The Priest’s Bridge

“The Priest’s Bridge is still there” it says in Pontoppidan’s Danish Atlas of 1769. And strangely enough it is still there today. If you can discover it! For the Priest’s Bridge, which was built by the last Catholic priest back in the 16th century, is really only a footpath through the vicarage meadows to the beach that was once the most important landing place on the island.

Five fishing boats fished here from the open beach. A rowboat, the ferry from Tambohus, moored here, and Norwegian skippers from Arendal and Mandal sold their timber, while Danish sailing vessels unloaded bricks, peat, feedstuff etc. at the storekeeper’s jetty. Of the six warehouses that once stood there side by side, only one is left, and that is used as a summerhouse. But the place is still worth a visit. For in the watery marl pits alongside the road you will see a rich variety of birds. Approximately 20 different shore birds nest here. Among them are the rare black and white avocet that we call “cobbler-fowl”.