Galgberget, Visby, Sweden | CruiseBe
Average: 9.1 (10 votes)

Galgberget, Visby

Natural sights
nature, beauty nature, walking, nature reserve

Galgberget (the Gallow hill) is a nature reserve just north of Visby on Gotland, Sweden. The area is bounded to the west by the cliff edge, in the east by County Road 149, and in the north by the city of Visby.

Galgberget is named after the still remaining gallows, built during the 13th century, where local criminals used to be executed. It is claimed to be the only preserved Medieval execution site in Europe. The gallows consist of a low, circular stone wall with three pillars of stone rising from it. Wooden beams rested on the pillars, and criminals were hung from these using ropes and hooks. It is believed that the gallows were in use until 1845. The gallows were situated so that there was a clear view of them in Visby and from the sea, so that everyone could view those who had been executed. In July 2008, in close proximity to the gallows, archaeologists from the Gotland Museum found the bones of some 30 people who had been executed, presumably on the spot.

The area has barren vegetation due to its limestone constitution, the most common plant being Prunus spinosa, commonly called the blackthorn or sloe. It is a popular hiking area. Galgberget also has the ruin of a lime kiln and a disused motor stadium. As of 2015, there are also a number of recently built apartment houses.

During the Medieval Week reenactment of the Battle of Visby in 2008, the local branch of the Society for Creative Anachronism organized a medieval tent camp at Galgberget.

Text is available under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0