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What was your original face?

Gotland 5 Oct 2006

Gotland Posted on Thu, November 16, 2006 13:59:17

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The weather! On all our days we had everything from rain & thunder to sunshine. This is from a hill outside Katthammarsvik.

We were on our way to Trullhalsar (Anga), an area with about 350 graves and several stone circles (according to the book).

After some messing around on small roads we found it:

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It’s a secluded spot. 2,5 kilometers from the nearest farm in fairly dense woods.

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The first glimpse of a stone circle.

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One of the stone circles.

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A single stone.

Blog ImageOk, one more circle …

Then we went to Roma kloster, the only tourist attraction that still had a shop open. The cloister ruins were nice, but here’s a picture from down a road there:

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We visited more sites, among them another viking-age settlement, Fjäle ödegård (Ala), that is highly recommended.

Since there are 350 stone ship-settings on Gotland, we have to go again! And I guess we will …

Gotland 4 Oct 2006

Gotland Posted on Thu, November 16, 2006 12:51:26

A few kilometers up the coast from our lodgings were a small group of rauker.Blog Image

On this day there was a fair at Hemse, a fair mix of rubbish and local produce. Lots of people made a welcome change though.

A shop sold paper, books and ammunition (swedish Krut)!

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But, we cannot linger here, there are stones!

First the remains of a viking-age settlement at Vallhagar (Fröjel). 24 remains of houses in an open field. Very nice.

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Burial-mound at Vallhagar.

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Grinding grain.

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The photo above is from the ship at Gnisvärd (Tofta). It’s the largest on Gotland, 47 meters long and 7 meters at the widest. The endstones each about 1,3 meters long. The stones are closed in by fir-plantations.

Next we tried to find the burial-area at Krokstäde (Tofta), and that was not easy. The guidebook said:

Från kustvägen leder en spikrak skiftesväg at Ö förbi Tofta hembygdgård. Efter ytterligare 600m går en skiftesväg rakt åt S. Efter ca 300 m korsas denne av en skogsstig. Följar man stigen ytterligare 300 m åt SO kommer man fram til ett stort gravfält.

We found the hembygdsgård but lost our way on a small road that got smaller and smaller. Luckily we were able to turn and get back.

Several failed attemps later, my wife saw a sign inside a bush (its true!) that said Skjutfelt (eng
Shooting-range). On the map there were a shooting-range close to the
site, so we tried that road. This time the road fit the descriptions in
the book.

All the sites we had seen so far, were well kept and orderly. This was not, there was an overgrown parking lot, and unkept signs. The first pointed to a field with some sheep and a young bull! Lots of stones in heaps spread round under the trees. Further in there was another field (this time only sheep). I found this stone:

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According to the guidebook there should have been a stone circle (domarring) and about ten raised stones, one with cups.

Not well looked after, but plenty of atmosphere. I liked it!

Blog ImageWalking the Trojaborg (labyrinth) at Fröjel.

Then we went to Visby and had pancakes at Strykhjörnet Crêperie & Logi.

One more picture, the sun sets behind the ruins of St:Karins church in Visby.

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Gotland 3 Oct. 2006

Gotland Posted on Thu, November 16, 2006 11:20:09

My wife and I drove across Sweden and took the ferry to Gotland. We had booked a room in Frejs magasin
in Ljugarn on the east side of the island. October is low-season in
Gotland, most things outside Visby is closed, which meant that we went to Visby to eat, and also that we had
most of the sights to ourselves!

Not far from Ljugarn is Gålrum (Alskog) a site with a worn,
viking-age picturestone, six stone ship-settings, one large
bronze-age burial-mound and several other stones. The road goes right
through so it’s not hard to find.

Blog ImageThe largest ship-setting in Gårlum, in the background to the left is the picture-stone (to the right of the tree).

We drove a few minutes further south of Gårlum, and found this:

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There was a 1 kilometer walk through the woods to this ship-setting (the largest of about 5?) and past a large burial-mound.

Then we drove to the southernmost part of Gotland, Sundre. We found a scenic road along the east-coast that went to the cliff Hoburgen, the southernmost point. Here’s a picture of the sea and sky taken from under the cliff:

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But we had more stones on the days list!

Here I am inside the stones at Gunnarve (Fröjel), the most famous of ship-settings in Gotland. Its very close to the road and has fine views over the sea.

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The next were the 4-room ship at Rannarve (Klinte). We had some
problems finding it, but it was more that we prefer finding our own way
than looking for signs (my wife would have put it another way), on the way back we found it was well marked.
You had to drive about 1,2 km on a forest-road to find it.

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This was a very impressive site.

Apart from the large ship, there were one small ship and a small stone-circle. Not far away through the wood there was a bronze-age burial-mound.

Blog ImageThe small ship at Rannarve.