Tanum Rock Carvings in Bohuslan – Sweden

The Tanum Rock Carvings in Bohuslan is one of Sweden’s better known tourist spots. The area is also an important historical landmark.

Location and How to Get to This Specific Site

The rock carvings are in Tanum. This is just to the north of Bohuslan. It is situated in the center of the main road between Gothenburg and Oslo. The site is just off the highway.

Besides buses and taxis, tour operators also provide transportation to the site. Those in Norway can reach the place by bus from Halden. You just have to switch to another bus from Stromstad. Next, get a cab to the site.

What to See There

The rock motifs are very diverse. Various objects are depicted including boats, weapons, assorted animals and people. The artwork in the Tanum Rock Carvings in Bohuslan is different from those in other parts of the European continent.

Many of the illustrations are quite complex and vivid. Many of them depict scenes from daily life. There are also scenes showing religion and warfare. You will also see some Neolithic burial mounds in the area. Illustrations of primitive ploughs, wheeled vehicles, trees and mazes also abound.

Going to Aspeberget you will see a large panel depicting bison, hunters, ships and drawings of the sun. At Litsleby is the Odin figure.


The carvings in the area date primarily from the Bronze Age (c. 1800 BC). There are more than 1,500 carvings in the northern portion of Bohuslan. The numerous carvings in the area have allowed archeologists to determine the life in Europe during ancient times.

The rock art present suggests that the area has been continuously inhabited for eight thousand years. 3,000 years ago, the site was set along the sea shore. Back then the sea level was 25 m higher than today.


Admission to the site is free. Entrance to the nearby museum is free also.

Other Info

Continuing research is unearthing more carvings. In Tanum parish, there are nearly 300 sites alone. Aside from animals and peoples, different illustrations can now be seen. 13 categories have been established to classify these works. Some of the more unusual drawings are of circles, wheels and discs.

You can also visit the Vitlycke museum. There are maps to help you navigate the area. A history of the site is provided for as well.
The Tanum Rock Carvings in Bohuslan are open from 10:00 am until 6:00 pm from May to August. For the rest of the year, the schedule will vary.