• 17Jul
    Categories: Everything!, travels abroad Comments Off on Gotland

    From Sweden’s second largest island, Öland, we went to Sweden’s largest island, Gotland!

    That meant a three and a half hour ferry boat ride.

    The main city in Gotland in Visby, an ancient walled city.

    Once we figured out how to get into the city, we were fine.  However, we didn’t know that cars weren’t allowed inside the city!

    It’s not that fun dragging bags over cobblestones, but it CAN be done!  And once we found our room, it was nice to be able to walk the cobbled streets without worrying about traffic.

    Some of the streets were rather steep, but the views were amazing.

    Buildings were a combination of wooden structures…

    …and those that had been stuccoed.

    But one of the most amazing features of the city was the ruins of St. Karin’s Church, which towered over everything else.

    Gotland is famous for its sheep.  If you don’t want cars on your street, you could just put up a concrete barrier, but a stone sheep is so much cuter!  These were everywhere!

    After a late dinner on our first night, we were walking back to our hotel just as the sun was setting.  I’m just a point-and-shoot photographer, so I was delighted to get this photo!

    Our second day on Gotland found us outside the city walls, exploring the countryside.  We stopped at the church in Bro.  There was a great sign that gave the following information, “The first church was built on this site in about 1200.  Only the tower remains of this structure together with a large number of building stones, incorporated into the present nave.

    “The high Gothic doorway of the nave has interesting figure sculptures.

    “Several 5th century picture stones are incorporated in the south wall.


    “In the interior there are medieval and 18th century mural paintings.


    “The Romanesque font is from about 1200.”

    I thought the door and lock were pretty cool, too.

    We stopped at a pretty little lake.

    There was a cottage there about the same size as the Swedish cottage in our woods.  I’ve been telling Bob I’d love to have a sunporch on our house.  He isn’t convinced we need one (who said anything about “need?”).  Perhaps we should put a sunporch on the cottage instead!

    This cottage even had a deck!

    There were wildflower everywhere!

    The color of these poppies was so intense!

    And these pink flowers were like a groundcover.

    Imagine my excitement when we discovered Bunge, open air museum!

    It was on the north end of the island.

    It showcased farmsteads from the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries.

    There was a variety of architectural styles…

    …including some half-timbered houses.

    Here’s a charming little building.

    And another.

    I loved this window detail.

    This is a barn with a shaggy thatched roof.

    A typical fence from the area.

    I’m always fascinated to see how people eeked out a living.

    Here’s a mill.

    People were so clever–using a hollow log for a bee hive…

    …or a birdhouse!

    There were several kinds of windmills.

    An early “A” frame!

    This one had really thick walls and was 16 sided!

    Bob liked looking at the mechanics of things!

    I watched a great demo on how flax was processed into linen.

    Extremely interesting were some Stora Hammars Stones from the Viking Age!  They depict battles, sacrifices, etc.

    It was a great outing!



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