ABOVE: Denmark's only Gothic bridge, from the ruins of the
archbishop's fort at Hammershus.
Bornholm's sights and sites
The easiest way to see the sights on Bornholm is to choose
an itinerary and stop off at everything of interest along the way. Bornholm--the green
guide has a nice selection of do-it-yourself tours, or you can make up your own
itineraries as you go along.
A few of Bornholm's high points include:
Round churches. Bornholm has four round churches
that once served as fortresses when the congregants weren't being born, baptized, or
buried. They're well worth visiting, both for their historical interest and handsome
Å-Kirke. The island's largest church is in Å-ker Parish, which is surrounded
by downtown Åkirkeby. It's an attractive church with a castle-like tower that was clearly
built for defensive purposes, with its narrow windows and massive walls.
Dueodde. The beaches and dunes of southeastern
Bornholm once supplied the white sand for Europe's hourglass industry. The Baltic's
lakelike water (with its low saline content and warm-weather algae) may be disappointing
to ocean surfers, but the beach is lovely and you'll find accommodations and restaurants
nearby. Don't miss the view from the lighthouse.
Hammershus. This fortress is at Bornholm's
northwestern corner, where it defended the island at various times from the mid-13th
Century through the 1600s.
Joboland Braendesgårdshaven. If you're traveling with children,
you'll need to spend half a day at Bornholm's unassuming but pleasant amusement park. (See
photo at top of page.) It has a boating pond, an aerial cable ride, a parent-powered
roller coaster, a challenging hillside playstructure, and plenty of other wholesome
activities for kids and grown-ups. The cafeteria serves better food than you'll get in
most theme parks.
Allinge-Sandvig. The two towns run together, forming the
busiest tourist center outside Rønne. Allinge has
some good restaurants and shops; Sandvig, up the road, has an indoor salt-water swimming
pool with hydraulically generated surf and a view of the Baltic through large windows.
Gudhjem. Fishermen still bring in herring, Baltic
salmon, and other species at Gudjhem, which has been a fishing port since the Middle Ages.
The town was more important in Hanseatic times than it is today, but it's still popular
with visiting artists and fans of Bornholm smoked herring (which got its start in
Rønne. Don't just rush through the capital on
your way from the ferry. It's an appealing town with many shops and several interesting
museums, including Erichsens Gård (shown above). Be sure to visit the Bornholm
Welcome Centre near the ferry terminal to pick up brochures and maps.
Christiansø and Frederiksø. The
"pea islands" lie 20 km (13 miles) off Svaneke, where they've served as
Denmark's easternmost military outposts since 1684. The extensive fortifications and gun
batteries are still there, and you can visit them by taking a passenger ferry from Gudhjem
Bornholm Web links
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