St. Nicolai Church dates to the 13th century. Originally built in late Romanesque style and dedicated to the patron saint of merchants and seafarers, the church is the oldest building in the community. Renovations in the 15th century developed the church into a Gothic hall with two transepts and a tower 27.2 m high.
On display in a glass-covered sarcophagus in the northern transept are the remains of the Haraldskær Woman, one of the best conserved of the iron age bog bodies. The southern transept houses the sarcophagi of Kai de la Mare and his wife. The exterior brick wall of the north transept has an interesting feature of 23 spherical indentations approximately 15 cm in diameter, which hold the skulls of 23 robbers who were caught and beheaded in the nearby Nørreskov forest. In front of the church stands a sculpture of the priest Anders Sørensen Vedel.
The church was seriously damaged during the Thirty Years' War by the Catholic troops of Wallenstein. Since that time it has undergone several major restorations: in 1744, 1855-56, 1887-88 and 1964-66.References:
The city walls of Avila were built in the 11th century to protect the citizens from the Moors. They have been well maintained throughout the centuries and are now a major tourist attraction as well as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Visitors can walk around about half of the length of the walls.
The layout of the city is an even quadrilateral with a perimeter of 2,516 m. Its walls, which consist in part of stones already used in earlier constructions, have an average thickness of 3 m. Access to the city is afforded by nine gates of different periods; twin 20 m high towers, linked by a semi-circular arch, flank the oldest ones, Puerta de San Vicente and Puerta del Alcázar.