Rêves de sagas is a project to historically reconstitute the Viking period (792 –1050), in this case by voyaging in a Knarr, a passenger boat as described in the Sagas. Our aim is to stop off at Scotland, Ireland and Brittany, with Rognan, Norway, as our starting point.

We will be using a traditional local boat, a Nordlandsbåt, constructed using ancient methods and very similar to those used by the Vikings. Throughout this expedition several aims are envisaged: seeking our real identities; seeking the past in order to be able to better understand our own present and our future; a reappraisal of nature through confrontations with the primordial forces of air and water; a deepening of our musical knowledge, as well as discovery of the Atlantic coasts.

The Vikings were great travellers, navigating south as far as Spain, East using the rivers of Russia as far as Constantinople, and discovered northern America and Canada well before Christopher Columbus. They left traces that lasted for centuries after their own culture had been submerged by other northern European cultures. Our knowledge of them stem from accounts left by Christian monks who had attempted to evangelise these 'barbarian savages', described in the chronicles as looters, brutal and violent, destroying everything in their way.

Booty hunting was certainly a part of their culture. However the richness of the archaeological remains left by these skilful artists and artisans, as well as the reading of the sagas show us that they were primarily great travellers and merchants. They were curious to discover their world, not hesitating to go to sea in small boats in order to open up new territories for hunting or commercial exchange, thereafter to return home rich in adventure and stories to tell.

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