A few years ago, my mother and I were fortunate to visit Lindholm Høje near Aalborg, Denmark. Aalborg is a city in mid Jutland with a population of approximately 225,000 people. The locals are quite friendly and overall it is a delightful coastal town to visit. Sea breezes and modern amenities abound in this city.
Lindholm Høje has a must-see museum (opened in 1992), with professional-level Iron Age and Viking exhibits throughout the facility. There are fascinating display timelines showing how the burial site fits into the history of the world. It is interesting to see how layers of sand obscured the burial site since 1000 AD; the archaeological excavations revealed an extraordinarily well-preserved cremation gravesite. One of the cut-away dioramas shows a person inserting a long measuring pole through many feet of sand until one of the grave’s stone markers is reached. Other exhibits depict daily life in the village. The museum has superbly reconstructed village activities with models of how crops were sown and harvested. Archaeology provided clues as to types of cereal crops and fish eaten. Evidence of mining was also located. Shells, bone fragments and hunting tools are on display and provide further insights. Large finds of flint are interpreted as offerings to the Viking Gods, and some evidence of human sacrifices was also found. Trading routes are explained, as is the Viking traders’ desire for silver, a precious good. An example of how silver was considered so valuable is shown by a silver mask artifact, likely depicting a Norse God. An ancient Viking King’s mint was located in the area, with examples of the coinage on display.
Outside, one can walk to view the various stone arrays marking the Viking gravesites. There are around 700 gravesites in total. In general, the gravesite stones made in the form of ships and triangles were intended for men, while the circular and oval stones arrays were for women. It was tradition to burn the dead on land and bury their remains. The site is quite large and allows for contemplation of the serious traditions, skills and activities these ancient people enjoyed here at Lindholm Høje. This was an important village site, denoted by the strategic advantage of being at the top of a hill and offering a commanding view of the waters below.
If in the Aalborg area, this is a must-see museum for history fans. For more information and photos, please see the website links below.
Signage is in Danish and English. The artefacts are presented in a respectful manner, paying proper tribute to this sacred Viking burial site. The interior of the museum has low lighting in certain places for exhibit conservation. Children’s activities are available, but do contact the museum prior to visiting for specific details. There were no loud noises or scents that would cause concern for those bothered by such stimuli. A shops sells souvenirs, Viking-themed jewelry, books and more. There is also a wonderful café for refreshment.
Current opening hours
April 1, 2022 - October 31, 2022
Tuesday - Sunday 10 - 17 h.
November 1, 2022 - March 31, 2023
Tuesday - Sunday 10 - 16 h.
Adults: DKK 90
Children ages 17 and under: Free
Students: DKK 75
Groups (min. 15 persons): DKK 75 per person
Tel: +45 9931 7440
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Lynne Christensen is a world traveler who enjoys visiting museums and archives. She grew up roaming around graveyards in Europe with her genealogy-loving parents in search of elusive ancestors. A lifelong learner, she earned both Master of Business Administration and Bachelor of Commerce degrees plus has multiple years of experience in marketing and corporate communications. Her writing is published in numerous magazine articles, case studies, advertisements and technical manuals. Lynne writes the Aunt Edwina series of cozy genealogy mysteries plus the Forever Charles historical time travel romance series. She lives on the West Coast of Canada in a house full of fascinating books. For more information, please visit her website: www.lynnechristensen.com