An open air museum is like theatrical incarnation of what life once used to be like, and often the experience is enhanced by the staff dressing and acting in accordance with the era represented. Since Skåne, just like the rest of Sweden, was once home to the notorious Vikings, there are several locations where part of history is re-enacted in ambitious projects such as actual townships, complete with small businesses, cattle and inhabitants dressed in viking gear. If you’re more interested in the medieval times, there are castles and strongholds where knights dressed in medieval attire compete in tournament games and skills of arms. So if you have a flair for the past, just enter the Scanian time machine and buckle up - you are in for a memorable ride!

Kulturen in Lund

Kulturen in Lund

Kulturen is a large open air museum in central Lund. Almost like a small world of its own, it comprises two whole blocks of historical buildings and gardens. Some of these houses are standing on the exact site where they were once built, and around the houses are cobble stone street settings and beautiful gardens. You will find up to twenty different exhibitions here, highlighting everything from art, design, culture and history. The playground features a small water system with an old-fashioned, manual pump that will keep the youngest ones entertained for hours, and there are usually temporary exhibitions aimed especially at kids here. If you get hungry there is a restaurant and a café, and the garden with their well kept lawns are perfect for picnics.

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Foteviken - an authentic Viking settlement

Foteviken - an authentic Viking settlement

At Foteviken you can get a glimpse of what everyday life was like for the notoriously aggressive and horn-clad vikings. Foteviken is an archaeological open-air museum on the Höllviken peninsula in southern Skåne, that contains the reconstruction of a large Viking Age settlement where visitors are invited to participate in live reenactments of history. This is an entire Viking Age town reconstructed using the materials and techniques of the time, as historically correct as possible based on the knowledge and materials available. In other words, this is not a made up town of fake movie backdrops, but a city of real, solid and inhabitable houses, which creates a strong sense of authenticity. In the Viking town you will meet sheep, poultry and horses, often wandering freely in the village, just like they once used to do. In the early 1980s, five sunken viking ships were discovered in the waters just north of where the Viking town now lies. One of them has been recovered and a full scale recreation of the ship is on display at the Foteviken Museum.

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Glimmingehus

Glimmingehus

Are you up for a trip back to the Middle Ages? Glimmingehus, located in eastern Skåne near the small city of Simrishamn, is the best-preserved medieval manor in all of Scandinavia. The origin of this stately fortress dates as far back as the year of 1499, and a visit here will give you fascinating insights in what life at that time was like. The old castle was built to be prepared for battle and features a lot of unique defense elements, such as gaps through which hot tar could be poured over intruders, drawbridges, trenches and other deadly traps. The staff takes ambitious part in making the history come alive - here you can listen to ghost stories in the summertime, you can try your hand at Middle Age-chores, join one of the guided tours or simply relax in the beautiful herb garden.

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Kulturens Östarp

Kulturens Östarp

Kulturens Östarp is an old, preserved farm located 30 km east of Lund, with buildings dating as far back as the 16th century. Here you get a sense of what life in the countryside of Skåne was once like, and the traditional four-winged and lime washed farm induces the feeling that time has stood still. Everything looks the way it always has and today the farm is kept that way as a museum. The garden features the neatly cut boxwood hedges that are so typical for Scanian court yards and if you are bringing children, they will love the fact that the farm is still populated by old native breeds of farm animals such as chickens, cows, goats, horses and pigs. Kulturen’s Östarp is open for visitors all year around, and in the summertime the timber-framed farmstead of Gamlegård is open as well, and hosts in period costume are on site to contribute to the time traveling experience. A restaurant on site serves traditional Scanian food of high quality and the meadows around the farm are perfect for picnics.

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Fredriksdals museer & trädgårdar

Fredriksdals museer & trädgårdar

Fredriksdal, located in the city of Helsingborg, is one of the largest open-air museums in Sweden, and is almost like a historical version of Skåne in miniature. Famous for its vast and diverse gardens, Fredriksdal features everything from botanical gardens with flowers and plants from the region to historical vegetable and herb gardens. Here you will also find historic buildings and whole preserved town quarters complete with cobble stones and old houses. The surrounding meadows and pastures are beautiful with grazing animals of ancient farm breed typical for this region, such as cows, sheep, goats and horses. Permanent as well as temporary exhibitions showcase life and culture through the ages and the old houses present an interesting journey through the different building techniques of history. The crown jewel of Fredriksdal is the ancient rose garden with its spectacular collection. Here you can decant thousands of fragrant beauties, the oldest one having been cultivated as far back as 2000 years ago.

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The steam train in Brösarp

The steam train in Brösarp

In the small village of Brösarp in eastern Skåne you can catch the old preserved steam train, a big favorite among train enthusiasts of all ages. Traveling through the beautiful landscape with its forests and meadows feels a lot like traveling through time, giving a sense of the atmosphere of a small steam-operated railway in the 50’s. There are four stations along the way; Brösarp, Ravlundabro, Vitaby and S:t Olof, all of which are picturesque and quaint little villages well worth a visit. If you catch the train on a Sunday you can book a table in the restaurant car and enjoy a delicious three meal course en route.

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