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Tromøy kommune
Former Municipality
View of Tromøy
View of Tromøy
Nickname(s): The pearl of Southern Norway
Coordinates: 58°26′59″N 08°51′51″E / 58.44972°N 8.86417°E / 58.44972; 8.86417Coordinates: 58°26′59″N 08°51′51″E / 58.44972°N 8.86417°E / 58.44972; 8.86417
Country Norway
County Aust-Agder
District Sørlandet
Municipality ID NO-0921
Adm. Center Tromøy
 • Land 29 km2 (11 sq mi)
Elevation 95 m (312 ft)
 • Estimate (2008) 6,000
Created from Austre Moland in 1878
Merged with Arendal in 1992

Tromøy is the largest island in Southern Norway, a former municipality in Aust-Agder county, and is currently an important part of the present-day municipality of Arendal.


The island is located directly across the harbor from the town of Arendal. Tromøy Bridge (Tromøybroa) a 400-metre (1,300 ft) long suspension bridge connected it to the mainland in 1961. There is a passenger ferry that takes six minutes to transport riders from Skilsø to Arendal. The highest point on the island is the 95-metre (312 ft) tall Vardåsen. The company Aker Pusnes is located in Pusnes. It is a designer and supplier of all types of deck machinery and mooring systems for marine and offshore applications.


The municipality (originally the parish) of Tromø (Old Norse: Þruma) which means "rim", "edge", or "border".[1]


The municipality of Tromøy was established on 1 May 1878 when the municipality of Austre Moland was divided into three separate municipalities: Tromøy (population: 2,320), Barbu (population: 4,874), and Austre Moland (population: 2,524). The municipality of Tromøy included several smaller islands, including Merdø, Skilsø, and Tromlingene.

On 1 January 1992, the municipality of Tromøy was incorporated into the municipality of Arendal, along with Moland, Øyestad, and Hisøy. Prior to the merger, the municipality had a population of 4,711.[2]

Viking era[edit]

Tromøy is known for having once hosted many Viking kings. According to the Ynglinga saga, Harald Granraude, the King of Agder, had his headquarters at Tromøy. It also says that his daughter, Queen Åsa Haraldsdatter, took her one-year-old son, Halfdan Svarte back to Tromøy after the death of Gudrød Veidekonge. There are several place names in Tromøy derived from the Viking era including Kongshamn and Hove.[3][4]

Hove on Tromøy

Hove Farm[edit]

Hove is an area located on the south-western part of Tromøy which has easily cultivated, self-draining soil and was therefore a convenient place for early agriculture. The first recorded cultivation of potatoes in Norway is believed of have occurred at the Hove farm (Hove gård) which was one of the most significant estates in Tromøy. In 1757 the owner, Nils Mathiasen Aalholm, observed in his garden diary (Nils Aalholms hagedagbok) that potatoes were being cultivated on his farm.[5][6]

World War II[edit]

During the Occupation of Norway by Nazi Germany (1940-1945), the Germans had an anti-aircraft school at Tromøy (Feld Flakartillerie-schule 50) from 1941-1944 at a camp built on the Hove farm. The camp was built for 1,500 men. There were 3 radars at the island and supposedly four 88 mm anti-aircraft cannons. Construction of a 200-metre (660 ft) airstrip was begun. Most of the camp's buildings, including the airstrip which never where completed, are still there today, along with a bunker (R618) of unknown purpose. The bunker is currently undergoing restorations (2007) but work has been halted due to an ownership dispute. The German military used 75 buildings in the area, most of them built during the war.[7]


Tromøy Church

Tromøy Church[edit]

Tromøy Church is the parent church in Tromøy parish in Arendal. The church is a medieval stone church from 1150. The foundation walls are 1.5 metres (4.9 feet) thick.

It was converted into a cruciform church in 1748. The church has a restored brick Romanesque portal with two grotesque face masks on the wall on each side of the portal.The church was painted during the 1750s and decorated in rococo style.

The church has a nave from 1751 hanging on the ceiling with a model of Dronningen av Danmark, a frigate based in Copenhagen. The baptismal font made of soapstone dates from the medieval period. Altarpiece and pulpit are from 1725.[8][9]


Arendal Herregaard Hotell was built in 1930 and it is one of the oldest hotels in the region. It stands about 250 metres (820 ft) from Spornes beach

There are also two camps on the island: Hove Leirsenter (Hove Camp) and Hove Familie Camping (Hove Family Camping).

Hove Festival[edit]

Starting in 2007, the Hove Festival was Norway's largest festival venue. Its capacity is 20,000 people. Headliners for the first year included the American bands Slayer, The Killers, Queens of the Stone Age, and My Chemical Romance. In the fall of 2014, Festival Republic announced that Hove Festival would not return in 2015.[10]

Picture gallery[edit]


Other sources[edit]

  • Ekroll, Øystein (1997) Med kleber og kalk,Norsk steinbygging i mellomalderen 1050 - 1550 (Gjøvik) ISBN 82-521-4754-2

External links[edit]