Visby Things to Do

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    SHEEP!

    by balhannah Updated Mar 8, 2012

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    Visby
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    Sheep, dead and alive!....

    What I mean by dead is concrete sheep, they are everywhere in Visby!

    A Ram is actually the symbol of Visby, and this is what you will find on their Flag.

    Real Sheep are in the paddocks, and these are known as Gotland sheep. Only a few of the original Short-Tail breed exist, since then, the Sheep have been been bred to produce good meat, milk and wool. Not all the Sheep you see are pure breds, some are half breds. These medium sized sheep are quite friendly by nature.

    Sheep mean a lot to the people of Visby!

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    LITTLE TOURIST TRAIN

    by balhannah Written Mar 8, 2012

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    For all those people that love riding these small trains, and that includes us, there is one at Visby.
    It had just pulled up infront of the Tourist Information Centre which is situated along the Esplanade.
    These are a good way to see the sights, and here where it is hilly, would be very good to save your legs, and to sit back and relax on a wet day.

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    Gotland Art Museum

    by Sjalen Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    This is the museum for Gotland art from the 19th century, and is run by the County museum close by. Tyra Lundgren is perhaps the most famous artist represented, but there is also the couple William Blair-Bruce and Caroline Benedicks who lived just north of Visby. There are also temporary exhibitions such as that on the special artists' light at Fårö and what works that has inspired.

    If art interests you, you should perhaps also pay a visit to Villa Muramaris north of the city (signposted along the main coastal road). Today, it is a well-known restaurant in a garden setting by the sea, but it was built by the artists Johnny and Ellen Roosval. He Sweden's first professor of Art and she a painter and sculptress. The house was finished in 1917 and is built in the style of an Italian villa. I have only passed by myself - would probably have stayed if it would have been dinner time.

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    Länsmuseet Gotlands Fornsal 8000 years of history

    by CharleneP Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    Outside the Museum

    The earliest picture stones were erected some time during the 5th century and the latest during the 12th century. They've got history and items from the Stone Age, the Viking, from medieval times to the present day. I have enjoyed it alot. - NO CAMERA'S INSIDE

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    Medieval City Wall

    by starship Updated Oct 27, 2010

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    Northern section of the city wall

    One of the most historically fascinating sites of Visby is the 2 mile long medieval city wall which encircles the oldest part of the city of Visby. The wall is one of Europe's oldest and is the longest of its kind. The limestone wall was erected in the 13th and is punctuated by as many as 40 towers all of which are intact. Some of the more important towers are the "Powder Tower" and the "Maiden's Tower" ("Jungfrutornet").

    The Maiden's Tower takes its name from the curious legend, but perhaps fact, that the young daughter of a local goldsmith was walled up alive in the tower walls as punishment for betraying the town because of her love for the Danish King Valdemar Atterdag!

    The wall is punctuated by a few draw gates, but I could not find the names of these gates. Although two sections of the wall appear to have been breached during assaults, and portions of the wall have been re-built, the wall remains in magnificent condition for its age. Preservation of the wall is an on-going effort.

    There is no doubt that the city wall provided residents inside a mighty fortification against invaders and attackers and street plans inside the wall (also originating in the 13th century) were modeled on early Viking settlements. No streets inside the walls followed straight lines. Curving and twisting streets were meant to baffle any intruder who did make it inside the walls by ensnaring him in a labyrinth.

    The phenomenal city wall contributed greatly to the city's designation as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

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    Klinttorget

    by Sjalen Updated Aug 13, 2007

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    Mini fire station
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    A tiny square in the hilly parts of town, this is the area where Visby's poor lived which is why the cottages are all very tiny and cute. These days they cost a fortune and are mainly summerhouses for wealthy mainlanders :( You reach the square by walking inside the walls to the north from the Österport gate and apart from nice cottages you will find Visby's old fire station which is yet another small affair. With all the wooden cottages and with houses painted with tar to keep them sound, there were probably quite a few fires. The old city whipping post is also in the square since it was suitable with all the "rabble" living in these quarters. A nice thing to do is to walk on to the cathedral hill from here (see general tip).

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    Högklint views

    by Sjalen Updated Aug 13, 2007

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    H��gklint from below
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    Whatever you do, try not to miss this wonderful viewpoint five kilometres south of Visby. You can climb it, but personally I love staying on the beach at Fridhem below it and just marvel. Fridhem is also a great place for a coffee (see tip). Hög(e)klint is not even 100 metres high but looking at it from down the beach it looks higher and the setting makes it spectacular. You find a parking place by the top of it, but you can also approach it from the houses below to the north where there are steps and a footpath to take you through what is actually a nature reserve. Both on the way there and at the top you have excellent views back towards Visby in the distance and on the top you will also find stairs to the base of the cliff, although it was far too windy at my visit for me to dare climbing those safely. You can see many more images of wonderful Högklint on my Kneippbyn page since VT doesn't have a separate entry for it and it is quite close to the family park.

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    Visby Cathedral

    by Sjalen Updated Aug 13, 2007

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    Sankta Maria, or St Mary's in English, is the proper name of Visby's cathedral and it was built by means collected from trade by the Germans in the 12th century. It was finished in 1225 and quickly became the German church in the city, looking quite Rheinlandish in its architecture which inspired church architecture all over Gotland. In the 14th and 15th centuries it was extended and began to look more like the grand structure you see today and, amongst other things, it got a huge loft which has been used for storage for generations. In 1525 it was the only one of Visby's churches not to be abandoned during the Lübecker sacking of the city. 1572, after the Reformation, St Maria was therefore made the main Visby church and given cathedral status. The cathedral is one of the first buildings you notice when sailing to Visby and you see it from many parts of the city. There are often concerts in it on summer evenings. Thoughts now include using the loft as a cathedral museum but nothing has been decided yet.

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    Högklint

    by MikeAtSea Written Aug 12, 2007

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    H��gklint
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    To enjoy sweeping views over the town of Visby and the rugged coastline one needs to travel a few kilometers south of Visby. At Högklint one can enjoy a stunning view point of the coast of Gotland and the Baltic Sea right below.

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    The Conference Centre

    by MikeAtSea Written Aug 11, 2007

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    The Conference Centre
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    Visby recently opened a new modern conference centre. The idea is to attract more visitors outside the high season months of June to August and have events and conferences bring more tourists to the island. The modern conference centre is close to the sea promenade.

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    Sheep Barriers

    by MikeAtSea Written Aug 11, 2007

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    Sheep Barriers
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    Quiet an unusual traffic barrier one can find right across the entire old town of Visby. The island is home to some 57.000 inhabitants and according to my guide also home to 57.000 sheep. Hence it makes sense to have sheep stop the traffic entering the old city!

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    Speakers Corner

    by MikeAtSea Written Aug 11, 2007

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    Speakers Corner
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    This corner becomes "Speakers Corner" every year during the first week of July. Instigated by the former Prime Minister of Sweden Olaf Palme who spent his annual vacations always on the island of Gotland. The tradition lives on and members of different political parties gather here to discuss politics with the Swedish people.

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    Almedalen

    by MikeAtSea Written Aug 11, 2007

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    Almedalen
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    If one stands here today looking at this beautiful park with a pond in the centre one could not imagine that this used to be the main port during the medieval times. During the 12th and 13th century ships offloaded here the goods, but already in the 14th century the port closed because of mud and could not be used anymore since ships also needed deeper water to sail. Hence the port was moved to its current location.

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    Viking House

    by MikeAtSea Written Aug 11, 2007

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    Viking House
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    This is the only remaining house built according to the viking tradition. The houses were easy assembled since they could be taken apart and built up somewhere else again, since the vikings were always on the move conquering parts of Scandinavia and other parts of Europe.

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    The Botanical Gardens

    by MikeAtSea Written Aug 11, 2007

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    The Botanical Gardens
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    The Botanical Gardens of Visby date back to 1855. They are arguably the most unusual botanical gardens. Besides roses and medieval ruins they contain mulberries, figs, walnuts, plane trees, handkerchief trees and more.

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