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Viking ship at the museum.

Roskilde is in West Zealand, Denmark, 35 km west of Copenhagen. Roskilde is an ancient city dating from the Viking age. The most important historical sights are the Viking Museum and Roskilde Cathedral. Roskilde is also home to the giant rock music event, Roskilde Festival.



Roskilde is south of Roskilde Inlet with the Viking Museum and some of the accomodation and restaurant options nearby. Central Roskilde is 1 km further south centered around the pedestrian street Algade/Skomagergade and Roskilde Cathedral. The city centre is quite small at around 1 square kilometer bordered by a ring road. The train station is at the southern end of the city centre. Roskilde Festival is 4 km south from the train station along Køgevej.


Roskilde was established more than 1,000 years ago, at which time it had a wooden church and a royal farm. In the 12th century, Roskilde Cathedral was built and Roskilde became the seat of the bishop and was also granted the status of a market town. The town was one of the most important in Denmark for the next few centuries until the reformation ende the importance of the church.

Get in


By train

From Copenhagen Central Station (København H) it is about a 25 minute trip. Nearly all trains leaving Copenhagen besides those leaving for Elsinore or Sweden stops in Roskilde, but you would normally have to pay an extra fee if you jump on a Intercity train (i.e. trains to Jutland). Regional trains bound for Odense, Kalundborg or Nykøbing Falster are your best choices (they are marked with a green "Re" sign on platform screens). There is also a small branch line with occasional trains to Køge.

By bus

Intercity buses to and from Jutland[43] lines 882 to Fjerritslev and 888 to Århus/Aalborg, makes stop at the Q8 gas station at Darupvej 2, by the highway. It is quite far from the city center, but there are several bus lines connecting from Roskilde Station, e.g. 600S

Important regional buses includes 600S which runs an arch around Copenhagen proper from Hillerød in the north (Frederiksborg castle) to Hundige Station in the south. 233 runs between Roskilde and Lejre Forsøgscenter, 234 connects with Slagelse and finaly 229E and 239 with Frederikssund.

By plane

Roskilde Airport (IATA: RKE, ICAO: EKRK) [44] is Denmark's premier General Aviation facility with planes taking off or landing, every 5 minutes througout the day. It is also the main base for un- or semi scheduled taxi flights to the Kingdoms more remote islands; Copenhagen Airtaxi [45] offers flights to Samsø, Læsø and Anholt for between 1,000-1,500 Kr, and more or less works as a regular airline, with flights bookable on the company website. Other options include: Samair[46] to Samsø and Starling[47] to Ærø.

Get around

You can easily walk from the train station to the main square with the cathredral and from there to the Viking Ship museum.

There are a few local buses running from the train station.


Map of Central Roskilde


Roskilde Cathedral
  • Roskilde Cathedral (Roskilde Domkirke), +45 4635 1624 (, fax: +45 4632 2527), [1]. Apr-Sep M-Sa 9AM-5PM, Su 12:30PM-5PM; Oct-Mar Tu-Sa 10AM-4PM, Su 12:30PM-4PM, limited access during ceremonies. On UNESCO's World Heritage List. This is where Danish kings and queens have been buried for a thousand years, 20 kings and 17 queens lay in the four chappels here. Most impressive are the temple like monuments for king Christian 3 and his wife. A wooden church was built here in the 10th century, the present church was built in early 13th century. Home to the Cathedral Museum. 25 Kr, children 15 Kr, worshippers free.
  • Roskilde Former City Hall, Stændertorvet 1. Built in 1884 in Gothic style. Now home to the local tourist information office.
  • Roskilde Palace, Stændertorvet 3, +45 4631 6565. Home to two exhibitions, the Museum of Contemporary Art [2] and the Palace Wing [3]. A four wing yellow baroque building built in the 18th century. Was home to the king and his family when around.
  • Roskilde Station, Jernbanegade 1. The oldest train station in Denmark built in 1847 in connection with opening of the first railway between Copenhagen and Roskilde.
  • Historic granite tiles, Skomagergade. 15 granit tiles in the pavement illustrating the history of Roskilde. Was created by sculptor Ole Knudsen in 2009.
  • The Giant Jars, Hestetorvet. Three five meter high jars created in 1998 by sculptor Peter Brandes. They symbolise life and dead and were placed here to mark the city's 1,000 year anniversary. One of the jars has inscribed a poem by Henrik Nordbrandt.

Parks and nature

  • Bypark, (between Roskilde Cathedral and Roskilde Inlet). Established in 1915 by Roskilde's patron, O.H.Schmeltz. Comprises a playground for children, a snake-like walking path and other areas well suited for a stroll or for hanging around. The park is home to cultural events including summer concerts Tuesdays in July. If you walk from the city centre to the viking museum, this can be done through the park.
  • Folkepark. Consists of a number of combined parks primarily based on former monestary land. Was first established in early 19th century and found its present form in the 1930s. The park is home to cultural events including performances for children at the amphitheater on summer Thursdays.
  • Boserup Forest, (3 km west of Roskiilde, bus 605 from Roskilde Station). Hilly, primarily beech mixed forest. 5 km trekking path.
  • Ledreborg Palace & Park, Ledreborg Alle 2, Lejre (train from Roskilde to Lejre (seven minutes) and then bus 233 to the palace (only in the summer)), +45 4648 0038 (, fax: +45 4648 0480), [4]. Park 11MA-4PM, palace only by appointment. Built 1740-45 by Count Johan Ludvig Holstein-Ledreborg and still the family residence. Houses a collection of original furniture and paintings. The baroque park has resently been restored. Houses an open air concert every summer. Park 25 Kr.


Viking Centre
  • The Viking Ship Museum, Vindeboder 12 (follow the signs from the cathredral), +45 4630 0200 (), [5]. 10AM-5PM. A museum with several original viking ships, a viking research center, a harbour with copies of viking ships, and a shipyard making new ships. 60-100 Kr, students 50-80 Kr, children free.
  • Roskilde Museum, Sankt Ols Gade 18, +45 46 31 6529, [6]. Local history museum, but well in tune with other attractions, it also has a good collection of viking archaeological finds, some connecting to the sagas about the legendary Beowulf. 25 Kr.
  • Museum of Tools, Ringstedgade 6, [7]. M-F 11AM-5PM, Sa 10AM-2PM. Exhibits tools from 1850-1950 used by coach makers, carpenters, joiners, coopers, clog makers and other craftsmen. Free.
  • Lützhøfts Old Grocer's Shop, Ringstedgade 8, [8]. M-F 11AM-5PM, Sa 10AM-2PM. The shop existed 1892-1979. It has been led back to its appearance around 1920. Here you can buy goods like the ones sold in the 1920s, you can also see the grocer's office, inventory and old magasine buildings. Free.
  • O. Lunds Eftf. Butcher's Shop, Ringstedgade 8, +45 4635 0061, [9]. Sa 10AM-2PM, currently closed for refurbishment. Butcher shop as it was in teh 1920s. Free.
  • Roskilde Mini Town, Skt Ibs Vej (between Byparken and the harbour), (), [10]. Always accessible. Model of Roskilde as it might have looked in its heyday around 1400. The model is at scale 1:200 and is around 50 square meters. It was finalised in 1999 but was not inaugurate it its present location until 2005. Free.
  • St. Hans Hospital Museum, Kurhusvænge, [11].
  • The Ruins of Skt. Laurentii (St. Lawrence) Church, Stændertorvet 1.
  • Lejre Museum, Orehoejvej 4B, Lejre, [12].


  • The Roskilde Gallery, Maglekildevej 7, [13].
  • Jeppeart, Skomagergade 33, [14].
  • Gallery Art Corner, Ringstedgade 3C, [15].
  • Galleri Working Art, Byvolden 10A, [16].
  • Galleri NB, Vindeboder 1, [17].
  • Glasgalleriet, Sankt Ibs Vej 12, [18].


Roskilde Festival

The legendary Roskilde festival [48] is still going strong despite 40 years of sex, drugs and rock'n'roll! started by a group of friends in 1971 inspired by the Woodstock festival, it has grown from a few thousand guests in its first year, to over 115.000 visitors from all over the world, and is routinely sold out with over half the tickets sold outside of Denmark.

The festival takes place in late June early July on Roskilde Dyreskueplads south of the city. To Get in there are several options; from Monday-Sunday during the festival trains depart from Roskilde Station to the festivals very own station inside the camping area (West) every 30 minutes for 20 kroner. There are also shuttle buses from Roskilde Station to the camping area (East) all day during the festival. When arriving at the festival you exchange your ticket to an armband/bracelet which gives you access to both the camping area, and the stage area.

Many people show up a week before the music starts to get their tents up so they can sleep close to the stage area, and limit walking as much as possible as the camping area is huge! A good tip is securing a place as far from trees and fences as possible, since they in essence become one big urinal during the festival, if rain is forecast, you should also attempt to camp as far from the marked walkways, preferably on a slope, since mud quickly becomes and issue.

On the camping grounds there are several service areas with food stalls and supermarkets to stock up with eat & drink, some also have first aid, toilets and showers. Inside the stage area there are also many many restaurants and bars - most of them with a theme, and some of them are really huge and elaborate. There are also many shops where you can buy necessities and other rubbish.

Music is playing from Thursday - Sunday and are usually varied, with some international headline acts, and much experimental and indie music and the smaller stages.

Other activities

  • Sail in a viking boat on the fjord, (at the viking centre).
  • Sagnlandet Lejre, Slangealleen 2, 4320 Lejre (Bus 233 from Roskilde station), +45 4648 0878 (), [19]. Become a Viking for a day, in this spectacular hands on history museum.
  • Capella Play, Ro's Torv 51A.
  • Roskilde Golf Klub.
  • The Path of the Gods (Gudernes Stræde), [20]. 64km path.


On Roskilde festival the nearest supermarket is Fakta at Køgevej 108, about 1300 meters (a 15-20 minute walk) due north (past the highway) from the eastern entrance. The downtown area which has a pedestrianized area full of different shops is a further 1½ km away (or 30-40 minutes by foot).

  • RO's Torv, Københavnsvej 29 (a few hundred meters east of the station beyond the tracks), +45 4638 0680, [21]. M-F 10AM-7PM, Sa 10AM-4PM. A fairly attractive mall with 90 different stores and a cinema.
  • Algade/Skomagergade. Pedestrian street and main shopping street in town.
  • Fair Trade Butik Karibu, Sct. Peders Stræde 1, [22].
  • Club Skin-Dive, Maglegårdsvej 5C, +45 4637 0992, [23].
  • Bjergtrolden, Ringstedgade 30, [24].



  • Jensens Bøfhus, Skomagergade 38, +45 4632 2510, [25]. M-Th 11AM-10PM, F-Sa 11AM-11PM, Su noon-10PM. Mains 100-200 Kr, menus from around 150 Kr.
  • Restaurant Shanghai, Skomagergade 4, +45 4635 0182 (fax: +45 4632 0831), [26]. Five course menu 108 Kr, main courses from around 70 Kr.


  • Snekken, Vindeboder 16, +45 4635 9816, [27]. 11:30AM-11PM; kitchen 11:30AM-4:30PM, 6PM-9PM. Restaurant at Viking Ship museum with a view over Roskilde Inlet. Mains around 200 Kr.
  • MS Sagafjord, at the harbour next to the Viking museum, +45 4675 6460 (), [28]. Old Restaurant ship. You can have lunch, tea or dinner on Roskilde Fjord. 95 Kr plus e.g. 365 Kr for a three course evening menu.
  • Restaurant Mumm, Karen Olsdatters Stræde 9, +45 4637 2201, [29]. Three course menu 425 Kr.
  • Bryggergården, Algade 15, +45 4635 0103, [30].


  • Restaurant Gusto Giusto, Køgevej 1, [31]. Italian restaurant. Mains around 250 Kr.
  • Store Børs, Havnevej 43, +45 4632 5045 (), [32]. Kitchen noon-4PM, 5PM-9:30PM. Lunch menu 158 Kr, mains around 250 Kr.



  • Gustav Wieds Vinstue, Hersegade 11 (in the centre of the city), +45 4636 5335. Traditional Danish bar, but also has a large selection of foreign and gourmet beers.
  • Promenaden, Hestetorvet 4 (next to the train station), +45 4635 2475.
  • Pub Ringstedgade, Ringstedgade 50, +45 4635 9597. Local place frequented by workers and ocassinally by people returning from concerts in the nearby Roskildehallerne.
  • Ruder Konge Bodega, Skomagergade 25 (close to the main shopping street), +45 4636 0415. Large traditional bar frequented by locals. Cheap.
  • Teatercafeen, Sankt Hans Gade 24, +45 4636 9545. In a primarily residential area and primarily frequented by regulars. Has billard and slot machines.


  • Cafe 42, Skomagergade 42 (on the main shopping street).
  • Cafe Gulland, Borchsgade 6, +45 4635 0244, [33].
  • Cafe Vivaldi, [34].
  • Stændertorvet 8.
  • Ro's Torv, Københavnsvej 29-39.


  • Carma, Jernbanegade 6, [35].
  • Club Moon, Hestetorvet 3, +45 4632 4070. 11PM-6AM.
  • Garbo's, Hersegade 17, [36].
  • Mary's, Støden 9, +45 4632 4600. Combined club and sports café.



  • DANHOSTEL Roskilde Vandrerhjem, (next to the Viking museum), ''+45'' 46352184, [37]. Hostel at the harbour next to the Viking museum. Have dormitories and family rooms 150 Kr.
  • Soviro Bed&Breakfast, Skovbovængets Allé 17, +45 2077 4482 (), [38]. Listed rates for doubles from 450 Kr.
  • Mr. Janny Motel, Motelvej 28, +45 4635 4385‎.
  • Bed&Breakfast Roskilde, Langagervej 19A, +45 4636 3702, 2446 9623 (), [39]. Doubles from 450 Kr, apartment 1,000 Kr.


  • Hotel Comwell Roskilde, Vestre Kirkevej 12, Himmelev, +45 4632 3131 (, fax: +45 4635 0835), [40]. Rooms with free internet, some with view of Roskilde Inlet. Listed rates for doubles from 1,445 Kr.


  • Hotel Prindsen, (at the pedestrian street in the centre of town), +45 4630 9100 (), [42]. Four star hotel with free internet. Listed rates for doubles from 1,595 Kr.

Stay safe

Get out

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