Travels with V

Bornholm

Island in the sun (continued)

The landscape on Bornholm is varied and rich, and there are some fine forests here with exotic and domestic trees. In springtime the forest grounds are covered with light green garlic-smelling ramson .

An iconic attraction is the old fortress of Hamershus near the island’s northern tip (pic on top of this page). It was built in the 13th century in times of conflict between the king and the church, the bishop of Lund was in reality the ruler of Bornholm at this time. But from the end of the 17th century the castle was used as a free-for-all stone deposit so now only ruins are left standing.

Not far away from Hammershus is the  Nordboholm nature park, with two lakes, Opalsøen and Hammer Sø. They are actually old stone quarrys and cliffs with vertical slopes surround them. This is a perfect spot for rappelling, which we tried. In later years a zipline letting brave guests fly over the lake has been built here.

In the video above, that we have borrowed from the Danish Camping Union you can actually see me taking some photo shots on the ground as V is rappelling down.

This was not my only adventure, I also had to act bullfighter when a Highland cattle cow suddenly came rushing for me. I don’t know why but she suddenly gave me a blow with her impressive horns!

This happened in another forest area, the Almindingen. Here you can go by horse and carriage through the beautiful forest, visiting different sites such as Rytterknægten, a tall lookout tower, Ekko valley and Rokkestenen, a big stone boulder that many have tried to move, but very few have succeded. 

In another forest called Döndalen you’ll find the tallest waterfall in Denmark. Just twenty meters high, but still… 

Bornholm is blessed with some very unusual circular churches. They are called “rundkirke” and there are four of them, Österlars being the largest. It is commony believed that the circular form is a parallell to the round chapel at the Holy Tomb in Jerusalem. Since they were constructed in the very early middle ages it’s believed that the idea for this form was brought back home by nordic crusaders.

ÖSTERLARS ROUND CHURCH
INSIDE ÖSTERLARS ROUND CHURCH

Bornholm has been compared to Skagen (north Jutland) in terms of that attractive northern light so popular with painters. In fact one of the leading Skagen painters, Michael Ancker, was born on Bornholm and often returned to the island. And in the airy Bornholm Art Museum you can see works of artists from the island, both from classical and modern periods.

Turists come to Bornholm mostly from Germany and Denmark. Not so many from Sweden, for som reason. But the island is a great place to visit and hopefully soon this destination will become an attraction for travelers from both near and afar!

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