhouse. Excavations here provided numerous tools and a detailed insight into life in Shetland at this time.


Lindisfarne Priory – Northumberland, England

The site of the very first recorded Viking raid in 793, Lindisfarne Priory is a place in which you can stand in the exact spot that Vikings plundered a monastery on the East coast of England. It’s also a picturesque day out.

“Follow in the footsteps of the ancient monks who built their priory here nearly 1,400 years ago, and explore the wild coastal beauty of Holy Island. Visit our fascinating museum and find out about a grisly Viking raid, the cult of St Cuthbert, and the beautiful medieval manuscript: the Lindisfarne Gospels.

The Holy Island of Lindisfarne

Trelleborgen Viking Fortress – Trelleborg, Sweden

The Trelleborgen is the only known Viking ring fortress recreation in all of Sweden. Inside the fortress is a Viking museum, a shop, and even a reconstruction of a 14th century Norse farm.

The fortress reconstruction was completed in 2005 and since then has become a popular travel destination for people who enjoy learning about the Viking lore and history.


Of course, there are so many more amazing places to visit – especially in Scandinavia. Hopefully this gives you some idea about the types of places you can visit in Europe (and beyond

One thought on “Places to Visit for Norse History & Culture

  1. While it isn’t Norse, I live in a small German city which was founded in the 8th century – Christianization of the Saxons started from Fulda by Bonifatius. He went up to the Frisians where he was killed. Interesting times!

    Liked by 1 person

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