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The Wonderful Adventures of Nils
Genre Fantasy, Kodomo
TV anime
Director Hisayuki Toriumi, Mamoru Oshii
Studio Studio Pierrot
Network NHK (JP)
Original run January 8, 1980March 17, 1981
Episodes 52
Anime and Manga Portal

The Wonderful Adventures of Nils[1] (ニルスのふしぎな旅 Nirusu no Fushigi na Tabi?) is an anime adaptation of the novel The Wonderful Adventures of Nils by the Swedish author Selma Lagerlöf. The 52 episode series ran on the Japanese network NHK from January 1980 to March 1981.[1] The series was the very first production by Studio Pierrot. The anime was mostly fairly true to the original, apart from the appearance of Nils' pet hamster, and the greater role allowed to the fox Smirre. The music was written by Czech composer Karel Svoboda.

The anime was also broadcast in the Arab World (as "مغامرات نيلز" Nils' Adventures). The series was also broadcast in Canada (in French), France, Germany, Sweden, Finland, Iceland (as "Nilli Hólmgeirsson") Belgium, Greece (as "Το θαυμαστό ταξίδι του Νίλς Χόλγκερσον" - "The wondrous journey of Nils Holgersson"), Bulgaria (as "Чудното пътуване на Нилс Холгерсон с дивите гъски" ("The wondrous journey of Nils Holgersson with the Wild Geese")) The Netherlands, Poland (as "Nils and the wild geese"), Portugal, Romania, Spain, Slovenia (as "Nils Holgerson" with one s), Hungary (as "Nils Holgersson csodálatos utazása a vadludakkal"), Israel, Turkey (as "Uçan Kaz" ("The Flying Goose")), Italy, Hong Kong (dubbed into Cantonese), Mainland China, South Africa (Translated to Afrikaans), and Albania, but in some countries it was cut to allow for commercials. In Germany, the animated series episodes were also combined into one full feature animated movie (~ 1h 22min in length) in 1981; the same release has also been dubbed and released in Estonia on DVD & VHS.



Nils Holgersson is a 14 year old farm boy, the son of poor farmers. He is lazy and disrespectful to his fellowman. In his spare time he enjoys abusing the animals in his family farm. One day Nils captures a tomte in a net while his family is at church and have left him home to memorize chapters from the Bible. The tomte proposes to Nils that if Nils frees him, the tomte will give him a huge gold coin. Nils rejects the offer and the tomte turns Nils into a tomte, which leaves him shrunken and able to talk with animals, who are thrilled to see the boy reduced to their size and are angry and hungry for revenge. While this is happening, wild geese are flying over the farm on one of their migrations, and a white farm goose called Morten attempts to join the wild ones. Nils manages to flee on Morten's back together with his new hamster friend Carrot, and they join a flock of wild geese flying towards Lapland for summer.

The wild geese, who are not pleased at all to be joined by a boy and a domestic goose, eventually take him on an adventurous trip across all the historical provinces of Sweden, they encounter many adventures and characters like Smirre. Along the ride and at the same time the characters and situations Nils encounters make him learn to help other people and not be selfish. During the trip, Nils learns that if he proves he has changed for the better, the tomte might be disposed to change him back to his normal size.

Main characters

  • Nils - Nils is the main hero of the series. He lives with his family on a farm in Sweden. Nils is lazy and disrespectful to his fellowman and enjoys abusing animals in his spare time. After the farm's goblin magically shrinks Nils he become much smaller than all the animals and is capable of speaking and understanding animals language. Since all of the farm animals are out for revenge, Nils travels with a flock of wild geese whom is flying to the south of Sweden where it is warmer. Nils wishes to transform back to his original size.
  • Carrot - Nils' little hamster friend, which also joins him on the ride.
  • Morton - A goose which originally belongs to Nils' family. Nils originally flies away from his farm on Morton's back after the farm's animals are seeking to get their revenge on Nils.
  • Captain Akka (Akka of Kebnekaise) - The matriarch of the wild geese flock.
  • Gusta - A warm-hearted, if not very bright female goose of the flock.
  • Ingrid -
  • Gunnar - At the beginning of the journey, he is quite stern. Over time and after falling in love with Ingrid, he learns to loosen up, though.
  • Dunfuin -
  • Smirre - Primary antagonist and evil fox, who wants to eat the wild geese, but because of Nils it never happens. It follows wild geese to the Lapland. This character doesn't appear in the novel.
  • Rosenbaum -
  • Ondori -
  • Gacho -
  • Gorgo - A large, black eagle, that was found in an empty nest by Akka, years ago. She raised him and taught him, how to survive by eating fish, rather than preying on animals, such as geese.
  • Suirii -
  • Ten -
  • The Witch of Storm (Isatter Kajsa)-


  1. Mischievous Nils
  2. Shrunken Nils
  3. Riding a goose
  4. SOS of the forest squirrels
  5. Morten's big pinch
  6. Bird strength contest
  7. Battle of the mice
  8. The crane's ball
  9. Hungry Nils
  10. Lex's evil scheme
  11. Walking lead statue
  12. Morten's first love
  13. Goats of Hell's valley
  14. Phantom town appearing on moonlit nights
  15. The greedy crow and the coin bowl
  16. Choose a crow boss
  17. Ransomed duck child
  18. The lake disappears
  19. Spoiled fawn
  20. Snake's revenge
  21. A testy witch's prank
  22. Bear twins who prowl the forest
  23. Flood of swan lake
  24. Operation 'To hell with Lex the guard-dog'
  25. Rescue party from the sky
  26. One stormy day
  27. The story until now / Morten's engagement
  28. Nils singing on a streetcorner
  29. Arrested eagle
  30. The taste of freshly baked bread
  31. Monster of the forest
  32. Look out, Nils: A mountain fire
  33. Patrol of five
  34. Battle of the spirits of sun and ice
  35. Goose guard child looking for his father
  36. Bird love
  37. Morten the rookie papa
  38. Lapland, land where the sun never sets
  39. Don't follow me, Golgo
  40. Wolf attack
  41. Lake fire festival
  42. Big man who built a forest
  43. Nils's lullabye
  44. Bataki shut in
  45. Haunted house on a full moon
  46. Sea shining silver
  47. Main event of the village festival
  48. Lex's new journey
  49. Nils discovers a secret
  50. Wild goose's present
  51. To my old home
  52. Goodbye, Akka


Regional releases

A Japanese DVD Region 2 box set of the series was produced in 2002, and a French DVD box set in 2005. An English DVD release was never made.


  1. ^ a b "The Wonderful Adventures of Nils." Studio Pierrot. Retrieved on February 10, 2009.

External links

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