May 29 - June 9, 2023
An educational tour designed and organized by Archaeological Legacy Institute (ALI) and our experienced Danish guide, Benedikte Ehlers.
A tour led by Benedikte Ehlers in tandem with archaeologist Dr. Richard Pettigrew.
This 10-day tour circumnavigates Denmark, all the way from Copenhagen into northern Germany and completely around Jutland, to visit the chief Viking sites and interpretive centers. The journey begins in Copenhagen with the National Museum, the best place to explore Danish history and culture. Then we proceed to Roskilde, on the opposite side of the island of Zealand, the historic seat of Danish kings and queens and the location of the Viking Ship Museum, with its permanent exhibit of five original Viking ships.
We remain in the island of Zealand for Day 3 while visiting the Lejre Land of Legends open-air museum and the impressive Trelleborg Viking Fortress constructed by King Harald Bluetooth in AD 980, before we venture all the way to Schleswig, Germany, on Day 4 to see Hedeby, the key Viking trading city that was active throughout the entire Viking Age. Hedeby's location is strategic, as it linked the Baltic Sea trade routes to the North Sea via a short (9-mile) overland portage. Not far away is another one of our stops, the Danevirke, an ancient system of fortifications, dating back at least to the Iron Age, that may have served also as a shipping shortcut between the Baltic and North seas.
After finishing Day 4 on the Danish side of the border, we head out on Day 5 to Ribe, Denmark's oldest town, on the North Sea, where we make a stop at the Ribe Viking Center. Here we have a chance to step inside reconstructed Viking buildings and take part in activities that were familiar to Vikings, such as archery and Viking games. Day 5 ends in Esbjerg, Denmark's main port on the North Sea.
Day 6 focuses on Bork Viking Harbor, a living history complex at a place alongside the huge Ringkøbing Fjord that once launched Viking ships into the North Sea. We end this day with a drive to Struer on Limfjord, the long waterway that connects the Baltic and North seas in North Jutland. From here, on Day 7, we venture off the beaten path to Tømmerby Viking Burial Site, a vast Viking cemetery with many single-stone monuments, before retiring for the night (and the next night!) at Kokkedal Castle in Brovst. This is a real castle dating back to the 14th century, complete with its moat and other original features!
With Kokkedal Castle as our base, we set forth on Day 8 to visit two nearby sites: Lindholm Hills Viking Burial Site and Aggersborg Viking Fortress. Probably all the the Lindholm burials originally were marked by stones, but many of these were removed in the Middle Ages; despite this, many markers remain. Aggersborg is the largest of Denmark's Viking ring castles built by Harald Bluetooth, and actually Denmark's largest archaeological feature overall, with an inner diameter of 240 meters.
On Day 9 we drive southward from Kokkendal Castle on the final leg of our journey to visit two outstanding museums. The Fyrkat Museum features another of Harold Bluetooth's ringforts plus a Viking farmstead. The Viking Museum at Aarhus, in Denmark's second-largest city, is a window onto the town originally founded by the Vikings in exactly the same place where the city stands today. Then, after spending the night at Sophiendal Castle, we make our way back to Copenhagen on Day 10 via the Kongernes Jelling, the Home of Viking Kings, where Harald Bluetooth and his father, Gorm the Old, installed large stones with runic inscriptions. From this place, Gorm and Harald ruled their kingdom. The interpretive center here in 2021 was named the best tourism project in Europe! It's also a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Total Price (double occupancy): $3500 to $4430, depending on the number of participants. Pricing is subject to change and assumes double occupancy; a single lodging fee of $850 will be added.
Registration fee: $2000 to ALI. This amount is included in the total price above. Spots are limited, so register today!
Costs not included: personal travel insurance, airfare to & from Denmark, lunches.
Dates: May 23 - June 3, 2022
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