Everyone knows more or less about the history of Vikings. What’s less known, is how they lived at that time. We went to the Ornavik historical park in Hérouville Saint Clair, to meet the Vikings and the Carolingian inhabitants who brought the village to life. In addition to discovering how they lived at the time, the experience was amazing. We tell you all about it…
The Carolingian village in Ornavik
As soon as you open the doors, you are immediately immersed in the surroundings. We have the impression of entering another world, because everything is different: the places, the people, the sound, and even the time. It’s as if we’ve stepped back in time ! To our right, a man in traditional clothing is feeding the camp’s attentive donkeys.
Next to the farm, we come across a large vegetable garden with flowers and medicinal plants, as well as agricultural crops! It’s at this point that we meet a resident who explains to us how agriculture and alternative medicine were managed in those days. It’s quite incredible! Even back then, we knew how to recognize plants, which often had particular virtues depending on the little aches and pains of the body. Nature is very well done.
A little further on, we meet the village carpenter, who is building tiles for the roofs of the houses. We then learn that all the houses in the village have been authentically reconstructed following archaeological excavations! And everything was done down to the smallest detail… By visiting the interior, you can even see the furniture and tableware used at that time. We then imagine ourselves in the life of the Carolingians…
The Viking campment in Ornavik
After discovering the Carolingian village, head to the Viking camp passing through the forest where more than 600 trees present in Normandy in the 10th century were planted! On the way, a noise calls out to us… As we arrive at the camp, we notice children equipped with helmets, shields and swords trying out the natural horn used by the Vikings!
In the Scandinavian camp set up near the water, we discover the Viking art of living! While the women weave carpets and clothes, the men forge weapons and everyday tools… A great opportunity for us to follow the activities and meet the camp’s craftsmen!
An immersive visit
The historical park offers two types of visit: a guided tour or an immersive visit as close as possible to the Vikings traditions.
More than a historical park, we quickly realize that Ornavik is a project brought to life by all its volunteers involved.
- The authentically reconstructed village
- The life of the park with its volunteers inhabitants
- The events organised all year long to fully five the experience