You can walk around the Viking Village on your own but you will learn and see much more if you join a guided tour. The guide - the Vikings' jarl - seems to know a lot about their way of life and provides a very interesting talk, in Swedish and English.
The tours start at 11 am., 1 pm. and 2.30 pm. The meeting point is by the rune stone near the gate.
Entrance fee: adults - 60 SEK, children aged 6-15 - 25SEK, senior citizens - 50 SEK
includes the guided tour.
Open on weekdays 10 am. to 4 pm., 25 April - 14 October,
daily - 4 June - 25 August
The choice of site of this Viking Village has not been accidental. Archeological excavations suggest that there was a Viking village and harbour there in late Viking (early mediaeval) age. The name of the place contains the syllable 'vi', which denotes a place of great importance: a pagan sacrificial grove or even a small pagan temple or sanctuary, which could have been situated in the area. Some evidence indicates that there could have been the State demesne (royal stronghold), a harbour, a marketplace and even a festivity hall at Hollviken before the year 1134. The present-day Vikings try to recreate such an early mediaeval settlement, showing its architecture, household tools, handicrafts, the clothes and everyday life of its inhabitants. You can also admire two reconstructed Viking ships moored in the harbour.
The last house we visited was the assemly house, a place of meetings of the community and where all things necessary for battle were stored. Colourful shields of various shapes and patterns and animal hides worn by the warriors made an interesting picture, even if it was quite dark inside.
Favorite thing: Although many of the 'Vikings' were no longer there, with the autumn coming and the children back at school, there was a Norwegian mother with two children still living in the village. Bare-footed but obviously happy playing around, the children were waiting for their lunch, I thought, cooking over the open fire. My husband, curious and probably ready for a meal himself, had a look into the pot to see what was cooking. He was greatly disappointed to see nothing but boiling water. Still, the children didn't look famished so their meals were probably cooked somewhere else, at the Viking Restaurant on the site perhaps?