Like all Albatros Adventure Marathons the Viking Island Marathon is designed to be more than just a race. It's also about enjoying time together with family, friends and other running-minded spirits. Spectators welcome!
In order to register for the Viking Island Marathon, you must sign up for one of the tour packages.
The Viking Island Marathon takes place on the Danish island of Bornholm. Runners will enjoy a true trail run overlooking the Baltic Sea along the edge of dramatic coastal cliffs.
The itinerary is detailed below. This is what you'll be doing during your stay!
18 May 2023
Welcome to Bornholm - Hammershus castle ruins
This package does not include transportation to Bornholm, so today you can travel to Bornholm in a number of ways depending on what suits you better. See under "Important information" for details and links on how to get to Bornholm.
At 15:30 all participants go by bus to Hammershus - the largest medieval castle ruins in Northern Europe. Our tour leader will tell us about the history of this historic site and you will have time to walk around this dramatic place in your own pace. Following the visit to Hammershus we go for dinner and the race officials will give a briefing about Saturday's race and what to expect and pay attention to.
Note: If you arrive to your chosen hotel later than 15:30 you will miss the included tour and dinner.
19 May 2023
Explore Bornholm - excursion option
The day before race day can be spent in your own pace, for instance by renting a bike to get around. You can also book the optional excursion that will take you to the opposite side of the island to see some of Denmark's most beautiful and charming market towns.
The tour starts in Svaneke - awarded the title of Denmark's most beautiful town in 2013. The city center consists almost entirely of half-timbered houses and strict regulations on renovation ensures that the houses still looks very much as they did when constructed some 200 years ago. Next stop is Gudhjem - the only town upon a hill in Denmark and the start place for the marathon runners tomorrow. Last stop on our tour will be the Sanctuary Cliffs - the most dramatic and picturesque cliffs on Bornholm.
We should be back at the hotel by the early evening, just in time to relax a bit before dinner-time.
Meals: Breakfast & dinner
20 May 2023
Today is the big day! You will enjoy an early breakfast at your hotel before we take the bus to the start. If you are doing the marathon, then you should be on the bus in time for the 6:45 departure to the start line. The marathon will start at 8:00 from Gudhjem.
For those doing the half-marathon, the bus will depart at 8:00 in time for the half-marathon start at 9:00.
You will get the chance to run along the northern coast of Bornholm through forests, beaches and cliffs overlooking the Baltic Sea.
Meals: Breakfast, burger lunch in the Finish Area & dinner
21 May 2023
Optional excursion and celebration dinner
A day to explore more of Bornholm either at your own pace or on the optional tour that follows in the footsteps of the vicious vikings that once inhabited Bornholm.
In the evening we all meet for a festive celebration dinner.
22 May 2023
Our stay in Bornholm is over. Just as for arrival there's various options of how to leave the island again.
In the footsteps of the Bornholm Vikings
21 May | 6 hours | 75 EUR
Numerous gold- and silver treasures have been found in the ground on Bornholm - actually more treasures than anywhere else in the Baltic Sea region. This indicates that the inhabitants of this island throughout time have been skilled merchants and not least fierce raiders, who obviously needed to defend and hide their riches. The vikings of Bornholm had a reputation of being inhospitable, and fearless swordsmen from whom it was best to stay away.
We start our excursion today a little longer back in time though. Our first stop will be at the famous petroglyphs on Madsebakke in Allinge. These rock carvings of ships and sun signs dating back approximately 5000 years clearly show the importance and development of navigation thousands of years before the viking ages.
From Madsebakke we jump to the end of the viking ages, as our next stop will be at Østerlars round church. It is the largest and most famous of Bornholm's four round churches and most likely the oldest of them with experts believing it was constructed around year 1050, roughly 100 years after the great viking king Harald Bluetooth, who united the Danish Kingdom, had introduced Christianity. The round churches also functioned as fortifications with parapets, which was only covered by the present day cone roofs some 500 years later. At Østerlars we can also see two runic stones indicating that Østerlars was indeed constructed by the vikings as a fortress before it also became a church.
Our next stop is in Risen Forest, which has an impressive profusion of flowers in the spring. Here we find Bornholms best kept viking graves with more than 10 excavated "stone coffins" - raised flat rocks indicating the burial site. The area also holds menhirs.
Given the fact that there was a marathon and half marathon on yesterday it must be assumed that most of us by this time think more about or stomachs than about vikings... Hence we drive to the nearby Fru Petersens Café where we have a lunch reservation. At Fru Petersens there will be amble opportunity to re-fuel on one of the two buffets offered - a classic Danish lunch buffet or the big cake buffet. The lunch is included* in the excursion, but you can only eat from one of the buffet's, no mixing, so choose carefully before you start. *Beverages at own expense.
With full stomachs we head for the last stop of our excursion - Almindingen, Bornholms largest forest. Here we find Lilleborg and Gamleborg. Remnants of two viking strongholds. Gamleborg dates back to year 750 and with its position in the middle of the island it is assumed that it was initially meant as a place of refuge in case of invasion. Later findings on the site, however, suggests that the place, for a period of time, was the site of the islands main castle and the seat of the local king. Written sources documents that Bornholm had its own king in the late 800's and early 900's until it was subordinated to the Danish Kingdom by Harald Bluetooth during the second half of the 900's. Gamleborg was abandoned and substituted by a smaller, but much better castle - Lilleborg. Located on a 16 meter high cliff and surrounded by water it functioned as the seat of the bailiff. In a dispute with the church in the 13th century, however, the church was destroyed by the Archbishop, but the ruins are fairly well-kept and idyllicly surrounded by lake and forest.
We will be back at our hotel in the afternoon and will have some hours to relax before going for the celebration dinner later this evening.
About the Tour
Duration: 6 hours
- Bus transportation - Local guide - Lunch (beverages at own cost)
Svaneke, Gudhjem & Sanctuary Cliffs
19 May | 6 hours | 60 EUR
Today you will get the chance to discover some of the most noteworthy places on the island - the market towns of Gudhjem and Svaneke and the dramatic Sanctuary cliffs.
Svaneke is a small fishing village on the north-eastern coast of Bornholm. It is filled with small, half-timbered houses and winding lanes leading to the harbour. Our tour leader will take us on a guided tour around the town and afterwards there will be time to explore more areas on your own.
Next we will move onto Gudhjem - one of the most popular summer spots on the island. A typical dish from Bornholm, called “Sol over Gudhjem,” is originally from this town. As any proper Danish dish, it of course has herring in it. This charming village lined with colourful homes along the Baltic Sea is definitely worth the visit. You will have time to buy lunch at the local smoke house and why not treat yourself with an ice cream from one of the famous ice cream shops on the harbour. Keep in mind that Bornholm has a flourishing culinary scene so we highly recommend you enjoy the local specialties.
Our final stop is the the Sanctuary Cliffs (or Helligdomsklipperne in Danish). Situated along the coast between Gudhjem and Tejn they are considered to be one of the most important landmarks not only of Bornholm, but in the whole of Denmark. Asides from the stunning views it will also give you an insight in what to prepare for in tomorrows race, as the marathon route runs right by here using the same narrow trails as we walk today.
We will be back at the hotel in the late afternoon, so there will be time to relax a bit before dinner.
About the Tour
Duration: 6 hours
- Bus transportation - Local guide
Svalbard - Last stop before the North Pole
1-8 Jun | 8 days | 6 590 USD
This extension tour is not directly in connection to the Viking Island Marathon itinerary. Starting only 10 days after the conclusion of your visit to Bornholm this extension caters for those who are planning a longer stay in Scandinavia all together. However, with a brand new ship - the Ocean Albatros - sailing its innaugural cruise, this is a splendid opportunity to visit one of the most remote corners of the world and still enjoy comfort and luxury while onboard the ship.
During the short summer, wildlife such as reindeer and polar fox are busy amassing energy for the icy polar winter. The cliffs shimmer with life as every surface is populated with countless birds, and in a few months a new generation of arctic sea birds is ready to leave their nests. Arctic guillemots, black guillemots and razorbills can be observed fishing in the wake of our ship. On several shores, the huge walruses enjoy the short Arctic summer as well as many whales and seals foraging along the edge of the pack ice and the coasts.
With a fleet of sturdy Zodiac boats, we are able to view wildlife at close proximity. The Zodiacs allow us to have frequent shore landings and embark on exploratory mini cruises in the fjords and glacial landscapes.
BBQ snacks and one beer or soft drink at the finish line
Transportation to and from Bornholm
Travel and health insurance
Meals not stated in the itinerary
Anything not mentioned under 'Inclusions'
Marathon or Half-Marathon:
Race entry includes:
English-speaking race officials
English-speaking medical team from Denmark
Timing and results
Craft Runners T-shirt
Manned water and energy drink stations along the route
Collapsible cup for hydration
Transportation to start area in Gudhjem (42.2 km) or Hammershus (21.1 km)
Booking and Payment
The booking of a trip is binding for both customer and travel agency once the deposit (25% of the total trip price) has been paid at the time of booking on the booking.albatros-adventure.com website. The remaining amount, 75% of the total trip price, will be charged to the customer’s payment card as provided by the customer, 75 days before trip departure. Bookings made later than 75 days prior will require full payment immediately.
The email sent to the customer upon booking a trip acts as the booking confirmation. It is therefore of vital importance that the customer provides a valid email address.
The 5-day tour package is excluding transportation to Bornholm meaning you can choose the means of transportation and point of departure that suits you best.
Going with Albatros If you prefer to be on the same bus as the participants on the 7-day package and let us arrange the transportation you can of course book a seat on the marathon bus between Copenhagen and Bornholm. The cost is EUR 100 pr. person. The bus departs from Best Western Hotel Hebron at 08:00 Thursday the 18th of May. On Monday 22nd of May the bus will stop both at Copenhagen Airport with expected arrival at 13:00 and at Best Western Hotel Hebron with expected arrival at 13:30. Adding the Albatros bus transportation to your booking is done in the online registration form.
Going with regular coach service Regular bus service is also running to Bornholm via the ferry from Ystad, Sweden. Choose between 8 departures to Rønne, Bornholm on the 18th of May and 6 departures from Rønne, Bornholm on the 22nd of May. Regular coach tickets can be booked here: KOMBARDO EXPRESSEN Note the site is only in Danish, but your browser may support translation. Also pay attention to the departures marked as "Shuttle" - this means the bus from main land Denmark will not drive on to the ferry, but instead drop you off at the harbour in Ystad and you will have to walk on board the ferry. The regular coach service always end and start on the harbour in Rønne and does not drop off or pick up at other places in Bornholm. Thus it is your own responsibility to get to/from the hotel from/to the bus drop off/start point in the harbour of Rønne.
Flying to Bornholm Danish airline company DAT fly 8 times a day between Copenhagen and Rønne on week days. Tickets can be booked directly on their website: DAT Getting from/to the airport to/from your hotel in Bornholm is your own responsibility. Taxis and regular bus service is available. Read more on Rønne Airports website here
Self-drive It is also possible to bring your own (or a rental) car to Bornholm. Ferries depart from Ystad in Sweden, Køge in Denmark and Sassnitz in Germany. Time tables and booking are done online on BORNHOLMSLINJEN
Questions about Denmark or Bornholm?
For information on visas, currency, electricity, and more, please check our Destination Guide page.
For information on weather and clothing, please check the our Climate & Weather page.
If you're curious about the destinations that we'll be visiting or other background information on Denmark, you can read all about it on our Travel Destination page.