September 30, 2014

A Hanseatic City, a Harbour and a Haunted Seaside Resort, oh my!


Rostock is another member of the former Hanseatic League, and has also one of the oldest universities in the world (founded 1419). The buildings of the old city core, though much had been destroyed during WWII bombings, still show some of the red brick gothic architecture. It is a lovely city, and buzzing with energy.

Rostock City Hall
The "porn fountain" - Lust for Life Fountain in Rostock

Warnemünde with its sea harbour is Rostock's gateway to the Baltic Sea. Besides the shipbuilding industry, tourism is an important factor in the area. The town is very neat, picturesque and offers a lot of culinary specialties, mostly fish, shrimps or other local sea food.


Our further travels lead us to Germany's first seaside resort, Heiligendamm, founded 1793. It is not a real town but a cluster of luxurious mansions for the rich and famous. A playground for artists and writers, politicians and dictators, aristocrats and the nouveau riche. But with WWII the white town at the sea became grey and went to rack and ruin. The former German Democratic Republic used it as recovery ward, demolished some of the buildings and used others for more utilitarian purpose. It was only after the German Reunification that investors took over and tried to rebuild and renovate the old structures. And the high society came back. In 2006 George W. Bush was here to visit our Chancellor Angela Merkel, in 2007 Heiligendamm hosted the 33rd G8 summit.

The town is a gated community, and off limits for normal people like ourselves, as one needs a key fob to enter the premises. The atmosphere very much reminded us of the old times stories of the Overlook Hotel in Stephen King's The Shining. This, by association made us uncomfortable, and hence, we left very soon...

Heiligendamm Pier
Still waiting for investors
Kurhaus - Spa

... to rather spend the rest of our sojourn at the beach. However, it was somewhat eerie here as well. The light became diffused, water and sky lost their colour. We had entered the forest of the ghosts. We felt that was high time to turn around and leave before we would end up becoming a part of the story of this haunted area.

Cormorans
The so called Gespensterwald (Forest of the Ghosts)

Today's trip was 270km.

11 comments:

  1. That #12 photo is my kind of neighborhood. :^)

    Love the pipe? in the water waving Hurrah!

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    1. The pipe waved at me, shouting: "Picture me!", so I did. It seemed happy afterwards!

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  2. A gated town? Weird.

    you sure you guys don't work for the German Tourist Board? If not, they should use your photos!

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    1. Very kind of you, Dom. Alas, nobody from the Tourist Board has contacted us as of yet.

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  3. the last gated town i used to know was the wandlitz area :-). wonderful pictures as always.

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    1. Thanks, Yvonne. We were confused as well, as we only know gated communities from North America, but not in Germany...

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  4. Rostock city hall is gorgeous.

    A nice eclectic set of photos. I like how you've thrown in some of the various things around town and not just buildings or the surrounding scenery.

    The pipe in the water is one of my favorite pics too.

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    1. Brandy, there is so much to see and document. It was Bob who taught me to keep an eye open for city and roadside oddities. And Roland has a good eye for spotting those...

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  5. What a beautiful area! Wonderful photos. if voting for favorites, the small houses on the narrow street and the pipe (is that a support for a dock?) catch my eye.

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    1. I honestly have no idea what the pipe is being used for; in fact I was not even questioning it's existence. I will ask next time!

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  6. I'll never stop being fascinated by the architecture and building methods. Thanks again you too!

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