The History

The Vikingmuseum Ladby

Visit the only vikingship in the world, still situated in the burial mount where it was placed 1000 years ago. Step into a burial mound from the Viking Age and pay a visit to the 1000 year old Ladby ship. Get close up to the treasures from the ship grave and experience the recreation of the Viking kings's final sailing trip, to Valhalla. You can also take a walk outside and watch the building process, as boatbuilders create an exact full-size replica of the Ladby ship.

What is the Ladby Ship?

It is Denmark's only ship grave from the Viking period. Around 925 AD, the king of Ladby was buried in his ship, which was 21.5 meters long and 3 meters wide. A burial mound was raised above the ship. His grave was furnished with all his fine possessions, including 11 horses and 3 or 4 dogs. In the bow of the ship lies the original anchor and anchor chain.

Unfortunately, the grave was plundered back in the Viking times, so the deceased was removed and most of the grave goods destroyed. Some of the grave goods can be seen in the exhibition building.

Back in the burial mound, you can see the imprint of the ship, the approximately 2000 rivets that held its planks together, and the shroud rings for the rigging of the mast. In the bow, the original anchor with its chain and the 11 horse skeletons can be seen. The stem is decorated with the "dragon's mane", in the form of iron curls. (The originals are on display in the exhibition building.)

The Ladby Ship - found again

In 1935, the ship was unearthed here after more than 1000 years underground. It was excavated by the National Museum and the pharmacist and amateur archaeologist Poul Helweg Mikkelsen from Odense. He also paid for the construction of a concrete dome over the the ship grave. At the time, it was called "The World's Oddest Maritime Museum" - with good reason!

The Ladby Ship in a new light

On May 6, 2012, it was the 75th anniversary of the Ladby Ship Museum. We marked the anniversary by giving the old ship a facelift: the old florescent lights were taken down, a new ventilation system has been installed, and the walls have been painted in a dark color to signal that this is a burial chamber. The idea is that the ship, the unique authentic artefact, which still lies where it was placed as a ship grave for the Ladby king more than 1000 years ago, should be the central part of the museum. So let your eyes get used to the darkness and allow yourself the time to see all the fascinating details in the ship. 

Calendar

Launching the Ladby Dragon
Thursday, April 26, 2018, 4:00-8:00 PM
The Viking Museum at Ladby

Now the Ladby Dragon is ready for another season on the water!

News

The mast has been raised on the Ladby Dragon
26. September 2017
The Viking Museum at Ladby

Now the reconstructed Ladby Ship has been fitted out with mast and rigging.

We will soon expand the Viking Museum
26. September 2017
The Viking Museum at Ladby

With the newly acquired acreage (4.5 hectares, or 11.1 acres) at our disposal, we can now improve accessability, expand our teaching facilities and make the museum an even better place for an outing.

The Sword Bead from Munkebo Hill was a Showpiece
26. September 2017
Landscape & Archaeology

A proud and a wealthy Viking must have owned the sword that had a sword bead on it, which was found in connection with the excavations on Munkebo Hill.

In the Iron Age, they made iron at Selleberg
26. September 2017
Landscape & Archaeology

Two bloomeries (smelting furnaces) from ca. 200 AD were found between Marslev and Birkende.