At The Viking Museum, a modern interactive museum located on Djurgården in Stockholm, visitors can come along on a journey to the Viking age with an interactive exhibit and an exciting Viking ride. ASSA ABLOY Entrance Systems has delivered eight high speed doors serving as partitions and projector screens for the ride, which tells a dramatic story about a family's life in the tenth century.
The Viking Museum is a privately-owned museum that was inaugurated by King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia in April 2017 and is situated in a former boathouse run by the royal family.
“Our location here on Djurgården is fantastic and we attract both Swedish and international visitors who are curious about our Viking heritage here in Sweden. We also have a nice mix of attractions for younger and older visitors as well as for men and women,” says Patric Gille, head of operations at The Viking Museum.
The Real Story
The goal of the museum is to tell the true story of the Vikings. The generic picture of the Viking age focuses on violence and plundering, but few people know that the Vikings were actually a sophisticated people who placed great value in family life and the position of women in society.
“We want to stand for something other than helmets with horns and swords and instead have a positive effect with the story we tell. In our interactive exhibit, you can absolutely experience how life was like during the plundering trips. But we want to focus even more on life on the farm, life as a child and much more. You also get to meet Leifur and Estrid - two people who lived during the Viking age,” says Patric Gille
A staff of around 20 employees works at the museum, including trained archaeologists and historians among the young guides. In addition to the exhibit, they also arrange events and special exhibits with themes such as runes and rune stones, women during the Viking era, myths about Vikings and much more. The former boathouse also has a restaurant and a shop with Viking-themed souvenirs designed in-house. But what really makes the museum unique is the ride called Ragnfrid's Saga.
“Ragnfrid's Saga is a captivating Viking ride that takes the visitor back to the year 963. The ride is offered in several languages and begins at Frösala Farm where Ragnfrid and her husband Harald lived. The audience then get to follow along on a journey and witness plundering in the west and slave trade in the east,” says Patric Gille.
Visitors take the 11-minute journey in carriages that run on rails embedded in the ground. Each part of the story is displayed on screens using effective high-performance doors from ASSA ABLOY Entrance Systems, which ensure that the sound, light and atmospheric environments of each scene do not disturb travelers in other carriages. Because the doors are black, an anonymous impression is given, and at the same time, they are woven into the story in several places, acting as projector screens.
“We think that this solution is outstanding and the doors blend in extremely well in a very natural way. We have invested a great deal of time and resources in this ride and the people who helped us build it have also built similar attractions in places like Disneyland. In other words, we set the bar high, and ASSA ABLOY Entrance Systems has not disappointed,” says Patric Gille.
A total of more than 300,000 tours have been given since the museum was inaugurated and this has taken place without any accidents or downtime.
“The only challenge we have encountered was at the very beginning when we were trying to synchronize the story with the carriages and the opening of the doors. With good support from ASSA ABLOY, we figured it out and the thousands of tours that have taken place since then have gone without a hitch,” says Patric Gille.
“And because ASSA ABLOY's technicians come here regularly to maintain our doors, we feel very confident that we can focus on our core activity and at the same time count on the doors doing their job. Ragnfrid's Saga is a big part of our experience and it must work every minute that we are open,” concludes Patric Gille.