Northern Germany may not be the first place you think of when you think “warm seaside holiday,” but Travemünde might just change your opinion. It’s a gorgeous seaside resort on the Baltic Sea that was once referred to as the “German St. Tropez,” featuring 4.5 kilometres of sugar-sand beaches, challenging golf courses, horseback riding, tennis and diving excursions. Travemünde isn’t currently on the radar, but its charms will entice those looking for a truly luxurious experience.
Travemünde is set in Germany’s northernmost province of Lübeck, where the North Sea meets the Baltic. The borough is located at the mouth of the river Trave, and was originally the site of a fortress built in the 12th century by Henry the Lion, Duke of Saxony.
Since the early 1800s, Travemünde has existed as a seaside resort, and is also Germany’s largest ferry port, connecting Germany with Estonia, Latvia, Finland, Sweden and Russia, The ships traveling in and out of the ferry port provide relaxing entertainment, as well as a steady stream of visitors which give the location an international feel.
The region features a conservation area around Brodtener Steilufer, with bicycle and walking paths. The beaches here are amazingly quiet with breathtaking views of the Baltic Sea. On beautiful summer days, the beach is filled with hundreds of hooded beach chairs used to protect beachgoers from the sun and the wind.
Within an hour’s drive of Lübeck is the Baltic island of Fehmarn, accessed via a beautiful suspension bridge. This holiday resort is semi-famous for being the location of rock legend Jimi Hendrix’s final concert. On September 6, 1970, Hendrix played at the Open Air Love and Peace Festival just weeks prior to his death. Today, a monument stands in Hendrix’s honour, featuring his iconic Fender Stratocaster carved into a block of granite, along with the date.
Anchored at the mouth of the river Trave is the Flying P-Liner Passat, a floating museum that was an active sailing ship between 1911 and 1957 when it was decommissioned. Flying P-Liners were world-famous ocean-going vessels that got their name because all of the ships constructed by the German shipping company F. Laeisz of Hamburg featured names that began with the letter “P.”
Travemünde is also the host site for the Northern Europe sailing race week known as Travemünde Week, the second-largest sailing race week in Germany. The event has been held since 1892 at the end of July and typically hosts over 3,000 sailors and 800 boats.
July to September is also notable for Sand World, a massive sand sculpture exhibition that takes place on Travemünde’s beautiful beaches.
It’s not the place you’d think to look for in northern Germany, but Travemünde provides a seaside resort that will challenge your expectations of what a vacation can provide. For more information on Travemünde, visit Travemünde Tourism.