Frilandsmuseet (Open Air Museum)

With recent trips to London and Sweden and one upcoming to Italy, I was planning on finishing up my posts on France so I wouldn’t fall further behind on my travels. Then I discovered that the majority of readers are people living in Denmark (don’t worry, I only know that the IP addresses of the majority of readers are inside of Denmark). Given the title of my blog and readership demographic, I thought I would return to the topic of Denmark for a few posts before returning to my European travels.

I thought I would start with a post on Frilandsmuseet. One of the ironies about living in a given location is that you rarely avail yourself to all of the cultural attractions a place has to offer. One of the great things about having family and friends visit is that they force you (in a good way) to explore places that you otherwise might not visit.  Such was the case with Frilandsmuseet which I visited last fall with my parents.

The Frilandsmuseet is an open-air museum (literal translation) situated in the northern Copenhagen suburb of Lyngby. Opened in 1897, the museum contains over 100 different buildings representing the various architectural styles and materials used throughout Scandinavia and northern Germany between 1650 -1950. Buildings ranging from manor houses to poor houses, barns to windmills and represent Denmark, the Danish island of Bornholm, the Danish protectorates of Greenland and the Faroe Islands, the Swedish regions of Scania and Halland and the northern German region of South Schleswig (formerly under Danish control).

Each building has been carefully dismantled in its original location than reconstructed on over 40 hectares of land surrounded by natural forests and gardens accompanied by livestock, giving the museum a more authentic feel. It is an ideal location for kids to roam for the day but equally interesting for adults, giving you a feel for the architectural evolution and (often harsh) living conditions experienced throughout northern Europe over the past three centuries. And best of all, as part of the Danish National Museum, it’s free courtesy of the Danish taxpayer.

Thatched roofing, typically found on older, rural homes

A traditional half-timbered home. I particularly like the use of pastels in Scandinavia which give vibrant colour to pictures

A traditional half-timbered home. The crooked, gaunt timbers suggests the homeowner was impoverished

The interior of a manor home, with all the luxuries enjoyed by the upper class

Many buildings served as both home and barn, particularly in Jutland and northern Germany

One of the joint house-barns if I remember correctly

Unique half-timber and brickwork design originating from northern Germany if memory serves me correct

Historical home from the Faroe Islands. There was little natural light with the building designed to be protected from the wind

One of several windmills. I believe this is the only building orginating from the site, dating to 1662


About Canadianindenmark

A Canadian expat working in the biotechnology industry in Copenhagen, Denmark
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