The Kalmar Castle – Back in time in Sweden

thatwanderlust-guided tour-Kalmar Castle-sweden

A guided tour in Kalmar Castle

‘Are you here for the English tour?’ A young man asked us as he shook our hands and then led us to the first royal room of the Castle. It was a place I had wanted to learn about for the last two years. During my previous visits to Kalmar I found the castle to be closed or we didn’t find a guided tour that matched our agendas. Today we were very lucky to have Filip guiding us in English during a private tour.

thatwanderlust-guided tour-Kalmar Castle-sweden

The guide, Filip, explaining the history of the Kalmar Castle.

We walk into a room where you can see an old map of Scandinavia. About 800 years ago Denmark and Sweden used to have a different border. In the room next door you can see how the Kalmar castle has grown from one stone tower with a bit of wall to an entire fortress over the years. An impressive realization.

thatwanderlust-guided tour-Kalmar Castle-sweden

An old game of chess.

thatwanderlust-guided tour-Kalmar Castle-sweden

Canons outside the Kalmar castle.

The Kalmar castle has been renovated. Some rooms more than others. Walking into the kitchen gives a feeling of how things looked like and you can sense a presence of the past. Even the stones you walk on, like those in the staircases. They also have a history. Looking closer at these giant stones you can spot some carvings. Our guide explains that they used to be grave stones and that they were reused for the floor to stand on the Catholic religion – as they went from Catholics to Christians. The walls are white and grey, just as they used to be. However. On the ceilings and on the higher part of the walls you can see artwork. Original artwork. They actually are fresco artwork, like the ones we know from Italy.

thatwanderlust-guided tour-Kalmar Castle-sweden

Old grave stone used in the staircase.

thatwanderlust-guided tour-Kalmar Castle-sweden

The Burnt Hall.

thatwanderlust-guided tour-Kalmar Castle-sweden

The kitchen.

thatwanderlust-guided tour-Kalmar Castle-sweden

The sober one

The dinning room is filled with this impressive piece of fresco on the entire wall. One can only imagine the parties they must have had in that dinning room. The guide explains about the dinners with the king. You, as a guest, were not allowed to get up from the table if the king hadn’t finished eating yet. The king could eat for six continuous hours, while getting drunk of all the imported wine. They did call the king, the sober one. Our guide also explains that the king was drinking 6 liters of wine every day, which seems like a drunk making amount of wine to me. I guess we can call the old king an alcoholic nowadays, but for his time he was the sober one. According to history he made the wisest decisions of all the kings. Even while being drunk. Therefor, the sober one.

thatwanderlust-guided tour-Kalmar Castle-sweden

The dinning room

thatwanderlust-guided tour-Kalmar Castle-sweden

The kings’ bedroom

Next is the kings’ bedroom. The walls and the ceiling are completely covered with artwork again. This time it is wooded art. Shields of the kings’ favorite things are placed on the ceiling and the top of the walls including hunting for bore, music and healthy making fruits. The colors of the artwork on the wall are so bright that our guide explains they original arts men used poison to make sure it would stay that colorful. It sure did.

thatwanderlust-guided tour-Kalmar Castle-sweden

Kings’ bedroom mural decoration.

thatwanderlust-guided tour-Kalmar Castle-sweden

Kings’ bedroom window.

Inside the wall there is a hidden door. Thom spots it and our guide then decides to open it for us. Inside is the kings’ toilet, but also a hidden hatch leading to a staircase that can take you to the 3rd floor. Sadly enough so many tourists who went inside this hidden toilet room carved their names into the wood and therefore the Kalmar castle had to decide to close it for public.

thatwanderlust-guided tour-Kalmar Castle-sweden

Kings’ bedroom hidden hatch with a staircase.

thatwanderlust-guided tour-Kalmar Castle-sweden

King’s bedroom toilet and hidden room walls, written on by ignorant tourists.

The hanging ceiling

A hallway further we get to enter a giant room. It has a throne and many paintings on the wall. The most remarkable thing here is the ceiling from the year 1576. It’s a gigantic piece of art hanging from wall to wall as a ceiling. I can not imagine a more horrible death if it would ever fall down, but the guide insures us that we’d end up in the Guinness Book of record – being killed by a ceiling of art. The artwork has very different details. I discover crazy, sad and happy faces.

thatwanderlust-guided tour-Kalmar Castle-sweden

The Guide pointing up to the hanging ceiling.

thatwanderlust-guided tour-Kalmar Castle-sweden

The ceiling.

thatwanderlust-guided tour-Kalmar Castle-sweden

A crazy looking face in the ceiling decoration

thatwanderlust-guided tour-Kalmar Castle-sweden

Rather fancy shade of blue used in the tapestry.

We get to have a peek into the church. Normally you’re not able to see the inside of the church in Kalmar Castle because it’s so popular for weddings and therefore always occupied.

thatwanderlust-guided tour-Kalmar Castle-sweden

You’d normally start a tour at the most saddening part of the museum and end it at the happy room. Today we stop our tour at the dungeons. A place where no one could escape from. So let’s focus on the happier places of the castle, like the castle square.

thatwanderlust-guided tour-Kalmar Castle-sweden

To sum it up

In conclusion, the Kalmar Castle (or the Kalmar Slott in Swedish) shows a lot of history. It has many rooms and artwork still intact or properly restored. It has an ambience that makes you feel like going back in time. Even the guide is dressed as a royal servant from 800 years ago. One hour of explanation about the royal rooms is totally worth your time.

Wish to visit the Kalmar Castle? Click on this link of Kalmar Castle to find out more about the opening hours, guided tours and more.

Have you been to the Kalmar Castle? Share your experience in the comment section below!

Want to read more about my visits to Sweden? Check it out by clicking right here.

thatwanderlust-guided tour-Kalmar Castle-sweden

The following two tabs change content below.
Ever since I left my home country I felt at home at any other place I went to. I enjoy getting to know more cultures by talking to strangers and hearing their philosophy about life. Speaking with gestures when you can not find a shared language, finding places only the locals go to and learn about their customs and values. Hanging out with local people makes me happy. The experience of every new place is a step out of your comfort zone where I like to wander around until it feels like a second home.
2 Comments on “The Kalmar Castle – Back in time in Sweden
  1. We loved Kalmar so much we named our dog Kalmar. There were so many rabits running around when we visited at sunset it was crazy!

Don't be shy, leave a Reply