Leka in North Trønderlag

Cultural information about Leka

Half way up the coast of Norway, facing the Atlantic Ocean, finds the island of Leka - The island well known not only  for it's geology, but also for it's archaeological sites. The island is part of the Caledonian range which, originates in Scotland and runs the greater part of the length of Norway as far as Svalbard. The islands geological types are largely metaphor i.e. they have experienced various stages of change. In the course of this subterranean changing the olivin rock into serpentinitt, The limestone into marble, etc. The predominant is serpentinitt which, in appearance, suggest an extra-terrestrial landscape. On this  island with its peculiar ochre yellowish and sharp-pointed mountains - contrasting sharply with the blue ocean you can't avoid the feeling of  close contact with the distant past.
Being at Leka will give memorable moments due to its different nature types, and changing weather. It is said that you can experience all four seasons in one day - best chance for that is in spring and autumn.

A tour round Leka          

1 Solsemcave
This cave
is probably a place of settlement and sacrifice dating from the Stone Age. The cave contains twenty-one  painting 
Here the Finnish sailing ship "Fedrelandene" ran aground during a violent storm on a February night in 1848
2 Herlaugshaugen
is a burial mound of a Viking King. It is the second largest burial mound in Norway, and the largest one containing a ship burial. The mound was created ca. 870 A.D. and was originally 12m high and  55m. in diameter Further there are about 160 stone barrows on Leka. mounds are to be found scattered about the island. 
The old legend of king Herlaug

3 Old Fortification and Caves
At the top  of mounts "Steinstind" and "Mannatind" there  have been found traces of old forts from the time of the great migrations (400-600 AD.) Smaller caves are to be seen in the area which were used by humans i.e. at Gutvik on the mainland and on Leka. Two of the best known are "Litj Bindalskjerka" and "Svartomnen", both in Gutvik.

"Lekamoeya" (The maid of Leka) is a steep peak at the south end of the island,  still used by fisherman as a landmark. 

5 Kvaloey

The place where the well known eagle snatch took place    
In 1932 an eagle snatched a three year old girl  named Svanhild Hartvigsen that dwelt at courtyard on the farm Soeraa and flew her to Mount Hagafjellet, a distance of several hundred meters. A search party discovered her some hours later on a narrow shelf in the face of the steep mountain. Her cloths bore the distinct marks of the eagle claws, but the child was not injured. The place marked on the mountain may be seen from the road and the whole affair is accounted "a miracle of Leka".

Push the picture

At the farm Soeraa there have been found a woman's burial place dating the Iron Age 



6 The Herlaug festival
In June every year the people of Leka along with the tourists celebrate the festival of King Herlaug. A theater group performs an open-air performance based on Snorres tales of the king. 
This performance alternates with another depicting the fate of the French ship "LÉnfant de la Patrie" which was wrecked on the shores of Gutvik in 1798. This is a true story about a French pirate ship and it's crew
The celebration lasts a week and includes different activities and events, among which are a fishing competition, cabaret theatre, children theater, march and exhibition.

Leka district museum
The museum was founded by Johannes Furre in 1961. To day contains the collection eleven boats and about  2000 other artifacts. You will find 2 of the cannons from the wreck of the French ship "L´Enfant de la Patrie". 
A small crofters museum may be seen at Gutvik on the mainland. This institution is the only one of it's kind to be seen in North-Troenderlag and displays the way of life of the agricultural population at about the year 1840 when the houses were built. 

8 Leka Church

The church is a long structure completed in 1867. The  Alter cabinet in the church is a valuable treasure from about year 1535 and of  Dutch  provenance. The myth tells it's gift from the Dutch princess, later queen Elisabeth, the wife of Christian II. The cabinet was loaned for exhibition to the "World Exhibition" in  Amsterdam in 1958. The church also contains five great Italian eighteenth century paintings which were "fortunately" rescued  when the church burned down in 1864.
9 The Camping

The Leka Motel and Camping a unique camping Ground that affords it's guests stone cabins for rent. It is a convenient starting point  from which to explore Leka's natural beauty as well as its culture. Guests may also rent fishing equipment and boats.
10 Diving
In addition to the wreck of "L´Enfant de la Patrie" other shipwrecks can be seen by divers in the ocean around Leka
11 The Skeisnesset Cultural Trail
The island has several cultural trails of varying lengths and degrees of difficulty, which are marked and posted with information beards. The area is of unique interest with historically, and geologically, and the trails meander along areas protected by regulating from damage to the ecology. Some of the trails are rather steep and / or rocky, while others are easy to navigate that they may be taken by wheelchair bound explorers or even by parents pushing baby carriage.
12 The Aardalstrands beach
                                Leka Beach

13 Yacht port 
The harbour
at Skei contains marina. On the site nearby the boat club bicycles may be rented for sightseeing and shower, laundering and kitchen facilities are available.

14 The old schoolhouse

15 Traces of the past  
In the mountain pass between Haug and Solsem, at a height of 90 meter above the sea level is it discovered rock remains from stone tool making. At the same place large amounts of charcoal are found indicating human habitation. These finds are above Solsem cave which may indicate that the site is even older. Since the flint are relative rare occurrence in the country it must have been brought here from the mainland.


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