Boden Fortress

Boden, Sweden

Boden fortress was one of Sweden's largest military building projects of all times. It was built between 1901–1916 against the threat of Russia and consists of several major and minor forts and fortifications surrounding the city of Boden. The fortress was originally intended to stop or delay attacks from the east or coastal assaults, which at the time of construction meant Russian attacks launched from Finland. It was primarily the expansion of the railway net in Norrland, which in turn was a consequence of the rising importance of the northern iron ore fields, that led to the increased strategic value of northern Sweden and the construction of the fortress. Although the main forts were finished in 1908, many of the supporting fortifications were not completed until the start of the First World War. Improvements were also continuously made during, and between, both World Wars.

Boden Fortress is made up of five primary self-supporting forts excavated out of the bedrock in five of the mountains surrounding Boden: Degerberget, Mjösjöberget, Gammelängsberget, Södra Åberget and Rödberget. Eight fortified secondary artillery positions were constructed between the forts to give flanking support and to cover areas not in range of the main forts' artillery. In addition, 40 bunkers for infantry, along with dugouts and other fortifications, were built to cover even more terrain. During the Second World War anti-tank gun emplacements and additional bunkers and shelters were built, and tens of kilometres of dragon's teeth were placed around the fortress and the city itself. Owing to the end of the Cold War and the reduction of the threat from the Soviet Union, Boden Fortress became less important to the defence of Sweden, and began to be decommissioned. The last fort of the complex was decommissioned on 31 December 1998, and is now used as a tourist attraction. All five forts as well as some of the supporting structures have been declared historic buildings, to be preserved for the future, by the Swedish government.

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Address

Avans byaväg, Boden, Sweden
See all sites in Boden

Details

Founded: 1901-1916
Category: Castles and fortifications in Sweden
Historical period: Union with Norway and Modernization (Sweden)

Rating

4.4/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Jani Tolonen (7 months ago)
Absolutely nice piece of Swedish history, recommend it.
Carlos Villalobos (7 months ago)
visited, but required a scheduled tour group to get in. Would have been nice to see the inside.
Rajendra Shah (9 months ago)
Great views historic sights loved it.
Dan Strömberg (11 months ago)
Bikers be aware of the path taking you down from the top, it’s steep with a sharp turn all covered with loose gravel. The site itself is totally underestimated and could do so much more to add value for visitors. The guided tour is 2 hrs and a shorter version for families would be appreciated!
Johan Westling (12 months ago)
One of multiple fortresses purposed to defend Sweden being attached by Russia from the north as late as a couple of decades ago. Massive view over the Boden territory and there are guided tours every hour during summer. Unfortunately we didn't have the time to go for one and therefore we didn't get the opportunity to visit the insides of the fortress which was a shame. Definitely on the to-do list.
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