Lofoten Viking History
When you are traveling to a new place one of the most exciting aspects of your touring is learning about the unique history of that area and how it has continued to impact the area. When it comes to the Lofoten Islands this history is linked to the Vikings.
Few groups in history have had the mystique, allure, and larger than life legendary status as the Vikings. Tales of this group often walk the line between myth and reality, bringing the main historical figures almost to the status of gods. Those that are fascinated by these people are drawn to the lifestyle that they led and the imprint that they left on cultures that can still be seen today. One of these cultures is the Norwegian culture of Lofoten.
If you are visiting the Lofoten Islands you absolutely must take the time to visit the Lofoten Viking Museum and spend some time developing a greater understanding and appreciation for the history and culture of the area. This museum was created out of the home of a Chieftain that was erected in approximately 500 AD.
In 1983 archaeological studies of the area began. Between 1986 and 1989 the research project there discovered the remains of what turned out to be the largest building found to date anywhere in the Viking Realm—both in Norway and other European locations. Deeper research into the area and the building itself revealed that this building was in fact the home of a Chieftain, one of the most powerful to have lived. The building itself was likely erected around 500 AD at a length of 67 meters but was then rebuilt to a length of 83 meters (around 250 feet) at the beginning of the Viking Era.
The research into this area also uncovered a variety of objects from the Viking Era and the Bronze Age. Many of these items can be seen in the exhibitions of the Lofoten Viking Museum.
If you visit the museum you are not just going to wander through halls looking at displays. The museum strives to offer interactive, immersive experiences that bring you back in time to the days of the Vikings so that you can witness how they lived, and try your hand at some of their daily activities.
You can take a horse drawn carriage ride from the main building to the boathouse where you can board a reconstruction of a Viking ship and join the rowing team. You can also visit the domesticated animal exhibition to see the types of animals that were common and beneficial during the Viking times.
If you want to really immerse yourself in the Viking culture, make reservations to be a part of the Viking dinner. Professional guides dressed in historically accurate costuming prepare a traditional meal and offer the alcohol and honey mixture called Mead that was a popular drink in the day. You can also stop into the banquet hall during the peak season (June 15 through August 15) and taste traditional Viking broth and glasses of Mead served in reconstructed Viking serving ware.