Den Gamle By - The Old Town Museum
'Den Gamle By' - The Old Town Museum is a perfectly unique attraction in Aarhus for the whole family to go on a fascinating journey back in history. The museum is awarded the maximum three stars in the Michelin Travel Guide.
In the Welfare State of Denmark
In the 70s town district you can drop by the shops, including Poul's Radio and TV shop, the mini-supermarket, the gynaecologist clinic, the kindergarten, and the hairdresser's. The townhouses are inhabited by various people, including a nuclear family, a commune, and a blind man. In the backyard are parked a Beetle and the plumber's Citroën. And you can also go inside the moped workshop and the scouts' meeting room. At the end of the Havnegade street lies the historical Aarhus jazz bar Bent J with occasional live music on stage.
Once upon a time before 1900
In The Old Town you will meet people dressed and acting as folk at the end of the 19th century, and also as how people lived and worked in 1927. You can also take a walk through a town district from 1970s' Denmark, complete with streets, townhouses, shops, backyards, and workshops re-erected exactly as they stood in the past. The oldest part of the Den Gamle By is representative of a small Danish market town complete with houses, gardens, dwellings, shops and workshops. The buildings originate from towns all over Denmark and they have been re-erected in the museum's grounds. From April and throughout the year you can meet the people of yore in the kitchens, the living rooms, and in the grocery shop.
The 1920s – modern times have arrived
In 1927, the townscape has become modern with cars in the streets, pavements, electric street lamps, telephone poles, and painted wall adverts. In this town quarter of the Den Gamle By lie an ironmonger's, a bookshop, a Schous Sæbehus chain store, a post office, a telephone exchange, and several residences from before Denmark was hit by the recession in the 1930s.
Close-up to the Danes' favourite cars in the 1920s
If you enjoy or are curious about motorcars, the town district of 1927 in the Den Gamle By has a treat for you at the authentic motorcar dealer and workshop 'Automobilforretning Carl Christensen'. Here you can find superb old cars, a showroom, a spare parts shop, and workshops carrying out engine renovations and bicycle repair. This is a great opportunity to get close-up to the infancy of Danish motoring and learn more about the many fascinating vehicles of the time.
Museum of living history
From April to December history comes alive in Den Gamle By. Here you can meet people dressed, working and behaving just like they did in the olden days. They are cooking food, chopping wood, sewing and needling, or attending to customers in the shops. Feel free to stop for a chat with them; perhaps they will tell you to go and fetch water from the well or throw rubbish on the midden.
Go for a ride in the horse-drawn carriage, or make a good bargain in the period shops. Have a pint in the beer cellar and enjoy a cup of coffee with cake in the tea garden.
In the Festival square the whole family can race on stilts, play skittles, or have fun on the swing boats and on the merry-go-round.
Special exhibitions and smaller museums on site
During the year there are theme days, concerts, activities for children, and a number of special exhibitions. The Den Gamle By museum grounds are also home to other smaller museums, including
and The Aarhus Stories with 700 square meters of underground exhibition space dedicated to portraying the birth, development, and potential future of Aarhus.
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FREE ADMISSION FOR EVERYONE UNDER THE AGE OF 18