The Port of Esbjerg lies on the west coast of the Jutland peninsula in the southwest Syddanmark region of Denmark. In 2007, the municipalities of Bramming and Ribe were merged to form the new Esbjerg municipality. Covering an area of 741 square kilometers, the Port of Esbjerg was home to over 114 thousand people in 2008.
The establishment of the Port of Esbjerg was hotly debated in the late 1860s. At the time, the area was a desolate distant corner of Denmark. The bill was eventually passed, and a port was created “from nothing” to become Denmark’s fifth largest city.
The Port of Esbjerg was built by the state in 1868 to replace the former harbor in Altona. It was connected to Fredericia and Varde by railway in 1874. The city has twice been named the “City of the Year,” first in 1997 for its public-private partnerships and second in 2006 for its support of young talents in sports, music, and art. Each year in August, the city has a two-week long music festival in the central Torvet Square.
At one time, the Port of Esbjerg was the biggest fishing harbor in Denmark. The port is still a major contributor to the city’s economy. In addition to fishing, the Port of Esbjerg is an important center for oil and offshore drilling.