Varberg Fortress

Varberg, Sweden

Varberg Fortress was built in 1287-1300 by count Jacob Nielsen as protection against his Danish king, who had declared him an outlaw after the murder of King Eric V of Denmark. Jacob had close connections with king Eric II of Norway and as a result got substantial Norwegian assistance with the construction. The fortress, as well as half the county, became Norwegian in 1305.

King Eric's grand daughter, Ingeborg Håkansdotter, inherited the area from her father, King Haakon V of Norway. She and her husband, Eric, Duke of Södermanland, established a semi-independent state out of their Norwegian, Swedish and Danish counties until the death of Erik. They spent considerable time at the fortress. Their son, King Magnus IV of Sweden (Magnus VII of Norway), spent much time at the fortress as well.

The fortress was augmented during the late 16th and early 17th century on order by King Christian IV of Denmark. However, after the Treaty of Brömsebro in 1645 the fortress became Swedish. It was used as a military installation until 1830 and as a prison from the end of the 17th Century until 1931.

It is currently used as a museum and bed and breakfast as well as private accommodation. The moat of the fortress is said to be inhabited by a small lake monster. In August 2006, a couple of witnesses claimed to have seen the monster emerge from the dark water and devour a duck. The creature is described as brown, hairless and with a 40 cm long tail.



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Fästningen 9, Varberg, Sweden
See all sites in Varberg


Founded: 1287-1300
Category: Castles and fortifications in Sweden
Historical period: Consolidation (Sweden)


4.4/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Martin Telinius (2 years ago)
Nice place and lots of history. You can stay over night here too in old prison cells and if you don't want the museum you can walk the ramparts for free. For a moderately small fee you can have guided tours with drama and dressed up guides.
Robert Lachmann (2 years ago)
Simply beautiful view down from the castle in the evening. During the summer the swedish people use the area below to BBQ. I was listening/ watching once from the castle on one of these evenings a concert of The Ark - a swedish great band. Great experience. The small city of Varberg was one of the most beautiful cities with very friendly people. The good, old Sweden. My favourite city on the West Coast of Sweden since the East Coast is much quieter and more natural.
Michael Begley (2 years ago)
Well maintained and excellent historical fortress. Well worth a visit.
Najeem Muhammed (2 years ago)
It's a nice walk around the fortress. The view from top was really nice.
Florin Puscasu (3 years ago)
Well preserved amd maintained fortress. A delight walking through. Magnificent view from the walls towards the sea. Save an hour or two to visit the Hallandmuseum inside the fortress. You won't regret it. A place not to be missed and to visit again if you can. We visited it the week before Halloween and were delighted by the display of pumpkins and light and sound decorations / shows.
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