Tønder - a town in the marshes

Tønder - A town in the marshes

Tønder - a town in the marshes
Tønder is Denmark's oldest market town, which received its borough rights already in 1243. Tønder is a fantastic town in the southwestern Jutland only 5 kilometers from the Danish and German border.

All nature encircling Tønder - and the whole Wadden Sea - has the status of nature and wildlife san—ctuary, that cuts across national borders. The area has more than 30 islands and three inhabited Danish islands: Fanø, Mandø and Romø. Romø is a popular tourist location and a great asset to Tønder Municipality. Many rare water bird species come from around the world and keeps rest and find food in the Wadden Sea. The area is a nursery area for many fish and marine mammals, and it is here, the common seal is breeding. Thats just one of the reasons why the Wadden Sea appears on the UNESCO list of unique natural areas in the world. The entire Wadden Sea area is influenced by tides. Tidal rhythm between high and low tide, twice a day, create the conditions for a rich flora and fauna. During low tide, when the tidal flattens and is drained, birds fills up with food before traveling to the breeding areas in northern Scandinavia, Siberia and Greenland - or as on route to wintering further south. The weather also affects the tides. Wind from the west is pushing water towards the North Sea coastline and amplifies the high water effect with up to four meters by heavy storm. The difference between high and low tide is approximately one and a half meters. By storm even higher. Storm surges are therefore a unique part of the local history.

The town lies low on the transition between moors and marshes bounded by Vidå to the south. The town was originally a harbour town, which is seen on contemporary street names as Ships Bridge and Ships Bridge Street, but the town lost its harbour in the 1550s with the dike constructions. As the land areas grew, the access to the sea disappeared. In the local dialect the name of the town Tønder is pronounced as Tynne.

Tønder Lace
In the 1600s Tønder was a center for production and sale of lace, and this importance the town held for centuries. In 1705 import of lace from Italy was baned by the King. The position as lace town became strong, so strong, that exports of Tønder Lace surpassed even the export of cattle. In 1805 the trade with lace reached its peak. At that time 26,000 people was employed in the lace industry. Shortly after - in1847 there were only 6 lace manufacturers left. Industrialization made it far easier to manufacture the lace by machine. And exports and sales died out. Today there is still a great interest in Tønder lace. But now it is essentially as a hobby, where the craft is passed on from mother to daughter through generations. Every three years a lacefestival is held in the town. The first festival took place in 1989 - always on the first weekend in June. The festival lasts for 3 days.

Tønder Festival
Every year in August the traditional Tønder Festival takes place. The main theme is Folk and jazz music. The town becomes a annual gathering place for many music enthusiasts from all over the word. And the festival has evolved to be one of the most important European festivals in traditional and contemporary folk, roots and blues. The festival takes place every year during the last full weekend in August and started way back in 1974. Around 1,900 volunteers are working to organize and run the festival. A huge job for a small town of only 7,000 inhabitants.

Tønder Christmas Market
In the Christmas month Tønder is especially known for its Christmas market and The Old Pharmacy, which holds Scandinavia's biggest Christmas show. The 763 years old borough town with its winding streets and charming houses forms a genuine setting and beautiful setting. Therefore the town has been named the Christmas town of Denmark. The whole town is decorated. And the cosiness is underlined by unarguably the most beautiful Christmas lighting. The inner town around the square is filled with Christmas stalls, where you can buy the delicious specialties, that belongs to Christmas. In the inner town and in the market many different activities takes place for children and adults - in the period leading up to Christmas. Christmas town Tønder has become a great trademark. The annual Santa Claus parade takes place in the beginning of November. From there it becomes time for the Christmas Market, Santa Claus in the streets and a flying Santa Claus on the roof. In The Old Pharmacy from 1671 you can explore the 1,200 m2 of Christmas, Christmas and Christmas again - and visit Santa's post office and get your post specially stamped by Santa Claus.

Apart Cultural Tønder Museum also has an exhibition of the famous furniture designer Hans J. Wegner in the former water tower and the Art Museum Tønder. North of the town is The Zeppeliner - and The Garrison Museum. If you want a uniqe experience - go visit Tønder - it is a gem in the marsh lands.

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