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Address: Granavollen, 2750, Norway
Phone Number:
+47 61 33 52 05

Sosterkirkene – the Sisters Churches - on Granavollen are an impressive...

Sosterkirkene – the Sisters Churches - on Granavollen are an impressive landmark and have a mysterious history. Two churches are placed next to each other. Their steeples have inspired the design of the Gran municipal coat-of-arms. We are still speculating why there are two churches on Granavollen. The popular explanation is that there were two sisters who disliked each other and built each her own church. But if we go back to the Middle Ages, the time at which the churches were built, it wasn’t unusual that one built two or three churches in the same vicinity. They then had different functions, for example cathedral, monastery church, or parish church. Only on Granavollen Today, it is only on Granavollen that we find two medieval churches so close together on the same churchyard here in Norway. The larger one, Nikolaikirken was probably the county church while the smaller one, Mariakirken, was the parish church.They were likely built during the 12th century. At that time, the churches were quite often given the names of saints. The larger one is named after the saint bishop Nikolaus of Bari, the patron saint of travellers. The smaller one was named Mariakirken after the mother of Jesus. A Gathering Place and a Power Centre Sosterkirkene are freely located high above the village. Granavollen has been a gathering place through centuries, both in prechristian times and in the christian era. One of the oldest finds from christian time is a rune stone from the 11th century. The burial grounds, the rune stones and written source material tell us that this has been an important religious and political power centre.

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Beautiful place

We were in the area for the wedding and got to look around the churches as well. From here you can also walk the Natur or kultursti (nature and culture trail). It is about a 4 km... read more

Reviewed 12 August 2016
Akershus, Norway
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19 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 5: English reviews
Akershus, Norway
Level Contributor
194 reviews
66 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 August 2016

We were in the area for the wedding and got to look around the churches as well. From here you can also walk the Natur or kultursti (nature and culture trail). It is about a 4 km walk to the next old stone church, Tingelstadkirke, and the museum. It is a beautiful walk in a pastoral, beautiful setting.

Thank MeliMag
Seattle, Washington
Level Contributor
6 reviews
Reviewed 16 July 2016

We just happened to stay next to these churches and were so glad we did. There was a kind deacon who spent a fair bit of time talking to us about the history. Outside is an ancient Viking rune stone. A short but fascinating place to stop.

Thank Traveling46
Oslo, Norway
Level Contributor
50 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 July 2016

Beautiful surroundings. Runestone. Norwegian history. Cemetery 1850-now. Both Catholic and Protestant church service.

Thank luhlu
Level Contributor
139 reviews
30 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 February 2016

Wonderful situated on the hilltop. Even found a Runa stone from the viking age at the graveyard. These churches are just across the square from the Granavolden Guesthous

Thank Frequenttraveller125
Gjovik, Norway
Level Contributor
21 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 October 2015 via mobile

We had a guided tour in the two churches. Very interesting to hear and see. More interesting places nearby like Steinhuset.

Thank EvaM54

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