UNESCO World Heritage

Christiansfeld – an extraordinary experience

On 4 July 2015, Christiansfeld was appointed World Heritage by the World Heritage Committee of UNESCO. This event took place during the meeting of the UNESCO Committee in Bonn.

When a site is adopted on this list, it signifies that this site is important – not only to the population in that specific country, but for all of humanity.

The Danish Kingdom has ten sites that are adopted on the list of World Heritage: The Jelling Monuments, Roskilde Cathedral, Kronborg Castle, Stevns Klint, The Wadden Sea, Christiansfeld, The Parforce Hunting Landscape in Northern Sealand, lulissat Ice Fiord, Kujataa and Aasivissuit Nipisat.

The most beautiful Moravian town in Europe

The Moravian community in Christiansfeld is a Lutheran independent church and is part of a global brotherhood with towns and communities in many countries.

The fundamental ideology of this church has not been influenced by the geographic locations and many of these towns are built in exactly the same way as Christiansfeld.

Christiansfeld – a living town

The town was established in 1773 as an example of a planned settlement within the Moravian Church, which in the beginning was centered in the town of Herrnhut in Saxony, Germany.

Christiansfeld was planned and built as a representation of the protestant ideal town and the most important buildings of the town were placed around the square in front of the Moravian church, The Hall.

The architecture is homogeneous and simple with one-storey or two-storey buildings in yellow Flensburg bricks with red tile roofs. The democratic organization within the Moravian community – with its equality-based philosophy – finds its expression in the humanistic town plan.

The open town plan enables a view to the surrounding landscape and includes important big buildings for common life and well-being. Thus there were community houses - the so-called "choir houses" - for the widows and for the unmarried men and women of the community.

UNESCO logo - Christiansfeld a Moravian Church Settlement

Why is Christiansfeld World Heritage?

In order to be adopted on the World Heritage list at least one of ten criteria set by UNESCO must be fulfilled.

Christiansfeld was adopted on the World Heritage list according to criterion III and IV:

  • Criterion III: The World Heritage site is a unique or at least exceptional testimony to a cultural tradition or to a civilization, which is living or which has disappeared.
  • Criterion IV: The World Heritage site involves or is directly connected to events or living traditions, to ideas or convictions or to works of art or literary of universal value.
Kirkepladsen med lindetræer og Salshuset. Foto: Ole Akhøj
The church square with lime trees and the hall. Photo: Ole Akhøj

The UN organization of UNESCO

In 1972, the UN organization UNESCO passed the World Heritage Convention.
The overall aim of this convention is to protect and preserve natural habitats and culture-historical sites and monuments of outstanding universal value to all of humanity.

Ten different nomination criteria have been set in order to attain whether a natural habitat, a culture-historical site or a monument holds this outstanding universal value and thus can be adopted on the World Heritage list. In addition to this, the site/monument must be adequately protected, and the demand for virginity and/or originality must be fulfilled.

When a site is adopted to the list, it signifies that this site is important – not only to the population in that specific country, but to all of humanity.

The Danish Kingdom has 10 sites that are adopted on the list of World Heritage: Christiansfeld, the Jelling Monuments, The Wadden Sea, The Parforce Hunting Landscape in Northern Sealand, Roskilde Cathedral, Stevns Klint, Kronborg Castle, Ilulissat Ice Fiord, Kujataa and Aasivissuit Nipisat.

It is the Danish Agency for Culture and Palaces, Slots- og Kulturstyrelsen, that is responsible for the work in relation to World Heritage within the Danish Kingdom.

World Heritage in Southern Denmark – experiences in a class of their own!

World heritage is important - world significant.

3 unique locations in Southern Denmark within just 1 hour drive from each other.

Jelling, with the iconic Jelling stones, which stands as a distinctly man-made monument at the meeting between before and after. Where an entire nation was born.

Christiansfeld, where the Moravian craftsmen created their own bid for the perfect society. A magnificent piece of urban planning with long straight lines and impressive architecture.

The Wadden Sea, an incredible piece of ever-changing landscape where light, sky and sea share the same scene. The interaction is never the same, but always present.

Read more at: www.worldheritage-southdenmark.com

Logoer - Verdensarv i Syddanmark

The other World Heritage Sites

Jelling Monuments

Roskilde Cathedral

Ilulissat Icefjord

The Wadden Sea

Stevns Klint

Kujataa Greenland

The par force hunting landscape in North Zealand

Kronborg Castle

Aasivissuit – Nipisat