Norwegian “Game of Thrones” fans are enrolling in a new viking school

Future pupils of the Seljord Folk viking school, perhaps.
Future pupils of the Seljord Folk viking school, perhaps.
Image: Reuters/David Moir
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Seljord Folk High School, a private institution in Norway that offers year-long continuing education courses, is now attracting students who want to live like vikings.

Interest in the seafarer-warrior lifestyle has increased on the heels of the popular television shows like HBO’s “Game of Thrones” and the History Channel’s “Vikings,” according to Norway’s English-language news site The Local. Seljord Folk, which also has courses dedicated to paragliding and musical theater, recently decided to hire a professor who could teach students the relevant hunting, fishing, boating, and craft skills.

A Danish man named Jeppe Nordmann Garly fit the bill. He describes himself as a “recreational Viking” and his biographical page on the Seljord Folk website (Norwegian) has photos of him hiking and blacksmithing with old-fashioned tools.

The course is set to begin this autumn, and its 14 spots quickly filled up with students, according to Norwegian news site NRK (Norwegian). The course description (Norwegian) says that students will make their own clothing, jewelry, cookware, swords, and knives; they will spend plenty of time on Viking-style boats; and will see real ones on a visit to the Viking museum in Oslo. There will be a field trip to York, England, which the Vikings invaded centuries ago, and—in a decidedly un-Viking-like departure—the students will join other Seljord Folk courses on a trekking vacation in Nepal.