Posted by: travelrat | May 17, 2013

Open Air Museum, Sunnmøre

Open Air Museum Alesund 1

19th March 2013: Sunnmøre

For our tour in the afternoon, a coach took us to Sunnmøre, a little way out of town, to visit the Open Air Museum. The guide said that many of the exhibits were closed for the winter, but enough remained open to show Norwegian life in the olden days.

As far as I could make out, the site was on either an island or a peninsula, for none of it seemed far away from the waters of the fjord. The days was still bright, the waters calm and the snow-covered mountains in the distance stood out clearly. So, if nothing else, it made for an extremely photogenic visit.

I was particularly interested in the ‘church houses’; these weren’t for living in, but to enable those who had come a long distance to worship to change out of their travelling clothes into their church-going gear. I was particularly drawn by the method of roofing them … first, a layer of birch bark, topped by turf.

Church Houses

I remembered wrestling with tar paper and particularly foul and nasty sticky stuff when I re-covered the roof of my shed recently, and thought this was a far better idea. And, when the grass got too long, you simply hauled a goat or a sheep up onto the roof.

There are other traditional houses as well … even a shop. They don’t sell their wares here, just show them … but, of course, there is a souvenir shop, where you can buy stuff. There were boats, too, but most of the ones on display were out of the water.

Overlooking the museum site is the white painted Borgund Church, where we made a brief stop to take some photos, not only of the church, but of its beautiful surroundings, too.

Borgund Church




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  2. Thanks for the slice of history and another use for grasses. In America on the plains, people used to build sod houses, as there were no trees.


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