Not everything is luxury and comfort in the castles.
The visit to the casemates help to have an idea of the soldiers hard life, and the unhealthy conditions they supported day after day.
A statue of Holger Dansk reminds one of the Danish legends involving the castle.
A quick look of Helsingor on our way to the castle and back, revealed a busy harbor, with some preserved buildings, embellishing the face of a town deeply dependent of its main attraction – the castle.
Does it have more? Maybe, but we didn't see it.
The construction of Elsinore Cathedral was finished in 1559. The oldest part dating back to 1200 BC.
Elsinore Cathedral was mainly furnished in the 17th century,and with wood carvings also dated from the 17th century.
In the period of 2000-2001 the church was thoroughly restored.
The chapel is the top point of the visit to the castle.
With its Renaissance decoration it is a festival of colors, in a style looking heavy and dense to my Latin eyes, but all of it is harmonious and respectful.
There are different tickets, according to what you wish to see, but this chapel should be your top priority.
Kronborg Castle is one of the most important Renaissance castles in Northern Europe... William Shakespeare's story of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark, takes place behind the walls of the castle at Elsinore. Kronborg is therefore known throughout much of the world as Hamlet's Castle, and Elsinore as Hamlet's town.
From 1739 until the mid-19th century, Kronborg was used as a slave prison. The inmates were guarded by the soldiers billeted in the Castle. The slaves were male convicts who had been sentenced to work on the Castle's fortifications. The convicts were divided into two categories. Those with minor sentences were categorised as "honest" and were allowed to work outside the Castle walls. Those serving sentences for violence, murder, arson or the like were categorised as "dishonest" and had to serve the full sentence doing hard physical labour inside the Castle ramparts. Otherwise, they served their time under the same conditions: they all had to wear chains and spend nights in cold and damp dungeons.
Kronborg Castle in Elsinore is one of northern Europe's most important Renaissance castles. Known all over the world from Shakespeare's Hamlet, it is also the most famous castle in Denmark and is visited each year by about 200,000 Danes and tourists.
In 1785 Kronborg was transformed into barracks that was why actually it was not kept subjects of furniture there. The museum of the Danish fleet and an exhibition, devoted to Hamlet (photos of actors played this role in various theatrical and film-statements) is opened today in its interiors.
The most beautiful rooms of the castle - the Royal chapel (1582) and the Ballroom, the biggest in Northern Europe (62m in length and 12m in width). Underground soldier's casemates are interesting: conditions of life were horrifying.
The sea museum is located now in the castle, and numerous visitors are still flown down to walk on a rampart and ancient cobblestone roads of the cozy town of Helsingor.
May-September 10.30-17.00. April-October Tuesday-Sunday 11.00-16.00,
November-March Tuesday-Sunday 11.00-15.00.
During last 200 years a lot of tourists visited Kronborg. By the end of the XVIII century there was a freakish garden with avenue and the sham tomb which has received the name of the Tomb of Hamlet.
In 1857 an enterprising local resident who received a sanction "to bring a tomb into accord with the description in the play", after insignificant reconstruction began to show it for money. Though the tomb for a long time was already closed for a review, in many tourist guidebooks "excursions on Hamlet's places" are still offer.
The 180-years tradition is alive till now to play "Hamlet" in the courtyard of Kronborg.
In days of Shakespeare Helsingor was the second city in Denmark. Many even believed, that Helsingor is really the capital of the kingdom. The castle caused special admiration. It was mighty and unapproachable. It protected the rest and well-being of Denmark.
However, Shakespeare admitted discrepancy again, when he had named the castle Helsingor, as the city name, while the castle had another name - Kronborg. Because of it and of some other discrepancies many historians and writers believe, that the writer never was neither in Denmark, nor in Helsingor, nor in Kronborg.
The atmosphere of the castle, owing to Shakespeare, is impregnated by mysticism and secret.
Getting here, you trust in a regal phantom or a demon which wandered along walls of the castle, in searches of revenge for his death.
Hamlet's gloomy and beautiful Castle became well-known owing to a history which happened far behind there - on the Danish peninsula Jutland.
All over the world the castle of Kronborg in Helsingor is considered as the Hamlet's castle. This name is used by Shakespeare in his famous play. Nevertheless, there are no witnesses that Shakespeare happened to be there.
Possibly, hearings about the finishing of construction of a powerful fortress in 1585 reached London, and the great playwright took advantage of it. He also included names of two really existed Danish noblemen, Frederik Rozenkranz and Knud Gildenstern in the play.
The plot about the Danish prince goes back to the Norwegian chronicle of the XII century and before the ingenious creation was described in English plays.
The Royal Quarters
The area of the castle which was used for the royal family and the guests.
The ballroom is a huge room of 62 meters long.
Link to my The Royal Quarters travelogue
Beautiful chapel with breathtaking woodcarvings. A must see while you´re here.
Buy the passe-partout and the chapel visit is included.
Link to my The Royal Chapel travelogue.
Danish Maritime Museum
Inside the Kronborg walls you also find the Danish Maritime Museum, with all kinds of shipmodels and other artifacts of danish shipping through the years.
Nice models. Nice displays.
May to september
-10.30 - 17.00 hrs.
April and October **
-11.00 - 16.00 hrs.
November to march **
-11.00 - 15.00 hrs.
At Easter and autumn school holiday
-11.00 - 16.00 hrs.
** Closed on mondays
Best thing to do is to buy a passe partout for the whole Kronborg Castle and Museums.
Link to my Danish Maritime Museum Travelogue.
The Casemates in the castle are quite dark, so it is not easy to take pictures down there. That´s why I took this one from the Kronborg Castle website.
The Casemates are an underground system of corridors and rooms under the Castle's innermost defences. Many of Kronborg's guests associate the dark, damp rooms first and foremost with the stone figure of the sleeping Holger Danske. But there is more to the history of the Casemates than that.
A very humid place even in this dry summer. You get a bit of idea how soldiers lived during their Kronborg stay. The casemates could have up to 1,000 soldiers and supplies for a six weeks siege.