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Beautifully located fortress
In 1287 Count Jacob Nielsen began building a fortress at Vardberg in Halland in what was then Denmark. The north and south ranges and a connecting wall between them were built at this time. The structure was extended to form a castle during the fourteenth century, when the then Swedish-Norwegian king Magnus Eriksson sometimes stayed here. The Danish king Christian IV also lived in this castle.
In the sixteenth century the fortress was besieged several times and much of the original stronghold was destroyed. In the 1630s and 40s the fortress largely gained its present-day appearance.
In 1645 Halland became Swedish and the fortress ended up being in Sweden. In the eighteenth century it sometimes received funds for armaments, but it fell into disrepair in the nineteenth century, and in 1822 the fortress was removed from the list of Sweden's permanent defences. A few years later the city was allowed to take stones from the outer walls for use in building projects. The fortress was used as a prison from 1848 until 1880.
Today the fortress houses the Varberg County Museum, with its exhibition on the medieval bog man, the Bocksten Man, among others. The museum also organises guided tours of the fortress. At the Medieval Festival in July the entire fortress area swarms with medieval crowds, when knights and rope-makers, archers and many others gather together to go to market.