Of all the over 250 castles in Skane (Southern Sweden,) the one with the biggest boasting rights is probably Malmohus Slott in Malmo. According to malmo.se, this castle is “the oldest remaining renaissance castle in Scandinavia.” That is quite something when you think about it. They are not counting just the 350+ castles in all of Sweden; they are counting all the castles in Sweden, Denmark, and Norway. Malmohus is the oldest still standing. Wow. That alone makes it worth adding to your travel plans.
Malmo is the third largest city in Sweden. Being right next to the college town of Lund and just across the Oresund from Copenhagen makes it one of the main tourist destinations. It has the highest concentration of restaurants in the country, along with fantastic shopping, dining, and cultural events. Malmo is a city you will want to visit on your trip to Sweden, so go ahead and stop into Malmohus Slott while you’re there even if you are not a castle freak like me.
In 1434, this place was first built as a citadel. It was the project of Eric of Pomerania, and reached completion as a castle in the 16th Century. During the 16th and 17th centuries it housed the Danish royal families. Mary Queen of Scots was imprisoned in Malmohus for several years around the 1570s. When Sweden won the war for control of Skane in 1658-ish, the castle became mainly a prison as it was no longer needed as a military fortress.
In 1937, Malmohus Slott was opened up to the public and turned into a museum. Now, from the sky this castle is very impressive. It is impressive from the ground also, but not as much. the massive moat is in tact, which is just very cool in its own right, but the only wall that still looks to be original is the outer wall facing the free public parking lot. The rest of the outer walls had a very modern look to me, which was a bit disappointing. I am guessing the castle fell to disrepair during its days as a prison and when it was restored for a museum, well, it just looks like it was restored, yanno? I mean there are bits and pieces of the glorious Middle Ages everywhere, but the full effect has sadly somehow been lost.
As to the inside of the castle, that is a whole ‘nother ballgame. They spared no expense on this museum aspect. The rooms are grand and elegant with all manner of relic. the Medieval Rooms area is home to a huge archaeological collection dating to the ice age. There is an aquarium in one area of the castle with lots of frogs, eels, and what-have-you indigenous to the Skane region. Pretty cool, that.
The area termed the Governor’s House is the educational center of the castle complex. Here children can try on viking outfits and learn about the rich history of the area. They can even get involved in role-playing events with the Zenit Program.
There is a nice sized cafe inside the Malmohus courtyard with very good food at reasonable prices. You can serve yourself at the counter and sit outside in the courtyard or at the tables inside… or go in and then out through the other door and be served at your table. This is also where you will find the Water Closet (toilet) if you need it.
Admission to Malmohus Slott is a mere 40SEK for adults, and 10SEK (buck 25) for kids 7-15. This castle is open year round.
Whether you are visiting Sweden on vacation or live here full time, Malmohus Slott is one castle that is so rich in the region’s history that you would be remiss to not stop in. This castle really does have a little bit of something for everyone, even if it is not the coolest castle in Sweden to snap photos of.