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Sunday, November 29, 2015

14th Century Monument-Karnan tower, Helsingborg, Sweden!

Karnan is a tower in the heart of Helsingborg city. It is from the medieval times (14th century) and tells lots of stories. Karnan tower is part of a larger fortress, but except fortress entrance and this tower rest of the mighty constructions were destroyed by Danish and Swedish kings over wars

As I walked out of Helsingborg ferry terminal, at Radhuset I was trying to figure out where to head next. As I looked around, I saw this fort entrance and that helped decide which way to turn.


I climbed stairs and went up, I was greeted by a tower, known as Karnan (Literally translates to "The Keep" but means "The Core" or "Central point" in Swedish and Danish languages)

The stairs were inviting and I went inside. Inside I had to buy a ticket. I could either pay 50 SKK that is valid only for this attraction or could pay 120SKK which would be valid for 2 days and for 4 attractions in total. With some thinking I decided to go for 120 SKK pass and I am happy I made that decision. I also got a map of the city and audio guide. Audio guide was Swedish only. Lady at the counter also asked if I am really planning to go to Sofiero- she said it is bit far and closes early. I thanked her for the information.

There is a limitation on how many visitors can go on top at any given point of time, because of narrow staircases and security issues I guess. So if rush is more you will have to wait around the ticket counter (known as Guard floor or first floor) for few of the guests to come down.

I went upstairs on the narrow stairs. Not many visitors were there and a few who were around were extremely polite giving preference to others by giving way. It was difficult to convince the other party to proceed while you are willing to give way. I got "Thank You"s in different languages as I moved to a side and requested them to proceed.

I went to top directly. From the top you will get nice view of Helsingborg town.

 





After spending a few moments on top I went down. There are a couple of floors you can explore a bit. They showcase ancient items used by residents of Karnan and a bit of history of this tower.

Fourth floor of Karnan, which is immediately below the open terrace is an empty hall, was reportedly used for functions.

Third floor has a set of seats- believed to be used by the king when he and his team visited Karnan and some historic information
Second floor, known as Borg floor, has items used by Karnan's staff when it was operational. There are some ancient cloths which visitors are free to try on.

King Eric Menved (1274-1319) was the king who built the original Karnan tower. Original design can be seen in below painting. Helsingborg was part of Denmark back then and it was a vital town because of its proximity to sea trade route.

Chinese checker like game played by residents
Notice the light used to simulate fire.

Information displayed inside Karnan explains how guests were accommodated in medieval age, the concept of toilets, food habits, dress patterns and so on. It was interesting to learn that even in 14th century they had the concept of beds, food preservation through pickling/salting, idea of using pits for toilets and so on.

Overall, it was a very revealing experience visiting Karnan in Helsingborg. Karnan was one of the first key attraction I visited during my Europe visit this year, just that I took some time to compile this post.

Also in HelsingborgEuropeade 2015 * Tropikariet and Madagascar LemursDunkers Culture House *  Sofiero Castle, Garden * 

4 comments :

Velmurugan said...

Nice Pictures with useful information! You showed an another angle

Shrinidhi Hande said...

Thanks Velmurugan

Arun Prasadh said...

Nice pics from the top. I thought the place has got something to do with our Mahabaratha Karnan.

Shrinidhi Hande said...

@Arun- thanks. No it has no connection whatsoever to Mahabharatha