Aalborg, Denmark

Aalborghus is a half-timbered castle built by King Christian III from 1539 to around 1555 initially as a fortification. Soon it became the seat of the king's provincial governors in Northern Jutland, and after the introduction of absolutism, became used by the State County of Northern Jutland for taxes.

A building had pre-existed at the site before Christian III's castle. It stood south of the castle and is mentioned in the first documentation of Aalborghus, dating back to 1340. It was owned by Margrethe I and was the death place of King Hans in 1513 who died in a horse riding accident.

Frederick I had originally intended to destroy the initial building around 1530 and moving to a different site to convert Aalborg's Franciscan monastery into a castle. However he left the decision to his son Christian III, who later decided to demolish the original in 1539 and contracted the royal architect Morten Bussert to build a new fortified castle north of the old site, near the Liim Fjord. A barrier wall was built alongside the fjord, and later in 1633, Christian IV built a north wing facing the port, which was used as a granary for the storage of food supplies such as corn. A western wing was built to the same effect later, holding other supplies such as meats and fish.

The southern facing wing was created between 1808 and 1809 but all that remains today of the original castle is the east wing. Between 1954 and 1964 the old granaries underwent full renovation by the Royal Inspector of Listed Buildings, Leopold Teschl, who converted them into council offices.



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Founded: 1539-1555
Category: Castles and fortifications in Denmark
Historical period: Early Modern Denmark (Denmark)

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User Reviews

KittyWittyBitty (2 years ago)
Beautiful castle by the water with a wonderful courtyard and a little park. Very quiet place despite a pedestrian area right next to it.
Netta E. (2 years ago)
Small place, not a castle I was expecting but probably nice area to be during a hot summer day as public is not welcomed inside.
Mirjam Haasnoot (3 years ago)
Beautiful building. You can only view it from the outside, but if you visit Aalborg you have to walk around this place.
Peter DeBrass (3 years ago)
Very nice park and castle. The prison is quite amazing and super cold in the hot summer months. For some reason all the lights were out inside the prison. The park is really nice and secluded also. Well worth a visit, although read up before you go, as there isn't much information available at the castle itself.
Jennifer Robb (5 years ago)
Not what you might expect from a "castle", but an absolutely gorgeous building nonetheless. We went in the off-season and were only able to explore the outside (including the inner courtyard), but it was well worth the short walk from our hotel. Even without going inside, you can feel the history that exists within this space... Interestingly, they've repurposed some of the space within the building for local businesses, which puts a fascinating historical/modern spin on the entire place. If you're nearby, a quick jaunt around/through the castle won't take more than a few minutes -- well worth the visit for a quick dose of history!
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