Harboeøre Tange – narrow strip of land

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The area called Harboeøre Tange used to be under water a thousand years ago and the Danish king Knud IV (Canute IV) gathered his fleet at this location during his attempts to reconquer England from the new ruler William I the Conqueror. He never managed to claim England for the Danish crown again and after these final attempts to regain the Danish North Sea Empire the Viking age was finally over in Denmark.

Geese at Harboeøre Tange

The water at this location was pretty shallow and the land was slowly rising. Due to the rising land several small islands slowly appeared above the surface of the sea. Over the years these small islands joined together to form a narrow strip of land which is now Harboeøre Tange. At the northern end of the strip of land you find a little body of water and a bit to the north of this water the same process was going on and another strip of land formed which is called Agger Tange. After a few centuries the two strips of land joined together. The land here was never really stable and during the frequent storms the land was sometimes flooded for a short period of time – but generally there was a land connection between Harboeøre Tange and Agger Tange from 1550 to 1825.

Battle of Jutland memorial

In 1825 the land was broken and a narrow canal was formed. During a few more storms the canal was expanded and a body of water appeared. At this northern end of Harboeøre Tange you find the small town of Thyborøn with a ferry connection to Agger Tange.

The snail shell house in Thyborøn

The area of Harboeøre Tange has a few attractions which makes it a possible destination for a daytrip if you are nearby. The main attractions are found in the town of Thyborøn which houses a couple of museums. You can go inside and learn about the naval warfare at the Sea War Museum in the city which focus of the history of the Battle of Jutland which took place at sea just off the coast of Thyborøn. There is also a memorial for the Battle of Jutland in Thyborøn. Other attractions in the small village are the little house called Sneglehuset, which is decorated with thousands of shells.

Chemical plant at Harboeøre Tange

Just south of Thyborøn you find a different kind of attraction. There is a large chemical plant and opposite the chemical plant you find one of the most polluted places in Denmark. The name Høfde 42 is well known in Denmark as the place where you used to dig down many tons of toxic chemicals in the 1950s. The beach is still toxic – but it does look like a very pretty beach. It would be an attractive beach if it wasn’t for the fact you are not allowed to swim or fish in the vicinity of Høfde 42 or Groyne 42 in English.

Windmills at Harboeøre Tange

You can actually catch one of the infrequent trains to both Thyborøn and Groyne 42 – so if you don’t have a car it is still possible to explore the area – you will just need a little extra time since there is only few trains.


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