The river Tryggevaelde is one of Zealands largest rivers. It starts at Ulse lake at Bregentved. The river has 19 tributarys the largest being Stevns river, that starts north of St. Spjellerup and yoins the Tryggevælde river north of Hellested. In the last 15 kms it grows broader and becomes a fairly large river. The river goes through the district of Valloe, past Valloe Castle, and finally enters the sea at Stroeby Egede, after going under the Pram Bridge.
Historically the river valley is interesting as it’s several thousand years of human habitation can be seen in the landscape. In the early Stone Age the inhabitants built their houses near the river and sea. In the late Stone Age they started farming and moved the houses slowly higher up the valley, so they could be nearer to the animals.
In the Bronze Age the villages were even built further away from the river, as the river had become a lot broader, than it is today. You could sail all the way to Harlev. In the Iron Age the area became a powerfull north European centre.
The rich burial grounds found in Himlingeoeje, Varpelev and Valloe town, are evidence that this was the beginning of the first Danish royal family.
At any time of the year the river valley is a beautiful area.
The river valley in several places is 500 metres wide with flood meadows. The area is rich in plant- and birdlife. Many waders, finches and meadow birds come to rest and nest, in the area. You will see for example; Greenshanks, Golden Plover, Common Sandpiper, Ruff, Wood Sandpiper, Lapwings, Common Snipe, Oyster Catcher, Lark, Cuckoo and many more.
The large variety of plant life is due to the chalky water coming from the surrounding area.
The grazing animals keep the grass short, and stop predatory plants taking over such as: Willow Herb, Meadowsweet, Stingingnettles and Sweet Grass. Many other interesting plants now grow here such as: Marsh Trefoil, Ragged Robin, Great Hairy Willow Herb, Yellow Gagea, Marsh Vetchling, Lousewort and Orchids.
The river has many fish in it; Perch, Rimte, Rainbow and Sea Trout. These fish make it a popular place in late summer to lay their eggs and the Rainbow Trout in lesser quantities lay their eggs in the spring. There are also a small number of crayfish in the Tryggevælde river.