Helsingborg Tourist Attractions
The Swedish town of Helsingborg, strategically situated at the narrowest part of the Öresund (here only 4.5km/3mi wide) opposite the Danish town of Helsingør (Elsinore), was for centuries hotly disputed between Denmark and Sweden. The town first appears in the records in 1085, and it received its municipal charter in 1649. It is now a busy port, commercial and industrial town, a favored center for conferences and trade fairs, and Sweden's main channel of communication by sea with Denmark and mainland Europe. There are plans to build a bridge over the Öresund.Historic Helsingborg has many old houses, a mixture of stone-built churches, small alleyways and a fortress, which has guarded the town for 600 years.
Visitors arriving in Helsingborg by sea cannot fail to see the town's emblem and landmark, Kärnan (the "Kernel"), a conspicuous brick tower 35m/115ft high which stands at the upper end of the long market square (Stortorget). From the end of the square a broad flight of steps flanked by two towers (elevator in left-hand tower) leads up to Konung Oscar II's Terrass, at the far corner of which stands the old defensive tower, with foundations up to 4.5m/15ft deep and a circumference of 60m/200ft. In 1400 it was the central feature of a stronghold built by Valdemar Atterdag on the site of an earlier timber fortress probably dating from the 10th century. Valdemar's castle was destroyed in 1680, leaving only the tower standing. From the top of the tower (190 steps) there are superb views of the town and over the Öresund to Denmark. Beyond Kärnan is Slottshagen, a beautiful park, with a piece of sculpture by Christian Eriksson, "The Hunt", and remains of the old fortress.
At the lower end of Stortorget in Helsingborg is a statue (by J. Börjesson, 1901) of the Swedish general Count Magnus Stenbock (1664-1717), erected to commemorate his victory over the Danes to the north of Helsingborg in 1710. Opposite it stands the neo-Gothic Town Hall (1870), with a 70m/230ft high tower and stained glass windows depicting events in the history of the town. In front of the Town Hall are Norwegian and Danish memorial stones, commemorating the assistance given by Sweden when these countries were occupied by the Germans during the Second World War.From the foot of Stortorget, Järnvägsgatan runs southeast, passing the railroad station and boat terminal and the Municipal Library (1965).
Southwest of Helsingborg's Stortorget, flanking the ferry port, is Hamntorget (Harbor Square), with the Seafarers Monument (by Carl Milles), a column topped by a figure of Mercury. Nearby can be seen a plaque commemorating the arrival of the French marshal Jean-Baptiste Bernadotte in 1810. (Bernadotte had been chosen by the Swedish Parliament as heir to the throne and had been adopted by the childless King Charles XIII; he became king as Carl XIV Johan in 1818).
Jakob Hansens Hus
At the upper end of Stortorget in Helsingborg, Norra Storgatan goes off on the left. At No. 21 is Jakob Hansens Hus (1641; restored 1931), a handsome old half-timbered building. In front of it is a fountain topped by a celestial globe (1927) commemorating the astronomer Tycho Brahe.
St Mary's Church
In Södra Storgatan, which runs southeast from the foot of Stortorget in Helsingborg, is the Gothic church of St Mary (13th C.; renovated in 15th C.). Notable features of the interior are the reredos (c. 1450), the pulpit (1615, with intarsia decoration), a historical chart (from A.D. 900 to modern times) and the modern stained glass in the choir.
Along Södra Storgatan in Helsingborg (No. 31) is the Municipal Museum, with extensive collections, including an art gallery and a natural history section. Behind it is an open-air museum.
Helsingborg Concert Hall
From Stortorget in Helsingborg, Drottninggatan runs northwest to St Jörgensplats, with a sculpture by A. Wallenberg, "Youth at Play". On the west side of the square is the Concert Hall (Konserthuset; by Sven Markelius, 1932), and beyond this the Municipal Theater (1976).
Öresund Park and Museum of Art
To the north of Helsingborg lies Öresund Park, in which is a former spa establishment, Hälsan ("Health"), with the Sophia Spring. On the other side of Hälsovägen, in Vikingberg Park, is the Museum of Art (Konstmuseet), with a collection of both older and modern art (including Frans Hals's portrait of Descartes).
Stenbocksgatan ands Fredriksdal Open-Air Museum
In the northeast of Helsingborg is Stenbocksgatan, beyond which is the Fredriksdal open-air museum, with a manor house of 1787, a number of old buildings, a Music Museum, a Botanic Garden and an open-air theater. In Stenbocksgatan itself is the Sports Stadium (Idrottens Hus), with seating for 5,000 spectators.
International Stamp and Coin Fair
Helsingborg International Stamp and Coin Fair is in April.
International Antiques Fair
Helsingborg International Antiques Fair is held in July.
Map of Helsingborg Attractions