Jaegersborg Deer Park
A lover of nature walks and any animal with fur (including Rob) we were very excited to head to Jaegersborg Deer Park. It has a deer population of 2000 deer who freely roam the park.
This is the Danish Royal family’s hunting grounds. It still functions as a hunting park today run by the Danish Natural Agency’s gamekeepers. Around 700 deer are killed each winter and around 700 calves are born each summer. It was first established by King Frederik 111 in 1669 as a small deer park which would provide the best conditions for a good hunt. When King Christian V took the throne he expanded the enclosure to five times the size evicting the farmers and introducing Par Force Hunting! Par force means by force so a deer would be chased to exhaustion, hunting dogs would then surround it and then a horn would be blown and spectators would watch as the monarch would come in with a long knife sword and kill it. This sort of sport was to demonstrate power and courage.
The extravagant Par Force Hunt of the 17th and 18th century took place throughout an extensive system of tracks using and abundance of riders, hounds, loud horns to signal the hunt and a lavish entourage of spectators to witness the hunt. A pointless human sport that caused the deer to be so stressed that the meat was inedible. The lead hound dog was given the head to eat whilst the rest of the hounds ate the rest. The King or his guests were given the deer’s right foreleg as a trophy.
Thank goodness things seem a little more peaceful wandering through this beautiful landscape.
We really enjoyed getting up close to these deer. We saw white deer which are not albinos they are a result of variations.
From the shade of a dappled sunlight wood we watched red deer, fallow deer, sika deer and roe deer graze, run and frolic stress free in the grass fields.
We explored the impressive hunting lodge Hermitage Palace which was built in 1736 which gave the hunters somewhere to eat. It is set on the highest point in the park. It is a stand alone grand piece of architecture which has views over the fields on one side and panoramic views of the ocean facing the other way.
There were many people out walking, running and biking just enjoying the beautiful Spring weather. You can even take a horse and carriage ride through this landscape. On many occasions on we encounter herds of deer running across our path. This was truly a great place to view deer as they don’t at all seem alarmed by humans and their numbers are in abundance.
We were escorted off by some quacking companions.
After our amazing deer experience, we took a little drive north to the seaside town of Elsinore. It was a cute little village, with a nice ice cream shop. We wandered alongside the water and discovered numerous large ferries ready to make the short journey over the channel to Sweden. There was a statue of a boy, reminiscent of the Little Mermaid in Copenhagen – that sat staring off to sea (although he looked more like a teenage T-1000 from the Terminator movies!).
We walked on to Kronborg Slott (or castle) and walked around the fortifications. We then wandered through a small street food market and stumbled upon some lifelike sculptures.