Kristiansand Kanonmuseum – Kristiansand, Norway - Atlas Obscura

Kristiansand Kanonmuseum

The last fully functional fortress of Germany's World War II Atlantikwall. 


The Kristiansand Kanonmuseum is home to the world’s largest fully functional land-mounted naval gun.

Once a part of the Atlantikwall (Atlantic Wall), the Nazis’ huge defensive line that ran along the the western coast of Europe, the “Vara Battery” was meant to keep British forces from invading mainland Europe and to guard the shipping lanes of the Skagerak.

Built by a crew of Norwegian, Danish, and Russian prisoners of war, the barrel of the cannon was nearly 20 meters long (64.8 feet) and weighed 110 tons. A sister to the guns on the battleships Bismark and Tirpitz, this is one of a series of fifty 38-centimeter Thyssen-Krupp SKC34 weapons.

Spread over an area of more than 14 acres, the Kristiansand Kanonmuseum maintains many of the original bunker and troop complexes that made up this part of the Atlantikwall.

Join us on Obscura Day - Marth 20th, 2010 - in Sandviktoppen, Norway at NATO’s Altantic North Command and Control Bunker, built during the Cold War deep under a mountain overlooking Kristiansand, Norway. This ABC (Atomic, Biological, Chemical) proof facility was in service until 1992. After being decommissioned, the bunker has been locked and sealed awaiting a decision about its future use. The ventilation system is still operational, however the lighting system has failed, so be sure to bring a flashlight!

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