Himmelbjerget – Ry, Denmark - Atlas Obscura
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Ry, Denmark

Himmelbjerget

Denmark's famous pseudo-hill. 

The Himmelbjerget Hill, or “Sky Mountain,” is one of the highest points in Denmark, reaching 147 meters. Oddly enough, geologists have robbed some of the hill’s pride by saying it is a “fake” hill. After the Ice Age was over, glacial streams created subglacial stream trenches which later formed the pseudo-hill. According to geologists, a “real” hill is evenly rounded on all sides.

The Himmelbjerget reportedly became famous when a group of students were walking up the “pseudo” hill and being so impressed with its beauty, wrote to Danish poet Steen Steensen Blicher and asked him to hold a popular meeting there. The next year he did exactly that and thousands of people were invited to the Himmelbjerget. Taken over by excitement, Blicher forgot to ask permission from the property holder, a local farmer, and a quarrel started between the two. It was soon solved when the king at the time visited the area and leased it from the owner (later gaining absolute ownership), allowing people to enjoy the Himmelbjerget for free.

The tower erected at the top of the Himmelbjerget was built in commemoration of King Frederik VII who in 1849 gave the Danish people free constitution. The tower was 25 meters high and completed in 1875. Scattered throughout the rest of the hill are a bunch of little monuments, including a small wooden hut hidden in the woods that visitors are encouraged to look for.

Know Before You Go

You can sail from Ry, or take a steamboat from Silkeborg.