1. Møns Klint
Møns Klint is part of the vast chalk bed upon which large parts of Denmark rest.
The chalk is made up of the skeletal remains of animals that lived about 70 million years ago. At that time, there was a tropical sea where Denmark is now. This sea was populated by microscopic algae with a skeletal structure made up of limestone plates, also known as coccoliths. When the algae died, the limestone plates settled on the seabed. Over millions of years a thick layer of chalk formed. Animals such as squids, sea urchins and mussels also lived in the sea. You may find fossilised remains of marine animals embedded in the chalk and lying on the beach, especially sea urchins and narrow, oblong stones called thunderstones. A thunderstone is part of the shell of a prehistoric squid.
The old seabed was raised vertically
After the Cretaceous Period, our planet went through a dramatic change. The continents rose from the sea and mountains were created. When the last ice age reached Denmark approximately 12,000 years ago, the thick layer of chalk had already risen above the surface of the sea. The enormous forces of the ice peeled flakes up to 50 metres thick off the old seabed and pushed them together. The result was Høje Møn. Black stripes of flint are visible in the chalk layers. They show how the layers were folded by the pressure of the ice. After the ice melted, landslides both large and small occurred over time, which have shaped the cliff we see today.
Denmark's highest cliff
Møns Klint is the highest cliff in Denmark. If you walk north along the trail from the parking lot at the GeoCenter, you will reach the highest point - Dronningestolen (“the Queen's Chair”). Here, the cliff forms an almost vertical 128-metre drop to the beach. Once, the edge was shaped like a chair. Legend has it that the wife of Klintekongen (“the Cliff King”) sat in it and looked for her husband when he was out on raids. According to popular belief, the Cliff King was Odin’s successor and ruled over Høje Møn. A camera is located at the Queen’s Chair, so you can enjoy the view on a screen inside the GeoCenter.
Read more about the Cliff King here
See the face of the Cliff King
200 metres further north you will find the fantastic viewpoint at Forchhammers Pynt. To the north, you can observe how the layers of flint were folded into the chalk as the ice pushed the cliff upwards. A little further ahead, you come to the face of the Cliff King. It is a 10-metre-tall profile in the cliff. You may climb the steps at Røde Udfald and walk back along the beach. Another way of viewing the cliff, both from above and from the beach, is by walking south from the GeoCenter. Here you pass the remains of Freuchens Pynt (“Freuchen’s Headland”), which fell into the sea in 1998. The headland is named after the famous arctic explorer Peter Freuchen, whose cousin was the priest of the local church.
Climb the longest staircase in Denmark and look for the peregrine falcon
At Sandfaldet and Sommerspirspynten, you may enjoy the view, the greatness and the silence. The headland Sommerspiret fell into the sea in 1988, but the place is still interesting. The peregrine falcons often sit here and watch for prey.
Grårygtrappen leads down to the beach, where you may walk back to Maglevandstrappen between flint pebbles, a selection of erratic boulders, fossils and sandy beaches. Note that the two stairs have 468 and 497 steps, respectively! Maglevandstrappen is the longest staircase in Denmark.
The cliff is alive – so use your common sense
The cliff is dynamic coastal nature which is influenced by wind and weather throughout the year. Rockslides occur when pieces or blocks of chalk loosen and fall. Or when large amounts of rainwater wash mud, clay and chalk into the sea. Both types of slides occur every year. The risk is greatest during winter and spring. Use your common sense - and enjoy a world-class natural phenomenon.
- all traffic in the area is at your own risk
- barriers must be respected
It is prohibited and associated with danger to life and limbs to
- climb the cliff outside stairs and trails
- throw stones and other objects over the edge