The Rundetårn is a round tower which was built by Christian IV between 1637 and 1642 which is part of the Trinitatis Complex, a single building, which has a church, library and an observatory. The tower was once the highest point in Copenhagen. It towered most of the rooftops, thus making its observatory a great venue for astronomers to study the stars and planets. The platform outside the observatory also gives you a bird’s eye view of the old Latin Quarter –where most of the city’s famous buildings are located.
There is no elevator in the tower, so all the visitors must climb the winding, 209 meter spiral walk which is unique in European architecture. This distance is 7.5 times of the hollow core of the tower, which was formerly the only connection between the other parts of the complex. At the middle of the tower you will find the entrance to the magnificent Library Hall, which opened in 1657. It once housed thousands of books, which are now in the libraries of old universities in the city. The library was restored in 1987 and now, it is an area where you can hold exhibits and concerts.
Above the library is the Bell Loft, which is famous for its large wooden beams. In the past it was rented out for different purposes. At one point, it was used to dry laundry and store dried herbs, tanned hides, theatre sets and feathers for fine clothes and hats of ladies from high society. In 1880 it became a peasant museum which later on became the Open Air Museum in 1901. It now houses artefacts from the Tower’s history including Christian IV’s wax seal, the big clock from 1731, a tin of medicine produced by Tycho Brahe and a piece of the bomb that exploded in the Library Hall in 1807.
Visit www.rundetaarn.dk for more information.
Image from Bjørn Giesenbauer