Byer på Bornholm

Towns and villages

Bornholm's towns are within easy reach of one another and make for a nice network of visits. Cycle or drive between quaint country towns and coastal harbours and try regional delicacies along the way!


Rønne is Bornholm’s main town and it is also the ferry port, connecting Bornholm to mainland Denmark (Køge, south of Copenhagen), Sweden, Germany and Poland. The town of Rønne, along with Nexø, was bombed heavily after the end of WWII by the Russians, targeting the occupying German garrison that refused to surrender to them. Despite this, you can still see many old buildings with lots of character. The Swedish state donated 175 red timber houses to aid the rebuilding of Rønne after the war, which you can walk around today.


Hasle is well-known for its quaint, old herring smokehouses. They are still in use today and you can visit them and the museum housed in part of the building. The nearby villages of Sandvig and Allinge both have lovely sand and rock beaches and are popular holiday destinations. 


To the north of Hasle is the picturesque town of Gudhjem, with its steep streets and alleyways leading down to the well-protected harbour. Gudhjem has only 1000 inhabitants but swells in the summer months with tourists. Take in the beautiful view of the town and the sea from the Bokul ridge. 


Svaneke stand out as Bornholm's best preserved old town with houses and half-timbered farms on winding lanes which gently slope to the fishing harbour. On the rocky coast north of Svaneke, lie the authentic fishing villages of Bølshavn and Listed, and just south, near Årsdale, you can visit one of the island's famous herring smokehouses. 


Nexø is home to the island's largest fishing harbour. The town centre was rebuilt after the Russian bombings of 1945 where the area around the market square was particularly badly damaged. You can still see the popular red timber houses, a gift from Sweden to help Nexø’s restoration, dotted around the town, along with a number of well-preserved half-timbered houses. 


Right in the middle of the island, is Aakirkeby (Årkirkeby). Here you can visit the island’s only vineyard and the family experience centre, NaturBornholm.

Further reading

Read more about Bornholm.

Read more about Historical Denmark.

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Baltic Gem: Bornholm Island

Explore the unique culture and landscape of Bornholm, Denmark's Baltic island dotted with fortress churches, seaside towns and dramatic nature.