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Gammelstad Church Town

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Address: 1 Kyrktorget, Lulea 954 33, Sweden
Phone Number:
+46 920 45 70 10
Description:

Of Sweden's 71 original church towns, only 16 are left today. The majority...

Of Sweden's 71 original church towns, only 16 are left today. The majority of these have been reduced to a remnant. Gammelstad has the country's largest and best preserved church town with 408 cottages comprising 553 rooms.

The church town presumably arose from a combination of several factors: the long distances, merchants' needs for storage and accommodation at the marketplace, the church stables and last but not least the population's duty to attend church regularly.

The oldest mention of Gammelstad Church Town is in Johannes Bureus' depiction of his visit here at Christmas 1600: "All farmers have their cottages near the church at a place they call The Hill". Unfortunately Bureus does not mention the age of the church town, but the first cottages were presumably built in the mid-16th century.

Gammelstad Church Town was put on the UNESCO World Heritage List on 7 December, 1996.The World Heritage Committee's reasoning was as follows:

"Gammelstad Church Town is a remarkable example of the traditional church town of northern Scandinavia. It admirably illustrates the adaptation of conventional urban design to the special geographical and climatic conditions of a hostile natural environment."

The World Heritage area includes the church itself, surrounded by the Church Town, the well-to-do areas, the public buildings and certain sections of the more recent permanent buildings.The church town tradition, i.E. The custom of spending the night in church cottages in connection with church weekends, was a decisive factor for conferring world heritage status.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

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Well worth a visit

A small village which is a Unesco world heritage site just outside Lelua, beautiful in summer or winter more so the latter, there is a christmas /Winter market there that is well... read more

4 of 5 bubblesReviewed 2 weeks ago
ocbears
,
Cork, Ireland, Europe
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220 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 89: English reviews
Cork, Ireland, Europe
Level Contributor
10 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago

A small village which is a Unesco world heritage site just outside Lelua, beautiful in summer or winter more so the latter, there is a christmas /Winter market there that is well worth a visit!

Helpful?
Thank ocbears
Lulea, Sweden
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 weeks ago

You can feel the old Swedish history at this lovelly place. Old small buildings to see that also is on the list of world heritage. Very old and nice fine church to visit. Take your time, have a cup of coffe and just feel the good atmosphere.

Helpful?
Thank kristinanilsson1
Hannover, Germany
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 12, 2016

Gammelstad Church Town is just outside of downtown Luleå and reachable by a couple of minutes drive from the city center. The Church Town itself consists of plenty of small cottages and cabins along several roads. Most of them painted red (the cottages, that is). There is a museum close to the church which informs about the history of the... More 

Helpful?
Thank A K
Holland, Michigan
Level Contributor
59 reviews
24 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 12, 2016

This church from 1492 is impressive and well preserved. The Gammelstad Church Town is a UNESCO World Heritage site. The stone church is surrounded by 400 quaint cottages that were used for people to stay in who traveled to the church and festivals. We found it interesting and a great place to walk around. We took a city bus from... More 

Helpful?
Thank bobbinrobin41
Jamshedpur, India
2 reviews
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 26, 2016

Nice place with quiet atmosphere. Most of the houses were found to be empty. There is a small shop from where one can purchase souvenirs.

Helpful?
Thank erjonynita
Gavle, Sweden
Level Contributor
28 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 17, 2016

The whole town has an interesting history. We visited the tourist center to get some information and then the church which has a very interesting history. Everything is within walking distance.

Helpful?
Thank kamptz
Yogyakarta, Indonesia
Level Contributor
23 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 13, 2016

It is an unique experience to discover thi sold village that speaks for itself. The solid church and the small cabins. I love dthe shop with Lappish handicrafts, I coul dhave stayed there much llonger. The cafee already closed and I hoped for a solid Raindeer meal, but may be next time. Althoiugh the cabins where small, at least it... More 

Helpful?
Thank tyraus
Germany
Level Contributor
192 reviews
62 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 89 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 10, 2016

This is a fascinating place and well worth a detour! You are free to wander around the little cottages, and there are some shops and a cafe, too (although with limited opening hours). If you visit on a Saturday afternoon, the church may be in constant use by weddings - I didn't manage to see the inside when I was... More 

Helpful?
Thank sebhoff
Karlsruhe, Germany
Level Contributor
46 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 25, 2016

It's a really nice place for taking an afternoon walk, just don't expect too much. There are beautiful old houses, a garden, playground, .... But everything was quite deserted when we were there. All places (except the tourist office) were closed, no cafés there or anything. Still it's a nice and relaxed atmosphere for spending some time, when there is... More 

Helpful?
Thank SKA_X917
Vaasa, Finland
Level Contributor
30 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 26, 2016

The Gammelstad of Luleå is a nice place to visit but as i was visiting the place in the late afternoon there really were no services available. A cup of coffee and an ice cream in the old town would've been nice to have.

Helpful?
Thank wstraveller

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