History of Varberg

The Fortress is a landmark for the town. The magnificant building is amazing. The town has an interesting history. The sea has always played an important role for the town. Both as a shelter for danish enemies, as a health resort, beautiful beaches and famous windsurfingattractions.

Varberg castle was built in about 1300 on the cliff by the sea. Just a few years later the site became the location for the town of Getakärr. During the Middle Ages in Europe it was common for towns to grow up around castles. 

In the late 14th century Getakärr took on the name of Varberg.
It is interesting to note that Varberg is the town in Scandinavia that has moved on most occasions. Around 1400 the town of Ny Varberg was established six kilometres north of the present town as the residents of the town no longer wanted to be so dependent on the castle.

The war between Sweden and Denmark in the 17th century caused the town to be moved on two further occasions, now adjacent to the castle that had been expanded into a fortress. At this time fortresses were being built throughout Europe to defend against the new weapon: the cannon. The fortress is still here and is one of the largest in Sweden. The province of Halland, where Varberg is situated, was primarily Danish until 1645, but as a result of the war became Swedish from that year on.

Varberg was quite small, but it was the most important town in North Halland. In the 19th century the town’s economy was supplemented with a health resort The main activities were swimming in the sea and baths and treatments in hot baths. The cold bathhouse dating from 1903 and the hot bathhouse from 1925 are still in use alongside modern new facilities. Varberg is probably the town in Sweden that has the strongest health resort traditions.

Open-air bathing in the sea started in earnest during the early 1900s and since then has been of great importance in the town. Large numbers of people have come on holiday and have also built weekend cottages close to the sea. There is probably not such a varied range of both sandy and rocky beaches anywhere else in Sweden. The separate nudist beaches for women and men are much appreciated.

Industrialisation started in the late 1800s. The bicycle industry rapidly established itself as the leading sector. Sweden’s largest bicycle manufacturer, Monark/Crescent, now owned by Cycleurope, still has its manufacturing base in Varberg. During the 1970s a large paper mill and an extensive nuclear power plant were established about 25 kilometres north of Varberg.

In recent years Varberg has grown substantially and is today a medium-size Swedish town with commerce and tourism as the predominant industries. There is a relatively large port with ferry connections to Denmark. The town centre is still characterised by its small scale with the square and its market on Saturdays constituting the town’s natural centre.

There you have Varberg´s history in short!
Today the town is known for its small companies that has grown to big international industries. Most known is the shoebusiness. Many of the companies still have their headquarter in Varberg. The windsurfing is popular for its great waves. 2008 opened a surfcentre with the device; everyone should have a taste of Hawaii.

Sidan uppdaterad 4/14/2015