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Helgoland (The Red Island)

Helgoland is known as Germany's only offshore-island situated somewhere in the North Sea. It belongs to Sleswig-Holstein although it is about 60km away from the coastline. The island is famous for its cliff line of red stone and especially for the only freestanding rock in Germany, the “Lange Anna”. Besides, there are millions of birds populating the island, most of them protected species which you can watch on guided tours exploring the island.

Helgoland is known as Germany’s only offshore-island situated somewhere in the North Sea. It belongs to Sleswig-Holstein although it is about 60km away from the coastline. The island is famous for its cliff line of red stone and especially for the only freestanding rock in Germany, the “Lange Anna”. Besides, there are millions of birds populating the island, most of them protected species which you can watch on guided tours exploring the island.

Helgoland has a rather interesting history. Once famous for its wreckers and pirates it became a British colony in the early 19th century and was given back to Germany in 1890. During the Second World War Helgoland became a sea fortification with air-raid bunkers and a small airport. But the island wasn’t an important military base and the plans the Nazis had for the fortress Helgoland were Utopian. Nevertheless, Helgoland was bombarded by the Britain shortly before the end of the War so that the island became uninhabitable. In 1947 the remains of the fortification were blown up. Only in 1952 did the inhabitants return to their island. The bomb-craters are still visible today and make history visible.

Today Helgoland is a popular destination for tourists. From Hamburg you reach the island with one of the Catamarans in about 3 to 4 hours. You can also take the Catamaran from Cuxhaven and reach the island in 1 hour. But the tour from Hamburg is much more interesting because you follow the Elbe from Hamburg up to its estuary mouth into the North Sea. Besides the Catamaran is up to 60km/h fast! It’s great fun to speed across the sea. On Helgoland you can then go shopping, duty-free of course! Lot’s of perfume, alcohol, cigarettes, chocolate!

Naturally the island is not only there for tourists and shopping. The view of the open sea is amazing in good weather and the landscape is great! You can do a guided bird-watch tour or explore the parts of the air-raid bunkers that are still accessible. There are also a lot of possibilities to stay for a short holiday because when arriving with the Catamaran you only have four hours on the island before you have to take the last ship home to Cuxhaven or Hamburg. And in four hours there is hardly time to see all of the island.

More information: http://www.helgoland.de

http://www.helgoline.de (which is the website with the current sailing list)

written by graefin

4 comments

  1. vicuna

    vicuna

    ouhh, I'd like to see some shots of helgoland.... Please graefin, show us our location shots! ;)))))))))))))

    about 6 years ago · report as spam
  2. shhquiet

    shhquiet

    photos now up! (sorry, my bad)

    about 6 years ago · report as spam
  3. vicuna

    vicuna

    yahoo! beautiful shots!!! :))))

    about 6 years ago · report as spam
  4. graefin

    graefin

    wooo! That was fast! Thanks!

    about 6 years ago · report as spam

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This is the original article written in: English. It is also available in: Deutsch.