Originally built in the 13th century by Norway’s King Håkon Håkonsson as a stone wall to protect the community’s wooden homes from fire and enemy attacks, by the 1600s Bergenhus had become a fortress to be reckoned with. Today, the oldest surviving building is Håkon's Hall, which served as the royal residence in the Middle Ages. During World War II, Bergenhus was used as the local headquarters of the occupying German forces.
By Heidi Sarna, AFAR Local Expert
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