Viking Island Marathon

20 May 2023

7-Day Package

Take a couple of days to explore Denmark's capital Copenhagen and let us sort the transportation to and from the rocky island Bornholm for you.
16-22 May
7 days
1 090 EUR

If you haven't had the chance to visit the Danish capital yet, we highly recomment this 7-day package where you will be able to see the highlights in and around Copenhagen, as well as enjoy a handful of days at the marathon destination. 

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. 

English

Itinerary

The itinerary is detailed below. This is what you'll be doing during your stay!

16 May 2023Arrival in Copenhagen - Optional Running Tour

Today you will arrive in charming Copenhagen and get a couple of days to explore the capital before going to Bornholm.

From the airport arrival terminal it is easy to make your way to Copenhagen Central station with train - running every 10 minutes - and from the Central station you only have a 5 minutes walk to the Best Western Hebron Hotel, which will be your home for the next two nights.

You have the opportunity to book a late-afternoon running sightseeing tour through the beautiful city of Copenhagen. Our local running guide will take us from the hotel on an 8km tour through the historical streets of the Danish capital. Please see Package Add-ons for more details. 

In the evening you are free to enjoy the city as you please.

No meals included

17 May 2023Copenhagen - Optional excursion

Spend the day exploring Copenhagen at your own pace with a stroll around the cosy streets or rent a bike from the hotel. Visit Tivoli Gardens or take a guided canal boat tour. The options are plentiful.

You can also book our optional excursion and visit some of Denmark's most prominent castles and the former capital of Denmark, Roskilde. First we visit Kronborg Castle - immortalized by Shakespeare’s play Hamlet and is often referred to as Hamlet’s Castle. We then continue to Frederiksborg Castle - the largest Rennaisance castle in Scandinavia surrounded by a picturesque lake and elegant gardens. In Roskilde we visit the Viking Ship Museum and the UNESCO World Heritage site Roskilde Cathedral. See more under Package-add-ons.

We finish our tour back in Copenhagen in the late afternoon where you will be able to enjoy the evening at your leisure.

Meals: Breakfast

18 May 2023Welcome to Bornholm - Hammershus castle ruins

After breakfast our bus will pick us up at the hotel and take us to Bornholm. The ferry departs from Ystad in Sweden, so we will also cross the Öresunds bridge linking Denmark and Sweden together. The ferry from Ystad to Bornholm is roughly an 80 minutes' sail. The ferry has a restaurant and a café with various options for food and drinks.

The ferry docks in Rønne. In Bornholm you can choose to stay either at the Griffen Spa Hotel in Rønne or Hotel Skovly just north of Rønne. See more details under Accommodation.

After checking in and settling in to our rooms we will jump back on the bus and go to Hammershus - the largest medieval castle ruins in Northern Europe. Our tour leader will tell us about the history of this dramatic place 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. 

Meals: Breakfast & dinner

19 May 2023Bornholm - Optional excursion to market towns

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 2023Race Day

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 2023Optional 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 gather for a festive celebration dinner.

Meals: Breakfast & dinner

22 May 2023Goodbye Bornholm

Sadly, it is time to say farewell to Bornholm.

After an early breakfast, we will board the bus that will drive us back to Copenhagen. Guests are responsible for their own flights home from Copenhagen.

Meals: Breakfast

Excursions

Running Copenhagen

16 May | 1.5 hours | 45 EUR
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We've arranged a specially-crafted running tour for Marathon on the Rocks participants that you can book if you would like some sightseeing in Copenhagen and to stretch your legs before heading off to Bornholm. The relatively short distances, the fantastic sights, and the vibe of the city makes it perfect for sightseeing while running. The tour departs at 17:00 from Rådhuspladsen (City Hall Square). From the statue of world famous storyteller H.C. Andersen, we will head towards the main sights in Copenhagen including the Parliament, the Queen’s castle and the Little Mermaid.

The route has been planned with the beautiful scenery of Copenhagen in mind and we will be running along the canals and the harbour as well as through some of Copenhagen’s many parks. We keep our tours very informal and run only in smaller groups, so there is plenty of time to ask questions about the sights, places, or people that we pass, or any other questions that you may have during the tour. The pace will be adjusted according to overall level of the participants, but you should expect between 5-6 minutes per kilometer. 

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Castles, Vikings and Royal Tombs

17 May | 8 hours | 140 EUR
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Those of you who would like to learn more about the history of Denmark will visit two of the most reputable castles not only in Denmark, but in all of Scandinavia. The tour will also include a visit to the former capital Roskilde. After an early breakfast at your hotel, you will get on a bus towards Kronborg in Helsingør it will depart at 9:30 so please be sure to be ready by then.

Our first stop will be Kronborg Castle. Kronborg Castle has been around since the 1420s and is one of the finest Renaissance castles in Northern Europe. Kronborg was immortalized by Shakespeare’s play Hamlet and is often referred to as Hamlet’s Castle. The castle’s strategic position at the entrance to Øresund meant the king was able to keep track of all ships passing into the Baltic Sea. For 400 years, the castle was the headquarter for the collection of the Øresund dues.

Underneath the castle, you will find the casemates - damp passages used for protection during times of war. These underground passages had room for soldiers and their horses, and had provision to feed 350 men for up to 6 weeks. Another treasure lying under the castle is Holger Danske, an impressive stone statue. Holger Danske is a mythical hero in Danish culture, according to the legend, he has been sleeping for hundreds of years and will only wake up to defend Denmark if she is ever under attack.

For our second stop, we will head towards Hillerød. Here, in Castle Lake, we will find Frederiksborg Castle sitting on three islets surrounded by a lake and spectacular Baroque gardens. The castle was built in the early 17th century by King Christian IV, it is the largest Renaissance castle in Scandinavia. The aim of the castle was to enhance Christian IV's status as a powerful European monarch. After a big fire broke out in 1859, the castle was rebuilt by J.C. Jacobsen, founder of Carlsberg. Since 1878, the castle has housed the Museum of National History. The museum presents 500 years of Danish history illustrated through portraits, paintings, furniture, sculptures and decorative arts.

Our last stop is in the former capital of Denmark, Roskilde, where we both visit the Viking Ship Museum and Roskilde Cathedral.
Roskilde Cathedral is the most important church in Scandinavia and a UNESCO World Heritage site. The oldest parts of the church date from the late 1100’s and it is the only building in the world with that many kings and queens buried in it. In total, 39 kings and queens are buried in the cathedral. You will see their tombs and burial monuments everywhere.

The Viking Ship Museum contains five original viking ships from the 11th century. There is also a boatyard and lots of rebuilt models of the old ships. It is a museum of shipbuilding and seafaring in the Viking era.
The five ships displayed in the Viking Ship Museum were sunk around the year 1070. They were originally built between 1024 and 1040. This has been established by studying the rings of the wood from the ships. It has also been established that the ships were built in Ireland, Norway and Denmark. This underlines the size of the Viking empire.

Please note that lunch is not included in the excursion, but the tour is planned to give you time to buy lunch at a local in-expensive café near one of the sights. 

After our busy day learning all about Danish history and culture, we will head back to Copenhagen where you will have the evening to relax before we depart for Bornholm the next morning.

  • About the Tour

    Duration: 8 hours

    Time: 9:30

    Inclusions:

    - Transportation to all sights
    - English speaking guide
    - Entrance to Frederiksborg and Kronborg Castle, Roskilde Cathedral and The Viking Ship Museum

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Svaneke, Gudhjem & Sanctuary Cliffs

19 May | 6 hours | 60 EUR
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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

    Time: 09:00

    Inclusions:

    - Bus transportation
    - Local guide

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In the footsteps of the Bornholm Vikings

21 May | 6 hours | 75 EUR
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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

    Departures: 09:00 

    Inclusion

    - Bus transportation
    - Local guide
    - Lunch (beverages at own cost)

     

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Extensions

Svalbard - Last stop before the North Pole

1-8 Jun | 8 days | 6 590 USD
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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.

For the detailed itinerary, ship information, deck plans, prices and more please go to:
Svalbard - Last stop before the North Pole | Albatros Expeditions

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Price information

Prices

All prices are per person in EUR.

Best Western Hotel Hebron & Hotel Skovly
Shared double room: 1090 EUR
Single room supplement: 450 EUR
 

Best Western Hotel Hebron & Griffen Spahotel
Standard room at Griffen:
Shared double room: 1290 EUR
Single room supplement: 500 EUR

Sea View room at Griffen:
Shared double room: 1415 EUR
Single room supplement: 625 EUR 

Inclusions

  • 2 nights accommodation at Best Western Hotel Hebron
  • 4 nights accomodation at chosen hotel on Bornholm
  • Bus Copenhagen - Bornholm - Copenhagen
  • Daily breakfast
  • Burger lunch and one beer or soft drink at the finish area day 5
  • Dinner Day 3, 4 & 5
  • Celebration dinner Day 6

Exclusions

  • Race entry
  • Optional excursions
  • Travel and health insurance 
  • Meals not stated in the itinerary 
  • Beverages
  • Personal expenses
  • Anything not mentioned under 'Inclusions'

Race Entry

Marathon or Half-Marathon:

150 EUR:

Race entry includes: 

  • English-speaking race officials
  • English-speaking medical team from Denmark
  • Timing and results
  • Medal
  • 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)

Pre- and post night in Copenhagen

It is possible to add an extra night in Copenhagen before and/or after the 7-day itinerary. Extra nights will also be at the Best Western Hotel Hebron.
Prices pr. person pr. night in euros:

Best Western Hotel Hebron - Optional extra night
Shared doble room: 100 EUR
Single room supplement: 65 EUR

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.

Refer to our Terms & Conditions for further information.

Important Info

Questions about Bornholm or Denmark?

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. 

Book this package

You will be taken to our booking site where you can complete your booking.