Ribe Cathedral and Saint Catharinae church

Ribe Cathedral

One of the most beautiful churches of Europe and the landmark of Ribe. A visit here allows you to experience both tombs and stained glass. From the 52 meter high Tower there is a fantastic view of Ribe and the surrounding countryside.

Ribe Cathedral is visible for miles across the flat landscape, and it is amazing to think that travellers have been met by this sight since the middle of the 13th century when it was completed. Ribe Cathedral is the oldest cathedral in Denmark.

Vor Frue Kirke (The Church of Our Lady), as the cathedral is actually called, became the only five-aisled cathedral in Denmark following numerous alterations and additions. The present-day building is characterised by a wealth of different styles and interesting details.

There are sepulchral monuments to some of the most powerful men of the town and the nation as a whole, as well as the oldest epitaph in Scandinavia, erected by King Valdemar the Conqueror to a son who died in 1231.

Borgertårnet (The Commoners’ Tower), which dates from the 14th century, functions as the watchtower and storm tower of the town and provides amazing views of the marshes. The 52-metre-high tower is entered through the cathedral (please note that children under the age of 14 must be accompanied by an adult). You can also visit the museum in the southern gallery of tje cathedral.

The carillon bells of the cathedral play the hymn “Den yndigste rose er funden” (Now found is the fairest of roses) by Brorson at 08.00 and 18.00, as well as the popular folk song about queen Dagmar at 12.00 and 15.00.

Kannikegården (The canon estate)

Kannikegården (The canon estate) is a parish hall and houses the ecclesiastical offices in Ribe. In the basement of the building are the remains of a dining hall (refectory) from an earlier canon monastery. The Monastery burnt in 1176, and the ruin is considered to be one of the oldest brickbuildings in Denmark.

Kannikegården (The canon estate) is partly made of concrete, steel, glass and brick. The brick that is characteristic of the building, is in a special size (34 x 70 cm) and made at Petersen’s Brick at Nybøl Nor. The clay is hard burnt and of English origin. The middle age leftover of the procession hallway, is built together with the new house.

Behind Kannikegården (The canon estate) is a garden with terraces which lead down to the base of the ruin that can be seen through glass walls. From here you can move around the building and sense the thick layers of cultures on the place.

In the years 2008/2009 and 2011/2012 there have been done some archeological surveys of it all, where the probably oldest Christian funerals in Denmark, has taken place around the 890’s. Not only the ruin was a big found, also a piece from a very old stone with old letters on, and around 100.000 objects got found.

Kannikegården can be visited on arranged tours with a guide. The ruin can also be seen with a guide, where you can get inside the glass and look down at the ruin.

Sct. Catharinæ Church and Monastery

Behind the beautiful St. Catharinæ church is the medieval cloister which is part of the best preserved abbey in Denmark. Experience the history and enjoy the beautiful buildings and the silence of the cloister.

The church and monastery was founded in 1228 by Dominican monks.

The present church dates back to the 15th century and is the third church on this spot.
The monastery is one of the best preserved in Denmark and the beautiful cloister part of the monastery is open to visitors.

The church and monastery is named after Catharina, an educated Egyptian princess who suffered martyrdom in year 307 due to her faith.  A fountain was raised in honour of Catharina at St. Catharinæ square.


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