Foteviken Viking Reserve
Foteviken Viking Reserve information
If you mourn the passing of big hairy men in longboats, find solace at one of Sweden’s most absorbing attractions, about 700m north of Höllviken. Foteviken Viking Reserve is an evocative ‘living’ reconstruction of a late–Viking Age village. Entry price includes a fantastic one-hour guided tour (Swedish, plus English), departing at 11am, 1pm and 2.30pm. Around 22 authentic reconstructions of houses with reed or turf roofs have been built on the coast, near the site of the Battle of Foteviken (1134). These belong to various tradespeople, like the town’s jarl (commander of the armed forces), juror and scribe; and the chieftain, whose home has wooden floorboards, fleeces and a Battle of Foteviken tapestry. There’s even a shield-lined great hall (the Thinghöll), a lethally powerful war catapult and nifty Viking-made handicrafts to buy. Amazingly, the reserve’s residents live as the Vikings did, eschewing most modern conveniences and adhering to old traditions, laws and religions – even after the last tourist has left. Viking Week is usually held in late June, and culminates in a Viking market, complete with agile warriors in training. There’s a reasonable hostel (33 08 06; cottages per night/week Skr630/3600) just outside the reserve for visitors.