Viking for a day – Help launch a viking warship

Spring is in the air and if you had been living around Roskilde Fjord some 1000 years ago you might have been preparing a warship for this season’s raid. Luckily you don’t need a time machine to experience this because we have a local viking ship in Augustenborg.

Sebbe Als, as the boat is called, is built as a replica of wreck number 5 found in Roskilde Fjord, where it sank sometime in the 11th century. It is a fast warship with a long and slim body with 24 oars and a relatively large sail. It can fit up to 30 people.

The ship is owned and operated by an independent society (PDF in English), who built the boat in the period 1967 – 1969, a few years after the finds in Roskilde. The ship, which was launched and named Sebbe Als in 1969, was built according to the drawings of the original ship and by using the same tools as the “old vikings”.

You can take part

Every spring Sebbe is checked, repaired and prepared for the season and this is where you can get a taste for what it’s like to work with a boat like they did in the age of the vikings. There are two dates coming up where you can go see the boat, meet the people building and sailing the boat, help out and maybe even join the crew.

21st of April starting from 9am Sebbe is getting a new coat of paint on the bottom. Come and get up close to the ship.

28th of April at 9am Sebbe will be launched into the water. This is done purely by manpower so they can use any help they can get in pulling the 2 ton boat in the water.

Sunday Ann and I cycled out to see if we could find the “naust” where the boat lives in winter and at the end of a gravel road we found it. Two very friendly ladies were painting a smaller boat called Ottar outside and they were more than happy to give us a tour of the facilities. The tranquility of the place was amazing we had brought a lunch pack with us so enjoyed that while soaking up the sun and enjoying the atmosphere.

Read more about the boat on SebbeAls.dk. To get to the home of Sebbe Als look for Hesselvej 10 by Augustenborg. To get there on bike it’s a nice 20 minute bike ride from central Sønderborg, in a car you need to follow this path and park by the manure tank. Check the map below for the exact location.

Photos by Steen Weile, chairman of Sebbe Als.


2 thoughts on “Viking for a day – Help launch a viking warship

    • Luckily the boat has a sail as well so they only row if there is not wind enough.

      I must say I’m intrigued about going for sailing trips on an old boat only powered by man or nature.

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