Things we’d love you to know

Specialities & Peculiarities of Bornholm

SPECIALITIES OF A SPECIAL PLACE

Every region in the world has it’s own peculiarities and specialities as a result of the landscape, the history and the people who live there. Bornholm is no different. Depending on who you ask, Bornholm is either called ‘The Pearl of the Baltic Sea’, ‘Sunshine Island’, ‘Garden of Denmark’ and so much more – all of it flattering. The people of Bornholm are also known over Denmark’s borders for their hospitality, friendliness and hard work. 

If you choose Bornholm as the destination for your wedding, you probably might want to know more about the workings of this very special place. Here we try to give a little bit of an insight into what makes Bornholm and its inhabitants so attractive to wedding parties from all over the world.

Bornholmians are Danes by Choice

Scandinavia as a whole has a very turbulent history. Bornholm with its strategic position in the Baltic has an even more tumultuous story. The island, in ancient times known as Burgundaholmr (The island that rises high from the sea), has often been fought over and was throughout history in turns under Danish, Swedish, German and even briefly Soviet Russian rule.

After being ‘won’ by the Swedish in 1658, a subsequent revolt saw the Swedish commander on Bornholm shot and a delegation of Bornholmians travelling before the Danish King Frederick III. There they ‘gifted’ themselves und the island to the Danish kingdom under the condition, that it never should be ceded again.

Denmark and the crown stuck to their promise, but during World War II first the Nazis, followed by the Soviet Army, invaded and occupied the island to make use of its various vantage points and views over the Baltic Sea. Since 1946, it has been free to belong wholeheartedly to Denmark – and itself – again.

The people of Bornholm chose to be citizens of Denmark.

How Many Suns over Gudhjem Can You See?

On an island like Bornholm, fishing obviously has been a major part of the local economy, tradition and history. In recent years, it has taken a backseat to more prosperous businesses like tourism, arts & crafts, agriculture and green tech

Fishing remains however part of the culinary experience of Bornholm and you will still find traditional smokehouses all over the entire island. Bornholm smokehouses supply all of Denmark with their hearty, usually locally caught, produce for the famous ‘Smørrebrød’- delicious open-faced sandwiches that present a feast to the eye and stomach alike. 

One of those sandwiches is the ‘national dish’ of Bornholm called Sol over Gudhjem (Sun over Gudhjem). This particular delicacy consisting of smoked fish, radish, chives and a single egg yolk. You will find it served all over the island. Our smokehouses and caterers would also be delighted to offer it to you and your wedding guests on the banquet.

Sol over Gudhjem (Sun over Gudhjem) is a Danish open-faced sandwich and a speciality from Bornholm.

What is the Story Behind the Round Churches?

Round churches can be found all over the Nordic countries. Yet nowhere is the concentration of these architectural masterpieces of art bigger than on Bornholm. The island boasts entire four round churches on a comparatively small space. All of them have become an attraction among tourists and historians alike.

The design of the perfectly round, whitewashed churches stems all the way back to the 11th and 12th century. When they were built, their function was not only limited to religious purposes. The circular structure made the churches into perfect watch towers and military defence buildings. Rumour has it, the round churches of Bornholm may have been used by the Knights’ Templar as storehouses.

The biggest and most impressive of the round churches can be found in Østerlars, but many agree that Olsker Round Church with its high tower is the most elegant of all churches of its kind. All four of the churches are still in use for Sunday services and other religious events.

There are many Danish round churches on Bornholm.

Is This a Bison Which I See Before Me?

If you should decide upon one of our beautiful forests on Bornholm for your wedding location, especially the woods of Almindingen, you and your wedding congregation might be offered a very special sight. Our local bisons, also called wisents, might want to drop in and try to do a wedding photo bomb.

The presence of these amazing animals in the woods of Bornholm is part of just another sustainability projects on Bornholm. They were brought here from Poland in 2012 to aid biodiversity on the island and keep the woods healthy.

While the bisons have become a major tourism attraction, Natur Bornholm, which looks after the animals, would like to remind everyone that these are wild animals not to be conditioned to humans to ensure their survival. Offering wedding cakes or cuddles is therefore not on the cards and you as well as your wedding party should always keep a respectful distance.

Bisons or wisents graze in Danish wodds on the island of Bornholm to aid biodiversity.

Napoleon Got Married on Bornholm...

No… not really. But he had heard of Bornholm, especially of the beautiful and soft sand of Bornholm’s beautiful Dueodde Beach. According the local folklore, he demanded sand from Dueodde to be brought to him. The reason: he needed it to make his hour glasses run smoothly.

But even though Napoleon did not make it to Bornholm himself, you have the chance and can experience the wonderful white sand of Dueodde Beach first hand – and foot.

By the way: Dueodde is not the only fabulous beach just waiting to host your wedding. Bornholm has a large variety of beaches which all have their own special features. From super-soft sands and rolling dunes to rocky slopes and towering cliffs, you can be sure to find something to suit your own ideas of a beach wedding.

For more information about our beaches, or any other wedding location on Bornholm, please see our blog or contact us on the form below.

 

The sand of Dueodde Beach on the Danish island of Bornholm was used by Napoleon for his hour glasses.

The Rocking Stone on Paradise Hill

Every region has its own legends and the Rocking Stones of Bornholm very much are part of the island’s folklore . As with the churches, there are several rocking stones spread across Bornholm. Despite their size, the stones are very much able to be ‘rocked’. The catch is, you have to find the exact point of where to apply your strength.

The most impressive of the rocking stones on Bornholm can be found in the East of the island on Paradisbakkerne (Paradise Hills). It measures apporximately 4 x 3 x 2 meters and weighs in at 35 ton. Thousands of people try to move it every year – and you as well as your wedding guests are welcome to give it a try.

As the story goes, this particular rocking stone was thrown to its current place by a troll in Sweden who could not stand the sound of his local church bells any longer. He aimed at the church tower, but missed his target and the rock ended up over the sea on the Paradise Hills where you still can see it today. 

All the rocking stones of Bornholm have their own story. If you want to find out more – or consider one of them as your magical wedding location – please contact us on the form below for an non-committal chat about your own and Bornholm’s fairy tales.

The rocking stones (rockestene) on Paradise Hill (Paradisbakkerne) on the Danish island of Bornholm are a speciality of the place.

Bornholm is the World Champion of Sustainability

We can’t mention it often enough, but one of the most remarkable features – of the island and Bornholm’s claim to worldwide fame – is the place’s enormous contribution to sustainability and green technology.

If the future of our planet, climate change as well as a brighter future are important to you, your partner and your wedding guests, then Bornholm is probably the best place to commit yourself to these goals – and each other.

From organic food to renewable energy and sustainable waste disposal to healthy biodiversity measures, Bornholm will have you covered. 

If you wish to know more about, how our wedding planners in Wedding on the Rocks can make your wedding as green and sustainable as possible, please do not hesitate to contact us on the form below. You can also read our blog posts on Bornholm’s sustainability measures and how to prepare for a sustainable wedding.

 

Wind parks are part of the special sustainability measures you can enjoy on your wedding day on the Danish island of Bornholm.

The People Underground ('De underjordiske')

Trolls, nisser, dwarves and elves are all well-known mythical figures from the Scandinavian legends. Every region has its own creatures. On Bornholm, it’s the ‘Underjordiske‘ – the people underground – you have to look out for.

‘De underjordiske’ are a small people with red hats who live in subterranean homes not unlike our own. You might get a glimpse of them in places with access to the earth – like Borholm’s many ancient burial grounds, caves or cracked rocks. Many Bornholmians have met them in person, though not always with a lucky escape or outcome.

The people underground do like good food and are not averse to steal the occasional sausage. If you should decide to have a wedding ceremony in one of our beautiful woods, you might become closer acquainted with these little mischief-makers. But keep a watch on the wedding cake!

 

Subterranean (De underjordiske) are said to inhabit the island of Bornholm in Denmark.

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