Thyborønfæstningen - Thyborøn - Denmark

Address: Situated along the coast of Thyborøn (See map)
Telephone: no telephone
Website: not available

Shop: no shop present
Restaurant/refreshments: not available
Size of the museum/site: large
Year of visit: 2005
Overall rating:

Description: When you mention the Atlantik Wall, most people immediately think of the beaches of Normandy. And rightly so, because that's where the 'real business' was done during D-Day, that's where the Wall was breached, and that's where the liberation of Europe started. But the Atlantik Wall covered a far larger area than just Normandy: it ran from the shores of southern France through Belgium and The Netherlands via north-west Germany and Denmark all the way up along the coast of Norway. There are quite a few interesting lesser-known parts of the Wall outside Normandy that can still be visited today. Thyborønfæstningen is one of these places.

A quick glance at a map of Denmark shows why the Germans wanted to built strong defensive positions here: Thyborøn overlooks the entrance of the Limfjord, which splits northern Denmark in two parts, giving access to Denmark's inland and at the same time connecting the North Sea with the Kattegat and the Baltic Sea.

The dozens of bunkers scattered along the coast show the Germans weren't joking around when they organised "Stützpunktgruppe Thyborön". The bunkers are of different types and sizes. Some were used as gun-positions (including "FLAK" anti-aircraft guns), others as ammunition depots, observation posts, or simply as shelters for the men. As the allies decided to focus their full attention on the beaches of Normandy and the Mediterranean and recapture Western Europe over land from thereon, the bunkers at Thyborøn didn't see any action.

Visitors can wander around the bunkers by themselves in this large unmanned 'open-air museum'. Although a lot of the bunkers are inaccessible nowadays (either because they sank partly in the sand or simply because they are locked), quite a few can be entered. Be warned that it's pitch dark inside the bunkers, so bring a torch if you want to explore them (don't be a fool like us, hopelessly trying to find the way by the light coming of the small screen of a mobile phone and the occasional flash from a photo camera)!!!

Although it is great to walk around the bunkers at your own account, there is a total lack of explanation/information about what those giant concrete things are and why they were built... a missed chance to really do justice to the historical value of this unique site.

You can combine Thyborønfæstningen with a visit to the Bunkermuseum in nearby Rom (stopping for a couple of beers in Lemvig!), or travel up north along the Danish coast to Hanstholm, where they have a great museum centered on the Hanstholm Batterie (which was closed during our trip to Denmark, damn!).

Bunker number 3, sitting quietly close to the entrance of the Limfjorden.

Staircase leading down one of the bunkers. Notice the machinegun hole at the end of the stairs to protect the inner parts of the bunker from unwelcome visitors.

Notice the wear and tear of the concrete caused by exposure to all sorts of weather.

A bunker cunningly disguised as a house.

One of the bigger bunkers to be seen at Thyborøn, with tiles at the top in an attempt to make it look like one of the regular houses of the coastal village.

Inner parts of the bunker shown to the left.

Overview showing the bunkers near Thyborøn dominating the entire coastline.

The half sunken remnants of the Atlantik Wall can be found all along the westcoast of Denmark. This picture is taken at Vedersø Klit, a bit south of Thyborøn.