Gamla Stan, Stockholm
Gamla Stan, Stockholm

Archaeological Tours

Scandinavia: Norse Gods & Viking Warriors

This tour places the Viking Age in the wider context of European history, and in Scandinavian history from the Bronze Age to today. The coastline of Scandinavia has seen much change and it has played a significant role in the region’s past. Stone Age hunters first walked to Scandinavia from southern Europe during warm epochs, but, with the retreating of glaciers and ice sheets came the rising of sea-levels and the Mesolithic culture, abound with ritualism, animalism and shamanism. With the adoption of agriculture, metalworking spread to Scandinavia and distinct local cultural traditions once again took over.

But the most famous of all of Scandinavia’s cultures is arguably that of the Vikings; whose seafaring warriors dominated warfare and trade for three centuries, and whose influence and invasion attempts spread throughout Europe to North America. Stand where Beowulf wrestled with the monster Grendel and where the heroes of Hrolf Kraki made their famed last stand against the hordes conjured up by the jealous god Odin. Through the archaeological sites, objects and landscapes, Norse gods and Viking warriors will once again come alive on this unforgettable adventure.

What's included?

  •  Expert scholar & tour manager
  •  Accommodation
  •  Local transport & private transfer to/from airport and group hotel
  •  Entries & tips
  •  Meals - as per the itinerary
  •  Ferry
  •  Flights (excluding airfare from the US)
  •  Four lectures from your expert scholar
  •  A name badge, luggage strap and bag tag
  •  A study guide, reading list, and other useful tour documentation compiled by your expert scholar and your Archaeological Tours team

Full Price
$12,050

Today's Price
$11,850

Saving
$200

Deposit: $1,250 Single supplement: $2,500

Tour highlights:

  • In Stockholm, stand before the mighty Vasa warship which sunk on its maiden voyage at the city’s fantastic Vasamuséet
  • Gaze upon the naturally mummified bog bodies of Huldremose Women and Grauballe Man on display at Moesgaard Museum - among the most spectacular discoveries from Denmark’s prehistory
  • Travel back in time to the age of the Vikings at the UNESCO-listed ancient city of Birka, just a boat ride away from vibrant Stockholm
  • Discover the folklore, traditions, and stories in and around magnificent Scandinavia
  • Travel from Sweden to Denmark via the architectural marvel that is the Öresund bridge, an experience for any visitor

Tour details

Dates July 6 2020 - July 21 2020
Duration 16 days
Cost
Full Price
$12,050
Today's Price
$11,850
Saving
$200
Deposit: $1,250 Single supplement: $2,500 Balance due by April 13 2020
Activity Level
Tour code A20VIK

Book Now or call 866-740-5130 if you have any questions

July 6 2020: Itinerary

We arrive in Stockholm, the dynamic capital city of Sweden. Known as the city of 10,000 islands, it is the most populous of the Nordic capitals. An evening lecture and dinner awaits us.

Meals include: Dinner

Hotel: Nobis Hotel, Stockholm

Our tour begins at the Historiska Muséet (The Museum of National Antiquities), which has an excellent Viking gallery and an impressive gold room. We then continue to the Vasamuséet, home to the Vasa warship, which was built in 1628 and sunk on its maiden voyage. After lunch, we walk through the old town (Gamla Stan), which is comprised of the original site of Stockholm, its law courts, and the Swedish Parliament buildings. Strolling along cobblestone streets, we stop to visit the Great Church, which is used for royal weddings and coronations; the Great Square, scene of the “Stockholm Bloodbath”; the Cathedral, and other historic buildings.

Meals include: Breakfast, Lunch

Hotel: Nobis Hotel, Stockholm

We venture out of the capital city today and drive to Uppsala. We visit Valsgärde, an Iron Age funerary site, where traces of about 80 graves can be seen as mounds or oblong depressions. These are the remains of chamber tombs, cist tombs, cremation burials, and boat burials. Next, we move to Gamla Uppsala in order to visit three huge royal burial mounds that legend attributes to kings Aun, Egil and Adlis. The beautiful Gamla Uppsala kyrka (church) stands over the site of a great temple, where it is believed that sacrifices to the Norse gods Thor, Frey, and Odin took place. Legend and history intertwine as we visit tinghög (parliament hill) and the Gamla Uppsala Historical Center, which displays the artifacts from the excavated mounds. We also visit Domkyrkan, Sweden’s largest cathedral, and the manuscript room of the University Library. We return to Stockholm via Sigtuna, home to Sweden’s oldest street with the ruins of two 12th century churches and several rune stones.

Meals include: Breakfast, Lunch

Hotel: Nobis Hotel, Stockholm

Today, we take a boat to the island of Björkö (meaning ‘Birch Island’) to explore the UNESCO-listed Viking town of Birka. Founded in the year 750, it benefited from its strategic location and became an important Viking trading center until 975, when Gotland and Sigtuna took over the Russia-Byzantine trade. A silver ring from a Viking-era grave in Birka is the first with Arabic inscription from that era to be found in Scandinavia’s center. 700 people lived at Birka when it was at its largest, and 3,000 graves have been found.

Meals include: Breakfast, Lunch

Hotel: Nobis Hotel, Stockholm

This morning, we view the Ramsund carvings that depict several sagas about Sigurd, and we also visit Anundshög, the largest royal burial mound in Sweden where standing stones are arranged to represent two ships and a rune stone. This afternoon, we visit the fairytale like castle of Gripsholm before returning to Stockholm.

Meals include: Breakfast, Lunch

Hotel: Nobis Hotel, Stockholm

An early morning ferry brings us to the ancient Baltic island of Gotland. We spend our day exploring the medieval walled town of Visby, its historic buildings and the fabulous Gotlands Fornsal Museum. Most notable among the museum’s collections are the Hall of Picture Stones with displays of large keyhole-shaped stones richly decorated in runic inscriptions, people, animals and ships, and the Viking Treasury. This collection includes a hoard of unique gold and silver treasures brought from as far away as Central Asia and Persia.

Meals include: Breakfast, Lunch

Hotel: Värdshuset Lindgården, Visby

This morning, we explore the excavations at Frojel and the Frojel Church. A cluster of buildings surrounded the harbor with its jetties, and in the small houses the craftsmen produced their wares, including imported goods such as wine and salt from southern Europe, precious metals from Arabia, and amber from Poland and the Baltic states. The archaeological excavations at the site are among the most extensive that have been carried out on a Viking harbor and trading place. Inside Frojel Church, we see several frescoes dating from the early 14th century, that depict dragons, deer, lions and griffins, as well as an angel and a bishop. Our afternoon is at leisure, so why not unwind with a ‘fika’ (a traditional Swedish coffee) or one of Gotland’s specialty saffranspannkaka, a saffron pancake with red berries and cream.

Meals include: Breakfast

Hotel: Kalk Hotel, Visby

Today, we fly back to the mainland and move on to Copenhagen. We stop in Lund to see its cathedral, a masterpiece of Romanesque architecture. Later, we take the Öresund bridge into Denmark and arrive in Copenhagen.

Meals include: Breakfast, Dinner

Hotel: Copenhagen Admiral Hotel

The National Museum awaits this morning, displaying material that covers Danish prehistory, including the fascinating Mesolithic Period, the Gundestrup cauldron, the Trundholm chariot and a series of Bronze Age coffined burials, as well as collections of Near Eastern and Classical antiquities. Its ethnographic galleries of non-European cultures are among the most important in the world.

Meals include: Breakfast

Hotel: Copenhagen Admiral Hotel

Our first stop today will be the fabulous royal chapels in Roskilde Domkirke, the burial place of Denmark’s kings and queens. We then continue to the Viking Ship Museum, which houses five wonderfully preserved ships excavated from the Roskilde fjord. Before returning to Copenhagen, we visit Gammel Lejre to see the excavations of a Viking ship burial. To end the day, we visit the huge Trelleborg Fort, one of seven Viking ring castles, before checking into our hotel.

All meals included

Hotel: Vilcon Hotel & Konferencegaard, Slagelse

Today, we begin our journey to Aarhus, one of the oldest cities in Northern Europe. We stop en route at Trelleborg for the Viking Festival and Odense for a walking tour. Our next stop is Jelling, the 10th century royal seat chosen by Viking Kings, Gorm the Old and his son, Harald Bluetooth. Their burial mounds and two rune stones, known as the Jelling stones, are still visible.

Meals include: Breakfast, Lunch

Hotel: Hotel Royal Aarhus

A tour of the city of Aarhus today includes the cathedral and the Viking Museum, which is housed in the basement of a bank. We also visit the cathedral and the historic park of Den Gamle By. We then depart for the Silkeborg Museum, which houses the famous Tollund Man. This afternoon, we travel back to Copenhagen.

Meals include: Breakfast

Hotel: Copenhagen Admiral Hotel

After a morning to relax and explore the city on our own, we transfer to the pier and board an overnight ferry to Oslo.

Meals include: Breakfast, Lunch

Hotel: Northlink Sea Ferry

Our touring today in Oslo will begin at the Kulturhistorisk Museum (cultural history museum), which houses amid its Viking and early medieval wing several magnificent Stave Church portals decorated with fantastical dragons and beasts. We will spend the afternoon walking in the city center, noting several important landmarks including the cathedral, Stortinget (parliament), and the Rathaus, decorated with scenes from Norse mythology.

Meals include: Breakfast, Lunch

Hotel: Grand Hotel Oslo

Today, we will visit the Bygdøy peninsula as well as four incredible museums. We will begin at the Vikingskipshuset, specially constructed to house three 9th century Viking ships excavated from burial mounds. The clay soil of these mounds is responsible for their excellent state of preservation. At the Frammuseet, we will see the Fram (the ship that carried Roald Amundsen to the South Pole) and, at the Kon-Tiki Museet, we see Thor Heyerdahl’s famous ship, a particular treat for those of us who have visited Easter Island. There is a fine Stave Church in the Folk Museum as well as a huge ethnographic collection. This evening, we will meet for our farewell dinner at one of Oslo’s fine restaurants.

All meals included

Hotel: Grand Hotel Oslo

Today we depart for the airport and catch our return flights home.

Meals include: Breakfast

July 6 2020: Additional Info

July 6 2020: Accommodation

Nobis Hotel is housed in 2 stylish 19th-century buildings on Norrmalmstorg Square, in the middle of Stockholm’s main shopping district. It offers luxurious rooms with free WiFi access.

All air conditioned rooms at Nobis feature modern décor, flat-screen cable TVs with CD/DVD players and marble bathrooms.

Restaurant Noi serves modern dishes with influences from all over Europe in an elegant setting designed by Wingårdhs architects. Traditional, rustic Italian dishes are served in the Bistro. The Gold Bar is decorated entirely in golden mirrors and serves a variety of classic as well as new and innovative cocktails.

This hotel is located within the medieval city walls of Visby and offers free WiFi access and an on-site restaurant. Almedalen Park is 150 yards away.

Guest rooms at Värdshuset Lindgården have a private entrance and views of the town or garden. Each room includes a flat-screen TV, desk and a private bathroom with a shower, hairdryer and free toiletries.

The restaurant serves traditional Swedish dishes and has a large selection of wines. Outdoor serving in the garden is possible in nice weather. During summer, live music events are arranged.

Lindgården is located on Strandgatan Street, which offers several cafés, bars and restaurants. Kallbadhuset Beach is a 2-minute walk away.

Overlooking Almedalen Park and the Baltic Sea, this design hotel is located in Visby’s medieval town centre. It offers a rooftop terrace and rooms with flat-screen TVs and free WiFi.

All soundproofed guest rooms at Kalk Hotel (previously Hotell Strandporten) have modern décor and include an iPod docking station and a refrigerator. Many guest rooms have large windows or balconies with views of the park, the sea or the medieval houses and alleys of Visby.

The breakfast room at Kalk Hotel (previously Hotell Strandporten) has a high ceiling and chandeliers, which creates a charming atmosphere. The O’Learys Sports Bar & Restaurant is housed in the same building and serves traditional pub dishes.

Kalk Hotel is only a few minutes’ walk from attractions such as the medieval City Wall and the Gotland Museum. The Visby Cathedral is 550 yards away.

Set in a heritage-listed 1780s building, this waterfront hotel is next to Amalienborg Royal Palace and opposite Copenhagen Opera House. It offers a gourmet restaurant, breakfast buffet with organic foods, plus in-room tea/coffee facilities.

Two hundred-year-old Pomeranian pine beams, brickwork and archways add a distinct charm to Copenhagen Admiral. Most rooms include exposed wooden beams in their design. All rooms have a seating area, minibar and multi-channel TV.

The gourmet restaurant, Salt, serves innovative dishes made with traditional and contemporary Danish culinary techniques on its a la carte menu. Creative cocktail combinations are crafted at Salt bar along with a menu of light snacks. During the summertime, patio dining is available and offers views of the harbor and the hotel's 3 vintage schooner ships.

Vilcon Hotel & Konferencegaard is conveniently situated amid beautiful rural surroundings and offers tranquil views of the surrounding woodlands and fields.

Vilcon Hotel & Konferencegaard is located on a typically Danish old farm, now transformed into a charming hotel and conference center. A seasonal menu can be enjoyed in the hotel restaurant.

All the external buildings have been reconstructed to modern standards while maintaining the historic charm of the original farm.

This luxury hotel is set in an elegant, Neoclassical building built in 1838. It offers a casino. ARoS Art Museum is 15 minutes’ walk away.

Hotel Royal’s impressive interior features stained glass windows, 300 art pieces and glass chandeliers. All rooms have antique furniture, a flat-screen TV and tea/coffee facilities.

Breakfast is available every day. Royal Hotel is 350 yards from Skolebakken Train Station and Aarhus Harbour.

 All accommodation on board NorthLink Ferries ships have been built with your comfort in mind. Cabins are modern, clean and fully equipped with en-suite washbasin, toilet and shower facilities. All cabins are now equipped with an individual temperature control and tea & coffee-making facilities.

Opened in 1874, Grand Hotel is located in Oslo’s city center, only 550 yards from the Royal Palace. Karl Johan high street and luxury boutiques are within a few minutes walk of the hotel. Guests enjoy free access to the WiFi.

The individually designed guest rooms of Hotel Grand include a flat-screen TV. Many offer views of the quiet courtyard or Oslo’s main street, Karl Johans Gate.

Eight is Grand Hotel's rooftop bar with panoramic views and an on-site restaurant. Guests can enjoy free access to Artesia spa on weekdays, provided there is free capacity.

July 6 2020: Enquiries

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