The oldest church still in use in Malmö, St Petri Kyrka is a real feast for the eyes. Well – from the outside it is, anyway. Countless red and chocolate-brown bricks support a pair of rocket-shaped Gothic spires that reach higher into the sky than any of the surrounding buildings.
The church was consecrated way back in the 1300s. At one stage its interiors were as lavish as the exterior is today, with colourful paintings all over the walls and ceilings. But in the mid-1800s, these were done away with in favour of ‘harmony, symmetry and neatness’. In simple terms, that meant painting almost everything toothpaste white.
However, one part of the church – the Krämare Chapel – survived this ‘restoration’ work relatively unscathed. Its late-medieval ceiling paintings are some of the finest in Scandinavia, and are worth popping in to have a look at. Notice too how the floor in this part of the church is made completely of broken gravestones; it’s thought that at one stage the whole building had floors like this.
When we last visited, donations were being collected for a new church organ. If enough money is raised and the project goes ahead, the organ would be the largest in Scandinavia with an astonishing 7,260 pipes.
St Petri Kyrka is an easy walk south from the train station. Cross the bridge called Petribron and continue south along Göran Olsgatan. After a minute or two the church will be on your left.
St Petri Kyrka
Göran Olsgatan 4
Last updated: October 2014