The Bragdøya estate covers some 230 acres and includes the smaller islands Timlingene, Svensholmen, Blomsterøya (Island of flowers), Langøya, Ragnhildsholmen and Hestehaue (Horsehead). The whole island is a public recreation area, lying in Byfjorden right outside Kristiansand.
A summer house for the Thaulow family In 1768 the city registrar Henrik Arnold Thaulow bought Bragdøya. He built the present Thaulow's House around 1770 on the site of a one Storey under a Stone Roof. His purchase of Bragdøya was, in accordance with the ideas and fashions of the time; the Age of Enlightenment combining a belief in progress with a Romantic enthushiasm for Nature. Bragdøya was Kristiansand's first summerhouse, a retreat from the bustle of town life for the Thaulow family and their distinguested guests.
Near the house and the remains of the farm there are still traces of the original gardens that made Bragdøya such a lush and attractiv eplace. Alle the old farm bulidings were demolished around 1970, and by the end of the next decade the main building was so decrepid that it almost subsided. However, thanks to bold and resolute rescue operation from voluntares, the house was saved for proseperity. Thaulow's house was declared a heritage monument in Culture Heritage Year 1997, whereupon Kristiansand municipality pledged that it would restore the house to its former glory.
Mackerel and the Gerrard family
After a period with frequent changes of ownership, the Gerrard family took over in 1914. The family company had worldwide business interests which involved selling dried fish to ships. The two warehouses were erected in 1915. We now call the one to the east for Saltebua, or Salting shed, while the one to the west is called Verkstedbua or Workshop.
The Gerrard family built the two-storey Villa in the popular Swiss style in 1920. It was uses as a summer residence until 1886. It now houses a group of Kristiansand artists aim to use the island for courses, seminars, exhibitions and other activities. From private residence to public recreation In 1969 Bragdøya was sold to Kristiansand. The state subsididised the purchase in order to secure the island for the public in perpeuity.
Bragdøya Coastal Heritage Centre
The warehouses have become one of Norway's finest centres for activities connected to seafaring and coastal life. Bragdøya kystlag has become the largest in Norway, with a fleet of 25 small craft, one troll vessel, two fishing smacks and the pilot boat Dagmar. In the Salting Room there is now a permanet exhibition of the history of mackerel fishing and these roomes have become a popular venue for concerts and other events. Some buildings have been added the Coastal Heritage Centre in modern time: Småbåtbua for small craft, Motorbua, and Sanitæranlegget with a water closet and showers for visitors.
As part of the recultivation plans, large parts of the island have been given over to wild sheep to graze.
Numerous voluntary bodies are engaged in the upkeep of Bragdøya. The voluntary body Bragdøya kystlag have the permanent activity at the island. Bragdøya kystlag is in addition responsible for the upkeep of Grønningen lighthouse. Bragdøya organizes maritime ecotourism, and will help you hire traditional rowing boats or sailing boarts or arrange for you to stay overnight in lighthouses or other accomodation – basic but exotic!
How to get there
The boat to Bragdøya leaves from Auglandsbukta.
Boat departure times here.
Take the bus M1 or M2 in direction west. The trip takes about 10 minutes from town centre.
For more information, please contact Bragdøya kystlag.
Phone +47 38085566 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org