Roskilde

Overview

Introduction

Many know Roskilde—Denmark's first capital—only for the Roskilde Festival, the huge outdoor rock-music festival held there annually the last weekend of June. Check the dates—you'll either want to buy tickets for the show or avoid the town altogether then.

The center of town is dominated by the ornate Roskilde Cathedral, a UNESCO World Heritage site that is the final resting place for Denmark's long line of royalty. Its oldest parts date from the 12th century, and it's well worth a visit. Don't miss the 16th-century clock inside, with St. George and a dragon. Another fascinating visit is the Viking Ship Museum, which has among its 39 boats five restored dragon boats that date from the 11th century.

Additional nearby sights of interest are Lejre, an excavation site in the center of Sjaelland Island, with a 260-ft-/80-m-long Viking burial site shaped like a ship; and Trelleborg, a fortified construction in Sjaelland that probably was a training camp for the king's men before expeditions to the British Isles. http://www.visitroskilde.com.

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